Book Review: White Witch, Black Curse by Kim Harrison

White Witch, Black CurseWhite Witch, Black Curse is the seventh installment in Kim Harrison’s bestselling series about sassy yet powerful witch and private investigator Rachel Morgan.  Beginning with Dead Witch Walking, the series is set in the Hollows, a fictional Cincinnati suburb populated primarily by witches, vampires, and other supernatural creatures.

Harrison’s magical setting and alternate history display a consistency that makes them believable, yet ever-so enticing.  Her characters are independent and strong, though they still display their own sets of enchanting personality flaws that make them utterly “human.”  Harrison is adept at weaving a world that will charm and thrill fantasy fans.

That being said, White Witch, Black Curse is not the finest example of Harrison’s work.  The story attempted to connect the dots between characters introduced in previous short story-lines, while largely ignoring some of the solid characters readers have grown attached to throughout the previous six installments of the series.  While some of the characters proved promising in the short story themes, they did not fulfill their roles to the fullest in this book and rather seemed a means to an end for cobbling the story together without truly giving us much background development as to who they are and why we should be emotionally invested in what happens to them.  Some of the standard favorites made little or no appearance at all.  Ceri, ancient elf and former demon familiar, was missing in action entirely, as was Rachel’s ruggedly independent werewolf pack leader, David.  Powerful elf Trent Kalamack and demon mentor Al made brief yet entertaining appearances.

Though White Witch, Black Curse was not the best book in the series, particularly following on the heels of the masterfully written The Outlaw Demon Wails, it still leaves readers wanting for more in the Hollows universe.  Ultimately, the Rachel Morgan series is one of the finest examples to be found in the urban fantasy genre.  The world that Harrison crafts is absolutely inspired, and fans of novels about witches, vampires, werewolves, and other paranormal beings should not miss out on this delightful and magical escape.

The most fantastic promotional items arrived in the mail with my review copy of this book.  I received two seed packets for “genetically engineered T4-Angel tomatoes.”  Fans of the Hollows series will no doubt get this witty inside joke.  Kim Harrison often gives away freebie tidbits and extras to fans through her website.

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