For those that would like a taste of the series, Jennifer has a couple of free stories about her assassin on her website -
Spider’s Bargain: This is a short story that takes place before the events of Spider’s Bite, the first book in the Elemental Assassin series. In Spider’s Bargain, Gin Blanco takes on a corrupt cop, but only one of them will be left standing in the end. Click here to read it.Venom: Book Synopsis
Web of Death: This short story takes place after the events of Spider’s Bite but before the beginning of Web of Lies. In Web of Death, Gin Blanco’s retirement is interrupted by some unwanted guests. Click here to read it.
Web of Deceit: This short story takes place when Gin is a teenager. It’s told from the point of view of Fletcher Lane, Gin’s assassin mentor, and focuses on Gin’s first solo job as the assassin the Spider. Click here to read it.
It’s hard to be a badass assassin when a giant is beating the crap out of you. Luckily, I never let pride get in the way of my work. My current mission is personal: annihilate Mab Monroe, the Fire elemental who murdered my family. Which means protecting my identity, even if I have to conceal my powerful Stone and Ice magic when I need it most. To the public, I’m Gin Blanco, owner of Ashland’s best barbecue joint. To my friends, I’m the Spider, retired assassin. I still do favors on the side. Like ridding a vampire friend of her oversized stalker—Mab’s right-hand goon who almost got me dead with his massive fists. At least irresistible Owen Grayson is on my side. The man knows too much about me, but I’ll take my chances. Then there’s Detective Bria Coolidge, one of Ashland’s finest. Until recently, I thought my baby sister was dead. She probably thinks the same about me. Little does she know, I’m a cold-blooded killer . . . who is about to save her life.
I have a copy of Venom to give away. To enter just answer Jennifer's question at the end of her post. Welcome Jennifer and please put the stiletto's and garrote's away.
Why Assassins Should Not Be Whiny
Some of you might know me as the author of the Elemental Assassin urban fantasy series. The books focus on Gin Blanco, an assassin code¬named the Spider who can control the elements of Ice and Stone. When she’s not busy killing people and righting wrongs, Gin runs a bar¬be¬cue restaurant called the Pork Pit in the fictional southern metropolis of Ashland. The city is also home to giants, dwarves, vampires, and elementals – Air, Fire, Ice, and Stone.
The first two books in the series are Spider’s Bite and Web of Lies. Venom, the third book, came out on Sept. 28. Tangled Threads, the fourth book, will be published in May 2011, while the fifth book (untitled) will be released in October 2011.
I’ve also sold a young adult urban fantasy series called Mythos Academy. The first book is called Touch of Frost and will be out in August 2011. The books focus on Gwen Frost, a Gypsy girl who has the gift of psychometry, or the ability to know an object’s history just by touching it. After a serious freak-out with her magic, Gwen finds herself shipped off to Mythos Academy, a school for the descendants of ancient warriors like Spartans, Valkyries, and more.
So why write about an assassin? The truth? Because I got tired of reading about all the whiny assassins out there. Seriously.
I’ve always loved reading about assassin characters, especially in fantasy literature. But in a lot of the books out there – fantasy and otherwise – it seems like all the assassin does is moan and groan about how eeevil he is, killing people for money. The assassin is all angsty and conflicted and bothered by what he does. Yeah, maybe you had a bad childhood or are being forced to kill people by a secret government agency, but dude, quit whining and just get on with things already.
Every time I would read a book about an overly conflicted assassin, I wanted to reach into the pages and shake the character. Because really, it seemed to me like there was an insanely simple, easy solution to the whole problem – quit being an assassin! You kill people for a living – surely you can escape from the secret government agency or your mob boss or whomever.
Now, I’m not saying that Gin is completely cold-hearted. She’s fiercely loyal to the few friends and family that she has. But if you get in her way or threaten the people that she cares about, then she’s going to put you down – hard – and sleep just fine that night. And yeah, Gin had a traumatic childhood and it still haunts her, but she’s not going to let her feelings get in the way of what needs to be done. She’ll sharpen her knives, slug back a gin and tonic, and get down to business.
As for why I decided to write a female assassin, well, I’m female so that’s the perspective that comes easiest to me. I think women are just as strong and smart and cunning and conflicted as men. Plus, the urban fantasy genre is full of great heroines, and I wanted to add my own to the mix. Whether they’re assassins or librarians or something in between, strong, smart, sassy heroines are the kind of characters that I like reading about, and those are the kind of characters that I like writing. Enough said.
What about you guys? Who are some of your favorite assassin or fantasy characters?
- Leave a comment responding to Jennifer's question to enter.
- One name will be drawn at random. Open internationally (by Book Depository).
- Giveaway runs until Midnight, Thursday, October 14.
- Leave a way for me to contact you.
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