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Hunted: House of Night    by P. C. Cast & Kristin Cast order for
by P. C. Cast
Order:  USA  Can
Griffin, 2010 (2009)
Hardcover, Softcover, CD

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* * *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

The previous House of Night novel, Untamed, ended with Zoey Redbird, her nerd herd, her new friend Aphrodite (Vision Girl), her vampyre ex-boyfriend Erik, Darius (a Son of Erebus warrior with a thing for Aphrodite), and her BFF Stevie Rae joining the latter's red fledglings in their refuge (tunnels under the city) after High Priestess Neferet awakened a very old, very dangerous, and very charismatic immortal, Kalona, from his imprisonment under the earth.

As Hunted opens, the group work on healing Stevie Rae (skewered by an arrow from 'cute Bad Boy' Stark, who is back from the dead and under Neferet's influence). They succeed but Aphrodite is Imprinted on country-bumpkin Stevie Rae as a side effect. Though her internal alarms are still warning her that Stevie Rae has secrets, and that all is not right with the red fledglings, Zoey and Stevie Rae make peace between their two groups. Zoey learn that one of the reds, Kramisha, is writing visionary verses, with clues on how to defeat Kalona.

Zoey's love life grows ever more complicated through this episode, beginning when her human ex-boyfriend Heath shows up - inadvertently drawing Zoey into a very painful encounter with a Raven Mocker, after which she Imprints Heath again. She still has feelings for Stark, despite his dark doings since his rebirth, and Kalona clearly has a thing for Zoey, entering her dreams and calling her A-ya. After a return to the House of Night and a daring escape, Zoey's Circle seek a very special place of power for a major confrontation with the bad guys.

House of Night is an engaging series, a cross between Lisi Harrison's The Clique and Stephenie Meyer's Twilight series. In presenting these adventures of followers of the mother goddess Nyx, P.C. and Kristin Cast emphasize the power of free will and the power of love. As Zoey tells Stark, 'We all have bad things inside us, and we all choose either to give in to those bad things or to fight them.' As Hunted ends, Zoey has won the battle but not the war, leaving room for plenty more challenges to come in the House of Night.

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