Review: Haunted by Kelley Armstrong

Posted July 28th, 2012 in book review / 10 comments


Book #5 of the Women of the Otherworld Series

by Kelley Armstrong

Publisher: Bantam (May 2005)
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Format: Paperback (495 pages)
Source: Personal Bookshelf
Purchase: Amazon / Barnes & Noble / Book Depository
Rating: ★★★☆☆ (3 stars)

Eve Levine — half-demon, black witch and devoted mother — has been dead for three years. She has a great house, an interesting love life and can’t be killed again — which comes in handy when you’ve made as many enemies as Eve. Yes, the afterlife isn’t too bad — all she needs to do is find a way to communicate with her daughter, Savannah, and she’ll be happy.

But fate — or more exactly, the Fates — have other plans. Eve owes them a favor, and they’ve just called it in. An evil spirit called the Nix has escaped from hell. She feeds on chaos and death, and is very good at persuading people to kill for her. The Fates want Eve to hunt her down before she does any more damage, but the Nix is a dangerous enemy — previous hunters have been driven insane in the process. As if that’s not problem enough, the only way to stop her is with an angel’s sword. And Eve is no angel. . .  ~ Goodreads

~Short Review~

At a Glance
Haunted was a good read but it added nothing to the series as a whole.

The Good
I am always interested to see how authors envision the afterlife and Armstrong apparently has a vivid imagination because she created one hell of a complex world for the dead. I did find many of her descriptions very interesting because she created a detailed picture that I could imagine myself being sucked into.

I never cared to know more about Eve, the dead, dark witch and mother to Savannah, but she did start to grow on me as the story went along. I wanted her to succeed in her task because I believed she deserved a second chance at some kind of pleasant afterlife. And I wanted to see her come to terms with her situation because her pining over her living dauther was getting depressing. So her finding peace was something I hoped for the whole time.

Once the book got into Eve and her friends going after the demon Nix, things started to really pick up. The whole ghost and afterlife concept really came together and things started to make sense. The action and fighting was very well done. Nix was such a horrible being that I loved watching the “good guys” chasing after her. I liked the fact that the Fates past three assassins failed to kill Nix so they sent Eve as their last resort in reining in this demon. Because Eve is similar enough to Nix to know what she might be thinking but is good enough to want to save innocents’ lives.

Haunted was a compelling read. The afterlife world was beyond interesting in its intricacies and rules. It was fun to discover every new detail. This book also had a great finish that will satisfy most.

The Bad
The beginning was slow. Armstrong really threw in massive amounts of information about the afterlife right away, and I just wanted to get to the meat of the story. The afterlife was very similar to the world in Beetlejuice, which I don’t know is a good or bad thing. I enjoyed Armstrong’s take of the ghost world, but I just wish it wasn’t dropped on my lap all at once.

My biggest problem is that this story in no way contributed to the series as a whole. It was like Armstrong got sidetracked and threw in this story to give bad witch Eve a redeemable story. I wasn’t really interested in the characters going in. I want to read more about my favorite characters.

The Snuggly
We get a little romance between Eve and Kristof. No real sex scenes, just the lead up to one. I never really liked Kristof, and Eve is just okay, so seeing them together did nothing for me.

I had fun reading this book most of the time. Little things bothered me here and there but it was an overall good read. But in regard to following the series, this book can definitely be skipped. Recommended for those who love everything Armstrong.

“You’ll wrest a burning sword from an angel, but you’re afraid of bats?”

“I’m not afraid of them. I just don’t like them. They’re…furry. Flying things shouldn’t be furry. It’s not right. And if I ever meet the Creator, I’m taking that one up with him.”

“That I’d like to see. Your one and possible only chance to get the answer to every question in the universe, and you ask, ‘Why are bats furry?”‘

“I will. You just wait.” 

Women of the Otherworld Series:
Book #1: Bitten
Book #2: Stolen
Book #3: Dime Store Magic
Book #4: Industrial Magic
Book #5: Haunted
Book #6: Broken
Book #7: No Humans Involved
Book #8: Personal Demon
Book #9: Living with the Dead
Book #10: Frostbitten
Book #11: Waking the Witch
Book #12: Spell Bound
Book #13: Thirteen


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10 Responses to “Review: Haunted by Kelley Armstrong”

  1. TheReadingPenguin

    This book DID have slow moments, but overall I really liked it. For me, Eve is a more interesting narrator than Paige. I still liked Bitten the best, though, so far.

  2. Sarah (saz101)

    Aw, boo… it just sounds… forgettable? And it’s a shame, ‘cos I know you like… wait, I *think* you normally like Kelly Armstrong? ANYWAY. Fingers crossed on the enxt one being better 🙂

    I still really like the sound of the world and afterlife, though… and the Beetlejuice reference? I am INTRIGUED.


    • Jennifer L. Bielman

      It’s funny you should say that because I actually did forget this book. I had to skim it again to refresh my memory. The afterlife is cool I just like other books in the series a lot more.

      Yes, Kelley Armstrong is a good author for me.

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