Wednesday, April 18, 2012

By A Thread by Jennifer Estep (Elemental Assassin # 6)

Jennifer Estep’s By a Thread, is the sixth installment in the Elemental Assassin Series. For the record, I was a bit tense and nervous when I picked up this book from the library knowing that the Mab Monroe storyline was finally dead. Finally after 13 years of Gin trying to get back at her for the deaths of her mother and older sister she has her revenge against Ashland’s number one super villain.

The worrying part was also towards the repetitive nature of the story telling in regards to how many weapons Gin carries on her body, who Finnegan Lane is and what he drinks, as well as the fact that Bria has been a total bitch towards Gin since learning that her older sister is the assassin the Spider. I was also wondering just how far Estep would take this series and how many more uber villains she could create from her imagination.

So, the storyline is that Finn Lane advises Gin that it is time for a much needed vacation away from Ashland. Ever since Gin killed Mab, Jonah McAlister, Mab’s former lawyer and second-in-command, has been spreading the word about Gin’s true identity. Everyone with a bone to pick, or an ax to grind, or something to prove, has been coming at Gin from all angles. When she is confronted outside the Pig Pit yet again, she realizes that a vacation actually sounds kind of nice.

With Bria alongside, Gin arrives in Bria’s former hometown of Blue Marsh where her best friend Callie Reyes owns and operates a restaurant that is the target of a real estate mogul who wants her property for his new casino.

The one thing that readers of this series should never worry about is Gin’s intention and desire to protect the innocent from thugs who use brutality, kidnapping, coercion and murder to get their way. She calls it doing pro bono work. So, after thugs interrupt Bria and Callie’s reunion where Gin was slightly jealous over how close the two are, Gin takes matters into her own hands and sorts out a plan to go after this books uber villain Randall Dekes who has been threatening Callie.

Then, Estep throws readers for a loop when she brings back Donovan Fucking Caine to the series. Like other readers, I loathe Caine with all my body and soul and wished that Gin had found a way to end him after he walked away from her and fled Ashland. When it’s revealed that he pretty much fled Ashland and ended up in Callie’s arms and now is engaged to marry her, I wanted Gin to end him. Alas, Gin has more important things on her plate than to worry about an old flame who walked out on her.

I believe that Estep did the right thing in bringing back Caine if only to prove that she doesn’t need his shit or him in her life any longer. She has Owen Grayson, and their relationship couldn’t be any hotter. No seriously, have you read the sex scenes between the two?

“You’re mine,” Owen said in a fierce whisper, the heat in his eyes as bright as the scorching sun. “Not his. Mine. Only mine. Always mine.”

“I’m yours,” I agreed, then pushed him over onto his back. “But don’t you forget that you’re mine too. Only mine. Always mine.”

Owen growled and pulled my head down for another hard, almost brutal kiss. He wound his fingers through my hair, holding me just where he wanted to. I let him take control, let him lose himself in the emotions that were urging him on, urging both of us on.

I also loved the fact that Gin seems to have grown a spine when it comes to dealing with her own sister and being blamed for everything that ever happen to her. In the end, the confrontation between the two sisters was just what this series needed. It was time for Gin to tell her sister, this is who I am, and if you don’t fucking like it, you can go straight back to where you lived and never come back. No skin off my ass! Here’s hoping that Bria never brings up Gin’s profession again.

As for the uber villain Randall Dekes, he is one terrifying character, probably more so than Mab. Dekes is a very old vampire who has the ability to siphon off elemental powers and use them against Gin and others to get what he wants.
When Gin and Randall finally do meet face to face, it wasn’t pretty and the violence was well thought out. I liked the fact that Gin shows a vulnerable side when it comes to protecting yet another set of sisters, Vanessa & Victoria Suarez, from Dekes at the risk of her own life.

Estep did a flashback to when Fletcher was teaching Gin how to be an assassin. I am one reader who wishes that we had seen more of Fletcher before he was brutally killed off in the first book of this series. Fletcher was Gin’s father figure and taught her everything she knows about being an assassin. He also knew just how far to push Gin before she got to the point of wanting to give up.

I definitely want to see where this series goes from here. Per Estep’s web page, it seems there are a few more books in the series. The one constant that I’ve been asking for is the elimination of Jonah McAlister once and for-all. He has survived for far too long, and now it is time to end his storyline.

Widow's Web releases at the end of July, first part of August, also per Estep's web page.

Author: Jennifer Estep
Title: By A Thread
Publisher: Pocket
Released: February 28, 2012 


  1. Great review! Not quite this far yet, but I'm catching up! Love this series! ;))