Web of Lies

Web of Lies - Jennifer Estep Originally posted at WickedLilPixie Reviews

Web of Lies picks up four months after Book 1 Spider’s Bite left off. While Web of Lies may be read as a stand-alone novel, many of the developments that occur won’t be as meaningful if you skip Book 1. I highly recommend reading Spider’s Bite before taking this one on.

Gin “The Spider” Blanco has retired from the assassin business and is running her inherited restaurant The Pork Pit. We pick up with Gin on a seemingly typical day in The Port Pit, where the day is violently disrupted by an attempted robbery, followed by a shooting in her restaurant the very next day. While the two events seem unrelated at first, they successfully bring her out of retirement boredom as she is compelled to dig deeper and find out what is going on with the mobs in Ashland.

This is a great follow up book! We get to see more of the characters we were introduced to previously, such as Finn her foster brother, and the two dwarf sisters Jo-Jo, and Sophie. Her love interest Detective Donovan Caine is also back and as judgmental and snarky as ever. In addition, there is a mysterious newcomer who makes it clear he has intentions of inserting himself in to her life. Did I mention bad guys? There are some nasty bad guys. And of course Mab Monroe, fire elemental extraordinaire and lead mobster, is back as well.

All the action of the previous book is present in Web of Lies. Gin is still the same cool-headed, smooth, and unapologetic protagonist we got to know, but we get more emotion this round. We’re given more flashbacks of Gin’s traumatic adolescence, and we’re given more back-story of her mentor and surrogate father Fletcher. Gin struggles with information Fletcher has left for her after his death regarding her sister, whom she thought dead. Does she search for her and if she finds her, how will she tell her sister about how she has lived her life? Gin shows a surprising amount of insecurity with regards to what her sister will think of her should she find her, which is a nice and surprising side of Gin to see. She struggles with her feelings and attraction for Detective Caine, his constant rejection, and there are a couple of parts where my heart breaks for her.

I still have some of the same small issues I have with the first book. Sometimes the narrative can be repetitive. In the case with this book she summarized what happened in the first book too often for me. Detective Caine was again frequently described as having a “soapy scent” and her inner monologue of “Mmm” following her descriptions of him still cheesed me out.

Developments are made in her relationships with those closest to her, including the Detective, but as new characters and revelations are made throughout this story, we are set up for book 3 out in September. While there is not a cliff-hanger ending, we are definitely left with enough mysterious threads I was left wanting more!