I loved, loved, loved this collection of Women of the Otherworld short stories. In between some of the stories, it was nice to revisit favourite characters. This collection also provided a greater backstory to Adam’s childhood and Aaron and Cassandra’s relationship. Both aspects of the characters which I hadn’t quite had a chance to enjoy or understand.
Seven months after the occurrences of 13, and Savannah and Adam are forced to negotiate and really look at what their new relationship means. The backdrop of a unique type of half-demon and their battle against the Cabals is a great way to raise the stakes in their activities. It also helps to highlight Savannah’s immensely complex relationship with the Cabals – primarily the tug of war between herself, the Cortez and Nast Cabals and how everything that happened in 13 just helped these already tenuous relationships completely implode.
The events of 13 drove the challenges and actions of all the members of the Women of the Otherworld forwards. Jeremy decides that now is the time for Elena’s ascension to Alpha, and looks forward to his retirement. The Pack is weathering the remainder of the storm in Russia and Elena and Clay struggle to deal with the revelation that Malcolm is still alive.
This was an absolutely AMAZING finale to this series! Although there are a number of short stories and novellas that follow and tell you how the many characters have continued life after the war, this was the final of the actual novels. And it was an epic final battle. I loved that although the majority of this story was told from Savannah’s point of view (like the preceding two books), the main players from the other books also had their own chapters. It’s almost the last section of a three part book – making it impossible to put Waking the Witch, Spellbound OR 13 down.
The ending of Waking the Witch was a bit of a cliff hanger. What would happen of Savannah’s blunder and how was it going to be fixed? Her final promise to give up her powers to save a young girl leave her incredibly vulnerable. And not just with a lack of powers, but it also causes her to ask who she is and what it all means? The added complications of Savannah’s guilt and her confusion about Adam help to make this a journey that I couldn’t put down.
Every time I read one of the books in the Women of the Otherworld series, I decide that they are my absolute favourite heroines of the series. And then I open the next book and my mind changes all over again. Every single lead in this series has her own amazing prowess and something that makes me feel connected to them. But, they’re all different enough that the storyline never gets boring. The first book featuring a grown Savannah Levine was no different. Her teenage rebellion and attitude have mellowed since her introduction in Stolen, but she still has this sense of sass that none of the other characters possess. And, her infatuation with Adam has blown from a school girl crush to an understanding of love and giving.
I suppose that if you live for hundreds of years, you are likely to know a heck of a lot of people. Yet, somehow, it still surprised me that Cassandra and Zoe knew each other in the past. The fact that they had a history was a surprise. The fact that Zoe had been wronged… not so much.
Yet again Jaimie is pulled into the world of fake reality and TV shows. And, once again, she finds a way to shine and do a trashy public event without sacrificing her own identity and self-worth. And, she solves a mystery, has an incredibly passionate romp with Jeremy and fills her time with foiling the evil (or at least incredibly morally bankrupt) director of the show.
I love when a non-Australian author writes about Australians and uses slang that we actually say. I’ve never heard someone say chuck a few shrimps on the barbie. For starters, we don’t call them shrimps, they’re PRAWNS! But, I have, and do use the term v plates to talk about virginity, and even told my friends that I’d lost my v plates when the time came. So just the title and the very beginning of this story worked well. Like I said, Armstrong actually managed to use Australian slang and characterisation in a way that was actually recognisable. And didn’t make us look like extremely backwards and uncultured swines.
Eve has such a beautiful penchant for getting into trouble. No matter where the demon / witch / angel seems to find herself, she has one epic adventure. The fact that Kris tries to send her on a journey to kill boredom just helps Eve’s ability to get into trouble along.