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White Witch, Black Curse (The Hollows, Book 7) Hardcover – Bargain Price, February 24, 2009

4.2 out of 5 stars 436 customer reviews
Book 7 of 13 in the Hollows Series

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Hardcover, Bargain Price, February 24, 2009
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Confusion reigns for characters and readers in the complicated seventh urban fantasy outing (after 2008's The Outlaw Demon Wails) for witch detective Rachel Morgan. Rachel's reputation is in tatters—to save humanity, she used powers that are considered evil—and she's still devastated by the mysterious death of her boyfriend six months earlier. Her attempts to solve his murder bleed into a case involving an emotion-sucking banshee, and soon Rachel has to bring in her PI partners—Ivy, a bisexual vampire, and Jenks, a pixie in existential crisis—along with empathic psychiatrist Ford and the banshee victim's father, Federal Inderland Bureau captain Edden. Harrison's unique vampire mythology unduly complicates world-building, and newcomers will be desperate for a glossary, but the nearly nonstop action nicely plays off the poignancy of Rachel's difficult life. (Mar.)
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From Booklist

Hell hath no fury like witch and bounty hunter Rachel Morgan when it comes to avenging her lover’s murder. Her quest for justice holds some significant realizations for her, too, such as the strength in her bond with vamp partner Ivy, who helps her withstand the waves of power coursing through her body in one of the book’s most emotionally gripping scenes. Through a welter of vampires, demons, pixies, and witches, Harrison conducts readers on a suspenseful, satisfying journey of payback, personal growth, and empowerment while setting the scene for Rachel’s new romance, which will probably commence in the next of this spellbinding series. --Whitney Scott
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 512 pages
  • Publisher: Harper Voyager (February 24, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061138010
  • ASIN: B003B652VM
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.2 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (436 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,447,923 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I wasn't sure what to think when finishing this book. After finishing an extremely satisfying Outlaw Demon Wails where Kim's writing has been picking up in pace and complexity and the story's richness and character development has become more satisfying with every book, I was left with this one which reminded me of driving down the freeway at 55 mph and having my car stall out. It was like she took a few disjointed ideas and slapped them together or was jotting down notes to set up the story lines for her next few books and we were reading her notebook and a side story that was thrown in to cover all her ideas that were jotted down. YOu can literally read the last 20 pages and not miss any major character development. I didn't *not* enjoy the book, it is always neat when she throws in new characters and the banshees were neat, but it would be nice if Rachel's character starts progressing at this point, I mean she supposedly is a "black" witch and yet really can't do black magic all that well and supposedly gets lessons from Al but what has she learned? And then we meet this new character Pierce and he is a major player that has a major influence on her life, and he only shows up for 20 pages in the whole book? I look forward to the next installment but advise those who read this one to bring a major dose of patience because you're not going to see a lot of main story line development in this book, it is a lot of set up for future installments.
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Format: Hardcover
I will start this review by saying that I love Kim Harrison's series The Hollows. They were the first true Urban Fantasy series I collected, and it has been my recommendation to many a person wanting to try out this genre.

However, and as much of a Fangirl I am to this author and her work (and the main character of the Graphic Novel, Ivy Tamwood), I have to outright admit there are some really serious issues with this Graphic Novel adaptation of the world of the Hollows. The author at least was gracious enough to not just wanting to transcribe her already written work into comic book form (Anita Blake and Harry Dresden, I'm looking at you!), something that seldom works right. Instead, she gifted us with a trip into the mind of Ivy (rather than the books' narrator, Rachel) and tells us just how the main duo of the series came to work together and know each other.

Storywise, this might have worked rather well for a novel, or a noveletta -- but in comic form, the most interesting aspects of the tale were subdued or understated. Ivy's feelings (read love) for Rachel happened incredibly abruptly, and even though Rachel here wasn't as incredibly annoying as Mercy Thompson in the "Homecoming" graphic novel (awful awful AWFUL!), she came across as random, whimsical, and annoyingly moralist. And somehow, Ivy seems to be amazingly grateful to have Rachel's abuse. I love the two characters and I adore Rachel, but I really didn't like her in this GN - in the books she's sassy, self assured and a little bit cheeky. Here? She's got mood swings that take her from cutesy to "RANTING BITCH IN YOUR FACE!".
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
White Witch, Black Curse introduces us to a new type of Inderlander---the banshee. Well, introduces us directly. Mia (the banshee) shows up in a couple of the novellas, but in the seventh installment of The Hollows, she is front and center. And not in a good way:

"S-stop," I stammered, head bowed as I struggled to just breathe. Damn it, what was I doing? I never should have taken this case. She was a freaking predator. A to-of-the-line, ancient predator, like an alligator."

Harrison's version of a banshee is more like a succubus or a psychic vampire. They're seen before a person dies, not b/c they're a herald of death, but b/c they're doing the killing. By sucking the life force, or aura, from a person, and after that's gone, the soul. They're dangerous, apex predators, and their ability to feed is strictly monitored by the Inderlander community and strictly policed by other banshees.

Or at least that's the claim. Personally, I don't think the book backed up that idea. I.S. (Inderlander Security) didn't do a damn thing to stop Mia's rampage, and as far as I could tell, the only reason another banshee got involved was b/c she wanted Mia's child (Holly). If there had been no Holly, I'm not convinced they would have gotten involved at all.

Banshee shenanigans aside, LOTS more Big Things are going on.<------it's kind of a trend at this point, yes?

Ford (the maybe human empath) figures out that there's a ghost in the church, and Rachel figures out that she can see the ghost, if they're both standing in a ley line at the same time.

Pretty cool, right?

Until Al shows up and snatches the ghost.
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Format: Hardcover
The best part of the reading, for those who've been with the series from the start, is of course just reacquainting yourself with the various cast. The main characters could just be visiting the local grocery and it would be fun to read along as they banter and just do slice of life stuff. Characterization is the mainstay of the series, and just keeping touch with Jenks and his family is enough for a comfortable, enjoyable (in some cases bittersweet) read.

That said, while I love the characters of Kim's books, the latest installment of the Hollows series seems to just tread water rather than advance any of the characterizations or plot lines. Yes we find out who killed Kist. Unfortunately it's a stupidly senseless death that seems just to have happened so Rachel could have an excuse to be angsty. This new book lacks a rather critical sense of, for want of better term, soul. With little rhyme or reason, Rachel is not at her best as she mopes through a majority of the book when she isn't agonizing over how long she should respect her dead boyfriend's memory before giving into her desire to knock metaphysical boots with a goodlooking guy witch whose best feature appears to be his convenient accessibility.

Rachel has always had a bit of a bewildering auto "wolf whistle, pant, pant, pant" thought mode when she encounters any and every good looking male who isn't running away from her bad reputation and isn't trying to kill her... Okay scratch that, she "notices" them in that way even if they are trying to kill her. Not that she follows up on it, always, but it grows old after the umpteenth time she notice how hawt this or that guy's tight butt happens to be.
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