Thursday, February 11, 2010

Spider's Bite by Jennifer Estep

Book Details
Spider's Bite by Jennifer Estep
Paperback, 432 pages
2010, Pocket
ISBN: 1439147973
Series: Book 1 of Elemental Assassins

My name is Gin, and I kill people.

They call me the Spider. I'm the most feared assassin in the South -- when I'm not busy at the Pork Pit cooking up the best barbecue in Ashland. As a Stone elemental, I can hear everything from the whispers of the gravel beneath my feet to the vibrations of the soaring Appalachian Mountains above me. My Ice magic also comes in handy for making the occasional knife. But I don't use my powers on the job unless I absolutely have to. Call it professional pride.

Now that a ruthless Air elemental has double-crossed me and killed my handler, I'm out for revenge. And I'll exterminate anyone who gets in my way -- good or bad. I may look hot, but I'm still one of the bad guys. Which is why I'm in trouble, since irresistibly rugged Detective Donovan Caine has agreed to help me. The last thing this coldhearted killer needs when I'm battling a magic more powerful than my own is a sexy distraction...especially when Donovan wants me dead just as much as the enemy.

Gin Blanco is an assassin with a vivid back story, yet you know there is so much more to her that has not yet been revealed. Her character is such an extreme contrast to her reluctant lover, Donovan Caine. I found myself identifying more with Gin's jaded bitterness than with Caine's upright morality. I completely love Finn, Gin's just like but not quite a brother, especially the way her gets her to show a lighter, more personable side.

The concept of Elementals holds a lot of promise, but I may need more information about them to fully grasp and appreciate all they can do. Dwarves, vampires and giants also make large appearances that could have been explained in greater detail. The book, while the first in a series, isn't obsessively focused on laying groundwork and I have high hopes that the different races are further examined in future books.

Heavy on action and mystery, Spider's Bite has a completely fulfilling story that includes a bonus cliffhanger ending which promises more of the same intensity seen here. There is a very dark, in-your-face quality that might deter urban fantasy fans that enjoy lighter fare. Bold and not afraid to get her hands dirty (or her entire body covered in blood), Gin Blanco kept me completely captivated and left me eager to see where the next job takes her.


Jennifer Estep's


  1. I'm starting this one soon as part of a blog tour. Glad to hear that you enjoyed it. Hopefully, I will too! :)

  2. I have read several reviews and all said this was a great book. I would like to read and make my own decision.