The House of Night series is set in a world very much like our own, except in 16-year-old Zoey Redbird's world, vampyres have always existed. In this first book in the series, Zoey enters the House of Night, a school where, after having undergone the Change, she will train to become an adult vampire--that is, if she makes it through the Change. Not all of those who are chosen do. It’s tough to begin a new life, away from her parents and friends, and on top of that, Zoey finds she is no average fledgling. She has been Marked as special by the vampyre Goddess, Nyx. But 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 club, 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.
I'm a latecomer to the House of Night series but I've seen it mentioned in so many reviews and on so many peoples' blogs that I thought it was about time I checked it out. What really fascinates me about the series as a whole is the collaborative process of mother and daughter, P.C and Kristin Cast writing the books together. As I was reading it, I kept wondering who had written which bit and who'd come up with certain ideas or scenes in the story. Obviously P.C Cast is already a hugely successful author so it's interesting that she's teamed up with her daughter for this series. I'm intrigued by how different they might have been had they been a solo effort.
Anyway, back to 'Marked' itself - from reading some of the reviews it seems that people either love it or hate it. It's been criticised a lot for it's weak portrayal of teens and for it's 'been done before' storylines. Personally, I didn't think it was quite as good as some other vampire books I've read. It's certainly not in the same league as Stephenie Meyer's 'Twilight' series or Richelle Mead's 'Vampire Academy' books but it was still an enjoyable spin on the vampire genre. The main character Zoey has to cope with the changes she's going through after having been marked as a vampyre and shipped off to vampyre finishing school, The House of Night. Once there, she has to contend with a lot of the same issues that teens at a brand new school face...a raging crush on the hot guy at school, making new friends and steering her way through the cliques and groups, whilst at the same time dealing with the whole changing-into-a-vampyre thing.
This was quite a quick and easy read. The story got better as it progressed and it certainly finished leaving me wanting more. I definitely enjoyed it enough to want to go out and get the rest of the books so I can find out what happens to Zoey next.