Irreverent Questions With… Saskia Sarginson

Saskia Sarginson answers a few irreverent questions, just in time for the release of her latest book, The Other Me.

saskia_328-fin-224x300Saskia was born in Manchester in 1961, but grew up in Suffolk. She has a B.A hons in Fashion Design and Communication from St. Martin’s School of Art and read English Literature at Cambridge University. She was awarded a distinction in her Creative Writing M.A from Royal Holloway University. Saskia worked as Health and Beauty Editor on Company magazine and has written for various publications such as Cosmopolitan, You magazine, The Telegraph, Sainsbury’s Magazine, The Clothes Show, Zest, She and M & S Magazine. She has also been a script reader, copy writer and ghost writer. Her debut novel, The Twins, was published by Piatkus in September 2013. Her second novel, Without You, was published in July 2014, also by Piatkus. She lives in London with her four children, (including twin girls) her partner, Alex, a TV series producer/director – and two cats and two dogs. 

How did you celebrate when your first book was published?
When my debut novel was published I collapsed in relief, then stayed awake all night in a state of complete terror – would anyone read it? Would they hate it? What if they hated it? Which was worse – nobody reading it, or people hating it? (You get the picture.) When my partner managed to talk me down from the dizzying heights of my paranoia, we went out for a quiet meal at our favourite local restaurant and raised a glass of champagne to The Twins.

What are your preferred conditions for writing, i.e. silence, background noise, TV?
Shhhhhh. Silence! I can’t even cope with someone breathing in the same room. The only creatures allowed inside my writing space are my animals.

Whose opinion matters most to you?
There are four main people who always read a book first and whose opinions matter the most – my editor and my agent, my partner and my best friend, who also happens to be an editor, luckily for me.

Who would play you in the film adaptation of your life?
Someone blonde, a bit on the curvy side – maybe Kate Winslet?

Do you have a party trick?
Not really. Not unless I could dance a tango. I could push my youngest son forward, he’s always got a trick up his sleeve, or some impossible riddle to solve.

Do you have pets, and if so, describe them?
I love animals. I have two cats and three dogs. My cats are sisters, with the same birthday as me. They have different personalities; Lola is shy and nervous; Tilly is brave, friendly, funny and best mates with the dogs: Maisy, a tough little border terrier, and Sacha, a big soppy lurcher. My latest dog is a rescue from Spain. When we got Evie she was skin and bone and terrified of men. Somebody (a man presumably) had chopped her tail off, just for fun. Now she’s put on loads of weight, and has become a happy, confident girl. I’d get more rescue animals if I could. But I need to move to the country first!

Many thanks to Saskia Sarginson for taking the time to answer our questions, and if you want to know more about the author, visit her Website, Twitter, Goodreads or on Facebook!


Irreverent Questions is BookThing‘s fun, irregular feature where we ask a series of random questions that popped into our curious heads. If you are an author and would like to take part, please get in touch!

Irreverent Questions With… Lisa Ballantyne

As part of the release of Redemption Road, Lisa Ballantyne kindly answered a few of our irreverent questions!

10865828_809984035753883_8254848204158460780_oLisa Ballantyne was born in Armadale, West Lothian, Scotland and studied English Literature at University of St Andrews.

She lived and worked in China for many years and started writing seriously while she was there. Before being published, Lisa was short-listed for the Dundee International Book Prize.

Her debut novel, The Guilty One was translated into over 25 languages, long-listed for the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award and short-listed for an Edgar Allan Poe Award. The Guilty One was also the Autumn 2012 Richard and Judy Book-club Winner. Redemption Road is her new novel. She lives in Glasgow.

Picture and bio reproduced from Lisa’s website.

What would you be or want to be (or still are), if you weren’t an author?
A character actress or a social worker… but even if I had the talent and skill to be either of those, I would write as well! I will always write, however I earn my money.

Describe your working environment right now (desk, sofa, bathroom, etc.)
I write at my kitchen table, in a Glasgow tenement, looking out of my kitchen window. There are two huge sash windows before me, still fitted with period glass that slightly blurs my view of trees, the railway, a church spire, and hills in the distance – the scene wavers, as if it is under water.

How did you celebrate when your first book was published?
I had a big party with my friends.

What gets you in the mood or inspires you to write?
Nothing particularly gets me in the mood for writing; I daydream constantly and this is the main source of my work, but I find that I have a lot of good thoughts when I am on busses staring out of the window.

What is the best experience you’ve had with fans?
I am touched when people write me letters to say they’ve been moved by my work.

