Book Reviews

#TBT: Redeemed by PC and Kristin Cast

I know I said I would only review books that I read more than a year ago but I can’t help myself. I have to tell you what I thought of Redeemed by P.C. and Kristin Cast. It’s the 12th and last book in the House of Night Series. I remember starting the series when I was a freshman in high school, and now six years later, we’ve reached the end. It’s been a long journey, and I’d be lying if I said I hadn’t almost given up on the series. It was just so long and I wanted to hurt someone every time I reached the end of a book and it said “The End…for now.” So I guess I’ll review the series as a whole but focus on Redeemed at the end.

The quality of the writing for the series either got worse or I got pickier but I’ll admit they are not the most well-written of books. There are plenty of grammatical mistakes in each book and the sentence structure is sometimes hard to follow. Also, the chapters towards the end of the series are divided up strangely and the switch in character perspectives isn’t always smooth. The writing isn’t absolutely terrible but it could do with some more editing. Also the pacing of the books is a little off. Each book is about 200-300 pages which cover about 3-7 days in the book universe. But the time lapse between books is sometimes a few hours, if not a few minutes from book to book. It’s not like that in the first four books or so but it makes the wait between books annoying and I always wondered why they didn’t just make some of the later books longer. Honestly, this all sounds harsher than I mean it to be but it’s the truth. They are not well-written books.

So why did I stick around?

To put it plain and simple, I fell in love with the story. Yes they’re books about vampires but it’s different. You don’t turn into a vampire through a bite and you aren’t born a vampire. In this universe, the gene to become a vampire is within everyone. Once someone reaches puberty, the gene either stays dormant or it’s activated. When active, a Tracker (a vampire who tracks future vampires) marks the teenager with the outline of a blue crescent moon tattooed on their forehead, making them a vampire fledgling and starting the Change. Once the change is complete, the moon fills in and they get a mask like tattoo from their forehead to their cheekbones. Each tattoo is unique to the vampire. Not every fledgling becomes a vampire, though. Some reject the Change and they drown in their own blood (it’s as awful and macabre as it sounds). The vampire society is matriarchal, which is honestly kind of refreshing. The vampires are sensitive to light, drink blood from willing humans, called Consorts, and live within the human world which isn’t always very open to them. They believe in Nyx, the goddess of night. There’s so much I could tell you about this world but I don’t have time. Click here to go to the House of Night website and learn more.

I apologize for the tangent. Back to the review and the story, the series follows Zoey Redbird, a sixteen-year-old fledgling who is fighting the forces of evil with her friends. (That sounds more cheesy than it is….I promise it’s good!) I just really got sucked into the story. It’s just such a different and interesting take on vampires that I couldn’t help but be interested. The characters grow and change through the series and they make mistakes like any teenager does. The authors weren’t afraid to put a gay character as one of the protagonists. They weren’t afraid to show teenagers having sex with more than one person. I feel like a lot of authors write these romantic, one-true love stories where the characters have sex with only one person and live happily ever after. That’s not realistic. This book shows confused teenagers thinking they’re in love with someone and sleeping with them and then have them be heartbroken when it doesn’t work out. In the end, most of them settle down with one person but it took a lot of mistakes and heartbreak to get there. It’s a fascinating story. It has action and friendship and love and spirituality and character growth. If you can get past the writing, the story is so worth reading.

In terms of Reedemed, I thought it was a good ending to the series. It had what most of the fans were looking for. Closure. Yes, it had the same writing and pacing problems as the first books but dammit once you’re 11 books in, you have to see it to the end. It was a bit of an odd story arc with Neferet becoming a “goddess” and enslaving humans. It did have a bit of a disjointed quality to it but it wasn’t bad. It wasn’t the best book in the series by any means but it was a good finale. The story ended when it needed to end. I wasn’t left with any questions. Overall, I liked the book and the series and though I’m sad that I won’t be in this world any more, I was happy to see it finally end. (Seriously, 12 books is a bit much…)