Deadly Sting (Elemental Assassin)

Deadly Sting - Jennifer Estep Dragged by Finn to an auction so they can paw through the remains of Mab’s estate, Gin is predicting a boring night (certainly more boring than dress shopping with added fun mugging).A boring night that quickly becomes slightly nightmarish when she sees her sort-of-ex-Owen with another woman on what may be a date.Thankfully relationship issues are rapidly overruled by a new threat – art thieves with guns, bombs and a willingness to shoot hostages.The Spider just can’t have a night off.In have to say, I wasn’t that thrilled with this story. I mean, the action was well done and well written as usual, I love these characters and the setting was intriguing. It had action, it had excitement, it had this wonderful world I love.But it came down to being “Gin goes somewhere, bad guys try to rob it, Gin stops them.” I actually had trouble writing a summary that wasn’t just one sentence. I kept waiting for the whole museum robbery to end and us to move on to the main plot now the prologue has finished until I got to 75% in and I realised, wait, this is actually the whole story. There’s no real twists, no grand revelations, there’s a couple of side issues taking up a tiny amount of room, but that’s about it. It’s a linear, simple, action story.I mean, it’s good at that. The fights scenes are excellent and there’s a wonderful bit of stylistic writing in that Gin often stops and watches her prey for a long time before actually acting. It can be really frustrating reading because you’re urging her to move and she isn’t – but she is the Spider, renowned for her patience and that was really brought home in this book; just how patient she is, how long she is willing to wait for the ideal situation. Except… someone was actually bleeding to death while she was being this patient. Great stylistically, a bit less so in terms of fitting the situation.And I liked her flashback with Fletcher, giving another sense of who she was and how she became who she is – but also the ruthlessness that has been instilled into her. I liked it, it would have been great character development for… someone who wasn’t Gin. Sorry, but while I loved so much of it, the idea of Gin getting the job done no matter what, even if it meant using a loved one as bait, doesn’t quite gel with how she’s acted towards her extended family.I’d also quite like her skill as an assassin be showed by her not getting hurt in a battle rather than her constantly being severely beaten before getting magical healing – less kamikaze Gin and more skilful, awesome Gin.Having said that, I think it’s a real mistake to look at any of the Elemental Assassin’s series in terms of individual books – this is one of those series that works incredibly well as a collective whole. The pacing of the series, the way each book is presented as its place in the series and general development of the series are all extremely well done – looked at as a whole the writing and organisation is incredible, some of the best I’ve ever read.Read More