Review: Venom in the Veins by Jennifer Estep

Reviewed by Jen

Sliding in to an Elemental Assassin book for me is like donning a comfortable old sweater at the beginning of fall. It’s pleasant and familiar. Not really flashy or new, but that’s not why I pick it up. I know what to expect and I like it.

As this installment begins, Gin still searching for answers about the mysterious Circle. But more pressing right now is the fact that someone seems to be targeting Finn’s boss at the bank, Moseley. He is attacked early in the book and Gin is convinced it has something to do with the bigger picture. She goes on high alert, determined to protect him as he puts on a high profile auction of Mab Munro‘s personal effects.

As in several recent books, the current happenings end up tying in to old memories of Gin’s and they manifest in dreams. That, along with one of Fletcher’s old files tip her off that it all has something to do with a vampire she killed many years ago. The story follows her as she unravels those connections and works to keep Mosley safe. [Read more…]

Review: Kill the Queen by Jennifer Estep

Reviewed by Jen

Kill the Queen is the first in Jennifer Estep’s new high fantasy series Crown of Shards. It feels remarkably like this author’s Elemental Assassin series. The particulars, of course, are different. The setting in particular. However, the heroine reminds me a lot of Gin Blanco and even the feel of the magic has something in common.

Evie is part of the royal family, but just barely. She is 17th in line for the throne, and orphan who is essentially a ward of her cousin, the queen. She is at the bottom of the family food chain. She has to do the ceremonial jobs no one else wants to do: Learn other languages, cultures, dances; she even has to bake special pies. But she does what she must keep a roof over her head and to stay in her cousin’s good graces. Even forces herself to get along with the crown princess Vasilla, who has been cruel to her since childhood. [Read more…]

Review: Snared by Jennifer Estep

Reviewed by Jen

Another great installment in Jennifer Estep’s Elemental Assassin series. I’ve got to say, I’m digging the new series arc.

Assassin Gin Blanco has come a long way over the past 16 books. She’s no longer just a killer for hire. She’s become the head of Ashland’s Underworld. Or at least the figurehead. We now know there’s a super-secret group known only as The Circle and they’re pulling all the strings, including the one that called for the deaths of Gin’s mother and sister many years ago. Let’s just say Gin is very motivated to bring them down. [Read more…]

Review: Unraveled by Jennifer Estep

unraveledReviewed by Jen

I really enjoyed this latest Elemental Assassin story, which takes us into an entirely new arc with a great mystery and a new big bad. Plus, there’s a road trip, which brings along just enough familiar faces to feel connected, while still providing a fun change of pace and scenery.

Gin, Owen, Finn, and Bria head to an old cowboy resort that Finn’s evil mother owned and left to him. Obviously, he doesn’t have exactly warm and fuzzy feelings for dear old mom, but the gang hopes the trip will help get him out of the doldrums and maybe give some clues about Regina’s cohort Tucker, who revealed himself as a major player in the last book. Tucker is part of the mysterious Circle, an underworld consortium that’s been deeply hidden, and now Gin is determined to uncover their secrets –and their possible connection to her mother. [Read more…]

Review: Unwanted by Jennifer Estep

unwantedReviewed by Jen

The idea of having a Finn-centric novella in this series seemed like a fun idea. I wish I  could say that it lived up to its potential. It’s not a bad story, necessarily, but there is not much to it. And it didn’t really feel like the Finn we know and love.

Understandably, this isn’t the time for Finn to be smooth or charming or sexy. This story is set on the heels of a book where his own mother tried to kill him. She tortured him and left a trail of bodies in her wake. And now Finn feels responsible. He feels guilty and everyone around him blames him too. No fun to be had here. [Read more…]

Review: Bitter Bite by Jennifer Estep

bitter biteReviewed by Jen

I’m happy to say that this book lives up to a pretty exciting premise. It’s all about Finn’s long lost mother, who is back from the dead and up to no good. Gin knows it. Bria knows it. Unfortunately, Finn DOESN’T know it. He is vulnerable in a way that we don’t normally see him, because like anyone would, he wants to believe his mother loves him. He wants the relationship with her that he has missed his entire life. [Read more…]

Review and Giveaway: Spider’s Trap by Jennifer Estep

spiders trapReviewed by Jen

Gin Blanco is back and the more things change, the more they stay the same.  There is a comfortable familiarity that allows me to sink right back into this world every time I pick up a new book. There are all of those delicious food references. Spider puns. Owen’s violet eyes. The fact they use rubbers, despite the fact Gin takes her “little white pills.” Chicory coffee. Where the Red Fern Grows. Dreams as memory restoration device. Finn’s charm. Gin’s disdain for sloppiness. [Read more…]

Review: Black Widow by Jennifer Estep

black widowReviewed by Jen

I can’t remember the last time I enjoyed a book in this series so much! It feels like Jennifer Estep breathed new life into the Elemental Assassin series, giving readers Gin Blanco as we love her best: an unvarnished killer who is loyal to the core and a survivor against all odds.  I appreciate the fact that Gin has a vulnerable side under all of her bravado and some books have explored that more than others. But here, it’s just Gin kicking ass and taking names and I absolutely loved it. [Read more…]

Review: Poison Promise by Jennifer Estep

poison promiseReviewed by Jen

I think I enjoyed this Elemental Assassin story more than I have any installment in a long time.  The series hasn’t been the same for me since Widow’s Web, for a number of reasons.  I’ve had serious issues with romantic arc.  And we’ve been missing a villain of Mab Monroe’s caliber for Gin to face.  The stories have felt more like standalones, not building toward anything.  Frankly, I was just losing interest. Until now. [Read more…]

Review: Killer Frost by Jennifer Estep

killer frostReviewed by Jen

Jennifer Estep delivers a fitting farewell with this series finale to her Mythos Academy series. It’s the big face off between Gwen and Loki. I wasn’t sure how our heroine was going to pull it off, but in the end, I thought it was a resolution that satisfies. [Read more…]