Reviewed by Annie Tegelan
Posted January 1, 2014
Welcome back to the Hollows! In THE UNDEAD POOL, the twelfth book of the series, Kim Harrison gives readers exactly what they have been wishing for.
Witch and day-walking demon Rachel Morgan has a new set of problems wreaking havoc on Cincinnati. Spells are misfiring everywhere, but the origin of the glitch seems to be her ley line. Which makes Rachel responsible for cleaning up the mess. The timing is bad, to say the least. The union of humans and Inderlanders is shaky and Rachel wonders if this task is too big even for her. With undead master vampires in the mix, it could become war. There’s no time to waste.
If things aren’t sufficiently complicated, there’s the ongoing, always tentative relationship between Rachel and Trent. They’ve been dancing around it for what seems — forever? As they circle one another, giving hints and kisses, readers are on the tenterhooks while Harrison addresses the burning question: “Will Rachel and Trent finally get together?”
Harrison’s writing and amazing world-building are second to none. It’s no wonder this series has gained such a passionate following. The characters continue to grow, the world is constantly changing — and the plot in each book feel fresh and new. THE UNDEAD POOL is without question the best of the series!
In Pale Demon, Rachel Morgan saved the demon’s Everafter from shrinking and ultimately disappearing. But it came at a high cost. Strange, dark magic is attacking Cincinnati and the Hollows. Spells backfire or go horribly awry. The truce between Inderlander and human is breaking up. Rachel must stop the dark necromancy before the undead vampire masters — those who keep the rest of the undead under control — are destroyed bringing an all-out supernatural war.
Rachel knows of only one weapon with the power to ensure peace: ancient elven wild magic. Which carries its own perils.
And painful experience has shown Rachel that no good deed goes unpunished . . .
Marilyn Armstrong‘s insight:
My favorite series is drawing to a close. This isn’t the final book. There will be one more ( I keep hoping for even more). In the meantime, I’m experiencing advance withdrawal pangs!
See on freshfiction.com
When Callie Walking — child of a Lakota magician father and a Scottish witch mother — meets one of the oldest living vampires, a creature so powerful it’s impossible to even gauge the extent of his power, one of two things is going to happen. Death or friendship.
I would be struck dumb if this is not the first story in a series. Callie Walking and Aristo Ionios are perfect for a series. He’s ancient with powers beyond understanding. She is young, but no slouch in the power department and one can only imagine how much more powerful she will be as she matures.
They meet. They talk. They take a wild ride on a classic Indian motorcycle. They talk some more. A chord is struck, a resonance.
She wants to know how he defeated the wards she set up to protect her client. She’s not deep in mourning for the client — he was, after all, a serial killer. But she want to know how her wards were defeated. The vampire she meets is not what she expects. He’s something else. Unique. Despite herself, Callie is fascinated and attracted.
This isn’t a full length novel. It’s 93 pages, which makes it either a long short story or a novella. Whatever you want to call it, it’s very good. I don’t say this lightly, but rarely have I encountered two more intriguing main characters. And I want more. There isn’t any more, not yet … but I live in hope. This could be a series worth following. Magic, witches, vampires, great dialogue and the entire story just oozes atmosphere.
You can buy With Friends Like These on Kindle at Amazon for $3.99 and it’s worth every penny. Buy it. If you do, maybe the author will write more and I would personally appreciate that.
Pale Demon by Kim Harrison
The next to the last (so far) in this great series. I’ve come to love the characters so much that they feel like personal friends … and come to feel like the world Kim Harrison creates is as real as the one I live in. Almost.
Most books in this genre are fun, but not especially well-written, Not true of Kim Harrison (or her alter ego, Dawn Cook). Her writing is elegant, beautifully crafted. She doesn’t count on sex to keep you reading. She does it with interesting characters who grow and develop. With complex plots crafted with as great a skill as any mystery writer ever has. These are not just “chick” books. There are GOOD books.
This book falls late in the series. You do need to read from the beginning. Do not start with this book. The relationships between characters are based on long history and shared experiences, and to appreciate them, you must have been there too. For you mid-westerners, the entire series is based in Cincinnati.
The plot in this story, as it does in all the books in this wonderful series, moves briskly along. You will laugh and cry at the same time. If you’re looking for sex, you won’t find it. Romance? A whiff, a hint, a tease. More action and mystery-thriller intertwined with magic and myth than romance. Which I appreciate. She does it all by writing well rather than via steamy sex. Not that I have anything against steamy sex.
There will only be another few books in the series, so I’m gearing myself up for going cold turkey when they are done. GREAT series, read them all!
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