Author Q&A: Dive into Kim Harrison’s Undead Pool

Kim Harrison’s 12th Hollows novel featuring witch and day-walking demon Rachel Morgan is out this week, and if you think The Undead Pool is full of dangerous waters, you don’t know the half of it — because this book sees Rachel and elven leader Trent Kalamack jumping into the deep end of romance!


While Trent may be her perfect match, who, if any, has been the most surprising or strange love interest for Rachel that a reader has suggested? Algaliarept, her demon mentor? Because there were a few books where that seemed possible ...

I've had more than a few readers steadfastly tell me that Al was the best person for her in a lifelong relationship, but I've always seen Al as a mistake even Rachel was wise enough to avoid. Al's scars are too deep for him to love without reservation, and I think, having been scarred herself, Rachel recognizes it. That's not to say that there isn't something between them, but it's more as if Al recognizes the determined will to survive and love in Rachel that he's lost, and he'll do anything to see that she doesn't suffer that same fate. He's happy to live vicariously through her.

Although maybe not through her and Trent! What's been your favorite Rachel/Trent moment of the series so far?  

Favorite Rachel and Trent moment? I really don't know. I've always liked the moment of truth when Trent admitted to Rachel that he was glad she stopped his marriage to Ellasbeth. They were both dirty, hungry and bored waiting for Jenks, and it's one of the first times that Trent was honest with her when he had no ulterior motive to be so. Another might be when a much younger Trent listens to a much younger Rachel when she tells him to stop letting Lee bully him. Lee spent the next three days in the camp well, and I do believe it was the beginning of Trent accepting that, for all her scatterbrained appearance, Rachel can read people extremely well and can match him thought for thought.

Rachel and Trent aren't the only romantic bond in The Undead Pool. We also see a lot of Ivy and Nina, and it's hard and it hurts. Do you feel like Ivy's coming full circle: battling her own addictions with Rachel's help and now helping Nina with hers?  

It was extremely important to me that Ivy end up with a lifelong partner by the end of the series. I wanted it to be a woman, and I wanted her to be everything that Ivy was attracted to in Rachel in the beginning, but who was as different from Rachel as peas are from corn. Letting Ivy begin to overcome her addiction unfortunately made her character less interesting, but seeing her able to help someone else break that same addiction more than made up for it. Ivy has indeed come full circle, and though I could have written a much more spirited, sexually exciting story with Ivy falling back into old patterns and luring Rachel to her, I decided to respect Ivy's growth.

Speaking of relationships and growth, the reader relationship with the Hollows will be changing in the next year or two.

Yes! The Hollows will be ending with that last, as yet unnamed, book number 13. I've been hard at work on what comes next after the Hollows, and while it was surprisingly hard to say good bye to a world and character cast I've grown to love, I'm bringing everything I've learned there to my next series, and I can't wait to grow in new directions. The chance to end a series when and how the writer sees fit isn't a given, and I am grateful for it.

Pick up RT Book Reviews’s March 2014 issue for a full interview with Kim about Rachel and Trent’s Hollows hookup. The Undead Pool is available now! For more supernatural stories visit our Everything Paranormal & Urban Fantasy page.