Crimson Savior is the first book in the Hell’s Guardian Chronicles written by Isabel Castruita. It’s the first in a new vampire series that carries a lot of the same characteristics as the Vampire Academy series written by Richelle Mead.
Zyra is an eighteen year old who thinks she and her mother are a part of the Witness Protection Program due to the fact that they often have to move at a moment’s notice. However, when the next move ends up with Zyra attending the Ivashka Vampire Academy, she finds out that she belongs to a long line of Italian vampires called the Strigoi Benefici, a line that has sworn to protect the harmless breed of vampires called the Lugat from the evil vamps called the Varacolaci. Yes, it does get confusing but it’s all explained in the prologue and expanded on throughout the book. Zyra is also a Hell’s Guardian which makes her one very powerful and special young lady and puts her on the radar of Queen Velika Talsania. The queen wants to make slaves of the Lugat and will destroy anyone or anything that gets in her way. There is also a love triangle since what would a young adult novel be without one causing all kinds of teen angst. I had some questions about the validity of the love relationship between Zyra and her vampire boyfriend, such as how does she fall head over heels and know she wants to be with him forever after only knowing him for a couple of days? The speed by which a lot of things happen in the book was questionable as is the fact that the characters don’t ask for explanations of things. Zyra, for example, just seemed to accept that she is a vampire and would train to be a Hunter. She also graduated in an extraordinary amount of time.
The characters are, for the most part, very enjoyable and are ones that I will enjoy reading about in future books. I’m sure they will continue to be developed throughout the series. Overall, I enjoyed the story and it has all of the ingredients of becoming a good series. It just needs to be polished up a bit and maybe some aspects made a bit more believable, such as the ones I mentioned above. The storyline may be fictional but the emotions and reactions should have some modicum of realism. There is a lot of potential in this book and therefore I look forward to reading the next in the series. I read the digital version of this book and it formatted very well. The cover is well done and eye-catching.