Book Review: Haunted by Kelley Armstrong

Title: Haunted
Author: Kelley Armstrong
Series: Women of the Otherworld, Book 5
Publisher: Spectra Books
Paperback: 495 pages
Source: Chicago OverDrive
Summary: (taken from Goodreads)

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Former supernatural superpower Eve Levine has broken all the rules. But she’s never broken a promise–not even during the three years she’s spent in the afterworld. So when the Fates call in a debt she gave her word she’d pay, she has no choice but to comply.

For centuries one of the ghost world’s wickedest creatures has been loosed on humanity, thwarting every attempt to retrieve her. Now it has fallen to Eve to capture this demi-demon known as the Nix, who inhabits the bodies of would-be killers, compelling them to complete their deadly acts. It’s a mission that becomes all too personal when the Nix targets those Eve loves most–including Savannah, the daughter she left on earth. But can a renegade witch succeed where a host of angels have failed?

Overall Rating: 4 out of 5

Eve has always been an interesting character to me, and was made even more so from the last book, where we meet her in the ghost world and she helps Paige. So, I was happy when I found out that the next book in the series followed her as a main character. She’s the sort of badass heroine who takes an incredibly pragmatic approach to situations; she sets her own moral standards and lives by her own rules. If a person is a bad person, kill them. Killing isn’t morally justified? Says who? That’s sort of Eve’s stance on a lot of situations.

This story is more of a thriller than anything else — an evil possession demon is on the loose; one who gives her host courage and power to do horrible things like go on a serial murder spree or shoot up a YMCA. She’s been running rampant for centuries, possessing such famous killers as Lizzie Borden, among others. In exchange for them helping page, the Fates have called on Eve to return the favor by helping them out and catching this demon. Along with the chase and investigation, we get lots of Eve and Kristoff moments; he still loves her and wants to make an afterlife together with her — one they never got while living, but she’s still hesitant. One of the best parts of this book is Eve’s slow acceptance/realization of just how much she loves this man.

It’s a fun read that had some nice plot twists while also staying within the realm of possibilities (though it’s a really, really big realm for this series). Eve has taken the place of one of my favorite characters ever. I’m not as invested in her relationship with Kristoff as I am with Paige and Lucas, but I like her overall way more than I enjoy any of the other characters. She’s just awesome and smart and complicated and really, really fun to have as a main character. As always, familiar characters make their appearances throughout the course of this story, and it’s always fun to see them from another character’s perspective. With the thriller aspect and the amazing characters Armstrong has created, you really can’t go wrong with this series, and this book is no exception.

Book Review: Industrial Magic by Kelley Armstrong

Title: Industrial Magic
Author: Kelley Armstrong
Series: Women of the Otherworld, Book 4
Publisher: Spectra Books
Paperback: 528 pages
Source: Chicago OverDrive
Summary: (taken from Goodreads)

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Paige Winterbourne, a headstrong young woman haunted by a dark legacy, is now put to the ultimate test as she fights to save innocents from the most insidious evil of all…

In the aftermath of her mother’s murder, Paige broke with the elite, ultraconservative American Coven of Witches. Now her goal is to start a new Coven for a new generation. But while Paige pitches her vision to uptight thirty-something witches in business suits, a more urgent matter commands her attention.

Someone is murdering the teenage offspring of the underworld’s most influential Cabals—a circle of families that makes the mob look like amateurs. And none is more powerful than the Cortez Cabal, a faction Paige is intimately acquainted with. Lucas Cortez, the rebel son and unwilling heir, is none other than her boyfriend. But love isn’t blind, and Paige has her eyes wide open as she is drawn into a hunt for an unnatural-born killer. Pitted against shamans, demons, and goons, it’s a battle chilling enough to make a wild young woman grow up in a hurry. If she gets the chance.

Overall Rating: 4 out of 5

While I am usually very strict about only reading series in order, for some reason, I’ve skipped around in this one a lot. Maybe because different books are from different perspectives? Anyway, I picked this up after being away from this series for a while, so it took me a bit to figure out exactly where I was in each character’s storylines. Having already read sequels, I must say it was way too much fun meeting Jaime the necromancer for the first time. Her first impression is as ridiculous and wonderful as I wanted it.

This book is a fun mystery/thriller with supernatural aspects involved, and of course, it includes all of our favorite characters from the Otherworld series; I love that the werewolves make an appearance in this novel. (Since the series started with Elena, I have a feeling that she and Clay will always be my ultimate favorites.) But I really would recommend this book for thriller lovers, I kept referring to it as the “supernatural serial killer” novel I was reading, and it fits so perfectly. Basically, Paige and Lucas agree to help the Cabals (supernatural mafia-like groups) to help find the person who’s been killing teenagers of Cabal employees. It follows the typical thriller-style of stories where they think they have the whole thing solved, but it turns out that they were missing a couple pieces of the puzzle, which makes for an interesting, surprising read.

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