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Customer Review

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Weakest of the Otherworld series, I think, but still a good read., 6 Nov. 2009
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This review is from: Frostbitten: A New Hunt Begins... and an Ancient Secret Is Revealed (Otherworld) (Hardcover)
KA is a great storyteller. The women and men of the Otherworld Series are all well rounded and interesting. Throughout the series of books KA has managed to weave a very Armstrong unique fantasy world of werewolves, witches, wizards, demons, vampires, Cabals, the here and now and the 'sometimes' ever after!

In every book until now the reader has been treated to a really strong plot-line, a good solid lead pairing of characters and at least one, and sometimes several sub plots. A key characters in most of the books has been Elena Michaels. A strong lead female who started life as a normal human gal who just got bitten by a werewolf who was in love with her (you know how it is!) and by the time we get to this book, Frostbitten, she's had quite a few hair-raising adventures. Suddenly, well suddenly if like me you've been reading all of KA's Otherworld books, seemingly from out of absolutely nowhere Elena is now ready to assume the role - or is seriously being considered for it anyways - of Pack Alpha.

Now, if you've followed previous books where Elena is the narrator (Bitten, Stolen and Broken) you'll know that she's not exactly the self confident alpha type - except where Clayton Danvers, her mate is concerned... She's NEVER even intimated any desire to lead the pack. She's a physically fit and active gal. Smart and more often than not sassy. But has she ever shown any desire to lead? Nope. In fact, Elena has resented the Pack more than embraced it. She and Clay had too much baggage, a lot of it still there if you read Elena's sub-text to make her in any way a credible figurehead and protector of the werewolf heritage. Jeremy, the Pack Alpha isn't exactly in his dotage either and he's acknowledged as a good, clever and strong leader. So the whole suggestion in the book of Elena becoming Alpha was like a Thunderbolt to me! Wha?!?? Is it something to do with the twins? If so, KA didn't even hint at future reasons. Personally, I hope Elena doesn't become Pack alpha. I love her character, but I love it for it's flaws. The Alpha of this pack needs to be beyond reproach and tougher and smarter than all prospective overthrowers. That's not the Elena I've come to know and admire.

Similarly, the issue of Jeremy sending the Packs only female - indeed the whole werewolf world's only female werewolf who has just very recently gave birth to twins - off on a mutt retrieval jaunt instead of sending Clay, or Antonio and Nick or even Karl Marsten... or even Jeremy himself going. It just seemed so unlikely, so not Jeremy that I was again left bemused. And, when we did get to the chasing and fighting scenes there seemed to be some rehashing of scenes from earlier books - chases through libraries, tying up in log cabins... and the native Indian demons never really took on any substance, if you'll forgive the pun. In fact, as an earlier reviewer noted, this book just lacked 'something'. Substance, seems a good word. Continuity, another. The third, a mix of the two... a supporting appearance by one of the Otherworld non-wolfy characters? Paige? Eve? Hope? Savannah? Lucas?

What there was, though, that gave me hope of future books was the gathering of a few pups that Elena sent back south to Jeremy. The Pack was dangerously small and in danger of dying out. I'm hopeful that this means KA is building up her werewolf Pack and will be back with more because I do think what this book lacked in weight for me is more than compensated for in the overall quality of the whole series... and the series is more than the Pack. I'm also hopeful that her next Otherworld book, should there be one, will bring back Paige Winterbourne a real woman's 100%-woman-shaped witch and Lucas her ever so proper but thoroughly sexy partner back into first person narrative!
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Showing 1-5 of 5 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 10 Dec 2009 19:06:33 GMT
Claire Mill says:
Disagree pretty much completely with this review, but hey, each to their own and at least unlike a lot of people you've got real reasons for having the opinion you do and you've taken the time to explain them. As for the next book, it's not a Paige book (thank goodness in my opinion, she tends to annoy me. Though I agree it's nice to have a protagonist who's a real woman, curves and all). The next book is titled Waking the Witch and is a Savannah book (out Aug 5th 2010). And I believe the one after it is a Savannah book as well.

In reply to an earlier post on 17 Dec 2009 18:45:54 GMT
DDGwacott says:
Ah, well. If Savannah is the lead in the next book then Paige and Lucas won't be far behind. It'll be interesting to see if KA can keep the Savannah book on the adult side of the genre considering how fine the lines are these days between adult, young adult and teens. Being well into my middle years I need my fantasy to stay grown up and Savannah is still pretty young...

I appreciate your understanding on my point of view being in contrast to your own. As you say, each to their own and at the end of the day I think KA is a great storyteller.

In reply to an earlier post on 5 Jan 2010 20:38:00 GMT
Last edited by the author on 5 Jan 2010 20:38:23 GMT
Claire Mill says:
'I think KA is a great storyteller.' That we agree on!

Yeah, I think it'll be interesting to see how she's written Svannah as the protagonist, because she's 21 in Waking the Witch, so a whole lot younger than the other narrators and much close to the age of KA's YA series protag. But then I'm 21 too, so I'm while I prefer the more adult views, I can put up with a lot from teen/YA protags.

Posted on 12 Mar 2010 21:20:45 GMT
K. King says:
I do have to agree with you, she's never seemed to be very good Alpha material and even throughout this book she doesn't do very Alpha-like things. But at the end, she does say she doesn't want to be Alpha 'right now' so I think she knows she's not quite there yet.
I do just have to mention she's not JUST given birth, the twins are 3 and a half if I remember correctly.
Otherwise, good review :)

Posted on 6 Nov 2010 20:00:40 GMT
_* says:
I really have to disagree with your opinions on Elena as the next Alpha. This is not in the least unexpected - whenever Elena and Clay hunt together, Elena gives the orders. She helps Jeremy make plans, she uses her initiative. What's more, consider the rest of the Pack: Antonio is older than Jeremy and stepped aside once already because he didn't want to be Alpha; Clay is too uncontrolled and also takes orders from Elena when hunting; Nick is the Omega wolf, the weakest member of the pack, and isn't capable of taking on the responsibility; Karl couldn't possibly be Alpha, he is far too selfish and has not been a Pack wolf for long enough, none of the others would follow him. Elena may have her flaws (which help make her a great character), but she's grown up enough to be a good leader, and her acknowledgment of her flaws makes her a better leader. Jeremy isn't necessarily planning to step down yet, but he knows Elena will need time to assimilate the idea, so he is warning her.
Your point about the only female werewolf being sent on mutt disposal is also missing the point, her job has always been mutt-disposal, this is mentioned in Bitten and Stolen, and now that the twins are old enough she is going back to it. By the way, she didn't 'recently' give birth either, the twins are old enough to walk and talk!
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