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4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
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on 14 August 2011
I've written several reviews on Kelley Armstrong's 'Otherworld' series of books and in them have made no secret of the fact that Paige and Lucas remain my all time favourites and Eve and Savannah the two I've so far found hardest to connect with.

Well, this book has moved Savannah way back up the ratings for me. She's less whiny and self-opinionated and far more comfortable in challenging herself. Savannah was never written to be anything at all resembling a normal teen, albeit supernaturally gifted. She was always presented as the raw power and future that a coming together of witchcraft and sorcery, with a dash of demon could ever aspire to be. Armstrong has, over several years of books, cleverly enabled the princess of prima donna's with a chip on her shoulder and sackful of insecurities to grow through all of the teenage angst, impetuosity and cruelty that self-interested youth has above all other considerations. Finally, as we saw energing from her by the end of the last book, Waking the Witch she starts to mature, to think of others as well as herself. Start to realise that the world does not revolve around her, but that others - outside of her immediate family and circle of fellow supes - might well have as much right to life and as they are human might even benefit from a little supernatural help.

Savannah hasn't become another character altogether, the prima donna princess is still there. The girl with all of her insecurities is still there as is the daughter of Eve who has an almost demonic ability to remain dispassionate at the most gruesome and often terminal situations - and Armstrong does a fantastic job in making sure we see that - but Savannah has started to challenge herself. The author cleverly and (occasionally) subliminally uses a whole series of her characters as the supporting cast here to prompt, nudge, cajole and challenge Savannah to dig deeper within herself to find her inner strengths, and to .... grow up.

The plotline is a lead into the next book. So do not expect to have a big reveal at the end of this book. What you will get is the foundations for 'The Big Battle' and it's going to involve not just Savannah, but Elena and Clay, Hope and Karl, Eve and Kristof, Jeremy and Jamie, Cassandre and Aaron, and Savannah and Adam as well as Paige and Lucas. There are cameo's for all in this book, nods to all of their particular relationship idiosyncrasies, and they all feed a dual storyline - supernaturals are looking to 'come out' and the immortality-questers are back!

Running throughout it all is the romantic undercurrent. Everyone knows Savannah has loved Adam since she was twelve. Clay and Cassandra confirm it to her in the book. What we don't get from this book, though, is clarity on Adam's true feelings - no inner Adam soundbites yet *insert dreamy sighs* - but this book ramps up the temperature nicely. So much so, I actually let out a squeal of frustration at the end of the book that Ms Armstrong could leave me hanging on a snog.

This is by far the best Savannah book. It's also truly deserving five stars for the quality of writing, exceptional continuity and intriguing cliffhanger. I'm desperate for more!!!
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on 4 August 2011
Another great book from Kelley Armstrong's Women of the Otherworld series. This book is the second of the final 3 books which are narrated by Savannah Levine.

I wasn't sure I'd enjoy Savannah as a narrator. I loved all the books but the novellas and shorts that have Eve as a narrator are my least favourite. As Savannah is similar to Eve I was apprehensive. Luckily I have really enjoyed them, especially seeing how much Savannah has grown and evolved over the two books. I am looking forward to seeing her develop further in the final story.

At the end of Waking the Witch, Savannah lost her powers. In Spell Bound she is trying to come to terms with this, but is struggling. Her spells are such an essential part of who she is and how she identifies herself that losing them was quite devastating. It doesn't help that trouble keeping coming up, putting her in situations that make her miss the lost spells even more. All the supernaturals are a target for a mysterious group scheming to upset the current status quo. While everyone else meets at the Cortez Cabel in Miami, Savannah and Adam are out on the front lines trying to get to the bottom of things. They'll need to do it quickly or run the risk of their world being drastically changed forever.

The romance between Savannah and Adam was really well written, although I suppose it is technically more romantic tension than actual romance! I loved getting an insight into their relationship with each other that has been growing since Paige's books.

There was plenty of action to keep me turning pages and practically all of the recurring characters from the series play a role in this book. I love how threads from previous books in the series are coming together and am excited to see exactly what is in store for the main characters. I'm just sad that it will be quite a while before I get to find out.

Overall a great addition to a brilliant series.
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on 14 August 2011
Yet again i am left Frustrated with a capital F. In the previous book in this series, Waking the Witch, i was left disappointed that in order to have any answers i would have to purchase the next book, Spellbound. Now i have read Spellbound i am again left waiting for answers.

