Hi everyone! Today is the big day! Ever After (The Hollows #11) is out a whole month early for our reading pleasure. Since I pre-ordered the hardcover through Amazon, I actually received my book yesterday, which was pretty sweet! And while I can’t wait to read the final product, I have decided to repost my review of the ARC for this book that I read back in October. So yeah, I think it’s been long enough that is refresher is in order, not that I could forget much ~_^! I doubt my sentiments will change. Thank you all for voting on my poll from this weekend. The strength of ebooks is really telling, especially for a series that was established well before this format came to fruition! I myself prefer reading ebooks these days, but I started reading and collecting The Hollows in paper form and I own every hardcover since Book 5 (For a Few Demons More), so I think it only fitting that I collect them all. There are only TWO books left after all. I hope you all enjoy it. I guarantee most of you will, and I encourage you to share your thoughts! HAPPY HAPPY HOLLOWS DAY!!
Review: Ever After – Like the finest of wines, The Hollows gets better with age
As you can see, I present definitive proof that I’ve indeed read the book! And man oh man is it fantastic! It’s my new favorite! I normally worry about using that term too loosely because it could diminish the potential quality of the series as a whole, but I genuinely think it’s the best book thus far. Kim Harrison has done it yet again and all signs point to her doing it two more times, and in epic proportions.
This time the Ever After, home of the demons, is shrinking at an alarmingly fast rate, placing the existence of magic in a pretty vulnerable position; without one there couldn’t be the other. So as if our favorite itchy witch, Rachel Morgan, didn’t have enough problems, this just sprang up to #1. If she can’t solve this one, she won’t have any others. If she can’t fix it, the demons want her head as her botched leyline creation caused this mess in the first place. And no one wants to see that happen more than her old buddy, Ku’Sox, the former day walking demon who had the misfortune to cross Rachel and lose. He even resorts to abducting her friend and goddaughter as insurance…and boy is it effective. Thankfully she’s got Trent Kalamack and Algaliarept by her side to restore balance and take him down once and for all. But the price may be too high for things to ever be the same again.
I know there was criticism about not a lot happening in A Perfect Blood, though I personally enjoyed the old-school Hollows style mystery. But for those of you who didn’t, for EVER AFTER I think a better question is what didn’t happen! There was so much going on that I genuinely can’t recall a dull moment. I think I felt and continue to feel every emotion possible, but I ultimately finished the book in pure euphoria. In case you needed a little reminding, Harrison presents really harsh realities and difficult decisions that prove she’s an author with guts. I don’t think I’ve experienced so many pulse pounding moments since For a Few Demons More (book 5). This book left me reeling like no other.
The scenes that take place in the Ever-After were some of the best of the series. The race against the clock really made this book so intense. Learning the history of the demons and the elves and the eventual degradation of their relationship was great, though I would have loved even more insight. I just can’t get enough of it.
And that brings me to Big Al, who was totally amazing. Fans will absolutely adore him in this book as we learn more about his personal back story. He’s much more prominent here than in A Perfect Blood and that’s fine by me because he literally lights up the pages and keeps things exciting in his own peculiar way.
After having read Trent’s POV in the bonus chapter of A Perfect Blood, I saw everything he did in a whole new light, and boy was it refreshing. He’s got his own personal demons to work through and it really makes you feel for the guy. He is in a rock and a hard place, accepting his actions that have led to certain consequences while still working to find the best solution possible. I loved seeing him use more magic. I feel like elves have a pretty powerful arsenal that deserve more exploration, so it was nice to see Harrison skim the surface here with the insinuation of even greater things. Magic is amped up for the elves, while more human qualities are amped up for the demons, so it was an interesting trade off.
His teamwork with Rachel was one of my favorite parts of the book. The tension was insane and placed so well all throughout. It’s seriously amazing to go back and read passages from Dead Witch Walking and then look at them now. Their progress is usually one step forward, two steps back, but the slow burn for this ship is probably what will make it my all-time #1 favorite if they end up together *fingers crossed*.
This book was just about everything I could ask for, but it wasn’t 100% flawless. With so much ever after, elf and demon action, the story manages to throw in a smidgeon of development in vampire politics. Unfortunately it felt very much like an afterthought and briefly broke the overall flow. We know vampires won’t get a lot of focus until the final book 13, so 10 or so pages of development came off a random at best and forgettable at worst.
All in all, this is an absolute MUST READ for fans of the series. Since Black Magic Sanction and Pale Demon the series has been invigorated and manages to improve as we reach the final stretch. That is a rarity for 95% of series that make it this far. I think it helps a lot that Kim Harrison has an end in sight and continues to write towards that. Many others have jumped-the-shark by this point. The Hollows is absolutely revving up for a grande finale and I cannot wait to be there.
