In Black Widow (Elemental Assassin #12) by Jennifer Estep, Gin Blanco, aka the assassin the Spider, has had her cover blown and is now waiting for members of the criminal underground in Ashland to come knocking on her door to take her out. There’s one woman in particular she’s keeping her eye on: Madeline Monroe. Evidently when Gin killed her mother Mab, she made an enemy out of Madeline. Who knew? So Gin and her assorted friends and family begin to question things when they all seem to have major complications, some with legal implications, happen to them on the same day. She’s sure Madeline had a hand in it all. Now it’s time to do something about it.
‘I needed to hit Madeline the same way that she had me–completely blindside and bulldoze her until she was buried six feet under. I wasn’t quite sure how I was going to go about doing that yet, but one thing was for certain. I was sure as hell looking forward to it.’
Crap hits the proverbial fan as Gin and the rest of her crew are sent scattering, fighting for their lives and their businesses. She knows it will be up to her to prove to Madeline, once and for all, that no one is allowed to threaten the people she loves. Gin is pretty sure she can go up against her in an elemental battle, her Stone and Ice magic against Madeline’s Acid. But will Gin be taken out before she can face off with her ? Or will she finally get the chance to end the Monroe family and be able to live her life in peace?
“Actually, Maddie,” I drawled again, “I wouldn’t celebrate your victory just yet. It looks to me like there’s still some question as to who the biggest, baddest bitch in Ashland actually is.”
Gin Blanco proves that she is still the reigning kickass female to beware of in Ashland in this fast-paced novel. It’s hard to believe that the storyline can still be so fresh here in book TWELVE, but author Jennifer Estep shows no signs of slowing down. Thank. God.
I’ve read several of the Elemental Assassin novels and I am impressed every time with just how solid both the characters and the plots always are. For me, there’s something so entertaining and satisfying to see a woman who isn’t ashamed of being strong, ready to show the bad guys just who’s in charge. Gin had pretty much every criminal element in Ashland looking over their shoulder after she came out victorious in the showdown in book eleven, Poison Promise. I was a little worried that there wouldn’t be much left for Gin to accomplish after that, but this book kept me on my toes wondering how in the world she and her beloved friends and family would survive. You won’t believe the situations they find themselves in or what they have to do to in order to protect each other.
I’m torn between the fight scenes or Gin’s quiet moments with Owen as my favorite part of the book. The fights, whether they be elemental or not, were incredibly detailed as always, letting the reader feel like they were right there in the thick of things. I loved that even though Gin was obviously serious about her job as an assassin, she always had time for a snide remark or a verbal jab, just to mess with her opponent. I had to admire that about her. But then again, the scenes where Gin and Owen were both safe and in each other’s company were just so perfectly romantic and poignant. I’m glad they had a strong foundation in their relationship that allowed them to have each other’s backs and to be supportive, no matter what. Now I can’t wait to see what the future holds for the Spider and the rest of her friends and family.
Black Widow is a page-turning thrill ride. It had all of the elements of Urban Fantasy that I look for: a strong heroine, cool magic, fantastical beings, and tons of action. Highly recommended.
There’s nothing worse than a cruel, cunning enemy with time to kill—and my murder to plan.
With wicked Fire elemental Mab Monroe long gone, you’d think I could finally catch a break. But someone’s always trying to take me down, either as Gin Blanco or my assassin alter-ago. Now along comes the Spider’s new arch-nemesis, the mysteriously named M. M. Monroe, who is gleefully working overtime to trap me in a sticky web of deceit.
The thing is, I’m not the only target. I can see through the tangled threads enough to know that every bit of bad luck my friends have been having lately is no accident—and that each unfortunate “coincidence” is just one more arrow drawing ever closer to hitting the real bulls-eye. Though new to Ashland, this M. M. Monroe is no stranger to irony, trying to get me, an assassin, framed for murder. Yet, as my enemy’s master plan is slowly revealed, I have a sinking feeling that it will take more than my powerful Ice and Stone magic to stop my whole life from going up in flames.