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P.C. Cast is an award-winning fantasy and paranormal romance author. She lives and teaches in Oklahoma. Kristin Cast, has won awards for poetry and journalism. She also lives in Oklahoma, where she attends Northeastern State University as a biology major.
Gr 9 Up-P.C. Cast and Kristin Cast's companion (St. Martin's Griffin, 2011) to "The House of Night" series details the early days of the tragic love affair between Bryan "Dragon" Lankford and Anastasia, professor of Spells and Rituals at Tower Grove school. Even before Anastasia meets Dragon, something about the talented fledgling offends her. But when a spell gone awry reveals to her that the arrogant young Sword Master is her true love, her revulsion instantly morphs into gag-worthy infatuation. Meanwhile, Dragon struggles with his conflicting desire to genuinely impress the well-endowed priestess or simply bed her. The only thing preventing this from evolving into a full-fledged bodice ripper is that, after all the intense eye-gazing, sappy dialogue, and bad innuendo, the actual physical intimacy between the characters is anti-climactic. Cast gets so caught up in creating this lackluster romance that more important plot components-the threat posed by Sheriff Biddle, the evil force stalking the House, and Dragon's vow to choose peace over his sword-fall to the wayside and feel more like random afterthoughts than elements that would further the story. Woven throughout is an abundance of dreadful poetry. Caitlin Davies's narration does further disservice to this cliche-laden romance. Her reading is inconsistently paced, she sometimes seems to stumble over her words, and her attempt at various accents doesn't work.-Alissa LeMerise, Oxford Public Library, MI (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.