Bitten by Kelley Armstrong

Bitten by Kelley ArmstrongBitten by Kelley Armstrong
Series: Women of the Otherworld #1
Genre: Paranormal
Release Date: May 1, 2010
Publisher: Little Brown and Company
Source: Gift
Add it: Goodreads
Rating: four-stars

Elena Michaels didn't know that her lover Clay was a werewolf until he bit her, changing her life for ever. Betrayed and furious, she cannot accept her transformation, and wants nothing to do with her Pack - a charismatic group of fellow werewolves who say they want to help.

When a series of brutal murders threatens the Pack, Elena is forced to make an impossible choice. Abandon the only people who truly understand her new nature, or help them to save the lover who ruined her life, and who still wants her back at any cost.

I have to. I’ve been fighting it all night. I’m going to lose.
Bitten is one of those books that I have picked up to buy multiple times, but have always swapped it for another book that I deemed more important, or one that I was more excited for. Thanks to the new Canadian TV show, and the fact that this is Lauren’s favourite series ever, I finally managed to pick it up. Or, rather, Tatum bought it for me for my birthday so I had no other choice. It was either this, or read Code Name Verity, and I don’t want to be destroyed just yet, thank you.

I thought that the first one hundred pages were very slow, due to the fact that they were basically one giant infodump. I feel like the information that was thrown at the reader in the beginning could have been better interspersed throughout the novel, especially as sometimes Elena went off on tangents. I would have had less trouble getting into the book if the background information, and the world building, had been brought up at relevant times rather than all at once.

After I got through the first one hundred or so pages, I started to fly through it. Something happens at around that point that immediately grabbed my attention, and I was suddenly a lot more interested in the book. Once this happened, it was difficult to put Bitten down because the storyline and the mystery were intriguing, and Elena’s voice became more enticing after the infodumps were out of the way.

Elena is an amazing character, and I can see why everyone loves her. She’s strongwilled and intelligent, and yet she’s not without her flaws. Reading about her was a great experience, and also rather heartbreaking considering her backstory. I can’t imagine a better main character for this book, because Elena is just so perfect for it. She’s going through a lot at the beginning, such as living without her Pack – her family – because she strives to be “normal” instead of a werewolf. And not only that, she’s the only female werewolf in existence, which magnifies the problem.

And then, of course, there is Clay, Elena’s ex-boyfriend and the obvious love interest in Bitten. I read a few reviews prior to reading this book, and a few of them said that Clay was controlling and manipulative, and it put me off a bit. Having read a lot of paranormal romance about werewolves and other shifters in the past, I know that having a broody, somewhat controlling alpha male to protect the weaker female is the trend.

However, I didn’t get that vibe from Clay at all, and it makes me wonder if those who did went into this book with some sort of prejudice. To say that Clay is controlling towards Elena is ridiculous, because Elena has him totally whipped. He never once tries telling her what to do or how to act – with sincerity, anyway, because he knows that she won’t listen. On top of that, Elena doesn’t even really need his protection. She’s perfectly capable of looking after herself, and Clay only jumps in as backup. Yes, he’s her backup. I do not see why people are so against Clay, because I think he’s a great character and Kelley Armstrong managed to turn the typical dynamic that we get so often in paranormal romance on its head.

That said, I didn’t ship Clay and Elena. I’m sorry, guys, but I much preferred Elena’s relationship with Jeremy, whatever that might be. I just don’t think Clay can live up to the awesomely sexy Pack Alpha. It’s totally a crack!ship, and I’m likely letting down a bunch of WOTO fans, but that’s what I do best. That’s not to say that I don’t think Clay and Elena should be together, because they’re clearly made for one another, but come on, Jeremy is much sexier. I will have to resort to fan fiction.

I also thought that Kelley Armstrong did a great job with the secondary characters in this book, including Elena’s Pack, and those outside of it. I have a particular fascination with a certain Karl Marsten, which Tatum thinks I’m weird for, but I think Marsten is a great character who I hope turns up in later books in the series. I also loved getting to know the other members of Elena’s Pack, like Nick and Tonio. Again, I’m hoping they show up some more in future novels even though Armstrong switches up the female protagonists in those.

I’m so glad that Lauren and Tatum and the TV show finally gave me the push that I needed to start this series, because I had been meaning to read it for years. And now I’m buying all the books at once, because this is a great series to marathon. I’ve already read Stolen, and it was so much better than Bitten, you guys! I can’t wait to continue on because this series is addictive and the characters are all fabulous.