It’s no secret that we’re all Hollows nuts around these parts. I’ve actually been noticing a bit of a calm before the storm when it comes to the interwebs. Though I didn’t have time to hold a proper giveaway (though I hope you’ll like the consolation prize), I am a little curious about evolving buying habits and want to know how you all plan to get your mits on your copy. I’ve been pre-ordering hardcovers since my closest bookstore closed down, and same day delivery means it works out pretty well.
It’s taking a slightly different approach than the usual Harper Voyager link, but it’s easy to access all the same to read chapter 3:
Of course if you’d rather read through part of chapter 6, then by all means go here:
P.S. And forgive me for being a little slow on the posts lately. Assassin’s Creed has pretty much occupied all of my free time! Ezio Auditore is just that amazing (and hott). And this is why I’m glad I’m not a big gamer. But I’ve finished his trilogy and things should return to normal soon (because I doubt Assassin’s Creed 3 will be as addictive)!
While the wait is probably getting even harder the closer Ever After’s release date becomes, Kim Harrison has provided a little insight about the series from here on out.
Hi everyone! I hope you are all having a Happy Holiday Season! Kim Harrison has certainly tried to make it better for us by posting Chapter 2 of Ever After! If you were able to hold out from downloading it with a Fistful of Charms, you can now see it on her website. Just check it out here:
I heard this straight from the horses mouth on her blog today, but thanks to Jisha for the heads up as well! For the remainder of the holiday season, Book 4 will be offered for $1.99. Get it as a gift, or get it for yourself if you want to read the first TWO chapters of Ever After! Chapter 2 won’t be released until Christmas day, but if you just can’t wait, you can get it here.
Keep an eye out for additional excerpts here:http://harpervoyagerbooks.com/2012/12/17/excerpt-chapter-one-of-kim-harrisons-ever-after-jan-2013/
I.S. cops Ivy Tamwood and Rachel Morgan were having a pretty good week, working their beat, busting brimstone street dealers left and right. That is until they realize someone may be gunning for them directly. That’ll put a damper on anyone’s week. Fortunately dodging risky attempts on their lives, it’s up to Ivy to figure out whose targeting them and why. Could it be Piscary? Does he want to eliminate Rachel to get Ivy back in his clutches faster? Or could it be a new big bad with something else in mind entirely?
My favorite format of The Hollows will forever be in written novel form, but I’ll take it any way I can get it. Ivy fans will enjoy this book as much as the last, Blood Work. It’s told from her POV even though Rachel maintains a consistent presence. It’s not a requirement, but it will help to have read the short story told from Ivy’s POV, Undead in the Garden of Good and Evil, because certain characters and events become relevant again.
Considering that this is a graphic novel, I’ll start with the graphic part. The cover is actually a bit disappointing. The cover of Blood Work was one of my favorite parts about the novel. The colors and badassness really made it pop. This one? Not so much. It’s dark and vaguely mysterious, but it’s not interesting. I feel like the model should be wearing a more sinister expression.
It’s no secret that I’m not particularly fond of the artwork. Even though there’s a new illustrator, they implemented the original artwork so the overall style is unchanged. After reading this one, I’m still not a fan but it is definitely improved over the first one in a few areas. For one, the coloring is more professional. It’s more vibrant and saturated, giving it an all around better look. Interestingly enough, I think Ivy looks better in this one than in Blood Work. But on the other hand, I thought Rachel looked prettier in Blood Work than she does here. Piscary looked pretty spot on to how I envisioned him in my head, and a new character, Celeste, actually had a pretty cool design. The artist definitely does better work with her own original creations.
The story itself was pretty good, if a bit short. It’s natural to feel that way when a usual Hollows entry is over 400 pages. Though I’m pleased with the direction the later books have taken, I do miss the old I.S. runner days when they had to solve mysteries and tag bad guys. This book brings a little bit of that back. I liked how it continued the plot lines from Ivy’s short story because it expands the vampire world just a bit more when it comes to their politics, connections, and the domino effect that comes with certain actions. There’s a lot of inner turmoil with Ivy, fighting her attraction to Rachel, fighting her vampiric nature, fighting Piscary’s mind games. That’s pretty much all the poor girl does! Not to mention actually physically fighting the bad guys. Piscary was pretty scary at times, especially when pulling auras. He’s certainly one you love to hate. Kisten’s role is even smaller here than in Blood Work, but we do see enough to know how strong of a bond he and Ivy shared. Rachel wasn’t quite as funny as she was in the first novel, but she still felt like Rachel, kicking butt, taking names. And seeing her cherry red splat gun in action again was pretty cool too.
All in all, I don’t think these are the best that The Hollows has to offer, but it is worth a read and fans will appreciate the story.
*Review copy provided by the publisher
But don’t worry! I will be holding a giveaway for the official release!!