intense sensations

The taming of primeval sexual urges

Posted on: December 4, 2011

House of Night #1 (House of Night: The Graphic Novel, #1)House of Night #1 by P.C. Cast
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I had mixed feelings about this comic, which is based on a series of novels I haven’t read.

At first I hated the teenage stereotyping of the main characters. Do American teenage girls really squabble like this about boys? Are they really this shallow and feckless?

Then I hated the misappropriation of some of the world’s great mythic stories – Nyx, Persephone, Freya, et cetera.

But above all I disliked the way this story tames and domesticates the myth of the evil blood sucking vampire. This a more general trend in modern American teenage fiction so I suppose there’s nothing we can do about it but it saddens me deeply to see a powerful symbolic creature sapped of its life force in this way.

Then I smoothed my wrinkled brow and thought about it objectively. The story is coherent and works well as a metaphor for the journey into womanhood. Blood and lust are forever co-mingled in the adolescent female psyche. Establishing a finishing school in the heart of suburbia where primeval sexual urges can be understood and assimilated through archetypal mythic images is probably not a bad thing. I see nothing wrong with creating the conditions in which sexualised women are not seen as a threat to society, and this story helps to do that quite well.

The drawings are very good, particularly the ones set in mythical Norway, which are by Karl Kerschl.

So, all in all, it’s an intriguing little comic, which I ended up liking more the more I thought about it. I won’t be reading the novels, though, hahahahaha!


7 Responses to "The taming of primeval sexual urges"

What an entertaining review! I don’t personally read comics, but I have been curious about the House of Night series since it was recommended by a few people. And I have to say, after reading this, I am actually even more curious to read the novels themselves. How bizarre!

Hello, spooky Mrs Green! I’m glad you enjoyed the review. Oh, I would say go ahead and read the books! I think the mother in the mother-daughter team really knows her mythology and has probably created a very entertaining series. I’m not sure why they chose a man to write the comic. Is it narrow-minded of me to think only a woman can do justice to what goes through the minds of teenage girls? Maybe the books are much better!

Dark Horse usually publishes good graphic novels and adaptations of novels. I didn’t know they did the House of Night- thanks!

Hello Eeleen! I agree. Dark Horse do great comics. Like, um, um…


So what Dark Horse comics would you recommend?

Oh, Mr. Dark Horse just sent me an email! Star Wars and Buffy! LOL. Of course!

Aye that’d be the ones, plus Hellboy and Conan
Seasons greetings btw!

Season’s Greetings, Eeleen! May Hellboy and Conan keep you hot and comforted. I’ve heard Conan has a big heart.

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Books by Vanessa Wu

Lure of the Feminine

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