Alex Van Helsing: Vampire Rising by Jason Henderson | Paperback | Barnes & Noble
Alex Van Helsing: Vampire Rising

Alex Van Helsing: Vampire Rising

4.3 72
by Jason Henderson
     
 

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This doesn’t happen . . . does it?

Two vampire attacks in his first three days at boarding school and Alex Van Helsing realizes there’s more to the family name than he thought—and more to this area of Switzerland than meets the eye. Lurking underneath Lake Geneva lies a secret vampire university called the Scholomance. And somehow the vampires

Overview

This doesn’t happen . . . does it?

Two vampire attacks in his first three days at boarding school and Alex Van Helsing realizes there’s more to the family name than he thought—and more to this area of Switzerland than meets the eye. Lurking underneath Lake Geneva lies a secret vampire university called the Scholomance. And somehow the vampires know a Van Helsing has arrived.

Special agent Sangster of the Polidorium—an undercover, international vampire-hunting organization—wants to train Alex in the tricks of the trade, but when two innocent teens are kidnapped, rehearsal is over. It’s up to Alex to infiltrate the Scholomance and rescue his friends . . . if he can survive the zombies, bullets, and fangs heading his way!

Editorial Reviews

ALA Booklist
“Trouble seems to follow Alex Van Helsing wherever he goes... Invigorated by likable teen heroes with believable interests (one loves vampire lore, the other manga). This first book in the Alex Van Helsing series seriously doesn’t suck.”
Publishers Weekly
Launching the Alex Van Helsing series, Henderson’s debut is a pedestrian mashup of common contemporary genres: action hero meets vampires in an elite boarding school setting. Unlike Hogwarts, Alex’s new school, Glenarvon Academy, is populated primarily with mundane (if wealthy) students; Alex, however, is far from ordinary, being descended from a family of vampire hunters, though his family’s past has been kept secret from him. But Glenarvon isn’t the only premier academy on Lake Geneva: its neighbors include the Scholomance, an equally elite educational facility for vampires. Early and violent encounters with vampires (which Alex has a preternatural ability both to detect and dispatch of) allay his initial skepticism about the supernatural, and soon he’s gearing up to face Icebreaker, a powerful and very famous vampire. Henderson’s prose is serviceable, but the dialogue in particular tends to be corny and trite (“'Joining the family business, are we?’ Icemaker snarled”). The plot, while action-heavy, is predictable, with plenty left unanswered for future books, making this an accessible but uninspired choice for reluctant readers. Ages 12-up. (May)
Voice of Youth Advocates (VOYA) (Starred Review)
“This book will engage readers easily and many will not be able to put it down... Characters and plot are strong and the development of a new twist on the Van Helsing and vampire mythology will make readers eager for the next in the series.”
VOYA - Karen Sykeny
This wonderful series opener is a compelling action, fantasy, horror story and tells the Van Helsing family history of hunting evil monsters like vampires and werewolves. Alex is a teenage boy who is sent to a boarding school in Geneva, Switzerland by his father after getting into a severe fight at his local school. Alex soon learns that what he thought was "not happening" and "not real" based on his father's words, is real. Vampires exist and he is the great-great-great grandson of Van Helsing. He finally understands that the "static" in his head is his ability to sense when evil is near. He befriends two boys at school, Paul and Sid, and they are all soon involved in this strange new world where evil really manifests as monsters that hunt and abuse mortal humans. Their literature teacher, Sangster, has mysterious connections to an order, the Polidori, which secretly protects people from vampires and other creatures. Alex's archenemy in this novel is a vampire called The Icemaker, whose background offers a nice surprise by tying into 19th Century literature. This book will engage readers easily and many will not be able to put it down. This excellent book is a must-have purchase for all libraries, especially where horror fiction is hot. Characters and plot are strong and the development of a new twist on the Van Helsing and vampire mythology will make readers eager for the next in the series. Reviewer: Karen Sykeny
Children's Literature - Amanda Ledbetter
Alex Van Helsing is a fourteen-year-old boy who has just begun studying abroad at Glenarvon Academy near Lake Geneva. Only two days after arriving, Alex follows the sound of a scream in the woods and finds himself face-to-face with a vampire. The next few days lead to more encounters with vampires, including witnessing the arrival of the powerful and deadly vampire Icemaker. Joining forces with a secret vampire hunting group known as the Polidorium, Alex learns the truth behind his family name and sets out to defeat Icemaker and his army of vampires before they can complete their sinister plan. The first book in the "Alex Van Helsing" series, this story is packed with action from the first to the last page. While vampires are an essential element of the story, Henderson has limited the blood and gore to isolated incidents, and only minimal foul language is present. The plot also contains ties to Frankenstein by Mary Shelley and Dracula by Bram Stoker, allowing language arts teachers to make connections and encourage their students to read these classic works of literature. Reviewer: Amanda Ledbetter
School Library Journal
Gr 6–10—Alex Van Helsing always believed he was a normal teen who just happened to possess a legendary last name. All that changes when he begins to experience strange sensations and is involved in the bizarre death of a student at Frayling Prep. His parents decide to send Alex to Switzerland in order to attend Glenarvon Academy near Lake Geneva. Alex's dreams of a new beginning are shattered when he is attacked by a vampire on his second day. He must now face the realization that his instincts about supernaturals have been right all along and that they do indeed exist. Mr. Sangster, Alex's teacher, reveals to him that the Van Helsings have always been an integral part of the Polidorium, a secret organization of vampire-hunters. The Polidorium is in Lake Geneva to find the Scholomance, a vampire stronghold under the leadership of an ancient vampire known as Icemaker. When the vampires take captive two of Alex's friends, the 14-year-old must take action. Henderson references Mary Shelley's Frankenstein to weave a great story line full of action, suspense, and adventure. The satisfying story captivates readers with a modern-day spin of James Bond meets Dracula. It has lots of bite that will have readers thirsting for more.—Donna Rosenblum, Floral Park Memorial High School, NY

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780061951008
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
07/26/2011
Pages:
272
Sales rank:
1,095,607
Product dimensions:
5.38(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.70(d)
Age Range:
13 Years

Meet the Author

Jason Henderson is the author of Alex Van Helsing: Vampire Rising, which was named Best of 2010 by VOYA, and Alex Van Helsing: Voice Of The Undead. He has written for games and comic books, including the Activision game Wolfenstein, the vampire action comic series Sword of Dracula, and the manga series Psy-Comm.

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