Author: Jennifer Estep
Series: Elemental Assassin #5
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Release Date: 09/27/11
Reviewed by: Sara
But the Book:
Old habits die hard for assassins.
And I plan on murdering someone before the night is through.
Killing used to be my regular gig, after all. Gin Blanco, aka the Spider, assassin-for-hire. And I was very, very good at it. Now, I’m ready to make the one hit that truly matters: Mab Monroe, the dangerous Fire elemental who murdered my family when I was thirteen. Oh, I don’t think the mission will be easy, but turns out it’s a bit more problematic than expected. The bitch knows I’m coming for her. So now I’m up against the army of lethal bounty hunters Mab hired to track me down. She also put a price on my baby sister’s head. Keeping Bria safe is my first priority. Taking Mab out is a close second. Good thing I’ve got my powerful Ice and Stone magic -- and my irresistible lover, Owen Grayson -- to watch my back. This battle has been years in the making, and there’s a good chance I won’t survive. But if I’m going down, then Mab’s coming with me... no matter what I have to do to make that happen.
Plot: 4.5 Stars
The epic showdown that all readers of this series have been waiting for: Gin vs. Mab. I could not wait to dig into this novel because I've wanted this showdown to happen since I read the first book. I had pretty high expectations going in, and it definitely didn't disappoint. There were some twists and turns before the epic battle that left me gaping at the pages as I read. Even knowing that the sixth book in the series comes out in January, I was worried for Gin and company when the time came. There was a moment near the end that was a bit reminiscent of the last Harry Potter, but it really worked. It gave the reader a bit of insight into Gin. I also loved how this book continued to fill in the gaps in Gin's history.
Pace: 5 Stars
I could not put this novel down. This is definitely my favorite Urban Fantasy series, and the latest installment didn't disappoint. I haven't read a full-length novel as fast as I read this one in months. It was so refreshing to not want to put a book down. Even when the characters were planning their next move, it was anything but boring. Normally, the downtime between action scenes where the characters plan their next move can drag by a bit, but the author definitely has a way of leaving me on the edge of my seat before the action even begins. I also really enjoy how the author weaves in details of previous books. No matter how much time goes by between books, I'm never lost because each new novel includes the perfect amount of details.
Characters: 5 Stars
Although things are still tense, Gin and Bria are making progress. I really enjoyed their interactions in this novel as they tried to move forward. And with Bria hanging around more, Finn also got to know her more. The interactions between Bria and Finn were very entertaining. I was really excited to see more of Owen in this novel, especially when he was helping defend Gin. He was definitely a badass, and it was great to see him as more than just Gin's lover. This novel also involved a bit of growth for Gin. Normally a calm and cool assassin, she had a few moments that led to situations getting a bit out of hand. It was definitely a wild ride as she tried to get out of some sticky situations.
Cover: 5 Stars
My favorite part of this cover is how it embodies the epic showdown between Mab and Gin, fire and ice. It makes the cover stand out in the series. The first four covers were a bit more monochromatic, but this cover is a nice mix of complementary colors. The grayish-blue of the sky and stones really makes the orange of the fire stand out. I also really love the pose of the cover model. I just wish one of her spider runes were visible. This is the first cover in which neither of her palms are showing off the spider rune. This series has some of the best covers around because of the details. The setting of the covers are always specific scenes from the book, and this one is no different.
Overall: 5 Stars
Disclosure: I received an eARC of this novel for review from the author, and also received a finished copy as a gift from my girlfriend.