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    The first installment in Jennifer Estep's new Elemental Assassin series, Spider's Bite introduces us to Ashland, a southern city in the Appalachians where you're as likely to run across a good barbeque joint as you are a vampire hooker on the corner. It's a gritty film noir-ish world with lots of back alleys, hit squads, and corrupt cops behind most every badge. The main character is Gin Blanco, or Gin to her friends, but in some circles she's known only as Spider the assassin. However, in the secretive world of Ashland, she and her cohorts seem to be just as trustworthy and honorable as the next guy — but are they? Everyone in this town has an angle, a history — and it seems most have blood on their hands.

    Actress Lauren Fortgang does a fascinating balancing act voicing Gin. There's ample southern lilt and sly naughty charm to bring the material to life, and there is considerable music and imagery to be mined here in the writing. Yet her voice has enough bite and gravel to ground our no-nonsense morally ambiguous anti-heroine. The challenge for any good book in the urban fantasy genre is the paradox of making wildly fantastical worlds believable. Estep manages to take Ashland — this world of troubled souls, dwarfs, giants, and vampires, as well as human elementals who can tap into the very forces of nature — and make it all seem part of the everyday grind. With Spider's Bite you feel as if you could really walk these streets, but you'd also immediately feel the dirt on your skin and the hairs rising on the back of your neck as you hear noises in the shadows. Fortgang completes the task, making Gin a very believable character, somehow part embittered hard-ass, part loyal friend, and vulnerable lost soul on occasion.

    The book takes a cue from its main character. It is patient, carefully spinning a web of atmospheric settings and carefully observed characters — then like a spider it jumps into action from the dark. Ashland is a tricky place and you can never judge anyone by appearances, especially Gin, and it seems there's a long line of those who have died underestimating her. One should be wary, though, of any sexy southern charmer who can not only summon razor-sharp ice daggers from thin air, but also control the very bricks in walls, rocks, and stones, and the very ground beneath her. —Cleo Creech

    Description

    They call me the Spider. I'm the most feared assassin in the South -- when I'm not busy at the Pork Pit cooking up the best barbecue in Ashland. As a Stone elemental, I can hear everything from the whispers of the gravel beneath my feet to the vibrations of the soaring Appalachian Mountains above me. My Ice magic also comes in handy for making the occasional knife. But I don't use my powers on the job unless I absolutely have to. Call it professional pride.

    Now that a ruthless Air elemental has double-crossed me and killed my handler, I'm out for revenge. And I'll exterminate anyone who gets in my way -- good or bad. I may look hot, but I'm still one of the bad guys. Which is why I'm in trouble, since irresistibly rugged Detective Donovan Caine has agreed to help me. The last thing this coldhearted killer needs when I'm battling a magic more powerful than my own is a sexy distraction... especially when Donovan wants me dead just as much as the enemy.

    ©2010 Jennifer Estep (P)2010 Audible, Inc.

    Commentaires

    "Fortgang’s captivating drawl sketches Finn’s flirty, genteel arrogance and Caine’s horrified disapproval of her. Fortgang portrays Gin’s well-hidden emotions as well as her habitual analysis of combat probabilities. The capable narration ensures that Gin comes across as an intriguing mix of battle-weary assassin, sorceress, and affectionate homebody. Fortgang also delivers the book’s wry humor with subtle elegance." ( AudioFile)

    Ce que les auditeurs disent de Spider's Bite

    Notations
    Global
    • 5 out of 5 stars
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    Interprétation
    • 5 out of 5 stars
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    Histoire
    • 5 out of 5 stars
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    Commentaires - Veuillez sélectionner les onglets ci-dessous pour changer la provenance des commentaires.

    Il n'y a pas encore de critique disponible pour ce titre.
    Trier par :
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    • Global
      1 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      2 out of 5 stars
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      1 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour Brian Rygaard Jensen
    • Brian Rygaard Jensen
    • 06/06/2013

    How I got to loathe the story

    This book was one big cliche. The story was predictable. The characters were caricatured and without any depth.

    I had quite a few laughs listening to this story. I do not think that it was intentional for the writer to make me laugh as reader/listener. And they were not laughs based on humour, more of a "I don't know what else to do" kinda laugh.

    The constant use of...

    "I looked at him with my grey eyes".
    "His green eyes squinted"
    "His hazel eyes met my grey steely eyes".

    The description of the eyes kept popping up, and I was both laughing and thinking what a waste of my money each time it happened (and trust me it happens a lot). Who keeps describing herself looking at things with her eyes and the colour of her eyes? Noone.

    it does not stop there:

    "Guilt and grief racked my heart" is heard more than often.
    "Cold rage in my heart" likewise.

    The writer just tries too hard to make the persons in the story interesting and ends up making them shallow, and stupid.

    Some might feel that the narrator is good. I am not one of them. Whenever she was trying to make someone sound sexy and persuasive they sounded like stupid braindead pornstars. When the rugged detective (and you will hear that a lot) is "talking" it sounds more like a person on drugs, than a person rugged and tough.

