At last, Zoey has what she wanted: the truth is out. Neferet's evil has been exposed, and the High Council is no longer on her side -- but she's far from done wreaking havoc in the vampyre world. First, a mysterious fire ravages the stables. Then, Neferet makes a devastating move that will test them all.With the seeds of distrust sown and Darkness breeding chaos at the House of Night, everyone must band together -- but that's proving to be more difficult than ever before. The twins are barely speaking and the House of Night's former enemy, Kalona, has now become their warrior, pushing their trust to the limit. To top it off, Zoey is pretty darn sure she might be losing her mind. She saw something when she looked at Aurox through the Seer Stone that she can hardly explain to herself, let alone her friends. Is it possible that Heath has come back in a different form? Is that why Zoey's so intrigued by Aurox, when it's so obvious that he's dangerous? And who would believe her if she told them? Zoey knows that following her instinct about Aurox might be just what they need to defeat evil . . . but if she's wrong, it could cause the destruction of those closest to her.With the tension at a breaking point and friendships on the line, can the nerd herd come together to stop the spread of Darkness before it's too late?
Release Date: October 16, 2012
Published By: St. Martin's Griffin
Review Copy: Hardcover, 320 pages
This series has been my guilty pleasure since I picked it up several years ago. I have always been there release day to pick it up each new installment and tear into it. The love though still there was wearing thin as of Burned for me. What started out with a huge bang began to drag a little for me. I felt like each book held the same problem and no progression. Basically it was doing circles. Zoey found out she was more and more blessed by Nyx and Neferet tried to thwart her because of her goodness and power. This book was what I hope is the start of a change for the series and will help spark the fire that has died.
Zoey is starting to actually grow up. In every book they say how she is becoming more and how the Goddess Nyx favors her but I found that she just didn't seem to be growing with her abilities and responsibilities. I loved Zoey when I started this series, like fan girl love but somewhere I think she became lost. I know that she just wanted to be a regular teen but when you know that you aren't and just never will be, there comes a time when you need to step up and the girl just wouldn't do it. Then in this book the growth came. She realized that she just had to start thinking and doing what she is meant to do instead of complaining about all that has gone wrong in her life. She is building up to be a Zoey that I can enjoy again.
The Nerd Herd is also growing up and growing apart. Aphrodite is way more mature and decisive than she has ever been. Actually truth be told I enjoy her more than Zoey right now. She can make up her mind and yet she still carries the unique Aphrodite snark that we have come to expect. The twins Erin and Shaunee aren't the twins anymore and to be honest as much as I miss the fun that they created, I like them separate more. Turns out that they were not really all that alike and Erin has some serious attitude and issues that were held in check because of Shaunee. Damien is still the calm of the group and I just want to squeeze him. I love that guy so much and think that he needs to get a little more face time. There is also the new girl Shaylin, but to be honest I'm not sure I really have an opinion of her yet. Her gift of True Sight is awesome though.
Grandma Redbird was seriously fierce in this book. I have always loved and respected this woman as a character. she accepts who she is and who others around her are. When she accept Aurox into her home it wasn't really a surprise. She takes everything as it is and seems to see the better in people, even when it isn't really there. Her fight with Neferet was kind of epic and I will not lie and say I wasn't more than a little tense when it came down to the two of them. Neferet has lost a lot and is becoming desperate. So her attack didn't really come as a surprise but the rejection kind of did. I don't want to tell too much but I didn't see what happened with her and her consort coming.
The romance is still flitting around everywhere you read with this series and I am glad that some things don't change when it comes to that. Zoey is with Stark and that is honestly how I believe it should be. Ya I was heart broken when Heath died but has everyone forgotten that he cheated on Zoey with her best friend? They may have loved each other but really the guy CHEATED on her and in any other book everyone would be calling for his head. People make mistakes and I get that but I also believe that what she and Stark has is awesome and I don't want the Heath/Aurox thing to change that. I am still also a fan of Stevie Rae and Rephaim. They are a symbol of change and second chances and they work so well together.
The overall story in this book got my attention a little more than the previous couple. Thanatos influence on the group really helps everyone out and is the biggest reason for Zoey's growth I believe. Everyone seems to be adjusting to how things are now and letting go of what once was for the most part. There is a reasonable amount of action and even some serious Kalona fighting action. I'm not sure if I can genuinely accept that he is a part of the good team yet and doesn't have some agenda of his own hidden somewhere. The biggest issue dealt with in this book was that things are not always as they seem.
I wish I could say that I am dying for the next book but I will live. That is not to say that I wont pick it up soon after it releases because when it comes to this series I am kind of like a junkie looking for her next fix. I can't not pick it up because I am already way too far in to give it up and I do enjoy the writing. This book did rekindle some of my love and I hope that the next book continues with that. I just want everything to continue moving forward so that I can go back to loving the series and know that all these books in between that frustrated me so, were for something.
"Good to know. My mamma always said I needed a keeper. Hope she rests better knowin' I got me one."- Travis
I wanted to sream I know! I'm way too young to save the world! Instead I stood there silent, feeling stupid and useless while Thanatos bent and gathered the bodies of....
"Actually, the zapping light was kinda like Sookie's fairy-light-thing. Do you think there's any chance I'm a fairy?""No, Z. Focus. True Blood is fiction. This is the real world. What happened after the zapping light?"
"He's not going to do shit. Bow boy will shoot his ass. Then you'll slit him open from crotch to throat. I couldn't be safer if I was teaching kindergarten. Well, I'd be totally nauseated by the brats surrounding me, but you get my meaning."- Aphrodite
I couldn't have been more surprised if Aurox had crouched down and given birth to a litter of kittens.