[Review] BITTEN by Kelley Armstrong

[This is the first in a series of posts before the last in the Otherworld series, THIRTEEN is released July 24, 2012]

Cover Copy: Living in Toronto for a year, Elena is leading the normal life she has always dreamt of, including a stable job as a journalist and a nice apartment shared with her boyfriend. As the lone female werewolf in existence, only her secret midnight prowls and her occasional inhuman cravings set her apart. Just one year ago, life was very different. Adopted by the Pack when bitten, Elena had spent years struggling with her resentment at having her life stolen away. Torn between two worlds, and over-whelmed by the new passions coursing through her body, her only option for control was to deny her awakening needs and escape.

But now the Pack has called Elena home to help them fight an alliance of renegade werewolves who are bent on exposing and annihilating the Pack. And although Elena is obliged to rejoin her “family,” she vows not to be swept up in Pack life again, no matter how natural it might feel. She has made her choice. Trouble is, she’s increasingly uncertain if it’s the right one.

My Thoughts: I discovered Kelley Armstrong in 2004, the year DIME STORE MAGIC was published. I had already discovered Laurell K. Hamilton, and I was looking for something similar, when I got hooked by the cover of DIME STORE MAGIC. As soon as I finished it, I went back and got the other three books in the Otherworld series. I’ve been a fan since.

Bitten is the story of Elena, a journalist living in Toronto with her boyfriend. She’s a werewolf. He’s not. Despite being a werewolf, Elena just wants to live a normal life. Then she gets called to return to the other werewolves. Someone is threatening the Pack and they need Elena’s help. But it’s not easy for Elena to come back to the Pack. She doesn’t want the werewolf life; she’d rather pretend to be normal. And she’ll have to deal with her feelings for Clay, the werewolf who’d changed her, and she knows this will ultimately lead to having to make the choice between Clay and her human boyfriend.

The story of Elena and Clay has always stayed with me. Maybe because few romances start out with the guy betraying his girlfriend’t trust by turning her into a werewolf– a prospect no other female has survived. Clay not only bites Elena and changes her life forever, but he dumps her into the Pack’s Alpha’s hands and leaves her. Rather unforgiveable circumstances. And yet, when Elena returns to the pack, Clay acts as though he still wants her around, still wants her involved in his life. It’s completely arrogant of him. Possessive. But somehow, Clay still comes off as loveable and charming. Somehow we still want Elena to choose Clay over her human boyfriend.

Upon re-reading BITTEN it’s interesting to see how Armstrong’s writing has evolved. BITTEN still has the excellent plotting, world-building,  and character building she’s known for, but the voice isn’t quite there yet. Still a great read.

Rating: A
Series: Women of the Otherworld #1
Publisher: Seal Books/Random House
Acquired: Purchase

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