Review: Spider’s Bite by Jennifer Estep

January 7, 2015     Danielle Romero     4stars, reviews

Review: Spider’s Bite by Jennifer EstepSpider's Bite by Jennifer Estep
Series: Elemental Assassin #1
Also in this series: Web of Lies, Venom
Also by this author: Web of Lies, Venom, Cold Burn of Magic, Tangled Threads
on January 2010
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Format: Paperback
My name is Gin, and I kill people.

They call me the Spider. I'm the most feared assassin in the South — when I'm not busy at the Pork Pit cooking up the best barbecue in Ashland. As a Stone elemental, I can hear everything from the whispers of the gravel beneath my feet to the vibrations of the soaring Appalachian Mountains above me. My Ice magic also comes in handy for making the occasional knife. But I don't use my powers on the job unless I absolutely have to. Call it professional pride.

Now that a ruthless Air elemental has double-crossed me and killed my handler, I'm out for revenge. And I'll exterminate anyone who gets in my way — good or bad. I may look hot, but I'm still one of the bad guys. Which is why I'm in trouble, since irresistibly rugged Detective Donovan Caine has agreed to help me. The last thing this coldhearted killer needs when I'm battling a magic more powerful than my own is a sexy distraction...especially when Donovan wants me dead just as much as the enemy.


my thoughtsI have been hearing so many great things about this series for years! I have had the first few books on my shelf for a long time and I’m kicking myself now for never reading them!

The main reason I wanted to read this series wasn’t necessarily all of the hype but because I love the Mythos Academy YA series that Estep writes. I figure if she can captivate me with a YA series than an adult one should be even better because authors can put so much more into an adult book that would cross the line in a YA book. I have to say that I’m so glad I read this because I loved that Estep in my mind was able to take the adult series into places I wish she could go with her YA books.

This book starts off with a bang because from the start we see just who Gin is and it was a great beginning that showcased humor, fighting, skill, and a little spark of who Gin might be. I loved that she is an assassin because it is something I’ve never really had the chance to read about and it makes it even more special because in the book everyone just assumes the famous Spider assassin is a man, makes her job even easier since when they go looking for her they are looking for a male. I just loved Gin’s character because she didn’t fall flat on the page, her character shined through and we were able to see her strong points as well as her weak ones. I loved learning about her past and who she was and what she had turned into. I also really loved that Gin wasn’t afraid to show some of her sexual side. She told us right from the start of the book what she thought of the sexy detective in this book and I loved her honestly as well as her not hiding what she wanted sexually. So many times in a urban fantasy series the romance or sex is toned down but not here and as a romance reader I’m all for the sexy times.

I did love Gin and the rest of the characters in this book but half of any urban fantasy story is the world and what happens in it. I highly enjoyed all of the plotting in this book and the mystery as well as the fight scenes. I enjoyed all of that but I did feel at times I would get bored when things were repetitive to the point of exhaustion. There were several scenes in this book that felt stuck on replay because they would be shown over and over again as Gin’s motivation for doing something. I can’t tell you how many times we had to learn about how her family died or how her handler was killed. Especially the stuff with her handler, I know it was her driving force in this book to track down his killer to get revenge but come on I don’t need to read about how that is her driving factor 35 times in 200 pages. If you can get past all of those replays then this is a great book.

Overall, I really loved the characters in this one and the plot of the story with the exception of the replay loops we were stuck in sometimes. I felt that 50ish pages of this book could have been cut out because the replay was boring and not needed. Sometimes I feel Estep was trying to use those replay events to develop Gin’s character but they weren’t needed, we can learn over time who Gin is and we don’t need those shoved in our faces. This was a good book though and I can’t wait to see where the story goes I just hope we are past some of the awkwardness of this first book.

4 coffee cups

about the author

Jennifer Estep is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, prowling the streets of her imagination in search of her next fantasy idea. Jennifer writes the Elemental Assassin adult urban fantasy series for Pocket. Jennifer also writes the Mythos Academy young adult urban fantasy series for Kensington.  Jennifer is also the author of the Bigtime paranormal romance series.