16 comments on “Bitten by Kelley Armstrong

  1. Kristen Williams January 22, 2014 2:10 pm

    I don’t know much about this one. I’ve heard mentions of the show but I’ve not seen it yet. This book looks like it would be a fun read. When I get more time in my reading schedule I’ll have to make room for these. Thank you for sharing!

    • Amber (Books of Amber) January 22, 2014 7:30 pm

      I would definitely recommend it! It’s a great series thus far, and so addictive. So waiting until you have more time in your schedule is probably the best idea – I want to marathon them as fast as I can!

  2. Ellie M. January 22, 2014 4:00 pm

    Glad you finally decided to read it! I actually end up reading books only if there’s tv show to compare them lol Awesome review!

    • Amber (Books of Amber) January 22, 2014 7:31 pm

      Haha, I always have to read the books before I watch the show/movie. It makes everything so much better. Or worse, depending on how you look at it.

  3. Kelly January 22, 2014 8:19 pm

    YOU DON’T SHIP CLAY AND ELENA?! Don’t worry, that will change. Especially when a certain romantic interest is introduced for Jeremy 😉

    I haven’t read this series in ages, but I’m itching to give it a re-read, especially after seeing you experience it for the first time!

    • Amber (Books of Amber) February 2, 2014 10:11 am

      NO I’M SORRY. I’m really worried I won’t like whoever this romantic interest is, because I’m shipping Jeremy and Elena so hard, haha.

      I had no idea you were a fan of this series, otherwise I would have shouted at you about my thoughts about Stolen ;D

  4. Allie_ January 23, 2014 6:45 pm

    I had no idea this had been turned into a TV show !!!!! ahhhhhhhhhhhhh! I need to check it out ASAP. Thank you :))))

  5. Lauren Turtle January 25, 2014 3:25 pm

    AHAHAHAHAAAAAAAA FINALLY OMG!!! Jesus, getting you guys to read these books has been like pulling teeth.

    I fucking LOVE this series, and have done ever since stumbling over Stolen a few months after it was published so, basically 10 years of my life has been influenced by these books. I don’t care if you ship Clay/Elena or not because let’s face it, rarely do I ever ship the intended ship in books. However, I am SUPER glad you like Karl Marsten because yesssssssss!

    Now all you need to do is read the other 11 books in the series after Stolen, and then I can start nagging you to read Armstrong’s YA series. I basically ruined Tatum with those books. You’re welcome! XD

    • Amber (Books of Amber) February 2, 2014 10:13 am

      IT’S NOT MY FAULT I HAVE SO MANY BOOKS TO READ OK.

      Wait, so did you read them out of order? I DID NOT KNOW THIS. Intended ships are for normal people, everyone cool crack!ships.

      I think I told you that I can start the YA books after Personal Demon. Very excited 😀

  6. Tatum Turtle January 25, 2014 3:27 pm

    1) you NEED to read code name verity
    2) that entire paragraph on clay and clay/elena is perfect
    3) karl is gross why do you do this to me

    • Amber (Books of Amber) February 2, 2014 10:13 am

      Yes I know. I’m slowly getting through my review pile. I won’t request any more, I promise!

      Bedankt.

      KARL IS THE BEST WHAT ARE YOU ON ABOUT

  7. Judith February 1, 2014 3:34 pm

    I must read this eventually, right? I’m pretty sure one of you will make me at one point. But it sounds awesome so I’m okay with that. I’m not really reading that much paranormal atm I think, but I guess that much change. Also, Elena sounds fabulous. But what if I don’t like it?! o_o

    • Amber (Books of Amber) February 2, 2014 10:15 am

      Of course. The Turtle crew will gang up on you and force it upon you. I’ve kind of gone off paranormal, at least in YA. But this series is fabulous. There’s no possibility of you not liking it. Well there is, because you sometimes have weird taste, but still. I refuse to think about it.

  8. Mel@Thedailyprophecy February 11, 2014 11:05 am

    The first thing I saw you tweet about Elena/Jeremy I was like, WHAT? Because in Vampire Diaries they are brother and sister, so it sounded a bit disturbing, haha. I’m actually planning to watch the TV show, so that might be good enough to make me want to read the books :)

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