What do you value most?
The people I love and my creativity.

What is your favourite type of music?
That is such a hard question to answer. I love music and have eclectic taste, but I write listening exclusively to classical music.

Many thanks to Lisa Ballantyne for taking the time to answer our questions, and if you want to know more about the author, visit her Website, Twitter, Goodreads or on Facebook!


Irreverent Questions is BookThing‘s fun, irregular feature where we ask a series of random questions that popped into our curious heads. If you are an author and would like to take part, please get in touch!

Clash of Iron

I adored Age of Iron, the first book in this series and was waiting eagerly for this second book to be released. I sometimes have worries about whether a sequel will live up to the first one, but I think because of Watson’s irreverent style of writing, I didn’t worry about this book and I was very happy to be proved right on that score.

Clash of Iron (The Iron Age Trilogy) LEADERS ARE FORGED IN THE FIRES OF WAR

Iron Age warriors Dug and Lowa captured Maidun castle and freed its slaves. But now they have conquered it, they must defend it.

A Roman invasion is coming from Gaul, but rather than uniting to protect their home, the British tribes battle each other – and see Maidun as an easy target.

Meanwhile, Lowa’s spies infiltrate Gaul, discovering the Romans have recruited bloodthirsty British druids, and Maidunite Ragnall finds his loyalties torn when he meets Rome’s charismatic general, Julius Caesar.

War is coming. Who will pay its price?

I adored Age of Iron, the first book in this series and was waiting eagerly for this second book to be released.  I sometimes have worries about whether a sequel will live up to the first one, but I think because of Watson’s irreverent style of writing, I didn’t worry about this book and I was very happy to be proved right on that score.

Clash of Iron turns a few things we thought about certain characters from the first book on its head.  The most notable are Ragnall who takes self-absorption to a new level and becomes one of the enemy, even if it was by accident and a sense of his own self-importance.  The other characters are from the original 50.  Chamanca, who I now think kicks ass in a slightly icky way but she has undeniably won me over; Atlas who is just solid, likeable and is as loyal to Lowa as he was to Zadar; and Carden who can find the humour in any situation.  Those three are just awesome.

Lowa and Spring have grown beyond their experiences in the first book with Lowa learning to be the Queen of Maidun and to not repeat the mistakes Zadar made, while Spring is learning to be the best she can be and looks up to Dug and Lowa.  I keenly felt her frustration with her magic and not being able to understand how it worked, especially when it came to people she cared about.

Dug, thankfully, is just Dug!  Still badger profanity obsessed, solid, dependable but now just wants a quiet life.  I kept rooting for him and Lowa to reconcile as they so clearly wanted to be together but battles, events and timings meant it proved difficult.  I was surprised he managed to keep out of it for as long as he did but I do admit cheering when he entered the fray.

For the bad guys, they are too many to mention in this but oh my goodness, some of them are horrible.  Methods of torture for amusement or questioning is never going to be pretty but the author managed to get pretty damn inventive here.  He also managed to make some of it macabrely amusing.  King Hari the Fister’s trials come to mind there (you will know what I mean when you get there!).

I loved the way Caesar is portrayed, perhaps slightly out of convention with history but it worked very well for me.  His famed journal being an account of what he wanted to show he did rather than being what he actually did and his penchant for referring to himself in the third person was brilliant.

Felix, ahhh, Felix.  You were a surprise and I could quite happily see you go through every one of the torture methods mentioned and not shed a tear.  I really hope you get your comeuppance!

Characters aside, the story is well crafted with Watson’s own take on that period of history and it flows well and kept me reading.  Betrayals, heroism, horror, despair and gory battles are all ingredients for a decent fantasy novel but Angus Watson’s talent for writing those with realism and humour amidst it all is what raises this series from decent to fantastic.

Bonus points for the inclusion of a few famous Gauls.  I utterly, utterly loved that!

Bonus points taken away for making me cry at the end!

Overall this was a brilliant, exciting and engaging second book and I can’t wait for the third now, to see if some things are permanent and if so, how the remaining characters will give Felix and Caesar the punishment they so richly deserve!

Rating: ★★★★½ 

Book Information
  • Author: Angus Watson
  • Series: The Iron Age Trilogy (2)
  • Format: Paperback
  • Publisher: Orbit
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Buy on Kindle (UK)Buy from Amazon (UK)

The Girl With All The Gifts

The Girl With All The Gifts NOT EVERY GIFT IS A BLESSING

Every morning, Melanie waits in her cell to be collected for class.

