Title: Led Astray: The Best Of Kelley Armstrong
Series/Universe: Otherworld, Cainsville, Darkest Powers/Darkness Rising, Age of Legends
Author: Kelley Armstrong
Publisher: Tachyon Publications
Publication date: September 15th 2015
Page Count: 432 pages
Age Rating: Older YA & Up (disturbing imagery, blood, gore, violence, death, and mentions of assault)
How I got my hot little hands on it: Received an ARC to review
Publisher’s page: Led Astray: The Best Of Kelley Armstrong
Welcome to the many worlds of New York Times bestselling author Kelley Armstrong (Otherworld, Cainsville). As her SyFy channel series, Bitten, enters its second season, Armstrong continues to breathe new life into city-dwelling vampires, werewolves, and zombies. Now travel even further with her, to a post-apocalyptic fortress, a superstitious village, a supernatural brothel, and even feudal Japan.
In Led Astray, you’ll discover the stories of new characters from within and outside Armstrong’s popular novels. Here you will find two original tales from Cainsville, plus journeys to and beyond the worlds of Darkest Powers, Age of Legends, Otherworld, and more.
Bold and humorous, passionate and heart-stopping, here is Kelley Armstrong at her versatile best.
Kelley Armstrong is a master storyteller, a fact made abundantly clear in this “best of” collection.
There are 23 stories featured in this book, 21 previously published and 2 brand new, never before seen tales. Fans of Kelley Armstrong will recognize some familiar characters and settings, and some new, from the author’s Otherworld, Cainsville, Darkest Powers/Darkness Rising, and Age of Legends series. The only series I have read is the Darkest Powers (and that was years ago), but I was able to enjoy every story in this collection, so no worries for readers who are unfamiliar with any or all of these series.
With different characters and different settings (except for two pairs of stories featuring the same characters and settings), the content of the stories varies from modern cities to feudal Japan, from male to female main characters, characters with ages ranging from kids to adults, and with all sorts of supernatural characters (vampires and werewolves and demons, oh my!). The one thing all the stories have in common is some sort of a twist – something is not as it first seems in each story.
I guess that means the person being “Led Astray” is the reader – in the best possible ways!
I really enjoyed Led Astray: The Best Of Kelley Armstrong and I highly recommend it to anyone who loves Urban Fantasies, supernatural characters, stories with a paranormal bent, and, especially, stories with surprising twists. It’s very easy to believe Led Astray is truly a “best of” collection – every story was fantastic. Usually, in collections such as this, there will be one or two stories that aren’t my favorite, but not here – I felt like every work was my favorite.
All the stories in this collection were amazing, but if I had to pick, my absolute favorite was A Haunted House Of Her Own – a great tale of a woman who comes into some money and pursues her dream of buying an old Victorian to turn into a B&B, hoping it’s haunted to maximize her profits (haunted B&B’s apparently being all the rage) – and learning in the end to be careful what you wish for. To go along with my favorite story, I’m recommending Ghost Town Coffee Roasters Stonehouse Espresso – an espresso roast flavored with wonderful chocolaty undertones and hints of fruity sweetness.