Pale Demon by Kim Harrison
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Why, why did I hold onto this for so long? Why did I think I couldn't get back into the Hollows after not reading for such a long time? I read White Witch, Black Curse in June of 2009. Notice, I just finished Black Magic Sanction right before I read this one? I'm chastising myself for waiting so long between books, and I can't wait for February to read A Perfect Blood as soon as I can get my hands on it.
What's there to say about this book? It was A-MAY-ZING. (Yes, I know I spelled it wrong). I loved the road trip concept. I loved that Trent was a main character in this book. I loved Rachel trying to justify, not only to the rest of the world, but also to herself, her use of black magic to do good. She still isn't completely comfortable with using black magic, even though it's been to save those she loves. And I love this struggle.
Rachel is the best heroine ever. She's strong and kick-ass, yet she's unsure and vulnerable. She forms so many emotional attachments to people, yet spaces herself from them to save them. I love her emotionality. Her romance situation doesn't improve, in fact gets more complicated, and I love that also. She kisses at least four different people in this book, for four different reasons, but it didn't bother me - I enjoy going through Rachel's internal struggles with her.
Trent. Ah, Trent. He has been one of my favorites for a long time, and I've been dying for he and Rachel to get together. I'm not going to give anything away, but we do get to see sides of Trent we've never seen before. We learn a lot about him, his heritage, his past, and more about him and Rachel at camp. Their relationship is tenuous, but underneath, I think there is real trust, and I love it. I can't wait to see what the next book brings.
One of my favorite Trent scenes:
"Seeing him unaware, I could appreciate how slim Trent was, athletic, with just enough muscle in all the right places. A runner's body. I tried to keep my eyes where they belonged--then gave up, letting my eyes linger where they would--then warmed when my eyes rose to find Trent watching me in amusement in the mirror. His smile shifted as he recognized my appreciation, the slight movement of his body an invitation to look more. God, he was teasing me, and flushing, I took my eyes off him. Ellasbeth, your name is fool" YUM... :)
Of course, there is Jenks and Ivy. So much happens with Jenks. And Ivy's talk with Rachel near the end is revealing. That's all I can say about them, I guess.
I love the way Harrison writes. I love the movement of the characters while they are talking, the little details Ms. Harrison points out in her writing. There's not enough I can say about this book.
Read this and road trip with the crew. A shunned witch, a living vamp, a pixy, an elf, and along the way, they pick up a black witch and a coven witch. You can guess who those are. There is heartbreak as well as flirting. There are demon fights, ending in losses and victories. We get to see elf magic at work, and Rachel finally comes to grip with what she really is.
This book had it all, and I can't wait to see what Ms. Harrison has in store for us next.
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