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Pale Demon (The Hollows, Book 9) Hardcover – February 22, 2011
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From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. Harrison's intriguing ninth Hollows novel (after 2010's Black Magic Sanction) lives up to the earlier books, which established Harrison as a major urban fantasy player. Witch and bounty hunter Rachel Morgan needs to get to her brother's wedding. This leads to an uneasy alliance with her elven frenemy Trent Kalamack, who's being pushed toward Seattle by a quest. Meanwhile, Jenks the pixy is recovering from the loss of his wife, Matalina, and needs distraction. The result: "A witch, an elf, and a pixy on the Great American Road Trip" through a landscape reworked by magic, facing down terrifying foes en route. Elegant and taut as a gymnast's cartwheel, Harrison's polished prose drives a story that will have readers swerving in their seats every time Rachel turns the wheel. (Mar.)
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*Starred Review* The ninth Rachel Morgan novel finds our tough and feisty witch on a mission to get her shunning rescinded, which requires traveling to the annual witch convention in San Francisco. But the coven doesn’t want her to make her appointment, so they’ve put her on the no fly list, which is why she has to accept Trent’s offer of a cross-country car trip. The rich elf has his own reasons for traveling cross-country, telling Rachel and Ivy that he is on a traditional elf quest. Fans of the series will recognize that simply having Trent, Jenks, Ivy, and Rachel on a road trip is enough to make for a good story, but that is merely the beginning of an action-packed tale that finds Rachel coming fully into her demon magic powers and reevaluating her long-held impressions of Trent. Ending with hints of some major character developments and changes in Rachel’s life, this is an excellent entry that is guaranteed to satisfy Harrison’s legion of followers. (Should there be any overlap between Clint Eastwood and Kim Harrison fan clubs, that subset will certainly enjoy Harrison’s allusions here to Eastwood’s Pale Rider.) The Rachel Morgan series is fast becoming one of the hottest tickets in the urban-fantasy subgenre. --Jessica Moyer
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Top Customer Reviews
Things have been building, and Rachel’s life has been getting more complicated, but by the end of the last book, it looks like she’s finally going to catch a break.
Oliver, the new head of the coven of moral and ethical standards, has verbally agreed to remove Rachel’s shunning at the upcoming Witch Convention, as long as she shows up to said convention and apologizes publicly for her use of black magic.
So that’s the plan . . . BUT . . .
"As much as I needed to do this, I was so-o-o-o not looking forward to it. I mean, I’d been accused of being a black witch–of doing black magic and consorting with demons, both of which I did. Do. Whatever."
So yeah . . . life is still complicated, and Rachel (being Rachel) is going to have a hard time apologizing for something that she, 1. is still doing, and 2. is seeing as less and less of a problem. She doesn’t deliberately try to make things as difficult for herself as she can, but she does have a certain knack for it, doesn’t she?
And that’s not all, b/c we soon find out that the coven of moral and ethical standards (CoMaES) is a bit more slippery than anticipated. Rachel actually has to get to the convention for the shunning to be removed, you see, and it’s evident that the CoMaES is going to try to prevent that when Rachel is kept from boarding her flight to CA where the convention is being held.<——NOT nice.
But not entirely unexpected as Ivy and Jenks took the liberty of packing Rachel’s suitcases with old magazines, and repacking her things in different bags, so that when the airport “lost” her luggage, it wouldn’t be a problem.
Did I mention that Trent is trying to catch a ride with Rachel to the West Coast?
I didn’t? Hmmm . . . that’s odd.
TRENT is trying to CATCH A RIDE with RACHEL to the WEST COAST.
That’s like . . . DAYS in a car with Trent. Trent the sexy elf. Trent whom I love to hate. DAYS. With TRENT.
And, of course, she says, “NO,” b/c Rachel, but, of course, she changes her mind . . . b/c Rachel.
“Why does Trent need to catch a ride with Rachel to the West Coast?” you ask, and that is an excellent question. It is, perhaps, the most excellent question I have goaded you into asking thus far. And when I tell you to READ THE BOOK, I mean it more in this situation than any other time I’ve told you to READ THE BOOK.
Trust me. You NEED to know. N-E-E-D.
