I have only read Marked, and that was way too much for me. I will not be buying more or recommending them to anyone I know.
One rule of writing I have for myself is to try and not build the story in such a way that it will be dated as being from now in years to come. Write about the mundane bits of a novel that give readers timing cues in an impressionistic fashion, as Monet painted. Something akin to:
"As my friends buzzed joyously back and forth about the latest drama and hilarity on their favourite reality shows, I bent to tie my shoe. Absently, I hummed the song I'd heard a few hours ago in a coffee shop. I made a mental note to figure out the group's name, because they were going to get some traffic from me."
See? Not once do I talk about Madonna or ANTM or any of the other billion name droppy things she did.
That was merely annoying, though. What killed these books for me was the fact that they hardly qualify as books. I love to read a good series, and tend to gravitate toward books built in that way. There are certain tricks an author performs when working in the realm of a series, and the one that will make me never again buy/read a book by that author was made by the Cast duo.
The book lacks a fulfilled story. Instead, they urge you to read the next one if you want to know what's going on. This, to me, is backwards.
I don't think you should have to blackmail your readers into continuing the series by withholding integral parts of the plot back and weaving them slowly into newer books.
Don't misunderstand, please. I am not against unresolved threads of plot. I just can't handle those threads being everything worth finding out about. If the Casts had written Twilight, the book would have ended immediately after Edward told her what he was. There was no plot that was self sufficient enough to be resolved in the context of this book, and that is an absolute deal-breaker for me.
The writing was horrible, it was like a middle school girl with spell check wrote it, and decided against using bad language, so instead, used 'poopie'. It was almost funny, except they didn't mean it that way. I won't be reading any more of this series.
I liked the series. (notice I typed 'liked') The series kink of went downhill from the first book. I was extremely disappointed with them. Yes, I did read them all. That's just how I work. But, I couldn't finish the last book. It was TOO MUCH of a disappointment.
I have read the 1st book only- I am 36 yo and I was disturbed by the Rituals used in the series. I Loved other 'Vampire' Series out there, but this was akin to a tutorial on " Black Mass Rituals and how to Summon Spirits". I could not read the other books- which I already purchased. UGH. I am happy to see that I am not the other person annoyed that this is FOR TEENAGERS!!!!! This series is nothing more than Wicca 101.
I'm half way through the first one and not a teenager. While the constant asides and language issues annoy me (as well as the constant pop culture references) I'm interested in where the series will go enough that I'm going to read the next few books. I'm sure I won't ever want to own them and read them multiple times, but the world is intriguing.
I have to agree with some of the othe opinions on this board. BTW I'm in my 30's. I'm appalled that this book is for teenagers. The raunchiness alone should have made this an adult only book. Also, that blantant disregard for anyone that doesn't think or believe in everything through the writers point of view is some kind monster is unbelievable. I'm a huge YA fan for all sorts of paranormal books. This book is the only one I've purchased and really regretted it after reading the book. Some others I have read IMO shouldn't exactly be for teenagers but this one by far screams ADULT ONLY!!! If you took all the depraved, immoral activity out of the book and the extremely harsh judgemental nature throughout the book. The story wasn't bad and would have enjoyed the book. If I had to make a recommendation. The Vampire Academy is much better IMO.