My name is Gin, and I kill people – from that first line in Spider’s Bite by Jennifer Estep, my attention was caught. This story is fast paced and the characters are engaging. There are lots of unexpected things that happen, and the ending had me wide eyed with shock.
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.
The main character, Gin, is ‘the spider’, a stone elemental assassin for hire. She’s had to be tough since the murder of her family, and wouldn’t be anywhere without the help of her mentor/handler, Fletcher, who taught her everything she knows, and has been like a father to her. So when Fletcher is brutally murdered by someone who is trying to tie up loose ends, Gin’s cold and tough (almost indifferent) exterior becomes one of a calculated and controlled rage and she uses that anger against the person(s) responsible.
Gin is one tough chic. I really love that about her, that she could have had so many horrible things happen to her, and not let it outwardly affect her is amazing. I say outwardly because it obviously effects her in some ways, but she doesn’t let that stop her from being a professional. Then there’s Donovan Caine, the sexy, can’t be bought, detective has a perfect chemistry with Gin. He continually fights his attraction to her. His morals say that he shouldn’t be attracted to someone who kills for money, and on more than one occasion that guilt has him running from her. Finn, Fletcher’s son, is a great side kick. Not only is he charming, but he’s good at getting information when Gin needs it.
The plot is nothing but awesomeness. There is a ton of action and the story was constantly evolving. Gin being an assassin means that she can take care of herself, and does she ever. She used her super assassin skills to dispatch all of the bad guys. She never once became too complacent with her stone magic, and that created some great action filled scenes.
Overall, Spider’s Bite was a fantastic book. Everything about Spider’s Bite has me looking forward to the next in the series, Web of Lies. This is definitely a promising new urban fantasy series that I urge anybody with a love for the genre to check out.
Web of Lies
By a Thread (February 2012)