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Spider's Trap by Jennifer Estep
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With the Monroe story arc finally brought to a conclusion we are served a new story and a new villain in this book. However, this book appears to be more free-standing than the other books. Yes there are tie-ins to Gin’s past and all that but the story appears to be more of a completed, single, Gin (Spider) Blanco adventure than the previous long running story arc. Nothing wrong with that though.

The book is a traditional Elemental Assassin book. Gin is herself, that is the usual no bullshit assassin that we are used to. Naturally she is surrounded by her faithful friends. I do like her new vampire “secretary”. She is now also the head of the Ashland underworld which brings with it a whole new set of headaches. No rest for the wicked, not even the good wicked ones.

Naturally the new villain is a powerful elemental who has a few surprises in store for Gin although I had to say that Gin, who managed to take out Mab in a direct confrontation using raw elemental power, felt a bit too much on the week side in this book. She never seemed to use her powers properly but stumbled around being sucker punched almost until the very end. Some of the things she did where downright stupid, like taking that long to figure out that she should replace her metal knifes with something more suitable for the occasion for example.

The main villain himself is actually a wee bit bland in my opinion but he is complemented with a few additional characters who, while not really being the bad guys, are important parts of the plot and who makes up for the blandness of the villain.

It is a good book. Maybe not the best in the series but definitely good. Decent story, a few surprises and revelations, good writing, plenty of action and Gin and her friends are simply so much fun to read about. As usual I am looking forward to the next instalment in the series.
( )
  perjonsson | Oct 28, 2017 |
This review was originally posted on Bookish Things & MoreQuick thoughts
Gin is definitely still a bad ass. That doesn't change with her new title. She's definitely had to up her game since everyone now wants to kill her for her spot in the underworld.

You definitely have to keep an eye on your enemies, even when you don't think they pose much of a threat.

This one didn't focus much on the romance, and that's completely okay with me. There were so many other things going on that I didn't even miss it.

Past events can still haunt you today. Gin knows that better than anyone.

And holy shit that ending! I NEED the next book now!!!! ( )
  BookishThings | Mar 23, 2016 |
This was another great installment of the Elemental Assassin series from [a:Jennifer Estep|580315|Jennifer Estep|https://d.gr-assets.com/authors/1264385515p2/580315.jpg]. While I did not enjoy it quite as much as I did [b:Black Widow|18745163|Black Widow (Elemental Assassin, #12)|Jennifer Estep|https://d.gr-assets.com/books/1405619189s/18745163.jpg|26627076], I know that I can never go wrong with this author. This series focuses on an anti-hero, a kickass female assassin who is also a soft touch. While Gin is not outwardly lovey dovey, you cannot deny how much she cares for her friends and family.

This book starts off with Gin ensconced in her new role as Queen of the Underworld. Gin is quickly learning that this job, which she didn't even want, is tedious. Who wants to listen to the gripes and snipes of underworld crime lords - they are worse than teenage drama queens! Luckily the tedium is interrupted by attempted murder, and Gin gets back in the game. And for once, it appears that she may not have been the actual target. This installment of the series gives us some additional background on Gin's past, and an enemy so old she can't even remember at first. But things fall into place and Gin gets to do what she does best, with the help of some of those underworld underlings.

I liked that we got some new characters in this book - Lorelei and Mallory and a bit more Jade. While Lorelei did not endear herself to me for most of the book, by the end I was content with her position in the underworld, and I think we will see these 3 ladies having more dealings with Gin in the future. I like seeing the girl power - even if its of the criminal nature! My smutty little heart has also enjoyed a bit more naked fun with Owen in the last two books... I don't remember these books being particularly steamy in the past, so I am enjoying the smexytime now. The intimate scenes don't rise to the level of smut by any standards, but they do help to show Gin in a more feminine light, which is nice. Badass assassins have needs too - and you can't go wrong with Mr. Coal Black Hair and Violet Eyes. Yum!