    Add a story that is neither good nor interesting, and you get to waste a lot of hours you will never get back. None of the heroes or the main bad guys/girls have any flaws. They all belong in a model magazine.

    I was left with a feeling of this becoming a teenage girl fantasy novel, and if that is your age you might enjoy this story. Everyone else should avoid it.

    I will not be spending any more money of credits on this series, and you might be wondering why I bothered listening to the story until the end - if you have the answer please share because I do not know. Might be that I just hoped something remotely interesting would happen.

    92 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      1 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      2 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      1 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour Tania
    • Tania
    • 30/03/2014

    Couldn't finish it

    What disappointed you about Spider's Bite?

    Nearly everything disappointed me about this. Repetitive, poor writing. I'm with Alex (another reviewer) - except I didn't think the purchase price was worth the waste of my time. If I heard 'my grey eyes' one more time...

    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    disappointment that I'd wasted my money

    13 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      1 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour Alex
    • Alex
    • 06/06/2011

    Only because...

    ... I paid for it. Is it wrong to listen to a whole story only for that reason?

    It's the only thing that has gotten me through this book anyway. I hope for the sake of anyone who chooses to go on with the rest of the series that the author doesn't continue to remind you every couple of chapters that Gin looks at things with her grey eyes... Nobody ever describes the colour or their own eyes when they are looking at something. Let alone every single time. It's irritating. Self-absorbed.

    There's a difference between a strong character, and a boastful, arrogant character. I found myself rolling my eyes over and over again when Gin was going on about her own endless awesomeness. Sorry, I found myself rolling my BLUE eyes over and over again... (You can see how that's irritating, yes?) Not to mention how often she repeats herself about where she keeps her five knives, how the spider runes ended up on her hands, and the exact same aspects of different characters' appearances . There's no need to remind your readers of trivial details over and over again.

    Bad writing is even worse when it's read out loud.

    175 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      1 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      2 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      1 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour Tony Locke
    • Tony Locke
    • 13/07/2012

    Very Disappointed

    Would you try another book from Jennifer Estep and/or Lauren Fortgang?

    No. The book seems like a 12th grade creative writing assignment gone wrong. The repetition of information again and again is distracting. I haven't had to mention to anyone the color of my eyes more than once ever. I can actually go months without considering this. The main character has trouble going more than 2 or 3 minutes without mentioning what is going on with her GRAY EYES. I listen to audiobooks all the time, ( I am a long distance truck driver) and this was quite possibly the worst purchase I've made. I may be spoiled, I just finished the fourth book in the iron druid series, 13 books of the dresden files and the Mercy Thomas series. I was unable to listen to more than the first hour of this book.

    71 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      1 out of 5 stars
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      1 out of 5 stars
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      1 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour NB
    • NB
    • 24/10/2013

    Dreadful!

    What disappointed you about Spider's Bite?

    The narrator over-acted and grated on my nerves. Her voice sounded forced and unnatural. I could not get past the first two chapters.

    Would you be willing to try another one of Lauren Fortgang’s performances?

    NO

    16 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      2 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      3 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      2 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour i
    • i
    • 11/06/2014

    NOT THAT GOOD

    What would have made Spider's Bite better?

    More action. I got the book based on reviews and was very disappointed.

    Has Spider's Bite turned you off from other books in this genre?

    I liked a couple already. This one was not good.

    What three words best describe Lauren Fortgang’s voice?

    OK but...

    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    disappointment

    Any additional comments?

    We buy lots from Amazon because of the reviews, but the reviews and the quality of the books on Audible don't measure up. I don't know if they are padded or not. Considering dropping membership. For every 5 I buy, and I buy a lot, maybe 1 is good. What's up with that?

    11 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      1 out of 5 stars
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      2 out of 5 stars
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      1 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour Joanna
    • Joanna
    • 07/08/2013

    One dimensional

    Would you try another book from Jennifer Estep and/or Lauren Fortgang?

    Not likely

    What could Jennifer Estep have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    The author creates caricatures, not characters

    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    Nothing impressive in the narration

    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Disappointment.

    Any additional comments?

    I'm guessing the author has quite a few friends who write reviews for her, as I can't imagine any other way a book as bad as this could get such a high rating.

    5 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      2 out of 5 stars
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      1 out of 5 stars
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      2 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour Sarah Silverstone
    • Sarah Silverstone
    • 18/01/2014

    Narration too slow and sleep-inducing

    What disappointed you about Spider's Bite?

    I agree that the narrator has an AMAZING voice for Gin. The problem is that she read everything in the same slow, monotone, emotionless way. Whether describing the scenery, a hit, her family's death... it all was the exact same pace, with no inflection. I really wanted to get into the story, but I kept zoning out and having to go back and re-listen to parts. After an hour and a half, I couldn't keep going anymore. The story didn't hook me yet either, but it wasn't that far into the book. Also, the super slow pace and lack of energy and emotion definitely made it harder to connect to Gin. But, there hadn't been a whole lot of character development so far either, and very little to be invested in yet. Maybe that would've gotten better. I'll never know though, since I'm returning the book.

    What was most disappointing about Jennifer Estep’s story?

    The lack of energy and acting in the narration.

