Kathy Davie's Reviews > Spell Bound

Spell Bound by Kelley Armstrong
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Aug 30, 11

bookshelves: fantasy, urban, young-adult
Read in August, 2011

Twelfth of the Women of the Otherworld urban fantasy, young adult series starring Savannah Levine that starts in Columbus, Washington and ends in New Orleans, Louisiana.

The Story
Savannah is still suffering from the poison injected into her by Leah O'Donnell in Waking the Witch and it seems the witch hunter is still after her. Then something goes wrong when Savannah expresses the wish that she could offer up her powers so Kayla can go back to her grandmother and her grandmother would not be in jail. For something is watching and gladly takes Savannah up on her offer.

It's a good thing that Adam is there with her in Columbus. Someone to, hopefully, ride check on the crazy ideas Savannah gets. Someone who will know where she's going. Hopefully, someone to be sure Savannah gets to Paige and Lucas to help her regain her powers. Because Savannah is fighting the embarrassment of telling her guardians just what she's been up to since she has been spewing information right and left to a witch-hunter. A witch-hunter who scammed her and now everyone she knows is vulnerable to kidnapping by the Supernatural Liberation Movement.

The Characters
Pretty much everybody shows up in this story: Savannah, naturally; Adam Vasic, an Exustio half-demon; Paige Winterbourne and Lucas Cortez, Savannah's guardians; Benicio Cortez, Lucas' dad; Troy, Benicio's bodyguard and pretty much an old friend by now; Sean and Bryce Nash; Savannah's parents have a slip-on part; Jaime (a popular necromancer), Jeremy (alpha of the Stonehaven Pack), Clay and Elena; a pregnant Hope Adams (the daughter of Lucifer and an Expisco half-demon of chaos) and Karl Marsten (a werewolf in Jeremy's Stonehaven Pack); Jasper Haig has a brief appearance in which he harasses Hope; two-year-old Larsen, a young clairvoyant in whom the Nash Cabal is interested, is kidnapped; and, Cassandra DuCharme, a 300-year-old vampire.

One character whom I don't recall showing up before is Balaam, an upper demon who just happens to be Savannah's grandfather, on her mother's side, don't'cha know. Balaam is very supportive of the Supernatural Liberation Movement.

This story's characters seem particularly interested in achieving immortality: Gilles de Rais is a character from history; Althea, a.k.a., Anita Barrington; Sierra and Severin are twins and seem to be demons with a penchant for torture and a desire to betray; and, Veronica "Roni" who sets Savannah up—I sure hope she gets hers soon!

My Take
I'm not impressed with this story. Not much drama or tension and Armstrong portrays Savannah as such a childish, selfish person although she does provide Savannah several opportunities to take a second look at herself and grow up a bit.

I guess you could say that Spell Bound sees Savannah grow up and realize how often she's fluffed off, intending to rely upon her magic. She certainly does have plenty of opportunities to regret all the educational opportunities through which she daydreamed.

The Cover
The cover depicts Savannah all in black: jeans and a midriff-baring tank top with her necklace. The background is a combination of flames and a deeply red, cloudy sky with two different old buildings framing Savannah. The title, Spell Bound, is certainly appropriate since Savannah's powers are bound.
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