Author: Kelley Armstrong
Series: Women of the Otherworld #6
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: Dark fantasy, Paranormal fantasy, Strong women
5th sentence, 74th page: ‘Oh, goddamn it!’ I snarled, fists pounding the carpet.
Elena wasn’t looking for trouble. But when a half-demon calls in a favour, you don’t have much choice.
The job seemed simple enough: steal back Jack the Ripper’s infamous “From Hell” letter from a shady Toronto-based collector. But nothing is ever that simple in the supernatural underground. When Elena accidentally triggers a spell placed on the letter, she opens a portal into the dark streets of Victorian London.
Bad enough that Jack the Ripper could now be on the prowl in modern Toronto – but there is something even more terrifying lurking in the shadows, just waiting to cross through…and only Elena and her Pack can stop it.
I loved, loved, loved revisiting Elena after three books in which she only had a passing role. The fact that she begins the story pregnant and actually enjoying her life with Clay just made everything better. Their unique blend of violence, sarcasm and passion still managing to burn brightly in spite of all they had been through in their relationship. Plus, Elena is one of the most unique and prickly heroines that I have ever had the pleasure of meeting – her non-traditional relationship with Clay helps to further echo this.
Mistake after mistake built on one another to lead the Pack into a danger unlike any other that they had faced. Elena’s mentions of Logan and Pete, the two Pack members lost five years prior helped to highlight the sense of loss that she still feels keenly. Although this mention was slight, it was also a fantastic way in which to remind us that the loss of a loved one is forever felt. Although time may heal the worst of the hurt, a dull echo will forever remain, and this is certainly true for Elena, to the point that even socially-disadvantaged Clay is able to feel empathy for this sense of bereavement.
In Bitten and Stolen, although Elena is incredibly loveable, she is still an inherently selfish and immature girl. Yes, she will do anything to save her small family (the Pack), but she will do it in the way that she feels is best. And it really doesn’t matter what cooler heads have to say. Although this does work out at times throughout the past tales, it does put Jeremy, and especially Clay in awkward positions as they try and rescue or protect her. However, with the advent of motherhood, Elena is not only better at listening to others and respecting the need to work as a team, but she is also more careful to think through her actions. It is nice when she actually realises that her life isn’t just about her – but Clay, Jeremy and her unborn child.