Guest Review – Deadly Sting

Doug Meeks  has once again scored an ARC for an upcoming popular series installment – this time around, it is Jennifer Estep‘s next Elemental Assassin book, Deadly Sting. Doug might’ve gotten his copy early, but the official release date is March 26th.

deadly-stingWhat Doug said…

Deadly Sting (Elemental Assassin)


Jennifer Estep


Red is definitely my color. Good thing, because in my line of work, I end up wearing it a lot.

Most people shy away from blood, but for an assassin like me — Gin Blanco, aka the Spider — it’s just part of the job. Still, it would be nice to get a night off, especially when I’m attending the biggest gala event of the summer at Briartop, Ashland’s fanciest art museum. But it’s just not meant to be. For this exhibition of my late nemesis’ priceless possessions is not only the place to be seen, but the place to be robbed and taken hostage at gunpoint as well. No sooner did I get my champagne than a bunch of the unluckiest thieves ever burst into the museum and started looting the place.

Unlucky why? Because I brought along a couple of knives in addition to my killer dress. Add these to my Ice and Stone magic, and nothing makes me happier than showing the bad guys why red really is my color.

Against her better judgment, Gin is coerced into attending a high society gala with the rest of Ashland’s elite underworld. On display: the priceless art collection of her deceased nemesis, Mab Monroe, and an excess of crime boss swagger. While not comfortable in her fancy attire, Gin gets vastly more interested in the evening’s events when a group of thieves bursts in and tries to seize the valuable, dangerous gems. Facing a Die Hard-esque scenario in which she must free hostage party-goers while herself trapped in the museum, things get a little bit messy when the bloodshed begins. Let’s just say that Gin should have chosen the red gown…


Gin just can’t seem to have a quiet night out, she has been on a “break” from the love of her life and then to get pulled into a gala event by her brother was going to life her spirits ……. Yea, that’s gonna happen.

This may be one of the better books in the series but that statement almost has no meaning in this series since pretty much every book seems like it may be just a bit better than the last in some way.  This time is no exception, you get to see Gin at her skillful assassin best and emotional lows.  Nothing about this night will go as planned and the fact that bad guys decided to pick tonight to do something stupid is one of those bad decisions you get to only make one time.

The fact that Ms Estep can make you feel that anyone including Gin can be killed in this book just stands as a testament to her writing ability.  You feel certain that Gin has to survive so there can be a next book ….. right?  She somehow injects the stress, emotion and angst into these books that keep people like me coming back for more.  This novel has several twists and turns plus keeping you second guessing as to the motivations of a lot of the things that happen.

Gin is in great form and she is MAD, so as usual, that means somebody (or a lot of somebodies) are going to have a really bad day.  Loved this book and it is at least 4.5/5 Stars, maybe more if you love violent heroines and maybe a bit less if it offends you but Gin is the ultimate bad-a$$ you want to avoid and NEVER threaten anyone she cares about, it could be fatal.  This is the 8th book in this series and it shows no signs of getting stale, predictable or boring.

On a totally superficial note, this series for me has the distinction of having some of the best covers going. I can’t actually point to one that wasn’t great – including the e-novellas. I know the whole book and cover and judging thing, but it sure doesn’t hurt.


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