Monday, August 26, 2013

Excerpt and Giveaway: Heart of Venom by Jennifer Estep


Bria drew in a breath, but before she could tell me whatever was on her mind, the sound of a door banging open at the front of the house cut her off. A moment later, footsteps sounded. I recognized the heavy tread as belonging to Sophia, but the odd thing was that it didn’t sound like she was walking normally. Instead, a series of scrape-scrape-scrapes screeched across the hardwood floor, as if Sophia was dragging one of her feet yet moving fast at the same time. Before I could puzzle out why she would be walking that way, she appeared in the salon doorway.

Jo-Jo might be a sweet Southern lady with her pink dresses, polish, and pearls, but Sophia had a different style altogether: Goth. Today, as usual, she wore black from head to toe—boots, jeans, and a T-shirt with a big pair of puckered crimson lips on it. A crimson leather collar spiked with silverstone ringed her throat, although her lipstick was a flat black that matched her hair. 

Normally, I found Sophia’s style to be dark but also cool, quirky, and funky. The problem now was that her black clothes kept me from noticing the blood on her arm and leg for several crucial seconds.

“Sophia?” I asked.

Her black eyes met mine, and I saw something there I’d never seen before: fear. 

“Run,” Sophia rasped in her low, broken voice.

Then she collapsed without another word.

“Sophia?” Jo-Jo said. “Sophia!”

Jo-Jo dropped the bottle of nail polish she’d been holding. The glass shattered on the floor, splattering the bright, glossy, strawberry liquid everywhere, but Jo-Jo didn’t notice as she ran past us to where Sophia lay. Bria and I started forward too, but we’d only taken two steps when the front door banged open again, as though someone had kicked it wildly and sent it flying into the wall. A second later, more footsteps, multiple sets, all heavy, loud, and determined, all headed our way. 

Whatever trouble Sophia had gotten into had followed her home.

Bria and I glanced at each other, then both lunged for the buffet table. Bria went for the gun in her straw bag underneath the table, while I reached for my silverstone knives atop its far end. But before we could get to our weapons, six men burst into the salon, all carrying guns.


Jennifer Estep is a New York Times bestselling author, prowling the streets of her imagination in search of her next fantasy idea. Heart of Venom, the ninth book in her Elemental Assassin urban fantasy series, will be released on Aug. 27. Kiss of Venom, an e-novella, is also available, along with other books, short stories, and e-novellas in the series. For more information, visit or follow Jennifer on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.


Heart of Venom
Elemental Assassin #9
by Jennifer Estep
Published: Pocket Books
The hotly anticipated ninth novel in the hugely popular Elemental Assassin series finds Gin Blanco on a dangerous mission to rescue a friend.

When a terror from the past threatens Gin’s friend and body-disposer, Sophia, Gin will stop at nothing to protect her, even if it means walking straight into a killer’s trap. Meanwhile, the rocky romance between Gin and Owen reaches a turning point—can they reunite and rekindle their love? Or will the things Gin has been forced to do in her line of work as the deadly assassin the Spider keep them apart forever? Assuming, that is, she survives long enough to find out…
Jennifer allowing me to give away this book! Will have the review on Wed! I'll just say that I loved it. :D

How to enter? Just fill out the rafflecopter form below. It's US only.
a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Great post! I need to read more in the series, mainly as I have them.

  2. Okay, I know you guys are really excited about this being the 9th book in the series, but damn I wish I didn't have that many to read to catch up to read this one! Love the excerpt but, unlike you, I have to read in order!! :) Still, it's a series I'm gonna have to start!

  3. Totally intrigued by the scrape-scrape-scrapes, I'll be sure to keep a look out for this.

  4. Jennifer is a rockstar!! I am so in love with this series. I'm in the midst of acquiring all the books :) GIN IS MY HERO!!!

  5. Melliane -- Thanks! Glad you enjoyed the excerpt.

    Buried in Books -- Thanks! Hope you get a chance to check out the books. There are some free short stories on my website, if you want to get a feel for what the series is like.

    Petty -- Thanks! Hope you get a chance to check out the books.

    Vivien -- Thanks! Glad you are enjoying the series.

  6. Gin is one kick ass heroine. Yes, I said heroine. While she does kill for money, it's usually someone who deserves it, but she also protects the people in her life she cares about. I've followed this series from the beginning (buying, borrowing, or stealing) and loved them all. I'd love to win this one for my growing (burgeoning) home library.

  7. I love this series so much!!! Gin is the best!!

  8. Oooo what a cruel, cruel excerpt that was, LOVE IT! Makes me want to run to my Kindle and read this one all over again. I love Sophia so much:)

  9. NoraA -- Thanks! I appreciate all the nice words about the series.

    Nanna -- Thanks! Glad you are enjoying the series.

  10. Heater -- Thanks! Hope you enjoy the book.

  11. I love this series! What could be better than an assassin!? Can't wait to read this one :)

  12. Heather -- I'm sorry that I misspelled your name above.

  13. Great excerpt! Thanks for the giveaway!

  14. Really need to start this series - i love Bigtime & Mythos Academy so I'm pretty sure I'll love Gin as well!

  15. Wonderful excerpt, I picked up books one, two and three and cannot wait to dive in!

  16. I'm a huge fan of the paranormal genre. I like the idea of living in a different world--a different existence. I would love to read this book!!

  17. Krysten -- Thanks! Glad you are enjoying the series.

    Savannah -- Thanks! Glad you liked the excerpt.

    Mel -- Thanks! Hope you get a chance to check out the series.

    Kimbacaffeinate -- Thanks! Hope you enjoy the books.

    Christine -- Thanks! Hope you get a chance to check out the series.

  18. Jennifer is fantastic! I just emailed her this morning. I finally got an audiobook of the first book so I can get started with this series at last! Can't wait!

  19. I've heard so much about this author and am really eager to start reading her work. I love this excerpt and am so exciting to get my hands on this series. Thanks for sharing, Melissa!

  20. Heidi -- Thanks! Hope you enjoy the audio book.

    Keertana -- Thanks! Hope you get a chance to check out the series.

  21. The Elemental Assassin series is my favorite series and I'm always thrilled when a new book comes out so I can catch up with Gin and friends.

  22. LOVE-LOVE-LOVE this story! I loved seeing more of Sophia (even though it was a horrible time for the poor girl. Just desserts are so sweet!).

  23. I really want to read this awesome series. Thanks for the giveaway. Pleas eenter me.

  24. I haven't read this series yet, I say this every time. But one day!

  25. I've been a fan since I read the first book in Gin's series. I recently got my sister hooked as well. She read the whole series in less than a month and is almost as eager to get her hands on Heart of venom as I am.

  26. Barbara -- Thanks! I appreciate all the nice words about the series.

    Mary -- Thanks! Glad you are enjoying the series.

    Victoria -- Thanks! Hope you get a chance to check out the series.

    Candace -- Thanks! Hope you get a chance to check out the series.

    Anne -- Thanks! I appreciate you recommending the series.

  27. I too haven't read this series yet...but I almost have them all collected so I can start them.

  28. I freaking love this series! Gin is a badass heroine and I love following her along in her 'adventures'. There's never a dull moment and even though the series is 9 books deep, it still feels fresh. I look forward to each new installment.

  29. Awesome series. Cant wait to read the new one

  30. I love this series. Deadly Sting left off with Owen and Gin kind of talking. I want more!


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