I received an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. 4 stars / 3 flames. ( )
  Bambi_Unbridled | Mar 19, 2016 |
Jennifer Estep’s Spider's Trap is another thrilling book in the Elemental Assassin Series. Gin Blanco is the new queen of Ashland’s underworld. Someone is trying to murder Gin. She needs to weave her own trap to find her would-be-killer. This urban fantasy novel is suitable for adult audiences.

Spider's Trap was a fast-paced and entertaining story. I really enjoyed the plot. It was full of mystery and intrigue. Gin is a great heroine. I like her Ice and Stone magic. She has grown a lot throughout this series. The fact that she is an assassin makes her tough and a considerable person to run the underworld, whether she wants to be in command or not. She has a great group of friends. She also has many worthy adversaries. Jennifer Estep does a great job of creating unique stories within this series and keeping it fresh.

Complimentary copy provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. ( )
  dlynch | Feb 17, 2016 |
Let me first say that you will never get an unbiased review of the Elemental Assassin series from me. So, fair warning. I LOVE Gin Blanco. Gin is the part of me that really wishes I could stab asshats in the kidney and bathe in bloody justice. She’s all my revenge fantasies come to life. She’s the part of me that scares the crap out of Nell.

If you have read the series, you’ll know what I mean. If you haven’t, don’t let me scare you off. Gin is a good person and a protagonist you can care about. But she’s a “retired” assassin, and the way she knows how to deal with dangerous asshats is to slice their throats with her knives. Thus the bloody justice.

Gin’s world is not like our world. It’s a highly stylized and very corrupt world centered around Ashland, a southern town where Gin and her friends live. If you find yourself wondering why Gin doesn’t just move to a different town, you’re missing the point. It’s kinda like asking why Batman doesn’t just leave Gotham. Ashland is an essential character in the Elemental Assassin stories.

In this installment, a new threat has come to Ashland and is putting Gin and her friends in jeopardy. So, Gin does what she always does – hunts it down and eliminates it. Along the way she learns about pieces of her past she has forgotten.

I’m not going to say that any amazing new things are revealed about Gin or her friends – no major character developments, no huge surprises from the past (until the very end!). I can’t even say this story anything really new for the series (except that Gin seems to get her ass kicked more than in any other book). But it’s FUN! It’s a fun adventure mystery romp, very much like the early books in the series, but without as much angst.

Okay, I lied. There is one new element – we get to see Gin adapt to her defacto role as head of the criminal world. It reminds me of the TV series Angel when Angel and company are given the very criminal supernatural legal firm, Wolfram & Heart, to run. What would you do if you had all your enemies’ resources? Could be interesting. ;)

I’m heavily invested in Gin, Owen, Finn, Bria, Jo-Jo, Sophia, and all of Gin’s friends, so reading this book was pure delight. I got to visit with my friends and watch them kick ass to set the world right. Sounds like a fantastic time to me. :D

Copy provided by author/publisher in exchange for an honest review. Review courtesy of onebooktwo.com | one book, two reviews. ( )
  InvestedIvana | Sep 4, 2015 |
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Keep your friends close but your enemies within stabbing distance. One important lesson I've learned in the assassination business is that to be the best you have to roll with the punches. Now that I'm queen of Ashland's underworld by default, not by choice, a lot more punches are being thrown my way. But I suppose that's the price of victory for taking down some of the underworld's top dogs. Good thing I have my Ice and Stone magic to help me survive my volatile new position. Just when I think things are finally settling down, someone tries to murder me during a hush-hush underworld meeting. But the real surprise is how strangely familiar my shadowy assailant seems to be. My job is to maintain order among killers, crooks, and thieves, and soon I'm embroiled in a bloody game where the ability to keep secrets could be the greatest superpower of all. My enemies have all sharpened their knives and laid their traps, waiting for me to fall. But this Spider weaves her own webs of death.… (more)

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