04 March 2011

Book Banter -- Venom

Title: Venom
Author: Jennifer Estep
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Length: 416
Where Stacie's Copy Came From: Oshkosh Public Library

Plot Basics: Mab Monroe knows someone is out for her. Gin Blanco, restaurant owner and casual student, is on the short list, but only because Mab's flunkies Jonah McAllister and Elliot Slater have it out for her. But it isn't until Roslyn approaches Gin about the new role Elliot has assigned himself in Roslyn's life that Gin openly moves against Mab.

Gin's baby sister, Bria, is back in Ashland too. She has Gin's sense of outrage at innocent people inability to fight back. Only she is a Ashland's newest detective and she is figuring out quickly that Mab runs the town.

Banter Points: Gin is beginning to recognize her own fate in her fight against Mab Monroe. It should have been a little more obvious, given Gin's love of classic literature including the Greek tragedies. But this title firmly pushed Gin into the battle, so one can forgive her late recognition.

Gin decides that it is time for her to step forward and begin crumbling Mab's empire. Between the events of the last book, including those occurring in Gin's love life, and the plea for help Gin receives from Rosalyn, Gin is neatly backed on a corner. I could imagine Estep nodding in success and challenging Gin to get out of this spot.

Of course Gin does, but not without some spectacular collateral damages to Mab's forces.

Bummer Points: Okay, it's a bit on the picky side, but Estep has a fondness for certain phrases. Like the way Gin introduces herself. It does not flow well and jarred me put of the story. There are a couple others that do it as well. The rest of the writing style is great; makes me wonder what the editor is saying about them. Sometimes the phrases are welcomed since it ties many elements together. It could be that I'm reading too fast and it makes them more apparent.

Either way, it's a nit picky comment and I'll take full lumps for tossing it out there.

Stacie's Recommendation: I'm sticking by this series. Great characters, depth and bad guys you love to hate. The ongoing mystery of Gin's family and history keeps me wishing for more.

Bonus: Jennifer has graciously agreed to be part of our Author Answers series. Watch for her interview in April!

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