Book Critique: Betrayed (House of Night #2)

For review of all books in this series: Go here.

Stars: 3 / 5

Recommendation: Another series set in a world where humans and vampyres co-exist; with romance, mystery, learning to live a new life; and above all trust, friendship and belonging; everything melded together in the plot.

Betrayed is the second book in the House of Night young adult vampire-theme based fantasy fiction series co-authored by P. C. Cast and her daughter Kristin Cast, first published in October of 2007. We continue with the story of Zoey Redbird as she moves through the process of Change to become a vampyre.

The stories in the series revolve around 16-year old Zoey Redbird who is a fledgling vampyre attending the House of Night boarding school in Tulsa, Oklahoma. She is marked by a vampyre tracker forcing her to leave her home and family and move into the boarding school. But learning to be a vampyre is not easy, specially when one is Marked as special by the vampyre Goddess Nyx. Also all doesn’t seem to be what it looks like in the boarding school as well. What follows are a series of adventures in each book; uncovering hidden mysteries; finding true love; and above all embrace the destiny and live through it shining bright. The stories are told in first person narration.

The story in this book begins approx three weeks after the incidents from the previous book, Marked. The biggest problem that Zoey had on her mind was to find a ritual for her very first Dark Daughters & Sons full moon ritual as their new leader, and her ideas for the elite group; other than of course going through the Change process. But then football players are being found dead, drained of blood. And she is betrayed by someone very close to her. 

Zoey is still a strong character and Erik has become less confusing. However, the authors need to make her a bit more better I feel. Hopefully they did so in the remaining books which I have yet to read. She is a teenager of course and all the teenage angst and emotions need to be there in the plot, yet they all seem very drab and irritating at some points. 

I have read several other young adult fiction by other authors that come in the similar paranormal genre. However only few authors made a practice of using the teenage language in their stories even though the characters are teens. Authors Casts have done the same practice in this book. But the constant use of the teenage language such as - crap, Ho, jeesh - obviously makes you feel that you are in a teenage classroom and not in a novel. Again hoping they would have toned it down in the remaining books.

Zoey constantly goes into her mind and talks a lot within herself even when there are people around her, or those people talking to her. It is fine for a scene where she is alone and thinking things through. But this constant introspection, inner babbling as they call it, pretty soon wore out on me. Again I am hoping this also has reduced in the remaining books.

The elite group of fledgling vampyres is called Dark Daughters & Sons. However authors Casts interchange it with just "Dark Daughters" when talking about the group. Perhaps an abbreviation to the group name could help alleviate the confusing around the name, instead of using two different names.

Authors Cast continue to give us the medley of teenage emotions We see a lot of repeat paraphrasing as well. And of course like any other teenage flicks that I have read so far, authors had to give more than one boy for the girl to choose from.

Continuing in the world where humans and vampyres the plot in this second book is definitely strong, just the portrayal of the teenagers grated on me. I might take a break from this series before I continue for it might influence my thoughts on the series and do not like it instead.

With romance, mystery, learning to live a new life; and above all trust, friendship and belonging; everything melded together in the plot, it does come with a few flaws. But the book isnt completely unfortunate either. 

Spoiler Alerts:

1. Plot Reveals:

a. Zoey gives an oath of one favor to Aphrodite in this plot. What does Aphrodite ask of Zoey is something we need to watch out for. 

b. Loren recites a haiku to Zoey - Cream and silk as one / How I long to taste and touch / The moon watches us - and says it was by a poet who wrote centuries ago. However the only reference to the poem I found was it being referenced in a blog by Blue Velvet. Wonder who the original author was of this haiku.

c. Damien & Jack seem to form a couple; while Shaunee shows interest in Cole & Erin shows interest in Drew. 

d. Stevie Ray doesn’t survive the Change and dies in this book. However, she is converted to the undead, and now is head of all those undead vampyres. The book ends with Zoey promising to find out what exactly is happening and how to save Stevie Ray.

e. Media, Literature and Cooking stuff mentioned: Francis Bacon Quote; renditions from Othello by Erik; Star Wars movies;

2. Sub-Plots:

a. Zoey's birth family - Mom Linda Heffer, step-father John Heffer, Elder of the People of Faith; older sister; younger brother Kevin; Grandma Sylvia Redbird.

b. Zoey's friends and teachers from her school in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma before she was Marked: Kayla Robinson, her ex-bestfriend; Heath Luck, her ex-boyfriend & football team quarterback; Mrs. Day, Chess Club head; Mr. Shaddox, History teacher; Kathy Richter; Dustin & Drew, Heath's friends & football players.

c. People of Faith members - Dr. Asher, family shrink; Damien's father is a minister at the Dallas branch.

d. Law Enforcement - Detective Martin; Detective Marx (his twin sister, Anne is a powerful adult vampyre).

e. From Marked:

i. What deal Neferet made with the Saint Augustine People of Faith monks to take over their monastery and convert it into House of Night. 

ii. Zoey has imprinted on Heath unknowingly when she sips blood from him. 

3. House Of Night Residents:

a. A Junk DNA strand triggered by hormonal changes in humans, starts the whole Change into a vampyre. The fledgling vampyres have to go through four years of Change process that are divided into four classes - third formers, fourth formers, fifth formers, sixth formers.

b. Staff - Neferet, High Priestess & Zoey's mentor; Professor Nolan; Professor Doner; Professor Vento; Professor Penthesilea; Professor "Dragon" Lankhord; Professor Garmy; Professor Lenobia; Professor Loren Blake, Vamp Poet Laureate; Professor Anastasia, Dragon's wife;

c. Adult vampyres - Sappho, media specialist; 

d. Fledgling vampyres - Erik Night, a drama student & one of Zoey's love interests; Aphrodite, Zoey's nemesis with a power to see visions of future; Enyo; Deino; Pemphredo; Sarah Freebird; Diana; Jack Twist; Drew Partain; Walter; Thor; Amanda; Kaci Crump; Cassie Kramme; Cole Clifton; 

e. Dark Daughters & Dark Sons - A group of elite fledgling vampyres. Zoey is the leader of this group & High Priestess in training as of Marked.

f. Zoey's friends here: Stevie Rae Johnson, her roommate; Erin Bates; Damien Maslin; Shaunee Cole; Erin and Shaunee are roommates; Their elements are - Shaunee is Fire, Stevie Rae is Earth, Erin is Water; Damien is Air and Zoey is Spirit. 

g. Animals in residence - Skylar, Neferet's cat; Beezlebub, Erin & Shaunee's cat; Cameron "Cammy", Damien's cat; Persephone, horse; Nala, Zoey's cat; Wolverine, Loren's cat; 

h. New species of undead vampyres are being created & Neferet is somehow responsible - Elliot; Venus Davis;

4. Grammatical / Character / Plot / Geographical / Historical / Mythological Errors:

a. On Pg. 55, the missing football player, Chris, has a cousin named Jon. But on Pg. 78, authors have another football player, Brad Higeons, missing who they name as Chris's cousin. So does Chris have more than one cousin? Or was the name mis-entered on either occasions?


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