Frostbitten by Kelley Armstrong

(Women of the Otherworld, #10)

The Alaskan wilderness is a harsh landscape in the best of conditions, but with a pack of rogue werewolves on the loose, it’s downright deadly.
Elena Michaels, the Pack’s chief enforcer, knows all too well the havoc “mutts” can wreak.

When word comes of a series of humans apparently killed by wolves near Anchorage, Elena and Clay are sent to check things out. But they find more than they bargained for among the snow and trees of the savage Alaskan wilderness.

“I've spent the last decade learning to stand firm and face my problems… or at least batter them until they're unrecognizable.”

Frostbitten is the last full-length book in the Women of the Otherworld series that is told through Elena's point of view. Throughout the series our main character has grown into her skin, settled in with her mate, advanced higher in the pack, and adapted to motherhood.

In a way I'm bummed the final Elena book, like the second to last, takes a breather from Stonehaven. There's something charming about their property and the bonding that goes on there. Whatever the reason, the author took us out to the Alaskan wilderness, which actually had a cool small town setting. The snow and winter storms added to the creepy feel around an isolated cabin with death inside, wolves and werewolves outside. Armstrong introduces a new form of shifter, but throws in a mystery with it so I can't reveal much other than to say there's a few surprises and nice twists.

The twins are adorable but Skyping with them was enough. Taking Elena and Clay away from Stonehaven gives them alone time to solve the crimes and ride the highs of mystery while giving the readers a break from parenting overload. Jeremy is hardly around until the very end (bummer), but he and Jaime are spoken of briefly. This is an unusual story in that there aren't many regular gracing the pages other than through phone calls and memories. Nick makes a stand at least once, however, and we get two new important werewolves that may shape the future stories that will remain untold since the series is ending.

Cleverly twisted, Elena runs into some sick individuals who hold little remorse for man or shapeshifter. She has to confront her last biggest fear before she steps onto the higher step of alphahood. It was interesting on a psychological level, but I have to wonder if it was completely needed. She didn't grow beyond the fear (who would?) but instead learned to accept it and ignore it for the bigger picture. It was never a phobia or necessarily holding her back, so I'm not sure if the author had that particular scenario in this book for a bigger meaning that I didn't fully grasp.

Clay is awesome, he'll always be awesome, and we get a good dose of him here. Romance, steam, fight, vulnerable moments, the whole package in one.

Frostbitten is a dark book that finishes with a hopeful feeling. The pace is calmer than a few others in the series, but this only heightens the sense of isolation that complements the winter setting.


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   Book Quotes:

“I've spent the last decade learning to stand firm and face my problems… or at least batter them until they're unrecognizable.”

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