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[Book Review] Untamed by P.C. Cast & Kristin Cast

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bookinfo

Title: Untamed (House of Night series #4)
Authors: P.C. Cast & Kristin Cast
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Published: September 23rd, 2008
ISBN-13: 9780312379834
Category: Fiction/Paranormal Romance/Vampire/Fantasy
Website: http://houseofnightseries.com/
Format: Ebook

 

bookblurb

Life sucks when your friends are pissed at you. Just ask Zoey Redbird – she’s become an expert on suckiness. In one week she has gone from having three boyfriends to having none, and from having a close group of friends who trusted and supported her, to being an outcast. Speaking of friends, the only two Zoey has left are undead and unMarked. And Neferet has declared war on humans, which Zoey knows in her heart is wrong. But will anyone listen to her? Zoey’s adventures at vampyre finishing school take a wild and dangerous turn as loyalties are tested, shocking true intentions come to light, and an ancient evil is awakened in PC and Kristin Cast’s spellbinding fourth House of Night novel. (Recommended for readers age 13 and older)

 

thoughts

Kiss and makeup after the breakups. Yes, our Zoey lost all of her boyfriends, but she got the Nerd Herd back plus Aphrodite. I’m happy about Stevie Rae who’s back on humanity track and help her fledlings turned to crazy vampires on the tunnel.

Aphrodite had a vision about apocalypse which involves war between vampires and humans. The ancient dark spirit was about to return, chanting songs about the return of the beast with Aphrodite as a medium. It’s got something to do with ancient Cherokee’s fallen angels, as told by Zoey’s grandmother. The Raven Mockers appeared to Zoey & her grandmother, even chanting a lost song that prophesied their father’s return.

One question that still lingers in my head: why the hell did the high priestess can’t recognize that Aphrodite’s mark has disappeared?

Some new characters were introduced. I feel bad for the transfer-fledgling, Stark, who had a fling with Zoey. Bad thing happened to him. Erik’s back, and Aphrodite’s love life blossomed again since Darius stepped in the House of Night.

There’s a major turn of event in this book that changed the fate of House of Night’s fledglings.

The fourth installment of House of Night is more action driven. The romance and the ooey-gooey were put aside. I like Untamed better than the previous installments. The explanation about ancient Cherokee mythology is an eye-opener.

 

Quotes copy

Good. You’re supposed to read it, and I hope you understand what the hell it means. I never can figure out poetry. It’s all boring bull shit.”

“Free will sometimes sucks.”

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[Book Review] Marked: House of Night 1

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Title: Marked (The House of Night Book 1)
Authors: P.C. Cast and Kristin Cast
Published: April 1st, 2007
Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin
Genre: YA/Paranormal/Vampire/Urban Fantasy/Supernatural
Format: Ebook

Enter the dark, magical world of the House of Night, a world very much like our own, except here vampyres have always existed. Sixteen-year-old Zoey Redbird has just been Marked as a fledgling vampyre and joins the House of Night, a school where she will train to become an adult vampyre. That is, if she makes it through the Change – and not all those who are Marked do.

It sucks to begin a new life, especially away from her friends, and on top of that, Zoey is no average fledgling. She has been chosen as special by the vampyre Goddess Nyx. Zoey discovers she has amazing powers, but along with her powers come bloodlust and an unfortunate ability to Imprint her human ex-boyfriend.

To add to her stress, she is not the only fledgling at the House of Night with special powers: When she discovers that the leader of the Dark Daughters, the school’s most elite group, is misusing her Goddess-given gifts, Zoey must look deep within herself for the courage to embrace her destiny – with a little help from her new vampyre friends.

Zoey adalah remaja keturunan suku Cherokee, salah satu suku terbesar dari 5 Indian tribes di Amerika. Suku Cherokee terkenal sangat spiritual. Buku pertama dari seri House of Night ini mengambil latar tempat di Tulsa, Oklahoma. menurut situs ini, memang banyak keturunan suku Cherokee yang bertempat tinggal di Tulsa.

Balik lagi ke Zoey, tokoh sentral dalam cerita ini. Zoey digambarkan sebagai anak pemberontak yang tidak bahagia sejak ibunya menikah lagi dengan John Heifer, ayah tirinya, seorang control freak yang juga salah satu tetua People of Faith, aliran agama radikal. Suatu hari, Zoey diikuti oleh seorang tracker, lalu muncul tanda bintang sabit didahinya, sebagai tanda bahwa Zoey adalah calon vampir yang harus pindah ke sekolah khusus calon vampir, House of Night. Perlahan, kekuatan supernatural Zoey semakin kuat, hingga ia didatangi langsung oleh dewi Nyx dan di”baptis” oleh Nyx. Zoey dijadikan mata dan telinga dewi Nyx.

Zoey bertemu dengan teman-teman baru, juga musuhnya, Aphrodite, ketua perkumpulan eksklusif, yaitu Daughters of Night. Aphrodite berambisi ingin menjadi high priestess. Masalah muncul ketika Zoey yang memiliki kekuatan istimewa menjadi murid Neferet, high priestess yang juga mengajar di House of Night.
Ditambah lagi Erik, mantan kekasih Aphrodite, suka dengan Zoey. Heath, mantan Zoey di sekolah lama, tidak putus asa, malah semakin semangat mengejar Zoey hingga ke House of Night.

Ciri-ciri vampir di buku ini agak berbeda dengan penjabaran vampir di buku Bram Stoker, Stephenie Meyer, atau Anne Rice.
Vampirism terjadi karena seseorang diberi tanda, dididik sebagai murid di House of Night, dan kuat hingga lulus sekolah. Hanya murid terpilih yang bisa menjadi vampir. Yang tidak lulus akan mati.

Bloodlust tetap ada, tapi biasanya semakin tinggi tingkatan seeorang, kevampirannya akan muncul.

Di buku ini, Zoey mengalami masa transisi dari remaja biasa hingga menjadi murid di House of Night, pre-vampire.

Yang seru adalah saat Zoey dan teman-temannya melakukan ritual purifikasi menggunakan elemen: udara, api, air, bumi, dan roh. Lebih mirip ritual witch daripada vampir.

Penggunaan herbs dalam ritual juga menarik. Menurut buku ini, sage digunakan untuk mengusir energi negatif. Ritual ini pada awalnya memang dilakukan oleh Native Americans, tetapi di jaman modern ini, ahli Fengshui juga melakukan hal yang sama, terutama jika baru pindah rumah atau kantor.

Smudging-Crystal

Menurut situs ini, weengush atau sweet grass digunakan untuk membersihkan tubuh, pikiran dan jiwa. Disakralkan oleh suku Indian karena sweet grass merupakan simbol penyucian. Agak membingungkan karena menurut situs tersebut, asap sweet grass tidak disukai roh jahat. Tetapi, menurut buku Marked, asap sweet grass bisa mengundang roh-roh lain yang jahat.

Zoey menyebutkan pohon oak dianggap sakral untuk bangsa Cherokee. Menurut situs ini, pohon oak dihubungkan dengan misteri api suci, salah satu elemen penting dalam ritual Cherokee.

Satu sisi, buku ini agak childish, tapi isinya sangat tidak childish. Apa gue bakal lanjut baca seri House of Night? Absolutely! This book is addicting.

Nggak sabar kelanjutan kisah Zoey dengan Erik dan Heath juga Aphrodite.

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