I just spent a week and a half of my life reading every second I possibly could. I stayed up late at night. I neglected my husband. I DID manage to water the vegetables and usually make dinner, but other than that I’ve pretty much had my nose stuck in one of the 8–count them, 8–volumes of Kim Harrison’s“The Hollows” series. (The series isn’t. But I’ve read all the novels that are currently available. I wonder what I would have to do to become Kim Harrison’s new BFF so I can read the rest of the books ahead of everyone else. I don’t think my chances are great.)
As I’m sure I’ve expressed more than once, I don’t tend to like novels written for adults. I have plenty of reasons, but they probably all stem from a lack of maturity. I’m okay with that.
So I was pretty sure I wasn’t going to care for these books, but my friend recommended them so highly that I decided to pick the first one up from the library. I loved them. At least, I think I loved them–it’s all sort of a blur, in retrospect. I couldn’t seem to stop myself from reading them. Imaginative, unpredictable, full of heart-pounding action and some really delicious sexual tension.
I think what sets the series apart from a lot of adult urban fantasy is that Rachel Morgan, the series protagonist has a big heart. The narration isn’t trying to be edgy; Rachel’s voice is wry and funny. She says things like “crap on toast!”. She refuses to kill people, even when it would make her life way easier. She makes a lot of bad decisions that almost get her killed, but they usually come from her good intentions and her love for her friends and family, and her desire to keep them safe. Also, all the characters are so . . . human . . . even though most of them are vampires or pixies or elves or witches or werewolves or . . . you get the idea. Even the villains are usually compelling characters with a good reason for what they do–perhaps misguided, maybe even hateful people, but usually three dimensional and complex. Delicious!!!
The dialogue is funny. The characters evolve, and the relationships evolve, and just when you think you know where the novel is going, Harrison pulls out another surprise.
Also she occasionally throws in a really good nookie scene, to balance out all the violence and spell casting and death.
Of course I am sad that she hasn’t made our heroine Rachel hook up with her hot bisexual vampire room mate, Ivy–I think it should be Rachel and Ivy 4-Ever! But I don’t know that she’ll go there. I keep wishing . . . but I am losing hope, 8 novels in. Of course it’s not my series so I don’t get to decide right? But I am totally team Ivy.
The first volume in the series is Dead Witch Walking. Go–read. Thank me later. (Or blame me when, like me, you’ve neglected the weeding for a week and your garden is a mess.)
Now I need to get back to my regularly scheduled life, already in progress. What AM I going to cook for dinner?