With an expected publication date of January 2013, Ever After, the eleventh title in Kim Harrison’s The Hollows series, is already being earmarked by many impatient fans as an “auto-buy”. The series, which is seen through the eyes —and narrated by — former-witch-turned-daywalking-demon Rachel Morgan (now, isn’t that a mouthful?), has everyone clamoring for more.

The popular series is set in an alternate Cincinnati where witches, elves, demons and vampires roam free. As for humans, they’re fewer on the ground since the time of The Turn — when genetically modified tomatoes unleashed a virus that wiped out a quarter of their population, allowing the supernatural to seize control. In the first book of the series, 2004’s Dead Witch Walking, readers were introduced to detective-witch Rachel Morgan, a character that RT reviewer Exum likened to a cross between Stephanie Plum and Buffy Summers. She is, wrote Exum, “a wannabe badass with a sweetly vulnerable side and a rich backstory.” The premise of Dead Witch Walking rested on the massive mistakes made by the bounty hunting witch — mistakes that left her with a price on her own head.

Flash forward ten books later, and it seems that Rachel still isn’t above making a mistake or two. Pretty big ones, actually. And not only is her life on the line, but so is the fate of the Ever After — the parallel realm that makes the magic in Rachel’s world possible. So, why is the Ever After shrinking? According to the blurb, it’s our favorite witch-turned-demon’s fault:

While saving the world is important, it isn't Rachel's only motivation. There's also the small fact that she caused the ley line to rip in the first place, setting off a chain reaction of unfortunate events. That little mistake has made her life forfeit unless she can fix it. It's also made her more than a few enemies, including the most powerful demon in the ever after — a terrifying entity who eats souls and now has an insatiable appetite for her. He's already kidnapped her friend and goddaughter to lure her out, and if Rachel doesn't give herself up soon, they'll die.

With the help of her usual partners in crime, including, the mega-rich, hot elf Trenton Kalamack, she’s off to save their worlds.

So let’s take a gander at the just-released cover, shall we? It is pretty groundbreaking for the series as it’s the first cover to reveal a front-facing Rachel Morgan. We see every detail of her face, which in prior releases was either not depicted or was obscured. Could it be that Rachel is now stepping into the light in her newish demon role? Because she’s definitely bringing the light.

Sparks of fire crackle from her fingertips, and the scene is so electrifying that even parts of her stand out on end. And we’re curious to know: Is the atmosphere all hot because she’s on a mission — or because she’s teaming up with her love/hate ally, Trenton? Rachel’s come a long way from the “wannabe badass” she was in book one. ‘Cause this woman isn’t a wannabe-anything. She’s already bringing it.

And, it would be remiss for us not to point this out: Does anyone else sense an unintentional homage to Drew Barrymore? First of all there’s the title. 1998’s Ever After stared Barrymore as Cinderella. But then there was her earlier work, her role as Charlene “Charlie” McGee in the film adaptation of Stephen King’s Firestarter. Coincidence? Hmmm. We’ll let you be the judge:

How excited are you to catch up with Rachel Morgan and the gang? Tell us in the comments below (and let us know your thoughts on this whole Barrymore thing!) For more genre news and coverage visit our Everything Paranormal & Urban Fantasy Page!

Tags: RT Daily Blog, Paranormal/Urban Fantasy
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