    15 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      2 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      2 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      2 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour LexiLikesLiterature
    • LexiLikesLiterature
    • 19/08/2016

    Best Assassin or Luckiest Assassin???

    Though I rated this book at 2 stars, I do believe it has great potential. However, there is something missing. I can't quite put my finger on it. The protagonist is an assassin with two types of elemental magic. She is better at one than the other. She was trained by a retired assassin who took her in and raised her when she was a child. Her family was murdered and she doesn't know why or by whom.

    I must say, alot of these assassin books deal with orphaned children or revenge for their loved ones. Can't there just be an assassin who does it because they like it? But back to this story, the opening scene is very engaging. You start out on one of The Spider's kills. But from there it gets a little confusing. Gin is the spider and is supposed to be the best, but half the book she is getting her ass kicked and the other half she is barely winning. How does that make you te best? More like the luckiest.

    One of the unique parts to the story is the fact that she slept with her adoptive brother... Wow... but it is written well and doesn't come across as a lean towards incest. I applaud the author for her bravery. I remember when the writers of DEXTER tried it and the public rebelled.

    All in All. It was a decent read. It was entertaining enough to keep me engaged and I plan to finish the series

    4 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      2 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      2 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      2 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour Thomas
    • Thomas
    • 30/05/2012

    I was amazed at all the positive reviews.

    The story was just short of average with huge plot holes throughout. The psychotic lead needed a bullet in the head as far as I was concerned. Every character in the entire book was a bad apple and seemed to be a child beating rapist. Shouldn't every book have a least one character that is worth bonding with.

    Another thing that always drives me crazy in books like this is how they have these incredible powers but still ignore them. It just does not make any sense. "Oh, I'm a powerful and rare stone elemental but really don't want to ever use my power", get real.

    If you are super bored and there is nothing else in your library then put this on. Ignore the nasty characters, redundant descriptions, huge plot holes and try to get your commute finished.

    26 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    Trier par :
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    • Global
      4 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      3 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      4 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour M. B.
    • M. B.
    • 14/05/2015

    Gut, aber nicht brillant

    Dieses ist der erste Teil der Fantasyreihe mit Gin Blanco.

    Gin hat eine Gabe ("elemental"), sie kann Steinb und Eis kontrollieren. Seit ihre Familie von einer Feuer-Elementaren getötet und sie von einem Barbesitzer "adoptiert" wurde, arbeitet Gin als Auftragskillerin.

    In einer Stadt, in der neben den "Elementaren" (es gibt Menschen mit den Gaben für Feuer, Stein und Eis) auch Zwerge und Vampire leben, versucht Gin, nach einem missglückten Mordversuch, der sich als Doppelauftrag entpuppt, bei dem auch Gin getötet werden sollte, nach dem Auftraggeber.

    Mit Hilfe ihres "Adoptivbruders" Finn gerät Gin immer tiefer in ein scheinbar verworrenes Geflecht aus Betrug und Korruption.

    Die Geschichte an sich fängt interessant an, gewinnt aber durch die langsame und teilweise stockende Erzählweise der Sprecherin erst einmal nicht an Spannung.

    Durch die ersten Kapitel musste ich mich wirklich durchkämpfen, da bin ich von anderen Sprecherinnen wohl verwöhnt worden, die spannender erzählen können.

    Das Genre Fantasy/Vampire an sich ist zwar schon ausgekostet worden in den letzten Jahren, jedoch verkompliziert die Autorin nichts, die Menschen und Fantasywesen leben nebeneinander, und so ist es halt.

    Trotz der Erzählweise der Sprecherin werde ich mit Band 2 weitermachen, da mir die Protagonistin der Reihe gut gefällt. Vielleicht hat ja Lauren Fortgang im 2. Teil an Erfahrungen dazu gelernt?!

    • Global
      5 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour Harper A.
    • Harper A.
    • 03/10/2012

    Kaufen!

    Ich bin eigentlich nicht die fleißigste Rezensionenschreiberin, will aber auch meinen Beitrag zur Fortsetzung der Reihe leisten - also nichts zum Inhalt, nur so viel will ich verraten: Spannung ist garantiert! Ich kann für alle Teile eine hervorragende 5 Sterne Bewertung abgeben und für die gesamte Reihe eine Kaufempfehlung aussprechen.
    Allein die Idee eine Auftragskillerin zur Hauptfigur zu machen ist fünf Sterne wert - auch wenn gin im Verlauf der Reihe in "Rente" geht ;)
    Lauren Fortgangs Stimme ist überwältigend und daher ebenfalls für sie 5 Sterne.
    Bitte mehr davon.

    • Global
      5 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour Amazon Kunde
    • Amazon Kunde
    • 18/01/2011

    Love it!

    Eine wirklich tolle, spannende Geschichte mit einem ordentlichen Schuß Erotk. Die Sprecherin Lauren Fortgang ist einfach der Hammer, neben ihr wirken die meisten Hörbücher wie öde Fachbücher. Eine meiner absoluten lieblings Reihen, ich kann kaum erwarten dass das vierte Buch heraus kommt...

    LOVE IT !!!