While i love Kelley Armstrong's stories and will no doubt purchase the next book at some stage, i am feeling as though Kelley has let us, her fans of the series, down. It has to be a materialistic motivation to chop up the books this way. Surely?

I am cautious now about buying the next book in the series fearing the same thing will happen, and will probably wait until the conclusions are apparent before purchasing anymore books in the series to save any further disappointment.

The fact that Spellbound came out in hardback (a bit more special and more expensive than paperback) led me to believe that perhaps this book was to make up for my disappointment with Waking the Witch. I raced through the pages believing that by the end of the book i would see Savannah's mysteries unraveled, her magic restored and her abilities improved, her love life sated and most importantly, my faith in the series reinstated.

Unfortunately, i was jumping the gun and not only does Savannah only earn a meager kiss from Adam on the last page, she fails to reinstate her magic and therefore fails miserably to 'impress' with her oh so fantastic powers (she was better empowered as a child). On top of this the story running through the book is only just starting to come together with lots more promised in perhaps more than one future book.

I am left with the distinct impression that Kelley has written a great story, but through editing the book has been extended into 3 or more books which us gullible readers and great fans will buy anyway. Leaving me at least waiting inbetween episodes for a conclusion doesn't help me stay faithful to the series, and releasing only in hardback (harder to read and carry around) also annoys me.

I will say the story in Spellbound was faster paced than Waking the Witch, and i enjoyed the glimpses of almost all the previous main characters from previous books. Gathering momentum the story is building into a climax where it looks as though all characters and all supernaturals will have to pick a side and get involved but but this isn't on the 'lord of the rings' scale and i am dubious that the conclusions will fulfill the build up.

Hope to be proven wrong.
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on 21 October 2011
It's hard for me to say anything bad about a Kelley Armstrong book, I love her writing. Kelley's books, for me, are a proper page turner. I read them all in one sitting and Spell Bound was no different.

This is the second to last book in the Otherworld series (nooooooooooooooooooooo) since Kelley plans on taking a break from it to focus on other projects. As much as this saddens me, I know she doesn't want to keep writing and having the series lose it's appeal (like so many other series out there). Also, she has promised it's not an end but a hiatus, she plans on writing short stories and novellas featuring the Otherworld characters so we're not completely losing them.

The 2nd in the Savannah trilogy picks up exactly where Waking The Witch left us with that horrid cliff hanger ending. Good thing is, this book doesn't end on a cliff hanger but Kelley does tease us a little in the last few pages. As is my usual for Kelley's books, I cannot wait to read the next one and I'm pretty sad that it's a whole year away!
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on 19 January 2012
What's good about Spellbound is that it is quite a gripping story and written at a more cracking pace than Waking the Witch. The overarching plot is developed more, we get interesting insights into the demon world, and the book doesn't end on an actual cliffhanger (though there is clearly more to come). Savannah shows real signs of growing up and her relationship with Adam develops nicely and logically. We also get to see much more of the other characters.

What's not good (and warning: Here Be Spoilers) is a strong sense I have that the book is plot- rather than character-driven, so quite different in tone from KA's earlier Otherworld books. This is shown, in my view, by the changes to one character - Hope. She gets pregnant - unexpected, given the attitude to children both she and Karl had in Personal Demon - she starts having visions independently of being at the site of a violent incident - and we are told that, as an Expisco, she has a short life expectancy and in fact has already lived longer than any other Expisco. All these come out of the blue, and don't seem to fit with previous information. And the visions are used to advance the plot - which is a bit artificial.

So, mixed feelings here. It's gripping enough that I read it in one sitting and am looking forward to Thirteen. And yet ... niggle, niggle...
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on 16 June 2014
I have enjoyed most of the Otherworld series, especially the earlier books and I did enjoy 'Spellbound' to a point, I was just not that enthused by it unfortunately because of Savannah, I felt the same way when I read 'Waking the Witch'. Savannah is not a great character to read, there are stronger characters in the series. Savannah is selfish, inconsiderate, I could go on but basically she is not a nice person.

The story has plenty of excitement in it but it could have been written better without Savannah as the main character which I know does not make sense but as I said there are stronger and well written characters to chose from.
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on 20 June 2013
Savannah is back as boom 12 starts where book 11 ended.