I can tell you that the Withons (Ellasbeth’s parents, and presumably Ellasbeth, herself) are doing everything in their power to prevent Trent from getting to the West Coast, including, but not limited to, sending ASSASSINS.
So that’s fun.
I’m reluctant to say much about the biggest problem they encounter on the road, b/c it first appears well after the 10% point, which is where my cut-off is for mentioning specifics, but suffice it to say, that there is a BIG problem. A problem so BIG that it’s probably not possible to resolve it entirely in a single installment.
And then there’s the Big Deal. The thing that makes Pale Demon my favorite book in the series. The thing that makes me go back and read an entire passage over and over (and over) again. Yes, the plot is awesome, and yes, there is awesome character development—especially where Al, Rachel, and Trent are concerned—but those things alone are not what push this installment into the 5 star zone.
If you’re even remotely interested in this series . . . if you’ve let yourself fall behind, and tell yourself that you’ll finish the series eventually, if you are either of those things, this is the book that makes it all worthwhile, and you are doing yourself a MAJOR disservice by not catching up and reading it. It’s frickin’ awesome. It’s on the same level as Kate Daniels #3 in its epic amazingness.
Hopefully, you’re convinced, but if you’re not . . . well, you can lead a horse to water, blah blah, and all that. That is all. *runs off to read that entire passage one more time*
I absolutely recommend this book if you have read the previous books in the series. I do not suggest this UNLESS you have read all or at least most of the earlier ones because there is so much history between the characters that, failing to have that history, much of the behavior of everyone would not make sense.
I have both read the book AND listened to it on audio. I will do so again. Ms. Harrison has also opened up a range of terrific possibilities for future books and just trying to guess which ones she will take is entertainment in and of itself.
Great book, great read. Love it to death :-)
Perhaps one of the better stories in the series, pulling Rachel between both realities and never having a moments peace.
Rachel fights one of the nastiest, ugliest, foul-mouthed demons of all and then Ku-sox shows up as well. In my humble opinion, Oliver was right up there with demons. What a pathetic, nasty idiotic son-of-a-bitch.
Tinks little red thong, there was probably more action in this book then most of the other ones put together.
I was upset when Ivy said her goodbyes to Rachel because too much had changed and it seemed as if Ivy and Jenks would go their separate ways while Rachel went to live her crazy mixed up life going in a completely opposite direction.
Not good. The series MUST have the three of them together fighting the big bad uglies or readers will be ticked. You can't tear this group apart. That would seriously suck dishwater.
While I was somewhat pleased to see far less mistakes and typos, I, after tucking a stray curl behind my ear, nearly fell off my chair when Trent said somewhere around the New Mexico area on a road trip ...
"Seattle is fifteen thousand miles from here." hahahahahahaha
It's not fifteen thousand miles to anywhere in the world. Lol What a HUGE geographical mistake in this book.
Even though the books are filled with magical creatures and humans alike, the world is the same; the same countries and states and locations. Since it's a smidge over fifteen HUNDRED miles from the New Mexico area to Seattle, I assume the author meant hundred and not thousand, but the mistake wasn't caught and it should have been. I desperately looked for signs of Trent being sarcastic with the fifteen thousand mile thing, but he wasn't. It was a mistake made in the book.
I also noticed use of the word "moot" in quite a few situations. I alllllllllmost want to think that with many readers pointing out an earlier mistake (typo) in an earlier book of the point being "mute," the author decided to integrate this phrase into her future books to let the readers know she could correctly use the term.
That's fine, but go back and fix the other book as well.
As I tuck another stray curl behind my ear, I'm wondering if I want to read anymore of these books. I have already read so many bad reviews about the next one, hearing Rachel isn't being her usual self and somewhat trying to go back to a humdrum life like she had back in the beginning of the series and the reading audience wasn't pleased. She's been through too much and finally accepted who she was. She really shouldn't backtrack now... Not sure I'd be happy unless I heard..."Rachel calling Al, come in Al."
And...she needs to bring them all a few bags of real marshmallows.
I would opine that my continued dedication to this series may end very soon.
This series, has got to be my favorite, over ALL of the series of this genre!
You Rock, Kim!
I never want this story with these phenomenally written characters to end!
Love Rachel, Ivy, Trent, Bis and Jenks!
Liking Trent a bit more too! Lol!