Monday, March 9, 2015

Bitten by Kelley Armstrong

Synopsis From Dust Jacket:

Young, beautiful, and successful, Elena Michaels seems to have it all.  Her happy, organized life follows a predictable pattern: filing stories for her job as a journalist, working out at the gym, living with her architect boyfriends, and lunching with her girlfriends form the office.  And once a week, in the dead of night, she streaks though a downtown ravine, naked and furred, tearing at the throats of her animal prey. 

Elena Michael is a werewolf.

The man who made her one has been left behind, but his dark legacy has not.  And though Elena struggles to maintain the normal life she's worked so hard to create, she cannot resist the call of the eleite pack of werewolves from her past.  Her feral instincts will lead her back to them and into a desperate war for survival that will test her own understand of who, and what, she is.

Do you ever think about a series you used to love, but for whatever reason, it lost it's appeal?  If you don't, no sweat, I do enough thinking about it for everyone.  I'm one of those that feels a strong guilt about it.  Now I'm not beating my chest and flogging myself, but I do feel more than a tad bit of remorse.

 I can't tell you how many series I have gotten into over the years, then completely lost interest in.  For the most part it happened preblogging more than it does now, and I have no clue as to why.  Most of the series I've lost interest in would be classified as urban fantasy, and that may have an overly large role in it.  It didn't take long for me to get bored with all the vampires, werewolves, wizards, and demons living in a modern world, so the books they inhabited didn't appeal to me for very long.   There are a few that I still read when a new book comes out, but for the most part, I flirted for a while, then dropped them faster than you could say Lestat.  One series that lasted for a few books before getting the cold shoulder was Kelley Armstrong's Otherworld series, of which, Bitten is the first book.

Oddly, even though I gave up on the series, I still love this book, and I hadn't read it since I started blogging.  For whatever reason, I picked it up last week, and a few hours later, I was turning the last page.  It didn't take long for me to fall right back in love with Elena, Clay, Jeremy, and all the rest of the Pack.  I'm not really sure what the author had going on in this one, and Stolen the second book in the series, but the writing is so much better, and the characters are fully fleshed out in a way I can't say about some of the later books.  I really wish she had stuck with this first set of characters, instead of going off and getting the rest of the supernatural races involved.

In Elena and Clay, you have the perfect couple.  They love each, can't live with out each other, but they have both made some horrible decisions, putting so much tension into their relationship, it pulsates off the page.  When the book opens, they haven't been in the same state for over a year, and their reintroduction doesn't go smoothly.  If it wasn't for the dangerous situation they were having to deal with, and the rest of the Pack members acting as a buffer, that tension made have become too implosive, harming the reading in the process.

The writing in the first few books, and in Bitten specifically, is so tight, so put together, it's hard to find any flaws in it.  Armstrong keeps the narrative moving at a natural pace, allowing the characters and the events to set the tone.  She doesn't force them into convoluted interactions, or behaviors that go against who they are.   It's a perfect blend of style, characterization, and storytelling.  But most importantly, it's a book that has a permanent home of my bookshelves, even if it's extended family was served with eviction papers.


bermudaonion said...

Don't feel bad. I never even got into this series because of the werewolf element.

Alexia561 said...

Kelley Armstrong is one of my favorite authors and I absolutely adore Clay and Elena! They're featured in a few later books, so you might want to give those a try. Urban fantasy is my favorite genre, but I've dropped more than a few series because I got bored.

Becca said...

This happened to me with Melissa de la Cruz's Blue Bloods series. I loved first book and when I got to the second book a while later I was like, wait, why did I love this series again? I really could not have cared less anymore. I hate when that happens. You think you are set up for lots of good books with a series and then it just sort of deflates like a balloon.