With wicked Fire elemental Mab Monroe long gone, you’d think I could finally catch a break. But someone’s always trying to take me down, either as Gin Blanco or my assassin alter-ago. Now along comes the Spider’s new arch-nemesis, the mysteriously named M. M. Monroe, who is gleefully working overtime to trap me in a sticky web of deceit.
The thing is, I’m not the only target. I can see through the tangled threads enough to know that every bit of bad luck my friends have been having lately is no accident—and that each unfortunate “coincidence” is just one more arrow drawing ever closer to hitting the real bulls-eye. Though new to Ashland, this M. M. Monroe is no stranger to irony, trying to get me, an assassin, framed for murder. Yet, as my enemy’s master plan is slowly revealed, I have a sinking feeling that it will take more than my powerful Ice and Stone magic to stop my whole life from going up in flames.
Even after 12 novels in the Elemental Assassin series, Estep manages to somehow keep things interesting rather than jumping off the tracks like other authors have. Every time I read one of Jennifer's novels in this series, I have "Another One Bites The Dust" by Queen running through my head. Black Widow is actually timid in comparison to other novels in the amount of bloodshed and bodies that actually hit the ground, but it doesn't hold back on the action, the mystery, or the suspense at what comes next.
Black Widow is a cat and mouse game between Gin's people and Madeline Monroe's allies. While Gin's friends and sister have somehow managed to avoid getting caught in the middle of Gin's actions for the most part, they have no escape avenue this time around. They find themselves in situations that to be honest, would tear apart friends and families. However, living in Ashland is anything but ordinary even on the slowest of days. Just being friends with a "former" assassin, gives life a whole new meaning.
Madeline is perhaps one of the more interesting villains in this series because of her brand of magic and the fact that she's done more to disrupt Gin's life than anyone else. Thanks to Madeline's machinations and her desire for payback, Gin faces her own mortality. I found myself grinding my teeth while reading Black Widow because I almost didn't trust that Estep would leave everyone's lives in tact. As I have learned in the past, one must take a deep breath and relax because Estep will find a way to make things right.
The ending of Black Widow leaves some interesting questions about Gin's future. The family feud that has simmered between Gin's family and the Monroe's ever since her mother and sister were killed, has come full circle. I am sure Estep will find more ways to entertain readers in Spider's Trap (Elemental Assassin #13) which releases July 28, 2015 by Pocket.
Author - Jennifer Estep
Title - Black Widow (Elemental Assassin # 12)
Published by Pocket Books
Release date: November 25, 2014
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Format: E-Book, 400 pages