When they come for her, Sergeant Parks keeps his gun pointing at her while two of his people strap her into the wheelchair. She thinks they don’t like her. She jokes that she won’t bite. But they don’t laugh.

Melanie is a very special girl.

Oh my goodness, this is one creepy, thought provokingly brilliant book.  I’d heard good things about it but curiously I’d not heard much of what it was actually about.  I can understand that now.  The fall of civilization, apocalypse, zombie type creatures, are all part of it yes (or some time after the fall) but it’s actually about a young girl called Melanie who is very curious.

The focus is very narrow, kept to what Melanie knows in the beginning and doesn’t really spread out much further than that other than a couple of different POV scenes but all kept in close proximity.  I went through so many emotions, starting off as curious as Melanie but then feeling a bit uncomfortable led to dawning horror and then so much tension I couldn’t actually put the book down because I had to find out what was happening.  Almost like having to look at something awful, just to prove to yourself that it is actually that awful.  The pace is very much tied to the plot and as things progress, things speed up and get more intense and that does not stop until the end.  I actually finished the book with my mouth hanging open.

With a very small core cast, the obvious focus is Melanie who I loved, even with the creepy factor.  Secondly is Miss Justineau, her compassion and intelligence create for some very raw scenes.  The superb writing of Carey gave us the Sergeant who I loathed… then by the end I loved.  That’s a pretty impressive turnaround in not a lot of time and shows that what you see is very much not what you get.  Caldwell, the scientist, is cold but I’m stuck between necessity and hatred where she is concerned.  She may be the only one who can get the answer but her actions are abhorrent.  The lieutenant was just a bit a fish out of water and didn’t get in the way too much.

The answer to what is going on however is mind-blowing and so very horrifying.  Yet, it’s also fascinating and in an odd way, hopeful.

A brilliant yet creepy book that will leave you thinking.

Rating: ★★★★½ 

Book Information
  • Author: M.R. Carey
  • Format: Kindle
  • Publisher: Orbit
  • Genre: Horror
  • Buy on Kindle (UK)Buy from Amazon (UK)

Day 2 of the Creepy Halloween Blog Crawl

Piatkus Halloween banner

Today is our stop on the Creepy Blog Crawl!!  The amazing Kate Ellis writes our piece and gives you your letter! Tomorrow head to Book Mood Reviews for the next stop and once you have all five letters, visit http://www.piatkusbooks.net/halloween-blog-tour/, submit that word and you’ll be entered into their competition to win a bundle of Piatkus books and special Halloween sweets.  Good luck!

ROOM TWO Kate Ellis

My heart thundered in my chest as I hesitated in the corridor. Which door next? I had to make some sort of decision so I stumbled towards the first door to my right. I turned the handle and when the door swung open all I could see beyond the threshold was a heavy darkness. But somewhere beyond that door I knew there’d be a second clue. I stepped forward and the door slammed behind me.

I stood there quite still, my legs weak with fear, and suddenly I realised I wasn’t alone. Something was in there with me. Breathing. Watching. The air felt dank and I could smell decay; the smell of the grave. There was a faint rustle, like dry dead leaves blown by a fetid breeze, and a light appeared in the far corner; the flickering flame of a tall candle lit by an unseen hand. Then I heard a sigh, like air expelled from the lungs of a corpse after death.

With a huge effort, I summoned the courage to take a step forward. Whatever was in there with me, I needed to find that clue.

In the dancing flame I could just make out a shifting shape in the darkest corner. And, as I stared, the candlelight reflected off dark, glossy plumage. Feathers. Crow black. Shining like wet blood.

It slithered slowly across the floor towards me and my body tensed. It was a thing of evil – half-bird, half-serpent – and I forced myself to watch as it glided over the splintery floorboards. It breathed. It moved. I couldn’t see its form but there was a sour odour of decay, growing stronger as it drew nearer.

As I backed away the candle guttered and in that moment of brightness I saw something terrible. It was a doll with staring eyes and rosebud lips, open to reveal a set of sharp white teeth. It wore a cloak of black feathers and it was standing a few feet away, watching me. I could hear its rasping breath and I knew it lived. Then I heard a voice, like a child singing softly to itself.

‘Here comes the candle to light you to bed. Here comes the chopper to chop off your head.’

The voice was brittle, sweet yet knowing. The thing had me trapped and it was gloating. The rhyme was repeated again. Then again. Each time a little louder than the last.

‘ To chop off your head.’

