Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “First Kill (The Slayer Chronicles, #1)” as Want to Read:
First Kill (The Slayer Chronicles, #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

First Kill

(The Slayer Chronicles #1)

4.09  ·  Rating details ·  4,446 ratings  ·  362 reviews
The first book in the fantastic new series from the creator of The Chronicles of Vladimir Tod--now in paperback!

Over a million readers have heard Vlad Tod's story; now it's time to hear Joss's. When Joss McMillan witnesses his sister's murder--at the hands of a vampire--his whole life changes. He learns that not only is his family part of the Slayer Society, a group whose
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published September 20th 2011 by Dutton Juvenile
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about First Kill, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Kaysee I would say it is interesting to see where Joss comes from, but I had to read it a second time a few years later since my first attempt was right afte…moreI would say it is interesting to see where Joss comes from, but I had to read it a second time a few years later since my first attempt was right after I finished the last Vlad Todd book and it did me no good. I think reading this knowing it is it's own series about Slayers even if it exists in the same universe makes it a bit more enjoyable. Though their are mentions to Vlad near the end. (less)

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.09  · 
Rating details
 ·  4,446 ratings  ·  362 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of First Kill (The Slayer Chronicles, #1)
Aug 01, 2014 rated it did not like it
I don’t usually read young-adult novels. Not that I have anything against them… I suppose I’m not usually drawn to them I guess. From Heather Brewer; New York Times best-selling author of The Chronicles of Vladimir Tod comes The Slayer Chronicles: First Kill. This book made me open my wallet at the bookstore and purchase it is because it’s about vampire hunters…and those are my favorite kind of vampire stories.

A vampire kills Joss McMillan’s six-year-old sister. At the funeral, his uncle, Abrah
Mar 16, 2011 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mike (the Paladin)
Nov 06, 2014 rated it did not like it
Shelves: ya-fantasy
....this book is very young, and sadly very (in my opinion of course) very poorly written.

Now, I know that's a subjective statement and I'm sure many will like this book. It's all a matter of taste but I was really....REALLY glad to put it aside.

First the dialogue. I write and one of the things I'm never satisfied with in my own manuscripts is the dialogue. Here the conversations always (for me of course) came across as stilted and stiff.

Aside from that there is very little plot at all other th
Oct 06, 2011 rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Lisa Mandina
Feb 19, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Wow. I have to say that I loved the Vladimir Tod series by Heather Brewerand really enjoyed it! Loved the vampire theme from a different point of view. Loved this world that she created. So I entered into the Slayer Chronicles not quite sure how I'd like it, because I kind of liked the vampires better this time, unlike in Buffy the Vampire Slayer, where you do root mostly for the slayer. And, I didn't really like Joss that much, which this book was about, because of how he tried to slay Vlad in ...more
Mike (the Paladin)
Oct 22, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya-fantasy
....this book is very young, and sadly very (in my opinion of course) very poorly written.

Now, I know that's a subjective statement and I'm sure many will like this book. It's all a matter of taste but I was really....REALLY glad to put it aside.

First the dialogue. I write and one of the things I'm never satisfied with in my own manuscripts is the dialogue. Here the conversations always (for me of course) came across as stilted and stiff.

Aside from that there is very little plot at all other th
Jun 13, 2014 rated it liked it
Recommended to TL by: Found on sale at Ollie's
Interesting idea of a novel, but with many ups and downs, for me at least. Joss I did love in the first half and a few of the Slayers but it started grating on me a bit around halfway through (though not enough to DNF it).

I get that Joss wants to avenger his sister's death (Little Cecile warmed my heart, even though we don't get much time with her) but his constant 'devotion' to this society got on my nerves and I wanted to shake him a couple times.

This 'Society' as a whole didn't seem worthy of
Chels Reynoso
Jan 23, 2013 rated it really liked it
First kill by Heather Brewer is the gruesome story of a young boy, Joss McMillan, who is pushed into a new reality when he witnesses his baby sister’s cruel death at the hands of a bloody vampire. I know what you’re thinking, oh god not another Twilight knock off, well stop right there! This book is actually from the contrasting perspective of a vampire slayer. Bewer switches things up by enlightening us readers to a slayer’s world of vivid violence-- I personally loved this alternative take. T ...more
Dec 19, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great male reader for the audiobook. I have the second one on CD too, which should meet my expectations, if this Audio is any indication. As a fan of the original Vladimir Tod series, I am really hoping for a crossover! Great way to spend my driving time :)
Sep 11, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: deseret-connect
I reviewed this book about a reluctant teenage vampire for Deseret Connect, and I think that a certain audience will really, really love it (teenagers and certain YA vampire enthusiasts). For me, I am happy that I liked it--it ended on two satisfying twists. Prose was pretty boring, honestly, and Joss's thoughts are full of cliches like "he would never know how much I needed mentoring" (not an actual quote). I'll link my full review later. Some things I wanted to mention but were to persnickety ...more
Christian West
Jul 29, 2014 rated it did not like it
Shelves: teen
A story of 13yo Joss who is destined to be a vampire slayer. The book centres around his training.

