Friday, May 14, 2010

Review: Burned (House of Night #7) by P.C. and Kristin Cast

Burned (House of Night Novels)Title: Burned (House of Night #7)

Authors: P.C. Cast and Kristin Cast

Pages: 384

Source: Library

Rating: 5/10

Challenge: Read 'n' Review Challenge

First Sentence: *I had to give this to a patron before writing the review, so no first sentence!*

Summary (From Amazon/book flap):

Things have turned black at the House of Night. Zoey Redbird’s soul has shattered. With everything she’s ever stood for falling apart, and a broken heart making her want to stay in the Otherworld forever, Zoey’s fading fast. It’s seeming more and more doubtful that she will be able pull herself back together in time to rejoin her friends and set the world to rights. As the only living person who can reach her, Stark must find a way to get to her.  But how?  He will have to die to do so, the Vampyre High Council stipulates.  And then Zoey will give up for sure. There are only 7 days left…

Enter BFF Stevie Rae.  She wants to help Z but she has massive problems of her own.  The rogue Red Fledglings are acting up, and this time not even Stevie Rae can protect them from the consequences.  Her kinda boyfriend, Dallas, is sweet but too nosy for his own good.  The truth is, Stevie Rae’s hiding a secret that might be the key to getting Zoey home but also threatens to explode her whole world.

In the middle of the whole mess is Aphrodite: ex-Fledgling, trust-fund baby, total hag from Hell (and proud of it).  She’s always been blessed (if you could call it that) with visions that can reveal the future, but now it seems Nyx has decided to speak through her with the goddess’s own voice, whether she wants it or not.  Aphrodite’s loyalty can swing a lot of different ways, but right now Zoey’s fate hangs in the balance.

Three girls… playing with fire… if they don’t watch out, everyone will get Burned.

My Two Cents:

Well. I really enjoyed the early portion of this series. I thought it was a great take on vampire lore and showed a lot of potential. That being said, I was way less than impressed with this installment.

First, the book just lacked any of the cohesiveness and charm of the earlier books. I think the problem has a lot to do with the fact that Zoey is pretty much not present for about 90 percent of the book. It was just really hard to read; it took me nearly four days to read a book that should have taken me maybe a day. I just wasn't feeling it.

Along the same lines, everything that I liked and everything that was fun about the characters earlier in the series was just gone. There was no spark, no interesting people propelling the story forward. It just kind of hung there.

One of the things that's always bugged me about this series is the way the characters talk. The Casts seem to be trying so hard to reproduce "authentic" teen dialogue that they jump immediately into stereotypes. That's true with this installment, too, but the profanity was ratcheted up about 10,000,000 notches. Now, I'm no prude, and swearing in books usually doesn't bother me, but I was getting annoyed with all the profanity about 10 pages in. Then, I started counting the swear words. A few pages later, I stopped counting at about 25. It was so distracting that, sometimes, I couldn't even pay attention to what was going on in the story because I was so busy cringing at yet another swear word. It was just too much, and I really think it has no business being that prevalent in a young adult book. People talk so much about how "awful" teens are and how bad their mouths are, and this book is just another encouragement of that stereotype. OK. Rant over.

I was really surprised with how little I actually liked this book. It seemed to be one big place-filler because not much really happened. Unless you like the earlier books in this series, I would suggest staying away from this one. 

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