Spider’s Revenge (Review)

Book cover for "Spider's Revenge" by Jennifer Estep.Title: Spider’s Revenge

Author: Jennifer Estep

Publication Year: 2011

Pages: 400

Genre: Fiction, Fantasy

Source: E-book borrowed from the public library

From the cover:

Old habits die hard for assassins.

And I plan on murdering someone before the night is through.

Killing used to be my regular gig, after all. Gin Blanco, aka the Spider, assassin-for-hire. And I was very, very good at it. Now, I’m ready to make the one hit that truly matters: Mab Monroe, the dangerous Fire elemental who murdered my family when I was thirteen. Oh, I don’t think the mission will be easy, but turns out it’s a bit more problematic than expected. The bitch knows I’m coming for her. So now I’m up against the army of lethal bounty hunters Mab hired to track me down. She also put a price on my baby sister’s head. Keeping Bria safe is my first priority. Taking Mab out is a close second. Good thing I’ve got my powerful Ice and Stone magic — and my irresistible lover, Owen Grayson — to watch my back. This battle has been years in the making, and there’s a good chance I won’t survive. But if I’m going down, then Mab’s coming with me . . . no matter what I have to do to make that happen.

(This is the fifth book in the Elemental Assassin series, after Spider’s Bite, Web of Lies, Venom, and Tangled Threads.)

Really, this is the book that everything else has been leading up to. Gin vs. Mab. The showdown we’ve all been waiting for.

Spider’s Revenge is a mix of pretty much everything I’ve loved in the previous books: Gin being her awesome assassin self, Finn being a smartass and a great shot, Owen and the sisters and everyone else taking care of Gin, and Mab trying to ruin everything. There’s also a lot more failure on Gin’s part in this book than there’s ever been before, which really made it seem like this was more of a challenge. Estep did a great job of building everything up to a crescendo of magic, violence, and revenge that overshadowed any other fight in the series so far.

I have to admit that I spent some time in the beginning of the book wanting to smack some sense into Gin when she kept thinking about how she’d have to do everything herself to save the others. That seems to be a trope in urban fantasy or dystopian novels lately, the “save everyone but yourself” shite. It wouldn’t be so bad if the main character – usually a girl/woman – was simply willing to sacrifice herself if necessary; what bothers me is that it seems to be the default thought pattern, rather than trying to come up with solutions that don’t require a suicide wish.

In the end, though, Spider’s Revenge brought everyone together in an epic battle. It was a great book to cap off this storyline … well, most of it, anyways.


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