Read Jill Kismet: The Complete Series by Lilith Saintcrow Free Online
Book Title: Jill Kismet: The Complete Series|
The author of the book: Lilith Saintcrow
ISBN: No data
ISBN 13: No data
Format files: PDF, Epub, DOCx, TXT
The size of the: 4.30 MB
Edition: Orbit Books
Date of issue: January 22nd 2013
Reader ratings: 5.7
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Read full description of the books Jill Kismet: The Complete Series:
Okay, kids. This is over a thousand pages because it's all 6 of Saintcrow's Jill Kismet books: Night Shift, Hunter's Prayer Redemption Alley Flesh Circus Heaven's Spite and Angel Town.
I originally purchased Night Shift on its own. I was already familiar with Saintcrow's writing through her Dante Valentine character, but I wanted to give Jill Kismet a try and holy smack a Hellbreed, I'm glad I did. I finished Night Shift and then downloaded the complete series and read the next 5 back to back.
I read a lot of urban fantasy, and one of the things I really like about Saintcrow's main characters are that they are super bad-ass women. Invariably, they're horribly flawed, often with majorly screwed up backgrounds, but they're thrust into situations that they have to deal with and you're never sure that they're doing it because they flat-out want to survive or they're feeling obligated to serve humanity somehow. I enjoy anti-heros, because if a writer can take someone as messed up as Jill Kismet and make me like her and respect her, then hot damn, that's some good writing. Kismet is one of these characters, who was dealt a brutal childhood that would color her years afterward.
Adult Kismet is a Hunter in the city of Santa Luz, which is reminiscent of a city in southern California/Arizona. It's a hard, gritty kind of place inhabited by the kind of demographic you'd probably find in SoCal or southern Arizona. Or, quite possibly a place like Albuquerque or Las Cruces. Saintcrow is an Air Force brat who grew up in New Mexico, and I'll admit straight up that that's one of the reasons I started reading her. I, too, am from New Mexico and I like throwin' love to the NM creative community, even though she's no longer living there.
At any rate, Hunters in Kismet's world are specially-trained individuals who interface with local police departments and the paranormal communities to keep the bad stuff in the latter communities from causing problems in the human world. To do that, they often have to kill and they have to see really horrific things. Lots of urban fantasy is premised on the parallel worlds track -- scary stuff hidden in plain sight and a whole industry developed to keep it at bay so life can go on as usual. In Kismet terms, "the Nightside" is what she deals with, and throughout this series she has cop contacts she works closely with who are apprised of the Nightside. Other recurring characters include local weres (shapeshifters), exorcists, and her nemesis, the Hellbreed Perry/Pericles.
Kismet, as I've mentioned, survived a horrible childhood and was taken in by Mikhail, a Hunter who trained her. You never actually meet Mikhail, because book 1 starts after his death and Kismet is trying to cope with that, grow more comfortable in her role as the Hunter of Santa Luz, and also negotiate a deal with the Hellbreed Pericles, who has "gifted" her a scar on one of her wrists that connects her to him but also imbues her with extra strength and power, which includes paranormal healing abilities. The price? She has to visit him and do some of his bidding, which only binds them closer together and brings her ever nearer to true damnation. As the series unfolds, Kismet figures out that Perry (as she calls him) is in on some seriously threatening conspiracies. I won't tell you what they are or what they involve, because the clever unspooling of Perry's role is a key subplot throughout the series.
So from book 1 to book 6 we journey with Jill as she moves from a grieving, uncertain Hunter in the wake of her mentor's death to a seriously competent kick-ass Hunter and someone who is willing to make brutal choices to keep her city and loved ones safe. One of the major themes here is the idea of "sacrifice" and how far you're willing to go for yourself, your community, and those you care about most and when you hand that theme to a flawed character like Kismet, it opens all kinds of possibilities for plot arcs.
Speaking of, one of the things I really enjoy reading with regard to Saintcrow is her masterful control of plot arcs and subplots. Kismet's character arc develops subtly so it probably won't be until book 3 or 4 that you'll notice the shifts, due in part to Kismet's own comfort level with the work that she has been charged to do (but fully embraces) but also her relationships with her peers. You'll find recurring themes and secondary characters that appear in one book and then are effectively woven throughout in further books in tight narrative flow. Saintcrow's world-building gets another thumbs-up, as well as her often poetically macabre descriptions of the city and those who inhabit it, whether human or not.
Saintcrow writes Kismet with a hammer-blow, throat-grabbing pacing that will shake a reader hard, especially in the myriad action scenes. Kismet lives on an edge all day every day, and even in the moments of respite that Saintcrow grants her, you'll know it's only that -- a respite -- before she's back in the fray, bleeding, swearing, and fighting. For this reader, the writing floundered just a bit about midway into the series ('round Redemption Alley and Flesh Circus, when Saintcrow suddenly started adding all kinds of italicized internal Jill Kismet dialogue that detracted from the usual tight ferocity of her style, adding some unwelcome literary hiccups in Saintcrow's usual strongly honed pacing. Fortunately (for this reader), that experimentation petered out by the last third of the series, and the last two books, especially, will pound the hell out of your senses.
Whether intentional or not, Saintcrow did leave a few doors open for possible follow-ups, but if she doesn't add to the Kismet series, these six books are a well-crafted, high octane ride through the Nightside.
Read information about the authorLilith Saintcrow was born in New Mexico, bounced around the world as an Air Force brat, and fell in love with writing when she was ten years old. She lives in Vancouver, Washington, in a house full of stray cats and children.
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