In reality the book spends an inordinate amount of time with the protagonist being physically abused by everyone. The rest of the time is him being upset about his sister being killed by a vampire.

In all honesty, it came across to me as a story about a boy being indoctrinated into a cult. At the start he at least questions their motives and aims but by the end he seems willing to believe anything h
Emma Hamdan
Feb 19, 2019 rated it it was ok
It had a very interesting plot, but it took a while to get going. The book wasn’t very well written and there wasn’t very good descriptive language when describing the characters and at times they felt very flat. It felt very corny and almost a joke and I didn’t enjoy it. The book was more of a hate read.
Kerry Hagins
Jul 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I read Heather Brewer's other series growing up and loved it, now as an adult training to be a teacher I've finally started her other major series. Honestly, both series are on equal footing with each other, both have intriguing protagonists who are a part of interesting societies and story lines. Can't wait to read the rest of the series!
Sophia (Bookwyrming Thoughts)
Sep 02, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: in-my-habitat
Original Review posted on Bookwyrming Thoughts

Note: Formatting has been lost due to copy and paste.

Joss has always had this perfect life – good parents, a super close cousin that can pass as a best friend, and an ever so adorable little sister – until she was murdered. Then his life goes downhill from there and he discovers a group of vampire slayers that some of his family members are a part of for generations that can help avenge his sister's death.

I thought The Slayer Chronicles would be a s
Apr 09, 2012 rated it really liked it
Joss Mcmillan becomes a slayer. A slayer of bloodthirsty vampires. He does this to set his little sister’s soul to rest. When Joss was ten years old he witnessed his six-year-old sister’s death. He saw the streak of dark blood flow from her little neck; he saw the red lipped monster standing over the lifeless girl. He froze with fear, he feels he to blame for his sister’s untimely death. His sister- Cecile haunted his dreams. She taunted him in the nightmares blaming him for her death. Joss drea ...more
Reading Vacation
Aug 09, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Joss Macmillan (yes, THAT Joss Macmillan) has a tragic past. He once had a little sister, Cecile, who was his reason for living, his only friend. When Joss was ten, Cecile died at the hands of a vampire. Distraught and seeking revenge, Joss began training as a vampire slayer. Now, three years later, Joss prepares to put his skills into action.

If you like action, you will go wild for Joss’ vampire slayer training. There are rituals, explosives, hand-to-hand combat, and agonizing fight scenes. Sin
Brian Asencio
Oct 29, 2011 rated it liked it
Heather Brewer successful series of The Chronicles of Vladimir Tod was awesome. Now with her new book series The Slayer Chronicles it starts with the character from Vladimir Tod, Joss. This is about how Joss joined the slayer society and how his sister died. Challenges of life can be painful. It worths having challenges because it teaches you life lessons and confidence in yourself. After his sister was killed by a vampire, he trains to be a slayer. He is under training under his uncle, Abraham ...more
Ryan Burt
Mar 16, 2012 rated it really liked it
1) Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

2) Genre: Young Adult / Paranormal

3) Synopsis: Joss Macmillan experiences something horrible and with that his life changes. With that change he gets on the path to become a Slayer. The only question is if he has the stuff to become a Slayer.

4) Feelings: This is a partner book to the Vladimir Tod series. I really liked the Vladimir Tod series but was never the biggest fan of Joss Macmillan. So I fought picking this book up for a while. I am glad I did. I liked this bo
Blow Pop
Apr 12, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Content warnings: Abuse, manipulation, death, violence, fanaticism


I now know WHY I don't care much for Joss (besides the bits we see of him in the chronicles of vladmir tod) and why I particularly DON'T like his uncle.

Seriously, setting your nephew up for failure. Assuming that he's the traitor because deaths just happened to be near him. Beating him near to death with your friends as a "trial". Making him a fanatic to the point th
Sep 16, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: gore-action
A story of a vampire slayer named Joss would be told in this book series. As for those who read The Chronicles of Vladimir Tod, Joss happened to be Vladimir's friend, and this book shows the background and the view of a slayer.

In this book, Joss swore to become a great slayer after the horrible incident that flipped his world. He will be facing physical and spiritual challenges including proving himself to his uncle and become a great slayer.

The perfect American family description at the beginni
Sep 30, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This book completely pummeled the idea of sparkly vampires. ‘First Kill’ was written for real vampire fans, and those who are not vampires fans as well.
Heather Brewer put her audience into the world of a young boy who despises blood suckers. After he is told of his family’s secret heritage of the Slayer Society, he begins his vampire slayer training as their new recruit. Throughout his brutal education of being a slayer, we learn his reasoning for his fuel.
‘First Kill’ is full of surprises, su
Glittery Mango (Ealee)
First Kill was good... but it wasn't really nearly as good as The Chronicles of Vladimir Tod. The Slayer Chronicles is off to a pretty decent start, it's just that not much happened in this book, I could definitely understand Joss's emotional conflicts and how he was taking in everything in his surroundings, but it just wasn't as well as portrayed. First Kill in the end twines in with some foreshadowing of the events of the Chronicles of Vladimir Tod. This book had an unexpected twist in the plo ...more
Braden Petersen
Dec 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This book is really good! This is a series but you have to read The Chronicles of Vladimir Tod first for it to make any sense. This is about Joss McMillan who's sister was murdered by a vampire. Then, Joss learns he is vampire slayer. He goes to a cabin in the woods with his uncle Abraham to be trained. I definitely recommend this book to anyone who likes fiction, adventure, and action books. Also, a little mystery plays into it. I really like this book and you should read it too!
Sep 26, 2011 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Bibliophile  Booklover
Oct 17, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I enjoyed this book, and can't wait to read the next one. it took me longer to read b/c i'm bias b/c i love the chronicles of vladmir tod onwe b/c i love vlad plain and simple and i sympathized with the vampire more than the slayer. what can i say i'm a vampire chick
Aug 28, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
What I expected: vampires are monsters
What I got (not complaining): humans are just as capable of being monsters themselves

