Title: Ever After
Author: Kim Harrison
Series: The Hollows, book 11
Narrated by: Marguerite Gavin
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Harper Audio
“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…”
Ever After is the eleventh book in The Hollows series by Kim Harrison.
I think the above blur is very explicit; giving more away will be giving too much and I want to try to write this review as spoiler free as possible, so bear with me if I’m a little cryptic at times.
Many things happened in Ever After, As always Rachel is in the middle of a big problem, this time the ever after is shrinking because a fault in her ley line; the demons give her a deadline and if she can’t fix her ley line before the time is up they want her dead. She didn’t cause the fault, Ku’Sox did it to have an excuse to eliminate her. But that’s not the only thing Ku’Sox is doing, with the help of Nick (Rachel’s ex) he’s stealing Rosewood babies; his idea behind the kidnappings is to create his own little group of day-walking demons like Rachel; the only problem is the babies are dying and he needs Trent help to create the same cure for the disease his father used on Rachel years ago. The last thing Trent wants is to help him but when Ku’Sox kidnaps Cery and Lucy he not only would start to reconsider his priorities but he will have to work alongside Rachel to succeed.
Trent has slowly crept into Rachel’s life, things they have experienced together have made them closer but to prevail she will have to trust Trent completely, something she may not yet be ready to do.
One of the most important things we see in Ever After is character development; in this installment we see how previous experiences have forged many changes in the characters. One of the biggest changes we see is in Rachel; she is more mature, now she knows she needs to think before acting and is taking the time to prepare before running head first into action as she used to do before, she is even worried when she doesn’t have enough time to prepare. Another big change in her is that she’s realizing things are not as they seem and there is more than just black and white. She also realizes sometimes hard decisions have to be made to avoid worse things to come, for that reason she’s now reevaluating what she knows and thinks about Trent, maybe he’s not the bad drug lord she once thought him to be. At what is more disconcerting for her is that she now feels she can trust him with her life.
If you are a fan of Trent you are here for a treat, he not only is a big part of the story but also we see another side of him, the more human side, the side that loves and feels deeply. Trent is a man of honor; he is ready to do anything for his race and his small family, even if it cost him his soul. In Ever After we also see that what he wants in life for himself is not what is the best for his race, but he thinks he should come second and will do what he thinks is right even if it means sacrificing himself for the wellbeing of others.
Jenk is still the same perfect sidekick, always there for Rachel and Ivy when they need him. He’s the perfect father that hurts when something happen to his kids. He has no only learned to live after losing his wife, but also realizes that he can be happy again.
Ivy doesn’t play an important part in the story but as always she tries to be there for Rachel when Rachel needs her; but this time she has finally realized they are very different, living almost in two separate worlds and even wanting she can’t be always for Rachel. Ivy is moving on with her life and we can see an end to her crush on Rachel.
Mrs. Harrison also gave us an “appetizer” of what is to come involving vampire politics. I understand she needed to cement the base for what is to come in next books but I think the vampires’ scenes disrupted the flow of a story that was mainly demon oriented. If it wasn’t for that and for something I will explain in the next paragraph this would have been a perfect book for me, still Ever After was an excellent addition; I can say one of the best books in the series.
I know sometimes I say that I book is a roller coaster of emotions, but this one was the mother of all roller coasters of emotions, not only the action doesn’t stop from page one to last, but in the best Kim Harrison’s style she sucker punched us more than once and left us open mouthed and with heartache. In regards to this is where I have my second complain, something big happened in this book, when I say big is freaking big, but it happens off the screen and we learned about it from a third person and it’s like this happened and that’s it, not much details, nothing. I was thinking all the time that it must have been a lie and at the end all will be ok, but no, it was not a lie, that “event” really happened, but in my opinion it lacked realism and strength to made it feel real.
One of the best things of Ever After is the relationship between the characters and how far they have come. We also learn a lot about what happened between the demons and the elves and why the war between them started. We also see a lot of Algaliarept, we discovered many things about his past and everything we learned about him made me like him even more and be glad he’s in Rachel’s life.
The end is not a cliffhanger but is one that points out many things to come; it’s also one that clearly shows the end of the series is approaching and maybe a HEA shines in the horizon.
Ever After was the first book in the series I listened to in audiobook, I wasn’t sure about it but I’m glad I decided to do it, the narrator Marguerite Gavin did an excellent job bringing the characters to life and expressing their emotions, her interpretation of them was perfectly done, and it was very easy to differentiate who was who by just the tone of her voice. My only complain if I can call it that was that her voice sounded a bit old for a young character as Rachel.
If you are a fan of this series this book is a must, if you haven’t read this series can I ask you what are you waiting for? Please remember these books should be read/listen in order, now go read/listen them, and thank me later.
My Verdict: 4 ½ Stars
Other books in the series
Dead Witch Walking
The Good, The Bad, and The Undead
Every Witch Way But Dead
A Fistful of Charms
For A Few Demons More
The Outlaws Demon Wails
White Witch, Black Curse
Black Magic Sanction
A Perfect Blood
Other reviews Goodreads