NOTE: This review is for a book with mature content and sexy times!
Spider’s Bite by Jennifer Estep is the first book in the Elemental Assassin series. The series follows Gin, a stone elemental assassin. The world is one parallel to ours but with elementals, vampires, giants, dwarves, and more. The world is interesting enough, with a bit of urban fantasy in a city that seems to be as dark as Batman’s Gothem City. It’s the perfect setting for a badass assassin with her own code of conduct.
I have really mixed feeling about this one. I wanted to love it, especially with the promise of so many books (the series is 12 books long and growing), but I just kept thinking about how great Cat is in Jeaniene Frost’s Night Huntress series (book 1: Halfway to the Grave). Frequently reminiscing about a different kickass assassin-of-sorts was a great way to pull myself OUT of Gin’s world in Spider’s Bite. (Not to mention how much Donovan Caine pales in comparison to Bones…)
What I liked:
I liked how Gin took her job and her safety so seriously. She did everything she could to perfect her craft, including only using her elemental magic as a last resort to keep all her skills sharp. I really liked Gin’s family: Finn, Sophie, JoJo, and Fletcher. I liked the role elemental magic played in society, and frankly, I liked the world on the whole. I was intrigued by the setting and Gin’s role in it.
What I didn’t like:
The repetition was starting to kill me about halfway through, even with it being the first book. (Okay, we get it, you have ice cold rage burning in your chest and you love your silverstone knives!) I’ve heard that the repetition only increases in the other books with the hearty addition of recap.
I really didn’t like Donovan Caine. I feel like there is room for redemption, but for the most part his dominating emotions toward Gin seem to be lust with a whopping side of resentment. Not the best foundation for a relationship. We’ll see how that progresses.
I liked Spider’s Bite enough to give book two a go down the road (Web of Lies), especially with the whisperings I’ve heard about a certain Owen Grayson. I’m also curious to see how the series story arc continues. Hopefully the repetitive nature of the writing won’t ruin it for me.