Monday, January 18, 2010

"Bitten (Women of the Otherworld)" by Kelley Armstrong

Kelley Armstrong has become one of my favorite authors. I started out with her book "The Summoning", and then moved on to it's sequel "The Awakening", which were both very enjoyable thrill rides that had me begging for more. (I still am as the third book has not been released yet!) The tension that is caused by the constant stress to her characters is not only invigorating but enthralling to the reader. So, when I discovered that she had written an entire series before she wrote these two wonderful books, I couldn't wait to get my hands on them.
The series begins with a book called "Bitten". The main character of "Bitten" is Elena Michaels, who is someone that is trying to live a normal life (as if we haven't figured out that her life is far from it). The hard part of trying to live this "normal life" is that she is in fact a werewolf. Later on it is explained that she is not only a werewolf but the only female werewolf in the entire world. This is due to the fact that born werewolves are always male and those that are turned into werewolves rarely live through the change and this is especially true for females. (Basically the werewolf gene is sexist.) Anyway, Elena lives with her normal human boyfriend named Philip, in the normal human city of Toronto, and has a normal human job. Things seem to be going well for her until she receives a call from Jeremy, the Pack Alpha. (dun dun duuuun!)
At this point the aforementioned stress that is so wonderful in Armstrongs books begins. Jeremy has been having issues with a "mutt" werewolf, or someone who is not a part of the pack. The mutt it seems has been killing innocent humans and has so far attempted to frame the pack and its members for the murders. This may seem at first that it doesn't involve Elena, seeing as she doesn't want anything to do with the pack, but, on further examination we learn that she used to not only keep track of all of the mutts for them, but, she also helped in preventing the exposure of werewolves. In short, this is right up her alley and a certain pack alpha is not going to let her leave as easily as she thought she could.
This is all leading up to Elena returning to Stonehaven which is in remote upstate New York and is where the pack alpha and his bodyguard/adopted son live. The tension mounts even more spectacularly as we find out that said son, known as Clay, is Elena's old flame and the one who turned her into a werewolf against her will. As Elena battles against the feelings for Clay and the need to stay at Stonehaven, she must also help Jeremy and the other pack members find and kill whoever is antagonizing them.
I absolutely could not make myself put this book down. I think I read it in a day because once it gets its' hooks in you it won't let go until that final page has been turned. The story and its' heroin are fantastic from beginning to end and Armstrong never leaves her readers with a dull moment. Just when you think that things are coming around, BAM, someone else is found dead and the police (among other hinderances such as, male werewolves obsessing over the only female werewolf, human trespassers with guns, etc.) are hot on the characters trails. If anyone is reading this I hope you pick up this book sometime. It may just surprise you...

P.S. This book contains mild sex or sexual references and probably shouldn't be read by those who would be made uncomfortable by it or aren't mature enough to read that sort of thing yet. :-/

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