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Group Review: Ever After by Kim Harrison
Book 11 in the Hollows series
Book provided by Edelweiss and Harper Collins
Release date 1/22/2013

Synopsis from Goodreads: The ever after, the demonic realm that parallels the human world, is shrinking. If it disappears completely, so does all magic. It’s up to witch-turned-daywalking-demon Rachel Morgan to avert catastrophe and keep life from changing… for the worse.

While saving the world is important, it isn’t Rachel’s only motivation. There’s also the small fact that she caused the ley line to rip in the first place, setting off a chain reaction of unfortunate events. That little mistake has made her life forfeit unless she can fix it. It’s also made her more than a few enemies, including the most powerful demon in the ever after—a terrifying entity who eats souls and now has an insatiable appetite for her. He’s already kidnapped her friend and goddaughter to lure her out, and if Rachel doesn’t give herself up soon, they’ll die.

But Rachel has more than a few impressive and frightening skills of her own, and she isn’t going to hand over her soul and her life without one hell of a fight. She’s also got a surprise: elven tycoon Trent Kalamack. With this unlikely ally beside her—a prospect both thrilling and unnerving—she’s going to return to the ever after, kick some demon butt, rescue her loved ones… and prevent an apocalypse before it’s too late. Or, at least that’s the plan…

 

Badass Group Review – 5 Skulls – A

Hi! AH and Christal here. We were very excited to get an advanced copy of Ever After by Kim Harrison. This is one book that every Hollows fan will enjoy. It just may be the best book in the series so far!!! Instead of a review, we discuss the book, our favorite parts, and our hopes for the next books. If you haven’t read the earlier books, we try to avoid spoilers, but this is the kind of series where each subsequent book adds more information – so consider yourselves warned.

The Elves vs the Demons
Christal: I loved all the background we got about the elf/demon war.  To think that demons were slaves once… it gives a whole new dimension to the conflict.
AH: Kind of explains why they hate each other so much.
Christal: Completely, I’m interested to see how their species relationship develops from now on.

Ku’Sox and the Ley Lines
Christal: Ugh, I hated Ku’Sox and I hated how cowardly the other demons acted towards him.  I’m glad that Rachel was able to fix the ley lines and I loved Bis’ expanded role.
AH: Ku’sox was a little too psychotic. I mean, Newt has always been the wacky demon down in the Ever After. Ku’Sox took Newt’s crazy and added a whole new level. And so true about the other demons. I could not understand why no one wanted to stand up to him.

Al and Rachel
Christal: They are really becoming friends, almost equals.  I loved that when Al was feeling sad and alone, it was Rachel that he was drawn to.  I also loved the Trent got to experience Rachel’s feelings toward Al and started to see where she was coming from about him.
AH: I’ve always loved Al. Never really trusted him, but I’ve loved him. Al always says what he means and it is usually up to Rachel to figure out what he isn’t telling her.
Christal: Ha, I agree.  Not a big one for explaining the whole picture, that guy.

Rachel and Trent
Christal: Thinking back to the first book, I never would have guessed that I would be rooting for Rachel to end up with the little cookie maker. Now though, I can’t imagine her being with anyone else.  They truly do make one another better and I think they have way more in common than they will admit to.  I loved the final scene, but I hate that Ellasbeth is back hanging over Trent’s head.
AH: That ending was such a tease. I want Rachel to end up with Trent. I think that for the peace between Demons and Elves, Rachel and Trent will need to get together and make little elven demon babies.
Christal:  Elven demon babies… cute and scary!

The pixys and Jenks
Christal: Oh Jax, he just broke my heart.  The conflict between him and Jenks literally almost brought me to tears.  Hearing Jenk so heartbroken and worried that he had lost his son forever… my emotions!  I’m glad that their relationship is looking better by the end of the book though.  Also, I really love Belle.  No one can replace Matalina, but I love that Belle has found her place in the pixy clan.
AH: Agreed – It kind of seems like Jax is stuck with Nick Crap for Brains. You really get a feel for what a good father Jenks is when he is conflicted about Jax. Belle is a fantastic addition to the pixy clan. Looks like not only the elves and demons will make peace, but maybe the pixies and fairies?
Christal: I hope so, maybe Jenks can become an ambassador for the clans, lol.

