I am a huge, huge fan of the Hollows series by Kim Harrison. And I was so excited to find out that a graphic novel was coming out, featuring my favorite characters. Blood Work is a prequel to Dead Witch Walking. But it is set after the events of Undead in the Garden of Good & Evil. Essentially, it is the story of how Rachel and Ivy came to be partners for the first time, from Ivy’s perspective.
Let me talk about the plot first and then I’ll get to the art. When Rachel is introduced to Ivy, it’s not clear if it supposed to be a punishment or reward from Piscary for Ivy’s frame-job of her old boss. At first, the women are like oil and water. But as they start working the case of a dead Were, Rachel begins earning Ivy’s respect –and eventually Ivy’s more sensual attention. Ivy and Kisten are still a couple and Ivy is very much under Piscary’s thumb. But as the book progresses, she begins to question if she wants it to stay that way
I’m still nursing a broken heart over (*spoiler from book 5*) Kisten’s death, so it was bittersweet to see him here; especially since he is so devoted to Piscary, the man ultimately responsible for his murder. There’s no Jenks here… Rachel hasn’t met him yet. I guess if this were a story told traditionally, it would stack up to a novella. There’s not a whole lot going on… more like a snapshot in this time of their lives.
I don’t think there was any way I could be 100% happy with someone else’s artistic vision for my beloved characters. Rachel, Ivy and Piscary were ok for me. Not exactly how I envisioned them, but I could live with it. Kisten was the furthest from what I pictured. In my mind, he is early Jason Lewis. Here, he is… not. But despite that, it was easy to slide into the story, and interesting to see visual representations of all the tidbits that are part of the Hollows lore… from the charms, to the magic, to Ivy’s aura.
I don’t know how meaningful this would be to someone who hasn’t read the series. But it’s a treat for fans. Almost 4 stars.
P.S. Kim Harrison has posted some images from the graphic novel on her blog. Click here if you would like a peek.
*ARC Provided by Del Rey
Blood Workby Kim HarrisonRelease Date: July 12, 2011Publisher: Del Rey