Heart of Venom by Jennifer Estep
Publisher:Brilliance Audio, Pocket Books
Genre: Fantasy, Urban Fantasy
Number of Pages: 354
Narrator: Lauren Fortgang
Length: 10 hrs and 25 mins
Series: Elemental Assassin #9
Read: September 2013
The hotly anticipated ninth novel in the hugely popular Elemental Assassin series finds Gin Blanco on a dangerous mission to rescue a friend.
When a terror from the past threatens Gin’s friend and body-disposer, Sophia, Gin will stop at nothing to protect her, even if it means walking straight into a killer’s trap. Meanwhile, the rocky romance between Gin and Owen reaches a turning point—can they reunite and rekindle their love? Or will the things Gin has been forced to do in her line of work as the deadly assassin the Spider keep them apart forever? Assuming, that is, she survives long enough to find out…
Listened/Read for Review (Brilliance Audio/Edelweiss)
Overall Rating: 4.50
Story Rating: 4.50
Character Rating: 4.50
Audio Rating: 5.00 (not part of the overall rating)
First Thought when Finished: Heart of Venom ended with me going “Now that is what I am talking about!”
Story Thoughts: Heart of Venom was really the story of Sophia which made me happy. As much as I love Gin, Owen, Bria and Finn- I have to admit I get super excited about learning the back stories of the rest of the characters that I LOVE! Sophia and Jo-Jo are staples in Gin’s life and she wouldn’t be the assassin she is without them. Sophia’s story was heartbreaking, nerve-wracking, and brutal. The fact that she literally has to relive parts of it made me want to reach out and hug her. The action in Heart of Venom was well-paced and brilliant. Each outing has Gin testing her skills and her heart more. All around this stands out as one of my favorites in the series.
Character Thoughts: I feel like a broken record but the characters in the Elemental Assassin series are some of the best in Urban Fantasy. I am still in love with Finn. Jealous of Bria and her Finn loving time. Absolutely adore Gin! Even the bad guys are engaging albeit nasty and mean. I love that we got to learn more about Sophia and Jo-Jo. I was already in love with their characters but it was nice to get to know them better. Especially Sophia who is so quiet and often over-looked. I wanted to sock the bad guy (sorry his name is escaping me) but more than that I wanted to club his sister. Though I think they were both well done bad guys and to me that is as important as the good guys. Alright, an Owen update–he can shed his Owen the Ass title once again. Though I am still working up to loving him again.
Narrated By Lauren Fortgang / Length: 10 hrs and 25 mins
Hands down, I can not imagine anyone but Lauren narrating Gin and the gang. At this point, she is Gin to me. She nails the nuances, emotions, and pacing of this series perfectly. I highly recommend this series on audio if you haven’t given it a whirl. I just don’t think you would be disappointed. Of course, always listen to a sample as everyone’s narration preferences are not the same.
Final Thoughts: The next story is sort of a prequel and I am uber excited!
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