Brazen (Otherworld, Novella)
Subterranean Press (US: 10th January 2014)
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An internationally best-selling author signing up with a small publisher is great, theoretically. Bringing a large fan-base to a press who could do with more business – it’s a nice match. And a niche publisher is more open to hiring an illustrator to create interior art for an adult book – that’s pretty cool.
But the actuality of all this comes with its share of problems, namely exclusivity. Limited print runs, though audio and eBook versions are also available. However, Subterranean Press’s eBooks seem to be geo-restricted, so I can’t purchase and therefore can’t read them.
I managed to get my mitts on a hardcover of Kelley Armstrong’s Brazen, and was immediately a little lost. Admittedly, I haven’t yet read the last two full-length Otherworld novels (Spell Bound and Thirteen), and those likely would’ve helped me with back-story. But while another Subterranean Kelley Armstrong book (Hidden) is self-contained, Brazen clearly isn’t. The story’s not even finished, though I imagine it continues in the upcoming Bounty Hunt – but whether it will conclude there is anyone’s guess.
The issue with having side-characters in other books switching to main characters in their own is that they may not have the same affability. I enjoyed Nick on the side because of his distinctive personality, but in Brazen he’s all grown up and settling down with one woman, and his voice could’ve been that of any other Otherworld character.
There’s one genuinely shocking moment in the book, though. (Just wait ’til you see the attic!) But other than that, I struggled to connect with this novella. I’m really looking forward to Bounty Hunt, though – it’ll be narrated by Reese, and urban fantasy could definitely do with more Australians 😉