I can never find any fault in the Elemental Assassin books by Jennifer Estep. To date they are perfect, I love every single one of them. I usually buy them on release date and read them over the next few days… and then wait impatiently for the next one. This seems to be the pattern – buy, read, rinse, repeat.
The latest book in the series, By a Thread, continues in this familiar vein for me… Which I am super happy about, because I was rather worried that it would jump the shark with this addition to the series. It’s no surprise that the previous book, Spider’s Revenge, ends a particularly important plot arc within the scope of the books. Estep could have ended the series there, but she chose to go on and add more to the world at great risk of ruining the series.
Well, the risk has paid off. This is a great place to start in furthering Gin’s storyline. It perfectly underscores the idea that life does, in fact, go on.
*Spoilers from here on out if you have not read the previous books.
Gin has become a target in Ashland since killing her long time rival, Mab Monroe. Since then the underground activity in Ashland’s criminal scene has exploded with many players trying to climb to the top. To this end they believe that taking out Mab’s killer is the best way to establish supremacy as Ashland’s uber baddie. Gin is weary of taking out the less desirables and when her foster brother, Finn, suggest a vacation Gin begrudgingly takes him up on it. Gin’s newly un-estranged sister, Bria, suggest a trip to her childhood home; a resort town called Blue Marsh. Though the town is beautiful something tugs at Gin’s senses and, sure enough, there’s more than meets the eye. It seems that even assassins can’t catch a break… on vacation.
… Gin, Bria, Finn, and Owen… on vacation? With trouble on the loose? Oh yeah, sign me up. I want to be in on that party.
The book is a great departure from the previous plot arc while serving as a means of easing the reader into a new direction. It’s the perfect punctuation mark – there’s the end of that storyline, here’s a new one. Enjoy! What I loved about it is the seamless quality from the one book to the next; that feeling of an ending that seems very effortless. There is a lot of closure in this book, some in very unexpected ways. Like I said, it serves as the perfect punctuation mark. Estep can go anywhere from here and it’s ok since she gave the readers this book. I can’t wait to see what happens next.
5 out of 5 stars. Absolutely perfect.