Normally I love collections like this because you can read one novella, finish it, put it down and walk away. I did manage to do this… but it was quite a bit more difficult than I had anticipated. I had already read something by every one of these authors, and so I knew that what was just around the corner was going to be fantastic. And it was this knowledge that made it nigh on impossible to stop thinking about this storyline.
You know a story’s going to be good when it starts out stating that she was on a date with a dead man. Literally. Completely, totally and utterly, stone cold. Dead. The fact that a mysterious, Latino man dives in to save the day and the woman is stubborn enough not to let him escape. Well, it was going to be a fantastic story from the very beginning.
It only took me two pages to recognise something in this novella that links the story to Run, Rudolph, Run. Partly it was the mention of Jill, but mostly it was the creepy man zapping an unsuspecting woman with a ray and turning her into a shapeshifter… it’s basically what happens to Jill. Just five years later than the activities in this novella.
Ivy’s framing of Art is mentioned a number of times in the Hollows graphic novels, and Dead Witch Walking. Enough so that I was intensely interested in the why, the how and the every single moment of why she would do such a thing. Especially considering it is so at odds with the character that I’m steadily falling in love with as I read my first full length novel in the series. This novella explains her motives absolutely perfectly.
I always wondered how Hope and Karl met each other – and, more importantly, why their relationship continued after their abnormal first meeting. Chaotic not only answered this question, but it also showed how Hope’s first forays into the supernatural world went. The intricate relationships between the characters of the Women of the Otherworld series is shown in Hope’s embroilment with the Cabals, the supernatural council, and ultimately, with the jewellery-thief werewolf.