Title: The Undead Pool (The Hollows #12)
Author: Kim Harrison
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Publisher: HarperVoyager (25th February 2014)
Witch and day-walking demon Rachel Morgan knows magic – earth, ley line, even the forbidden demon magic – and the knowledge has saved her life more than once. But now something – or someone – is attacking Cincinnati and the Hollows, causing spells to backfire or go horribly wrong while living vampires attack humans and Inderlanders alike.
The pressures build when the city is quarantined to contain the unreliable magic, and Rachel must stop the attacks before the undead vampire masters who keep the rest of the undead under control are lost and it becomes all out supernatural war.
The only way to do so is through the ancient elven magic, but that carries its own perils – for magic always has a price, and gods do not come lightly when called.
Rating: ***** (5 stars)
THE UNDEAD POOL is the penultimate book in Kim Harrison’s fantastic THE HOLLOWS series. In THE UNDEAD POOL something is causing magic to go wonky and vampires to attack, Rachel Morgan is worried that somehow she is the cause. Once she establishes she isn’t the cause, she is determined to find out who – or what – is causing the disturbance and putting everyone in danger.
I have been really looking forward to reading this book, as THE HOLLOWS is one of my favourite urban fantasy series. I was curious to see what would happen in the penultimate book, and a little sad too that a series I love is drawing to a conclusion. THE UNDEAD POOL was a brilliant read. I really enjoyed it. It had everything I loved about the series, but at the same time I couldn’t guess what was going to happen next. Plot wise THE UNDEAD POOL wasn’t quite what I was expecting, what with there being one more book in the series. It was one heck of a journey, one I left smiling, a little sad, and excited to see what the final book will hold.
Rachel Morgan is one of my favourite characters in urban fantasy, which is kinda a given as she is the main character of one of my favourite series. In THE HOLLOWS series Harrison has taken us on a really interesting journey with her, and THE UNDEAD POOL is no exception. This book challenges Rachel on a personal level in a lot of ways. Yes, this book does have a “big bad” but much of the focus of the story is on Rachel herself and the consequences of her choices. I really liked this dual aspect to the book; I thought it really worked.
Rachel’s friends are important to her, and it was really nice to be reunited with Ivy and Jenks. I’m a little sad that they didn’t have more page time, but in a lot of ways I think this reflects the growth and change in their relationships with Rachel which is kinda neat. Trent also plays a large part in this book, which isn’t hard to guess as we know from the blurb that the plot has something to do with “elven magic”. I really enjoyed the dynamics between him and Rachel and the repercussions for them after the events at the end of EVER AFTER (review). It was fun.
The plot of the book is everything you would expect from Kim Harrison. She kept me guessing right to the end if Rachel would manage to defeat the “big bad” or not, and what that would mean. As I mentioned earlier, this book wasn’t what I was expecting. Not in terms of the plot, which was brilliantly thought out, but in terms of the subplot. I can’t say more unfortunately without risking spoilers, but I will say that it blew me away.
If you haven’t checked out THE HOLLOWS yet, then make sure you do soon. THE UNDEAD POOL is a fantastic addition, and I am really curious to see what Kim Harrison has up her sleeve for the final book.