Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Black Magic Sanction, by Kim Harrison

Black Magic Sanction (Rachel Morgan, Book 8)Kim Harrison's latest novel in The Hollows series has a lot of that "out of the frying pan" quality that I really enjoy in a novel. Our heroine, Rachel Morgan, has been shunned by the white witch coven, for being contaminated by black magic. Previously, this has merely made things inconvenient, but not intolerable.
However, the coven has decided that her potential to bear children who will be demons poses a direct threat, and they decide to neutralize her by capturing her, neutering her, and locking her up in Alcatraz. They send one of their members to capture her, and the mayhem begins. In the midst of her conflict with the coven, she's still at odds with Trent Kalamack, the politically highly placed elf, and in danger of being abducted by certain members of the demonic community, as well. About the only thing that doesn't erupt into trouble in this installment is her relationship with her vampire roommate, Ivy.
She manages to evade the first attempt to capture her, but the second one succeeds, and she is confined in Alcatraz. She escapes narrowly, with the help of her resident gargoyle, and the re-embodied ghost, Pierce. The coven then decides to attack her and her friends in the church where she lives and works, with catastrophic results for pretty much everyone concerned.
Rachel concocts a twisted ploy to stalemate the coven, Kalamack and the demons. Putting this one into play both reveals some previously unsuspected abilities on her part, and puts her into a great deal of danger.
This novel is fast-moving, interesting, and contains some good plot twists, as well as revealing a few more things about the history of the world Harrison has created. It's worth the high price of the hardback version to read this right away.

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