(Do I really NEED spoiler alerts here? The book isn't particularly old, but I feel like at this point, everyone who would have read the book should have read it by now, and I'm just ridiculously late to the party.)

(view spoiler)
Cameron Sartin
Dec 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The book The Slayer Chronicles First Kill is a story about Joss McMillan who has to grow up in a world filled with vampires. The story begins with Joss having a normal life. He has a happy family; his mother and father and his younger sister Cecile. Then one day Joss hears crying coming from Cecile’s room when he comes to investigate it he sees that a vampire has killed her from sucking her blood the funeral for Cecile he talks with his Uncle, Abraham, and tells him the true story about ...more
Feb 11, 2018 rated it it was ok
I did not finish this. The writing was noncommittal-- "No, he would use that pain, tuck it somewhere inside of him until he had the strength to find whatever had killed her and bring it to justice somehow." Really? Somewhere, whatever, somehow. All these words in one sentence to make it seem like this boy, who is supposed to be intellegent, is really just clueless.

Not only that, but this kid who is supposedly really young is the perfect son. Always great with his baby sister, does his chores wi
Aug 31, 2017 rated it really liked it
Narration: The story was narrated from an outside person, also known as a third person narration. The narration seemed very factual and non opinionated not expressing their opinion.

Setting: The setting takes place in the outskirts of New York in a cabin out in the middle of the woods where they are separated from the rest of the human world.

Theme: The theme i thought was to make out whatever life throws your way because there is a lot of crap thrown at Joss and he just has to make out what life
Dec 25, 2018 rated it it was ok

I don’t believe for a second that a 13 yr old has had absolutely 0 friends all his life, especially one that’s highly competent physically, there were a lot of decisions made in this book that i found confusing or that seemed like missed opportunities. I was not rooting for Joss at all because of his self defeatist attitude and how he seemed to remain stagnant in that throughout the novel rather than grow more confident in himself. While I acknowledge that there are 13 year olds like that I d
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
How does Slayer fit into Vlad Tod? 2 9 Sep 30, 2013 06:50AM  
Is Joss whiny? 10 12 Sep 23, 2013 07:01AM  
The Chronicles Of...: The Slayer Chronicles: First Kill 5 8 May 15, 2013 01:59PM  
Madison Mega-Mara...: First Kill (Slayer Chronicles 1) 1 3 Sep 24, 2012 03:51PM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • The Blood Between Us
  • The Magic Thief (Magic Thief, #1)
  • The Fallen and Leviathan (The Fallen, #1-2)
  • Maximum Ride Forever (Maximum Ride, #9)
  • Fang (Maximum Ride, #6)
  • Angel (Maximum Ride, #7)
  • Retold Classic Myths, Volume 1
  • A Stranger In My Grave
  • Finding Tess: A Mother's Search for Answers in a Dopesick America
  • It Burns: The Scandal-Plagued Race to Breed the World’s Hottest Chilli
  • Midnight for Charlie Bone (The Children of the Red King, #1)
  • A Week in the Woods
  • Lost and Found
  • Otomen, Vol. 7 (Otomen, #7)
  • The Janitor's Boy
  • Otomen, Tome 4 (Otomen, #4)
  • Otomen, Vol. 2 (Otomen, #2)
See similar books…
Heather Brewer is the pseudonym of Zac Brewer…but you can call him Z.

Zac is the NYT bestselling author of The Chronicles of Vladimir Tod series, as well as The Slayer Chronicles series, Soulbound, The Cemetery Boys, The Blood Between Us, and more short stories than he can recall.

He grew up on a diet of Twilight Zone and books by Stephen King. He chased them down with every drop of horror he could

Other books in the series

The Slayer Chronicles (3 books)
  • Second Chance (The Slayer Chronicles, #2)
  • Third Strike (The Slayer Chronicles, #3)

Related Articles

  Whether you love the horror genre or just tiptoe into it ahead of Halloween, we have book picks for every level of scared you want to...
429 likes · 280 comments
“Because pieces of your heart clearly weigh more when they're sitting shattered at the bottom of your stomach.” 146 likes
“What are we going to blow up?"
Morgan sighed happily and slapped joss on the back. " Kid... you just said my seven favorite words.”
More quotes…