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Reviews of books in a series, with a focus on urban fantasy.
Other genres include mystery, paranormal romance, and crime thrillers.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Web of Lies (Elemental Assassin Book 2) by Jennifer Estep

Web of Lies opens a few months after the end of Spider's Bite. We knew that Gin was going to be bored once she retired, right? Which would mean that she's going to jump up and take part in any hint of excitement by this time. Here is the official blurb, but it doesn't tell us too much:

Curios­ity is def­i­nitely going to get me dead one of these days. Prob­a­bly real soon.

I’m Gin Blanco. You might know me as the Spi­der, the most feared assas­sin in the South. I’m retired now, but trou­ble still has a way of find­ing me. Like the other day when two punks tried to rob my pop­u­lar bar­be­cue joint, the Pork Pit. Then there was the bar­rage of gun­fire on the restau­rant. Only, for once, those kill shots weren’t aimed at me. They were meant for Vio­let Fox. Ever since I agreed to help Vio­let and her grand­fa­ther pro­tect their prop­erty from an evil coal-mining tycoon. I’m begin­ning to won­der if I’m really retired.

So is Detec­tive Dono­van Caine. The only hon­est cop in Ash­land is hav­ing a hard time rec­on­cil­ing his attrac­tion to me with his Boy Scout men­tal­ity. And I can barely keep my hands of his sexy body. What can I say? I’m a Stone ele­men­tal — with a lit­tle Ice magic thrown in — but my heart isn’t made of solid rock. Luck­ily, Gin Blanco always gets her man … dead or alive.

The blurb tells us that we're going to see the nice detective again, and it tells us the general outline of what the book is about - protecting some people from a coal miner. But this book is once again packed with action, and the blurb does not do Web of Lies justice.

Gin is a bad-ass amongst bad-asses. Seriously, not much bothers her. But she's also smart enough to know when she can be a bad ass and when she needs to chill out and behave. I appreciate that.

I enjoy the relationship Gin has with her sort-of-foster-brother Finn, and I like the Devereaux sisters. Those three people make up Gin's "family". Not her biological family, but the family she has created. Web of Lies builds on those relationships already established in book one, and it moves Gin forward in her life. In a good series we see the characters growing and changing as they deal with what life throws at them, and we certainly see Gin growing and changing and adapting in book two.

The plot is a good one, and it fits in nicely with Gin's abilities. She can hear what rocks are... feeling? No, that's not the right word, but she can sense what's going on with any kind of stone, and the main plot has to do with mining. Nuff said? It works. The pacing is once again well done, also. As for humor, it's not a LOL book, but there is enough humor here and there to make you smile.

Gin isn't the type to think too hard about moral implications when a bad guy needs to die, she's more worried about little details like witnesses. That's what we have the good detective for, he forces her to have the discussions about what is right and wrong, he's the one that gives us the moral food for thought. Poor, poor, conflicted Donovan. I won't say what happens with him, as I don't want to put out any spoilers.

I will say that a new character is introduced, one I think I'm really going to like. I can't wait for Venom to come out in September so I can see what happens there.

I gave Spider's Bite a 10 of 10, and Web of Lies is also going to get a 10 of 10. Which means that after two books I'll give the series a 10 of 10, also:

Book Rating: Web of Lies: 10 of 10
Series Rating: Elemental Assassin: 10 of 10

The author says she is currently contracted for five books, and that she'll complete the first major story arc with those five books. She hopes to be able to continue with the series beyond that.

After reading Spider's Bite and Web of Lies, I hope she is able to continue beyond five books also.

1. Spider's Bite
2. Web of Lies (May 25, 2010)
3. Venom (September 28, 2010)


  1. Awesome review! I just can't wait to read Web of Lies. Luckily it's only 8 days away!

  2. Ah, I knew I was forgetting something, I'm supposed to say I got an ARC from the author, and that I was soooo excited to get to read Web of Lies ahead of time.