I tried to scream but no noise emerged. The candle was burning dimly now and the creature was still watching me with its cold glass eyes. I shuffled back and stooped to pick up the candle, hoping its feeble flame would guide me back to the corridor.

I could see a light beneath the door. If the thing didn’t strike at me I thought I could make it. As I clutched the candle I could hear it moving again, still singing, stalking like a predator.

I reached the door and fumbled desperately for the handle. To my relief it opened and I fell on my knees into the corridor, twisting round to slam it shut behind me. To shut out that evil thing and its terrible rhyme.

I was still holding the candle. The hot wax had dripped onto my hand but terror made me oblivious to the pain. Then I noticed something drawn near the candle’s base; a dark, malevolent bird – a raven with a human face. And just above it I saw the letter R carved into the wax. I had the second clue.

If you need a reminder of all the stops and dates, you can see them here.

Written in Red

While I enjoy any book by Anne Bishop, I haven’t been quite this excited about a series since her Black Jewels Universe stories came to an end (sob).

Written in Red (Novel of the Others) While I enjoy any book by Anne Bishop, I haven’t been quite this excited about a series since her Black Jewels Universe stories came to an end (sob).

She has this amazing ability to create a world with characters that are unusual but so very appealing.  If I was explaining to someone what this series was like, I would say the Others are a bit like the Kindred in the Black Jewels but also, so much more.  Neither human nor animal, they are something… Other.  The Terra Indigene (Earth Natives) – Deadly, feral, guardians of the world of Namid. Humans live by their sufferance and largesse, and woe betide them if they trespass on land that does not belong to them.

Simon Wolfgarde is the leader of the Lakeside City Courtyard – a place of the Others to live, work, rest and play.  Human laws do not apply.  Trespass and you may be eaten, and they aren’t kidding.  Meg Corbyn is an enigma to the Others, obviously human, she doesn’t smell like them, but doesn’t smell like ‘prey’ either.  Appearing from nowhere half frozen, and running from something, she applies for the job as Human Liaison between the Courtyard and the human world.  And so begins a very confusing and enlightening time for the residents of Lakeside.

This book is just so full of charm, from Meg herself to the Others and their interactions with her, and with each other about her.  Often hilarious as they try to figure out what to do with this strange short human who is willing to interact with their kind and as she creeps into their hearts, they all crept into mine.

I suppose the closest thing to call the others is shapeshifters, vampires, elementals etc. but those labels do not do them justice.  The creation of the world and the Others place in it is brilliant and without having to use lengthy explanations, Bishop manages to give you a broad view of the way it works.  Humans are not the dominant species even though their nature is such that they don’t believe half of what they hear about the Others and that is always their first mistake.  And there are some horrible humans.  There are also some amazing ones but you come to think of them as part or extension of the courtyard.

There are so many characters to love here, Meg first and foremost.  She is just so loveable and her innocence could have been annoying but it’s not at all.  You just want to look after her.  Simon is a close second and his confusion over dealing with a human female that does not smell like prey is just priceless.  There are quite a few laugh out loud moments where that is concerned.  Tess and her ever changing hair is both scary and awesome.  Sam is just so adorable as a wolf puppy, your heart just goes out to him for everything he’s suffered.

The rest of the cast are numerous and each and every one has a personality that shines – not always in a good way, but in their experience of humans and their distrust, Meg is something entirely new.  Anne Bishop keeps it simple though and you can identify new characters quickly by their surname as to what type of Other they are.  Wolfgarde for wolves, Crowgarde for Crows etc.

The story is fascinating and even the simple details make for enjoyable reading.  Pace wise, it never moves slowly without good cause and makes perfect sense for the plot happening at the time.  When it speeds up though, it really gets going.

Whether the Others will match my fangirl love of the Black Jewels books it remains to be seen, but after one novel, it’s off to a fantastic start!

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

Book Information
  • Author: Anne Bishop
  • Series: The Others (1)
  • Format: Kindle
  • Publisher: Roc
  • Genre: Urban Fantasy
  • Buy on Kindle (UK)Buy from Amazon (UK)

Creepy Halloween Blog Crawl

Piatkus Halloween banner

This Halloween, follow five amazing authors through five fabulous book blogs for the chance to win a grand prize with Piatkus.

Christopher RiceKate EllisTim O’RourkeKristen Callihan and Darynda Jones have joined forces to write a spooky story. Every day from 27th to 31st October, each author’s section of the story will feature on a different blog. Each section of the story will contain a single highlighted letter. Follow the story through the blogs, collecting the highlighted letters as you go and on 31st October you will have enough letters to spell a single word!

