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Why Aren`t You Reading Hollows by Kim Harrison?
© Deanna Toxopeus
July 30, 2009

Walk into any library or bookstore and you will notice stacks and stacks of urban fantasy thrillers. You can't swing a dead elf by its pointy ears without hitting a pile of Butcher, Hamilton, or Myer. Even Harlequin is in on it.

So how do I know what's good?

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At RevolutionSF we like books in any form they cross our paths. Here is our recommendation of Kim Harrison's Rachel Morgan series.

Sum up the series in a convenient catch-phrasey way.

A female Harry Dresden.

Too specific.

Urban fantasy/ thriller/ mystery about a female private investigator who gets entangled in supernatural adventures.

Details please.

Kim Harrison is one of the shining stars of this movement. Her Hollows series is set in a world where a genetically modified tomato released a virus that kills 1/4 of the world's population. Society was on the brink of collapse, until the supernatural community stepped forward. Werewolves, vampires, witches, et al. (known as the Inderlanders) lived among humams for years. These creatures were immune to the virus and took over key roles in society, and got it through the crisis.

Harrison's main character is Rachel Cain, a witch. She starts out as runner for the Inderland Security service (IS). Her job is to arrest Inderlanders who are breaking the law. As the series moves on, Rachel leaves the IS, an event that causes much drama, and sets up a detective agency a la Charlie's Angels with former colleagues Ivy the Vampire and Jenks the Pixy. Think . You lost something? Need to track someone down? Rachel is your woman.

The series also focuses on the twists and turns of Rachel's personal life. Rachel and Ivy negotiate their changing relationship. Rachel runs afoul of the most powerful man in town, Trent Kalamack, constantly trying to expose his misdeeds. Jenx and his ever growing family are frequently used as comic relief.

The tone of the series is reminisent of the mystery/ thriller genre, with magical elements thrown in. Just like Jim Butcher's Dresden, Harrison is not afraid to go to the dark places. She throws major roadblocks at Rachel and her circle of friends. Characters age, get killed off and deal with fallout from their actions, just like in the real world. Harrison also spins out the history and politics of the world as Rachel gets pulled deeper and deeper into it.

Take a spin with Kim Harrison and her Hollows series. You may find that you don't want to leave.

Deanna Toxopeus can not die as there are too many books left to read. She writes about books she is reading and about seaQuest dsV in her RevolutionSF blog.


 
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