3 Star rating
Black Magic Sanction
The Hollows, Book #8
By Kim Harrison
ISBN# 9780061138034
Author’s Website:

Brought to you by OBS reviewer Heidi

*Beware of Spoilers*

black-magic-sanction-the-hollows-kim-harrisonBlack Magic Sanction is the eighth installment of Kim Harrison’s popular Hollows series.  Rachel has been shunned by the coven, meaning that no witch will do business with her or even talk to her for fear of being shunned themselves.

But the coven isn’t stopping with a simple shunning.  They are making it their mission to end Rachel one way or another.  Somebody has tipped them off that Rachel can kindle demon magic and that any children she has will be demons as well.  So now Rachel is being hunted down so they can remove the threat of her ever spawning any children, permanently.  And, now Rachel will find out who her real friends are as she takes on the coven head-on in a fight for her life.

After several mediocre books in this series, I’m happy to find one that I truly enjoyed!  There was something constantly going on in this book, but it never seemed to be too much and it was never boring.  It was paced perfectly and was a pleasure to read.

It was nice seeing some old faces in this book as well.  Nick, Lee, and even Trent.  Yes, I know Trent never went away, but he was more in the forefront in this book than he has been in recent installments.  And, let’s face it…. I still think she’s going to end up with him in the end.  I thought these little blasts from Rachel’s past truly made this book!  It was good to find out who Rachel could trust and who she couldn’t.  And, I even enjoyed Lee in this one, he almost seemed like a best buddy or a big brother now that he’s not trying to trap Rachel in the Ever-After.  He needed a redeeming moment and he found it in this book!

I also found the budding romance between Rachel and Pierce to be pretty sweet, once you got past the way Pierce talks  with his constant uses of ‘opine’ and ‘swan’ (as in swear, not the bird).  I don’t really see them as a long-term thing, but then again you never really know.  Anyway, I’m enjoying seeing them find their way to each other, not to mention I think Pierce helps Rachel truly accept who she is, black magic and all.  And, I’m so happy that she finally quit trying to convince herself that she’s white, when she is so far beyond that now and has been for some time.

Al.  I cannot leave him out of this review either.  His character has really come a long way and I’ve even started liking him and his humor.

“I smell pancakes,” Al said as he jauntily smacked Pierce’s hat back on the witch’s head. “Did the runt make you breakfast?” Al said, leaning over the stove. “Quickest way to a woman’s crotch is through her gullet, eh?” he said, leering at Pierce, who was now rinsing out the percolator. “Is it working? I’d be curious to know. I’d buy her a cake or something.”

Somehow Harrison has managed to turn him from the big bad demon villain to an almost friend.  He definitely managed a few laughs out of me in this novel as it contains some of the best Al scenes that I’ve seen to date!

“How did you find me?” he said, anger creasing his brow.

I pushed his hair back to run a finger over the scar Al had given him. “How do you think? He knows when you are sleeping, he knows when you’re awake.”

From the corner, Al shifted his tune. “So be good, or I’ll rip your fucking head off”

Jenks also had his A-game on when it came to witty comments and reminded me of the reason I fell in love with him in the first place.

“Rache! Glad you’re… Tink loves a duck!” he said, wings clattering. “It stinks of sex in here. God, woman. I leave you alone for one night, and you’re humping the ghost.”

The only complaint I had on this book was the ending.  It left me scratching my head a little bit as I was expecting more than what we were given.  I felt I was left hanging a little bit and that I was missing the final page to the book.

There were a lot of highs and lows in this book as our Hollows friends did have to overcome a tragedy in this one, but I think they handled it well and I’m looking forward to seeing what happens with our favorite inderlanders next!