The creepy blog crawl starts here (you don’t need to collect a letter from this section of the story):

You wake up at the end of a long, dark corridor. Someone slams and locks the door behind you. There’s no way to go but forwards. At the end of the corridor is a heavy wooden door.

In front of you is an envelope with your name on it. You open it with trembling hands. It says, ‘You have been brought here for a reason. Prove that you are worth saving. Work out the five clues if you want to live.’

You stand up, clutching the letter, and run for the end of the corridor. On the door is a keypad, containing all 26 letters of the alphabet. Knowing, deep down, that it won’t help, you try desperately to open the door. It’s firmly locked. Turning round, you see five doors in the side of the corridor. Three to the left and two to the right. Five doors, five clues. You know what you have to do.

Day 1, 27th October: Head on over to Chicks That Read to read the first installment of the story from Christopher Rice and to collect your first letter!

Day 2, 28th October: Go to Bookthing to read the second installment of the story from Kate Ellis and to collect your second letter!

Day 3, 29th October: Click through to Book Mood Reviews to read the third installment of the story from Tim O’Rourke and to collect your third letter!

Day 4th, 30th October: Head on over to Opinionated Cupcakes  to read the fourth installment of the story from Kristen Callihan and to collect your fourth letter!

Day 5th, 31st October: And finally go to Fiction Fascination to read the fifth installment of the story from Darynda Jones and to collect your fifth and final letter!

Visit http://www.piatkusbooks.net/halloween-blog-tour/, submit that word and you’ll be entered into our competition to win a bundle of Piatkus books and special Halloween sweets.

Good luck!

Irreverent Questions With… Mandy Baggot

MandyBaggotYes you can believe your eyes, we are bringing back our Irreverent Questions!  Mandy Baggot, in the midst of her blog tour was kind enough to answer our questions.  She is a particular favourite of Tracey’s and if you haven’t read anything by her yet, what are you waiting for – go get Made in Nashville now!

Mandy Baggot is an award-winning romantic fiction author, writing hot heroes and emotional reads.

Represented by Kate Nash of the Kate Nash Literary Agency she is also a contributor to writing blogs, magazines and short story anthologies and regularly takes part in fiction festivals and literary events.

Mandy loves mashed potato, white wine, country music, Corfu, shoes and handbags. She has appeared on ITV1’s Who Dares Sings and auditioned for The X-Factor.

Mandy is a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association and lives near Salisbury, Wiltshire, UK with her husband, two daughters and cats, Kravitz and Springsteen.

And now, on with the irreverence!

How did you celebrate when your first book was published?
I always celebrate the same way whenever I bring out a new book. I always have a party on Facebook throughout the day and try and mix it up with hot men and competitions. I like to give things away and just enjoy chatting and celebrating the launch with my friends.

Then, in the evening, it’s opening white fizzy wine (champagne if I’m really lucky) and eating Chinese food. Last time, when Made in Nashville was released, I got flowers from my husband, Mr Big too!

Do you get fully dressed to write?
Not all the time! If it’s a normal day then it’s up and dressed to do the school run. In the holidays I have been known to still be in my PJs at lunchtime writing at my desk. There was also one crazy day when I had about 20 people posting clues to a James Bond competition for the launch of my novel, Security. I don’t think I got dressed at all that day. Scheduling tweets takes a while and tweeting is important you know!

How do you deal with negative comments?
I think I spilled the beans and answered this question at the Festival of Romance in September. I read ALL the reviews for my books on Amazon and Goodreads. There are some that make me cry with joy and there are others that irk, BUT I appreciate every review I get, even the stinky ones. If someone has, not only taken the time to read my book, but taken time to review it too, I am thankful for that. I often tweet the best of the one star reviews because that’s someone’s valid opinion and as authors we can’t please everyone. And it’s good to laugh, especially if someone’s called your work horseshit! I really need to make t-shirts.

It’s movie night, the credits are just about to roll, Happy Ever After, Everyone Dies, Or…?
Ooo that’s a tough one. My favourite films of all time are Dirty Dancing and Die Hard. Die Hard is part of a Christmas Eve ritual. We watch, we eat Chinese food – are you noticing a take-out theme in these questions? I like the hero and heroine to be happy in the end – the good guys beating the bad guys, but there has to be drama and conflict all the way through or I get bored. Who wouldn’t want to be swept up by Patrick Swayze and Bruce Willis?

Do you have any phobias?
Astronauts. They bust into Elliott’s home in ET and it frightened the life out of me when I was a child. Luckily, in my line of work, I don’t have to encounter them very often. Yes, I know it’s a person in a suit but…they give me the creeps!

