Saturday, November 6, 2010

Review: Venom

Venom Book Blurb:
What kind of assassin works pro bono? It’s hard to be a badass assassin when a giant is beating the crap out of you. Luckily, I never let pride get in the way of my work. My current mission is personal: annihilate Mab Monroe, the Fire elemental who murdered my family. Which means protecting my identity, even if I have to conceal my powerful Stone and Ice magic when I need it most. To the public, I’m Gin Blanco, owner of Ashland’s best barbecue joint. To my friends, I’m the Spider, retired assassin. I still do favors on the side. Like ridding a vampire friend of her oversized stalker—Mab’s right-hand goon who almost got me dead with his massive fists. At least irresistible Owen Grayson is on my side. The man knows too much about me, but I’ll take my chances. Then there’s Detective Bria Coolidge, one of Ashland’s finest. Until recently, I thought my baby sister was dead. She probably thinks the same about me. Little does she know, I’m a cold-blooded killer . . . who is about to save her life.

 Venom starts with a bang and compels you to hold on tight until the explosive finale. Gin's snarky inner monologue and heart for helping others who can't help themselves continues in the third installment of the Elemental Assassin series. She reveals, through her nightmares, exactly what she and her family endured that fateful night Mab Monroe unleashed her elemental magic on the Snow family. Several questions from the two previous books are answered.

Jennifer Estep treats readers to page time with Owen Grayson, who is even yummier than Donovan Caine and a MUCH better match for our leading lady (small spoiler here: he crafts weapons). We also meet baby sister, Bria, who is every bit as tough as Gin.

The writing is crisp and fast-paced, a treat to read. This book could be read out of order, but it's all the richer if read after Spider's Bite and Web of Lies. I really like Gin for several reasons: she is fiercely loyal to her friends and family, she has her own code of morals, even if she does kill people, she is very patient and self-sacrificing. On a related note, her passion for cooking makes me want to cook more too!

Sensuality: two sensual scenes, one semi-graphic

 Rating: 4.5 stars

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