Ivy and Nina/Felix
Christal: I’m not too invested in Ivy and Nina either way.  I like that Ivy has someone to take care of, but I’m kinda meh about Nina.  I actually miss how close Rachel and Ivy used to be.
AH: I was kind of glad Ivy wasn’t in the first third of the book. Even when she does appear, she really doesn’t do much to move the story along. I haven’t really liked Ivy since she hit on Rachel some books back. She kind of gives me the creeps. But if she moves on with Nina, then good for her.
Christal: I think Rachel trying to save Ivy’s soul might become a bigger part of the next book.  There were just hints here and there (and of course the incident with Cormel) that make me think that will be a major point of interest for Rachel in the next book.

The gargoyles, especially Bis -
Christal: Bis was excellent.  I loved that the other gargoyles started calling him “Worldbreaker” and I loved the scene where Rachel stood up to his dad.  Etude was a great new character, but I’m glad that it was Bis that helped Rachel save the Ever After.  He’s been a great supporting character for the past few books and I loved that he got to step up and show off.
AH: I never would have thought Bis would get such an important role in this book. I always saw him as a sort of pet, a guard gargoyle for Rachel. What a fantastic role for him and it was so cool seeing the rest of the gargoyles rally around him.

Tea and cookies with Dali
Christal: I still don’t know what to think about Dali.  I think I would trust Newt before I trusted him…
AH: You’re right. Never trust a demon. I loved how Rachel made sure that she had all of the good petit fours for Dali. Rachel’s negotiation skills have evolved from shoot first, ask questions later  to a more civilized approach.
Christal: So true, she has matured in all aspects of her life.
AH: I still would have never imagined Rachel serving tea to a demon in order to gain his support.

Wild Hunt
Christal: This was pretty amazing, though I’m glad Trent helped Rachel stay true to herself in the end.  I think if she had let said horrible character be killed, it would have changed something deep inside herself.  Plus, I think his situation now is more fitting and painful.
AH: The Wild Hunt was perfect!

Killing of major characters
Christal: I knew everyone wouldn’t be able to make it to the end of the series, but I’m really sad about a certain female character.  I think I am most sad that we barely got to spend any time with her in this novel before she was killed offscreen.  Honestly, the guy I couldn’t really care much about.  I never liked him and was just waiting for the other shoe to drop.
AH: I was shocked by the death. It was almost as shocking as the death in book 5. I kept hoping Al would work some of his demon magic and fix that death – resurrect that character.
Christal: I’m happy that they are in a better place, but I agree, I really thought they would be brought back somehow.

Battle scenes/playing dirty/slave/wedding rings
Christal: The action was great throughout this book.  I love the use of the different rings and how they really cemented a tenuous trust between Rachel, Trent, and Al.  I hope we see more of the power trio in the next books.  I especially liked how the rings helped Rachel and Trent to open up to one another more.  When they “melded” and were able to see each other from opposite viewpoints, it was just beautiful.
AH: Those rings were really cool, although I kept having Lord of the Rings flashbacks. I think that Rachel, Trent, and Al work really well together.
Christal: The four true rings to rule them all?

The last chapter…..Drunk Al crashes the last chapter
Christal: Loved loved loved this!  It just shows how much Al’s character has evolved and how his relationship with Rachel has deepened into something real.  I also highly approved of the way Trent took care of him and let him literally crash at his place.
AH: This was my favorite scene – Drunk Al crashes the party. Just beautiful.

I really don’t want this series to end, but if it does end, I’d love to see it as a TV series. It could be awesome.

Join the discussion – Who are your favorite characters in the Hollows series? Who are you rooting for? Who do you think will end up with Rachel?

Rating:  ☠  ☠  ☠  ☠  ☠ 

Best of UF
Thank you to Edelweiss and Harper Voyager for a review copy of this book.

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AH

AHHi all! Bonjour! I’m AH and I am obsessed with reading. I read all kinds of books, but my favorites are paranormal romance and urban fantasy. What is it about those vampires and shape-shifters? Lately, I seem to be reading a lot of dystopian books as well. Are zombies the new vampire? I hope not. I have 3 boys – all reluctant readers so I tend to read a lot of young adult books aimed at boys. I want them to catch the reading bug too! I’m looking forward to sharing my thoughts about books with you. Hope we can discover some great reads together.
 Posted by on January 11, 2013 at 7:00 am

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