Monday, February 22, 2016

Review: Bitter Bite by Jennifer Estep

Bitter Bite 
by Jennifer Estep
Series:  Elemental Assassin #14
Pub. Date:  Feb. 23, 2016
Publisher:  Pocket Books
Pages:  400
Format:  eARC
Source:  NetGalley

My Rating:  
Sultry Scale:

Which is stronger: blood ties or a battle-tested friendship?

It’s not easy being queen bee of an underworld abuzz with crooks and killers. Wielding my potent Ice and Stone elemental magic will only get me so far—my real secret is my tight-knit makeshift family, a motley crew of cops and criminals, dwarves and playboys. My foster brother Finnegan Lane is my right-hand man, but when his suddenly not-dead relative comes back into the picture, I’m the one on the outside looking in. 

It’s funny how life works: one minute your best friend is rock-steady, and the next he’s doe-eyed and buying into this whole loving-relative routine to the point of ignoring you. I’d like to be happy for Finn, I really would. But all of my instincts are telling me that beneath the syrupy sweet demeanor and old-fashioned charm, this sudden interloper is planning something. The whole shtick leaves a bitter taste in my mouth. This person might have avoided the grave once, but I’ll put anyone who hurts Finn in the ground—for good.

This book has been burning a hole in my Kindle ever since I got the ARC. After the teaser chapter from Spider's Trap where we learn this book's villain would have a history with Finn, I was stoked. I just love Finnegan Lane, and I knew this book would be heavy on Finn, even if some of it was going to be heartbreak.

Deidre Shaw, Finn's mother, has come back from the dead, and Fletcher has left Gin enough clues to know she is bad news and dangerous to both Gin and Finn. But all Finn sees is his long lost mother who wants to have a relationship with him. This interloper is affecting relationships of the group, and causing doubts as to her sincerity. But Finn has always been the steady one in Gin's life, supporting her when all the others had momentary doubts. So I think this rift between them hurts Gin most of all, and we see even more of her humanity in dealing with his doubt. We also get more flashbacks of Gin's past, which are sometimes harrowing but give us a peek into what made her The Spider. As always, we get to see Gin kick butt and solve problems for those she cares about.

I am happy to say that at the fourteenth book in this series, the Elemental Assassin is still going strong. I love the gritty feel and our anti-heroine, Gin Blanco. Bitter Bite provided an unexpected twist to the series, so now I am jonesing for the next book, Unraveled.

I received an advanced copy of this book from Pocket Books in exchange for an honest review. 

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Elemental Assassin Series