February 13, 2012

Bitten by Dan O'Brien

***This book was received as a free advanced reader's copy***

This was a supernatural crime mystery type of book. It had a good plot, the pace was a bit off, but the characters were good. And it looks like it may be the start of a series, which sounds interesting.

Lauren Westlake is headed to a sleepy little town up North on the trail of a case. A series of strange, possibly supernatural killings have happened, and a new murder has brought her here. The local police force, while resentful at first, soon appreciates her help when another murder occurs that is just as grisly as the first. And it won't be the last either. But Lauren's even got a little romance going as well, with a mysterious man who seems older than he really is. But since the town is full of strange surprises it doesn't alarm her. The cold blooded killer is still on the prowl, and Lauren knows she has to stop him, but its going to be tougher than she thinks.

I liked Lauren. She's pretty no-nonsense and won't take any crap. But at the same time she kind of seems unsure of herself as well. She does fall a little fast for her love interest, but hey, chemistry can happen that way sometimes. The police are also pretty no-nonsense but they are believable for the most part. And I liked the O'Brien gave them some backstories. I was a little weirded out by Hecate, unless she appears in the rest of the series (if it is in fact a series) she just seemed out of place and like an afterthought in this book. Her character and conversations almost made the book unbelievable (well unbelievable in the scope of a supernatural novel anyway). She just didn't seem authentic.

I will say that there is a lot of gore, violence, sex, and wildly colorful language in this book. I'm thinking that if you're sensitive to any of these things, it probably won't be to your taste. But the gruesome did make it a good horror story. It was descriptive and very visual. The conversation I felt a bit strange. I'm assuming this is modern time and the language was a bit formal for now, although I did like that he used northern expressions for some of the characters. I guess for a supernatural suspense, it just seemed like poetic language mixed in between cusswords, and it didn't come off natural. The idea of the killer and the backstory behind it was unique. I actually liked the twist that O'Brien put on the werewolf myth. It was different.

I would read the next in this series and will probably look for it to hit shelves. I'm eager to see if it puts a different spin on another supernatural being.

Copyright 2011
274 pages

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