At the end of waking the witch, Savannahs powers disappeared at the price of saving Kayla from foster care. As an incredibly powerful supernatural, Savannah feels that her powers were a large part of defining who she was. The loss of them is crippling to her confidence and Savannah starts to fear being rejected by her loved ones for no longer being a supernatural. Add in a few run ins with demons, a kidnapping and a big fight with Adam, Savannah starts to feel more vulnerable than ever. A storm is coming and Savannah may not be ready for her role in it.

The development in Savannahs character over the last two books was really well done and she is starting to discover that she doesn't always have to prove herself to everyone by putting herself n danger and being in the front lines. She is growing up and realising that if she wants to be with Adam, some of priorities and attitudes need to change. The plot is great with plenty of action and the tension between Savannah and Adam is unbearable. I love this book and can't wait to read the last one.
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on 15 September 2012
Savannah Levine has made a mistake. In a moment of despair she offered up her powers in exchange for the happiness of a young girl. Unfortunely for Savannah someone - or something - was listening and took her up on her deal. Now she is stuck with no powers in the middle of a crisis the supernatural world has never seen before.

This is the twelfth and penultimate book in the Otherworld series (which started with Bitten) and picks up right where the previous book left off. This is the middle book in a final trilogy that started with Waking the Witch and will conclude in the final installment 13 so if you are a new reader I definitely wouldn't recommend starting here.

The storyline builds on the last book, and begins to pick up threads from the previous books weaving them to create the beginnings of the final battle. Most of the previous Otherworld characters appear in this book, helping to grow the story in anticipation of the final book, although with the exception of the prologue Savannah remains the sole narrator. This means that the main storyline is focused on Savannah but the world building fits naturally with her understanding, rather than relying on info dumping the reader.

I really enjoyed that Savannah is made to grow up even more. She showed her maturity in the last installment, but when her powers are taken away she backslides a little and is forced to realise that her powers were not her entire identity. This aspect of the book is where the other Otherworld characters really add to the narrative as Clay helps her realise she needs to grow up. It also means that Savannah gets advice on her and Adam's changing relationship, forcing her to act as an adult.

This does feel a little like a needs to be done series book as a huge amount of ground is covered in a relatively short period of time. Some of the twists are a little predictable and the pace is slowed by the short period of time the book is set over. I still enjoyed the book and was glued to the page throughout as more and more is revealed about the bad guys and their mission.

All in all, this was another great read and I'm looking forward to 13.

Plot: 10/10
Characters: 10/10
Ending: 10/10
Enjoyment: 9/10
Cover: 9/10

Overall: 48/50
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on 1 February 2012
I am a very religious book reader and I have read all of the previous books in the women of the otherworld series so I had big expectations for this book and I am very pleased to say that this book does not disappoint. I found that I just couldn't put the book down and it has all of the great aspects that I have come to love from the previous books and I would highly recommend this book to any fans of the previous books and I would recommend to any one that hasn't read them to get them you won't be disappointed.
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on 4 August 2012
This was disappointing. I love Kelley Armstrong's Women of the Otherworld series, but Armstrong seems to just want to get it over and done with at this point. She's even resorted to tell us what's happening in a few short paragraphs instead of showing us the action.

The book was flimsy and so was the plot. The narrator, as in the previous book, is Savannah Levine, daughter of Eve, ward of Paige and Lucas. She's one of the least likeable of the series' narrators and most of the time, she needs a slap. To be fair to Savannah, she knows that she's a brat, but she only ever recognises that after the event.

The book features most if not all of the characters introduced throughout the series. We have cameos from Elena, Clay, Jeremy, Jaime, Paige and Lucas, Cassandra and Aaron, Hope and Karl, Kristof, Sean and Bryce Nast, the whole shebang. Some of them have bigger parts than others, some just drop in for a brief visit. The only major character who doesn't appear is Eve Levine. It feels very much like Armstrong is lining up the characters for the big finale that is the next book. The trouble is, it makes this book seem like a mile marker rather than a novel in its own right.

I'm really hoping that Kelley Armstrong ramps up the story and really pulls it out of the bag for the final book in this series. She's talented enough to do it and the world she's created deserves to go out with a bang rather than a whimper.
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