Many thanks to Mandy Baggot for taking the time to answer our questions, and if you want to know more about the author, visit her Website, Twitter, Goodreads or on Facebook!

Pictures provided by and used with permission of Mandy Baggot


Made in NashvilleMandy’s latest book is Made in Nashville (you can read Tracey’s 5 star review here)

An on-stage attack left Honor Blackwood with more scars than just the one on her face. It’s been ten years since she left her spot as Nashville’s brightest country music star. Is now the time to return? And is she brave enough to do it?

Country rebel and rock star, Jared ‘Jed’ Marshall is hot property on the Tennessee music scene in more ways than one. He’s wild, he’s sexy and everybody wants a piece of him. But when he sets his sights on Honor, is it pure attraction or just distraction on his mind?

Honor’s record label sign the ex-boyfriend that dumped her and suddenly going back to her old life is harder than she thought. And when a secret from the past becomes public knowledge it’s no longer just about the music. Are all the people in her life lying to her to get what they want?

Join the country scene to find out!

Made in Nashville – where the off-stage action’s as hot as the music!


Irreverent Questions is BookThing‘s fun, irregular feature where we ask a series of random questions that popped into our curious heads. If you are an author and would like to take part, please get in touch!

Otherworld Nights

All in all, this is a great collection and a bonus having the new material. I would have bought it just to have the stories in one place, even the ones I have read. If you haven’t read any of them yet then it’s highly recommended.

Otherworld Nights I always have a feeling of sadness when a much loved series comes to a close – especially one that has run across quite a few books.  I always want to know more, even if it’s in glimpses or character histories via short stories and novellas.  I was really happy to find out about three anthologies from the Otherworld series (also known as Women of the Otherworld) – not only to have the stories I had read in one place but also for the rare, hard to find ones and of course, new material.

The first of these is Otherworld Nights!

The focus of this one is love in its various forms such as family, friends or a loved one.

First up is Demonology – This was an online story and is the story of how Adam’s mother discovers what he is.  I originally read it online and it was an interesting look at the young Adam and how far Talia was willing to go to help him.

The second novella is Twilight – This appeared in Many Bloody Returns and is about Cassandra’s (re)birthday and the lack of enthusiasm she is experiencing at continuing on with her life.  It’s a good piece in its own right and Cassandra is an enigma for me in the Otherworld, so it was nice to have a story from her point of view.

Third is a Clay and Elena story and is called Stalked – I just can’t get enough of this pair and this is about their honeymoon.  It originally appeared in My Big Fat Supernatural Honeymoon and was one story I missed, so it was great to have it here.  Obviously things can’t run smoothly for them and it also has quite an amusing conclusion.

Fourth is Chivalrous, a story that appeared in Tales of Dark Fantasy 2 – It’s Reese’s back-story and I found it very emotional and tugged right at me.  It gives you so much more of an insight into the Australian Wolf and it is a really good story.

The fifth story is Lucifer’s Daughter and is about Hope and Karl – I originally read it in blood Lite 2 and this is probably the story I rate the least here.  While I like Hope and Karl, they just don’t grab me as characters the way most of the rest of the cast do, so for me, it’s enjoyable but not hugely exciting.

Hidden is the sixth story and is a long novella released in 2012.  Elena, Clay and the twins at Christmas time – just awesome.  Not only just for the characters but the plot of this is quite serious and on par with the novels.  There is a serious twist in the tale and a bit of a shocker.  This story is my favourite of the set but I may be biased!

The penultimate offering is From Russia, With Love and this Elena story was included as a bonus with some versions of 13.  Elena has grown so much over the series, and I just love her.  I feel like this was a brilliant point for her and something she has been working towards, even though she didn’t know it.  I don’t want to spoil it but it was a surprise to me and made me a bit emotional.

Finally we have the new novella – Vanishing Act.  this is about Savannah and Adam and is set after the events in 13 so there may be spoilers for you!  It’s really well written and gives you a look at ‘what comes after’ but I can’t say more than that.

All in all, this is a great collection and a bonus having the new material.  I would have bought it just to have the stories in one place, even the ones I have read.  If you haven’t read any of them yet then it’s highly recommended.

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

Book Information
  • Author: Kelley Armstrong
  • Series: Otherworld
  • Format: Paperback
  • Publisher: Orbit
  • Genre: Paranormal Romance
  • Buy on Kindle (UK)Buy from Amazon (UK)