Vampyres. High School. Being different. Fitting in. You know, the usual.
Marked by P.C. Cast and Kristin Cast covers all the horrors, a minor joys, of high school all while incorporating a vampyre mythos into the mix. Zoey is going about her day in high school and all is normal, that is until she sees the dead guy who marks her as a vampyre, thus altering her entire life. Her parents, particularly her religious fanatic step-father, believe this is a curable thing and lock her in her room. Zoey, getting sicker the longer she’s away from the vampyre school, House of Night, leaves her home to get her grandmother to take her there or face dying. Upon arrival at the House of Night, Zoey quickly learns that she is special and she is more developed than most fledglings, which furnishes her with attention she didn’t really want from the other, especially older, students. As Zoey navigates her new life as a vampyre she is also faced with the traditional high school crap, like rivalries.
I thought it was interesting how vampyres were a part of the known world but stigmatized. In that respect it reminded me of True Blood; however, with its mention of many vampyres being movie stars, I instantly began to question the logic. As all vampyres are physically marked on their faces, it would stand to reason that the celebrities referenced in the book would need to have marks on their faces, but alas they don’t. There also wasn’t a mention of concealing the marks on celebrities, which would be all too easy to do with make-up or special effects. This kind of detail would have taken a mere sentence to cover but it was omitted, thus leaving a hole in the story.
I thought that the asides Zoey had were a good mixture of realistic and dramatic to help build her character as a teenage girl. And the vocabulary used, for the most part was good. I can’t believe that “poopie” was used; while I could see the argument of it being utilized as a part of character building for a non-swearing teen, it’s just not realistic. Zoey is at the age where teens are going to swear, no matter their upbringing.
Overall, I’d give it a 3 out of 5 stars.