Author: Kim Harrison
Genre: Urban fantasy
Pages: Paperback, 496
Opening Lines: "'Brown for green for the drapes, Rache?'
"Jenk's voice slid into my dozing state, and I opened an eyelid a crack to find him hovering inches from my nose."
"Condemned for black magic, Rachel Morgan has three days to get to the annual witches' conference in San Francisco to clear her name. If not, she'll be trapped in the demonic ever-after . . . forever
"But a witch, an elf, a living vampire, and a pixy traveling 2,000 miles in one car is a recipe for disaster -- not even counting the assassination teams waiting to ambush . . . or the demon they unleash in St. Louis.
"Now, after centuries of torment, a fearsome creature walks free, craving innocent blood and souls -- especially Rachel Morgan's, who'll need to fully embrace her own demonic nature to survive. And even that may not be enough."
~ Jacket copy
Thoughts: Man, I'm not sure what I can say about this book without giving everything away! The basics, I suppose:
With Rachel's threat to go to the media about the true nature of witches, Oliver promised to clear her name at the witches' conference. However, he is going to do everything in his power to stop her from arriving. After being stopped at airport security, Rachel must make the long drive between California and Ohio in three days. Needing to go on an elf-quest, Trent informs Rachel that he is joining them on the cross country trip, so he could be in Washington by Sunday. This does not excite Rachel, and, after the airport fiasco, she must relent. Between assassins trying to keep Trent from getting to Washington, Vivian following, kidnapping pixies in the New Mexico desert, a day walking demon who might have destroyed the St. Louis arch, and a carsick pixy, they are lucky to make it to California in one piece!
Honestly, when I read the back of the book, I was afraid that this was a disaster waiting to happen! I have loved this series since I picked up the first book! However, this felt as though Harrison might be pushing her luck with this one. And, I have to say it, I was pleasantly surprised! The book is perfectly balanced between the car trip, the new demon, the conference, and the aftermath. I admit that I am curious about Trent's elf-quest and how it all went down; however, that isn't the most important part of the story.
I was not surprised with the outcome of the conference. Seeing Oliver's nature in the previous book, was a big tell. However, after what happening in New Mexico, I was very happy to see Vivian and Rachel forming a friendship. For me, the biggest loose end was the collective of witches. I wanted to know what caused the outcome and what happened to Vivian. Although I wonder if Harrison felt it wasn't important after the last stand between Rachel and Ku'Sox.
In the previous books, the only demoness the audience sees in Newt. Ku'Sox mentions her sisters, and Newt talks about them to Rachel in Dalliance. I would have liked to find out more about demonesses, why there were so few, etc. Honestly, I think it would have added too much length to the book to fully explore that. I'm hoping that Harrison really explores that in later books.
Even though I loath a lot of the things Trent has done to Rachel in the past, I have always sensed a little sexual angst between the two. I think Harrison brought that to the forefront, and played it well. After the occurrences at the end of the book, I think the two are finally starting to see each other. I wonder how Harrison will play this one out.
I really enjoyed this book. I felt that Harrison has done a good job keeping up with the story. And, strangely enough, it doesn't feel as though she is stretching this series as far as she can. There is enough going on in each book to make me want to know more. Plus, I love her characters! If she continues to have Al in the series, I will be content >:)
Currently: The Dead-Tossed Waves by Carrie Ryan
Current Pages: 26000