ever afterTitle: Ever After
Author: Kim Harrison
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Series: The Hollows (Book #11)
Publication Date: January 22, 2013
Format: Hardcover, 435 Pages
ISBN-10: 0061957917 (Harper Voyager)
ISBN-13: 978-0061957918 (Harper Voyager)
Reviewed by: Kristie
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…
Quick & Dirty: A deeply emotional and action packed book that once again finds Rachel fighting for her life.
Opening Sentence: “This is close enough.”
I want to start this review by saying that I am a huge fan of this series and I am seriously disappointed that it took me this long to read Ever After. Although I will say this novel didn’t speak to me like some of the past Hollows books did in the past but I still thoroughly enjoyed Ever After. I especially enjoyed the new dynamics of Rachel and Trent’s relationship.
Ever After continues Rachel’s struggles with the terrible demon Ku’Sox. He sabotages a ley line which in effect becomes like a black hole. The line is slowly shrinking the Ever After with the ultimate goal of destroying the Ever After and the demons with it. For the demons the only way to stop their ultimate destruction is by killing Rachel or so they believe. Since demon politics is so weird, Rachel cannot blame Ku’Sox without proof and even that proof would make it look like she was working with Ku’Sox. There are some really powerful demons that believe Rachel but they won’t take her side because Ku’Sox is even more powerful than they are. They won’t risk their lives in case Rachel can’t fix the line.
Meanwhile, Quen wants Rachel to take over is place and become Trent’s protector but Rachel’s conflicting feelings have her turning down the job. She doesn’t believe she can protect like he needs plus she really enjoys being her own boss.
As one of the last remaining elves, Trent is trying to ensure the continued survival of his species. The elves and demons have a nasty shared history and much of that is revealed in Ever After. Rachel has to team up with Trent in order for her to have any kind of hope of saving the Ever After and ultimately her life.
I love Rachel. She cares so much for other people often to the detriment of her life. She does whatever she can to help others. Ultimately it is her life above all others because she does whatever it takes to ensure her survival even if the outcome for someone else is detrimental. Although, I’m not sure that is entirely a bad trait. She is brash but she doesn’t answer to anybody and I enjoy so much how she is strong yet very much vulnerable.
I really found myself anticipating the parts of the book with Trent and Rachel. Rachel has so many doubts and frustrations, some of which are understandable but it does help amp up the sexual tension. I still have my doubts about Trent’s loyalties but I secretly hope they get together in the end. **As of right now, I have avoided any spoilers to the last book.**
Several years have passed since I read A Perfect Blood so I did have some confusion to events and characters for the beginning of the novel. I definitely wouldn’t recommend this as a standalone or a starting point to a series that is ending in two more books. Too much has gone on in this series.
There was only one thing I really didn’t like about Ever After. There was some tragedy off the “page”. It didn’t really need to be showcased but I had a hard time believing it was true. I was expecting said person to come back at any time, however, a certain characters reaction to the tragedy made me believe that it had to be true.
Overall, I really loved this book! I went through so many emotions. I love the dark atmosphere and setting. I can just feel myself sinking into this world. I can’t wait to finish this series.
“Nicely done, Rachel.” Smiling up at Trent, I accepted his hand and stood. Our pinkie rings glinted together in the light, and I didn’t know how to feel about it. My hands were shaking, but I was ready to put another imbalance back if Bis was.
Pulling my hand from Trent’s, I looked for Bis. “Another one?” I asked, my intentions obvious, and he nodded from the retaining wall, his red eyes glowing in the lamplight.
Jenk’s wings clattered as he dropped down, shrilling something so fast I couldn’t understand him.
“You surprise me, Rachel,” came an oily voice from the dark, and I spun, heart pounding as I turned to the river. Ku’Sox? Crap on toast!
“It’s Ku’Sox!” Jenks shouted, dripping an angry, frightened red dust. His sword was out, and his wings by my ear, harsh.
“Not in that you figured it out,” Ku’Sox said, a small sphere of light blossoming in his hand to show his presence beside my screaming, damaged line, “but that you’re stupid enough to be out here alone.”
Bis landed on my other side, puffing up as much he could by sucking in the moisture from the air. The size of a large dog, he crouched beside me with his tail thrashing.
“She’s not alone,” Jenks spat, hovering at head height and brandishing his sword. “Back off, Cute Socks. I cut your nose off before, I’ll do it again.”
1. Dead Witch Walking
2. The Good, the Bad, and the Undead
3. Every Which Way But Dead
4. A Fistful of Charms
5. For a Few Demons More
6. The Outlaw Demon Wails
7. White Witch, Black Curse
8. Black Magic Sanction
9. Pale Demon
10. A Perfect Blood
11. Ever After
12. The Undead Pool
13. The Witch with No Name
13.1 Sudden Backtrack
FTC Advisory: Harper Voyager / Harper Collins provided me with a copy of Ever After. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.