A Female Werewolf Tells her Story in Bitten: Women of the Otherworld Book 1
May 11, 2005 (Updated Oct 7, 2009)
Review by Marie Dragonfire
Rated a Very Helpful Review
Pros:Unique, interesting story.
Cons:One character annoyed me at times. Mystery could have been better.
The Bottom Line: Bitten: Women of the Otherworld Book 1 by Kelly Armstrong is an entertaining, unique book. It isn't for everyone though.
Werewolves have been the subject of several movies and books over the years. I’ve only read a few werewolf books. Bitten: Women of the Otherworld Book 1 by Kelly Armstrong is the first werewolf book that I’ve read in a long time. I ended up reading it because I first read Dime Store Magic, also by Armstrong. Since I enjoyed Dime Store Magic so much, I decided to pick up her other books.
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In Bitten: Women of the Otherworld Book 1, Kelly Armstrong created a world were werewolves lived among humans. She kept some things about werewolves that have been in other books and movies, like that people could be turned into a werewolf if they were bitten by one, but she also added her own things as well. Several of them did live in a pack with an alpha leader. There were also other werewolves, that the pack members called mutts, living around the country. Mutts had no control and killed humans. Pack werewolves were able to control themselves in wolf form and they didn’t hunt humans. They would kill if the safety of the pack was threatened. Werewolves needed to change into their wolf form at least once a week. Pack members learned how to be able to change more often. They were even able to change only part of their bodies, like a hand. There was a werewolf gene that was passed from father to son. They didn’t change until they were teenagers. Women only became werewolves if they were bitten, which is how Elena became the only female werewolf. Most people that are bitten don’t survive the change.
Elena seemed to have a happy life. She was living with her boyfriend Philip and was happy with her job writing articles. She also had a secret. She was the only female werewolf. She had been a werewolf for ten years. She’d been living away from her pack for a year trying to have a normal life. She put off changing for as long as she could. Jeremy, the pack leader called her about something important. She tried not to care, but she ended up returning to find out what was going on.
Clay was the only pack member that lived at Stonehaven with Jeremy. They weren’t actually related, but Jeremy was like a father to Clay. He and Elena had a complicated past. Clay was sure she would return to Stonehaven and her life with the pack. The other members of the pack were also at Stonehaven to see Jeremy. A mutt was killing humans in the area and threatening the safety of the pack. Jeremy wanted Elena’s help in dealing with the situation. Elena insisted she had left the pack the year before, but she stayed. The situation was more serious than they believed at first.
Bitten: Women of the Otherworld Book 1 was written in the first person point of view from Elena’s perspective. All of her thoughts and feelings, some of which weren’t exactly logical at times, were shared, making her the most developed character. She did share her thoughts about other characters, but it was only her view of them. That did give a one-sided view of some of the characters. She and Clay had a turbulent relationship. She was still mad at him for something he’d done several years before. She wouldn’t even listen to him. She had reason to be upset, but she was always throwing up what he’d done. She used it as a reason to think the worst of him. Elena did annoy me at times with the attitude she had about certain things. Part of it was probably because she was really still trying to deal with certain aspects of her life related to being a werewolf. I thought it was interesting to read about life as a werewolf from Elena’s perspective.
Some mystery was added to Bitten: Women of the Otherworld Book 1 when Jeremy contacted Elena. She didn’t find out what was wrong until after she returned to Stonehaven. Jeremy did share that a mutt was killing in the area fairly early in the book. It wasn’t known which mutt and why until much later. The situation did become more complicated which added some surprises. The pack’s efforts to discover the mutt was important to the book, though I did think that the mystery part could have been a bit stronger. There were several suspenseful moments in the book, especially closer to the end. Things happened that I didn’t expect. There was violence throughout the book. Some of the characters were described hunting in wolf form. The members of the pack only hunted animals. Some of those scenes were more descriptive than others. Some of the victims of the mutts were described and those descriptions weren’t pleasant to read. I didn’t think that the descriptions were extremely graphic, but they are probably too graphic for some readers.
Elena and Clay had been involved for a long time before she had left Stonehaven. Over the years, she had taken off on her own before, but the longest she had been gone before that was a few months. Clay was always waiting for her. Even when he was annoyed or upset with her, he still made it clear that he loved her and wanted her to be with him. Some things about their past were shared later in the book. Elena ended up getting involved with Philip after she left Stonehaven. She had feelings for both men, which did make her conflicted. She kept many secrets from Philip. More about her relationship with Clay was featured. Elena ended up spending a lot of time with Clay once she was back, and they started their sexual relationship again. There were several sex scenes between Elena and Clay. The scenes were descriptive, but didn’t really seem that graphic to me. Other readers might feel differently about that. The romance part of the book didn’t detract from everything else that was going on.
Bitten: Women of the Otherworld Book 1 was Kelly Armstrong’s first book and the first book of The Women of the Otherworld series. The second book, Stolen, also features Elena as a main character. I actually read the third book in the series first. I didn’t feel that Dime Store Magic contained any spoilers for Bitten: Women of the Otherworld Book 1. Elena did turn up in a few scenes, but she was only talking on the phone with Paige, the main character of that book. I have read that a movie studio has picked up the option to make Bitten: Women of the Otherworld Book 1 into a movie. I would be interested in seeing a movie version if it does end up getting made. Werewolves were the only supernatural type of character in this book. Other types of characters will be introduced in later books. People need to have an open mind to really enjoy these books since they are different. I have always enjoyed supernatural type books and I’m looking forward to reading more of Armstrong’s books. Her website contains information about the books, as well as some short stories that are connected to her books. I want to read those as well.
I really enjoyed Bitten: Women of the Otherworld Book 1. Elena did annoy me a few times, but it wasn’t so bad that I disliked her character. The few other werewolf books that I did read several years ago didn’t go into the level of detail about life as a werewolf that this book did. I found that to be very interesting. People that enjoy books about the supernatural may also enjoy this one.
The Women of the Otherworld Series
Bitten: Women of the Otherworld ~ Stolen ~ Dime Store Magic ~ Industrial Magic ~ Haunted ~ Broken ~ No Humans Involved ~ Personal Demon ~ Living With the Dead ~ Frostbitten ~
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