Wednesday, December 27, 2017

House of Night Review

House of Night Series
(Marked, Betrayed, Chosen, Untamed, Hunted, Tempted, Burned, Awakened, Destined, Hidden, Revealed, Redeemed)
By: P.C. Cast & Kristen Cast

When 16-year-old Zoey Redbird is Marked by a vampyre tracker and begins to undergo the Change into an actual vampyre, she has to leave behind her family in Tulsa and move into the House of Night, a boarding school for other fledglings like her. It’s tough to begin a new life, away from her parents and friends, and on top of that, Zoey finds she is no average fledgling. She has been singled out by the vampyre Goddess, Nyx. Although Zoey has awesome new powers, it’s not so easy to fit in when everyone knows you’re "special" – and some people wish you weren’t....

As Zoey tries to make new friends and maybe find a hot boyfriend (or three), she comes up against all kinds of evil, from the perfect-looking, super-popular girl with not-so-innocent plans, to the mysterious deaths happening at the House of Night and all over Tulsa, and the beautiful high priestess, Neferet, who seems to have Zoey’s best interests at heart…or does she? Things at the House of Night are rarely what they seem. Can Zoey find the courage deep within herself to find the truth and embrace her destiny?

I want to start this review by thanking my friend Stevie and my sister, Alli, for both recommending this series to me and allowing me to borrow their books so I wouldn't have to go buy all 12 books without knowing whether or not I would like them. There's always a measure of trust that you extend to someone by allowing them to borrow books, especially if they're favourites of yours, and I'm grateful that they trusted me enough to lend them to me. 

This is a bit of a different kind of review as I am going to be reviewing all the books in the series as one. As you all know I am a speed reader, and these books were pretty short compared to my usual novels, with good reason as they are geared to a young adult, almost teen-aged audience. So unfortunately with the speed that I read combined with the length of the books, I read them so fast and so close together that they melded into one another. I read one or sometimes two per day. Honestly, I'm not sure I could figure out which content was in which book specifically to write twelve separate reviews. So please keep that in mind when reading this review. I'm sure some of the books were better than others, and I distinctly remember reading one or two of them and thinking how pointless I felt they were because of lack of detail or lack of main plot involvement. 

When I began the series I was impressed with the idea of teens getting "marked" and thus changing them into vampires. It's an interesting concept of some 'higher power' selecting only certain people to be apart of the vampire race, and even then their place is not guaranteed. It seems they still have to partake in some sort of test that determines if their bodies are even equipped to deal with such a drastic change. It is definitely an original idea that gave me a lot of hope and high expectations right from the onset of reading the first book. Unfortunately, the series overall did not live up to my high expectations and although I did enjoy it for the most part, I was a little bit bored quite a lot of the time. I began the series knowing that it was a Young Adult series, but I really didn't realize just how Young Adult it was. Most of the YA books I read have a level of maturity that I've come to expect from all YA books now, but this series seemed to be aimed for 10-13 year old audiences. Once I acclimated myself to that fact I was able to get into the series a little more, although I have to say, the use of the word "bullpoopie" which is used constantly in all of the books, was the most annoying thing I've ever come across in any book I've read and it was almost enough in itself to put me off reading the books.

The main plot line carried through the entire series, which I enjoyed, much to my own surprise. I usually find that drawn out conflicts can quickly become stale but the authors did a great job at keeping the reader interested in seeing the issue resolved and the villain dealt with.  There were a series of smaller conflicts thrown into every book in the series, and most of them were geared to the 'pre-puberty' audience so there was a lot of relationship issues, boy issues, mean girl issues and friend issues. They were mostly dull and failed to keep my attention, unless they involved characters that I found myself emotionally invested in. 

There were a lot of characters in this series. A lot of main characters even. The forefront character, Zoey, was not a character that I liked. She spent the first half of the series flitting from guy to guy and drawing out her issues with them, making the problems a million times more dramatic than they needed to be. I found her slutty tendencies and her lack of regard for the feelings of the males that she dragged along to discolour my opinion of her early on and she never did anything to raise my opinion of her. She had five close friends in the series, only one of whom I liked. I felt the supporting characters went through more personal growth than Zoey did, so even though I may have been indifferent to all of them in the beginning I grew to appreciate their respective stories. I think the only character that I liked the whole way through the series and really felt for was Heath. He had such a bad hand dealt to him and his character was a genuinely good person. His story was heartbreaking. 

Overall while I may not have loved the series it's a series that needed to be written. It's a fantastic introductory Fantasy series for a younger generation who aren't interested in reading all about sex and more adult problems that they can't relate to. I fully believe that this series could absolutely help turn a young reader into a YA Fantasy fanatic. The authors did a great job at keeping all the content in the books relate-able to pre-teens, while keeping the books age appropriate. 

Final Rating:
Probability of Rereading:

Thanks for reading!

Opinionated Bookworm

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