Deadly Destinations: Jennifer Estep’s Q&A on Ashland & win HEART OF VENOM

July 18, 2013 Deadly Destinations, Giveaways, Guests 57

Today’s Deadly Destination is from Jennifer Estep with a Q&A on the city of Ashland from HEART OF VENOM (published on August 27, 2013 by Pocket). Want to win a copy? Enter via the widget below.

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Hosted by All Things Urban Fantasy & Dark Faerie Tales  July 1st-31st 

Jennifer Estep’s Q&A on Ashland from HEART OF VENOM

Heart of Venom (Elemental Assassin, #9)ATUF: The Elemental Assassin series takes place in the fictional city of Ashland. Just how detailed has the city become for you over the series?

JE: It has become somewhat detailed for me. In each book, I always like to have my characters visit a couple of familiar, favorite places – sort of anchor locations that appear in most of the books. But I also try to have the characters visit new locations in every book so that readers get to see more of Ashland. So far, Gin and the rest of the characters have visited everything from fancy mansions to a riverboat casino to the mountains. So, in terms of locations, businesses, and more, Ashland is definitely a more detailed city than when I started the series.

ATUF: If fans could visit the real Ashland, what one site should they make sure and see?

JE: I would suggest the Pork Pit, Gin’s barbecue restaurant, since that’s really the heart of the series and where so many things have happened in the books. Not only would there be a good chance that Gin, Finn, Owen, Bria, and Sophia would be there, but folks could also chat and relax over a hot meal and sample some of Gin’s cooking.

ATUF: Is Ashland patterned after any real life locations?

JE: Not really. Folks always say to write what you know. Since I am familiar with the Appalachian Mountains, that’s why I chose to set Ashland in that part of the world. But I always like to make up my own fictional cities so I can put restaurants, houses, streets, stores, and more where I want them to go, and also so I can add new locations to the city and new places for the characters to visit as a series goes along.

ATUF: Is there anything significant about the graveyard portrayed on the cover of HEART OF VENOM?

JE: Well, I can’t say too much about it, just that Gin does visit a graveyard and does have a shovel at one point in the book.

The Spider (Elemental Assassin, #10)

ATUF: How closely has your cover artist, Tony Mauro, captured the Ashland you envisioned while writing?

JE: Tony has done a terrific job capturing Ashland and just the overall mood and atmosphere of the books. I think the covers have been really great. Every time that I think that Tony can’t possibly top himself, I see the cover for the next book, and I am impressed all over again.

ATUF: In the upcoming 10th Elemental Assassin book, THE SPIDER, we get to meet a much younger Gin. Will Ashland be similarly different from the city we know today?

JE: Ashland won’t be significantly different. Readers will still visit places like the Pork Pit and Jo-Jo’s beauty salon. But Gin and some of the other characters will be a little different, as will their relationships. For example, readers will get to see Gin and Fletcher interacting and see how Gin really became the Spider. Readers will also get to see how Gin crossed paths with some of the other characters in the series.

 Jennifer Estep is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, prowling the streets of her imagination in search of her next fantasy idea. Jennifer writes the Elemental Assassin adult urban fantasy series for Pocket and the Mythos Academy young adult urban fantasy series for Kensington.

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1 copy of HEART OF VENOM


Available on August 27, 2013 by Pocket


The hotly anticipated ninth novel in the hugely popular Elemental Assassin series finds Gin Blanco on a dangerous mission to rescue a friend.

When a terror from the past threatens Gin’s friend and body-disposer, Sophia, Gin will stop at nothing to protect her, even if it means walking straight into a killer’s trap. Meanwhile, the rocky romance between Gin and Owen reaches a turning point—can they reunite and rekindle their love? Or will the things Gin has been forced to do in her line of work as the deadly assassin the Spider keep them apart forever? Assuming, that is, she survives long enough to find out…

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57 Responses to “Deadly Destinations: Jennifer Estep’s Q&A on Ashland & win HEART OF VENOM”

  1. Roger Simmons

    Jennifer Estep’s Elemental series is one of my favorites. Would like to win Deadly Sting. Thanks for the Q&A on Ashland, very interesting.

  2. Vivien

    Do you prefer writing from a male or female point of view?

  3. Kt.

    How many books are planned for this series? I hope there are many more to come!

  4. Ed Moore

    Why, do you believe, there is such a prevalence of female lead characters in Urban Fantasy?

  5. Chinyere Ezinwanyi

    What are you going to do with Finnegan Lane? That guy should have his own book!
    Can you break him and Bria up because they are boring to me. Bring in some new dude to the mix.

  6. inga

    I love Spider series. One of the best in my collection!!! Soooo many thanks for sharing this world with us Jen.

  7. Sparky

    Since Ashland is set in the crossroads of several states, how does that hurt the police and help the criminals or does anyone pay any attention?

  8. Nora-Adrienne

    Hi Jenn, I’ve been following your books (both adult and YA) for ever. I own almost all the Frost series and a couple of the Spider series. I’d love to be the winner of Heart of Venom to grow my collection. Keep writing and we will keep reading and buying.

  9. Raonaid Luckwell

    I’ve only read the story she had in Carniepunk and I absolutely enjoyed it. Now I have to get the books to read the full thing

  10. Jas

    I love everything I’ve read that Jennifer has written. Crossing my fingers that I’ll get a chance to read this one too.

  11. Krysten M

    I love this series!! I can’t wait to read this next one and Kiss of Venom. Just love Owen!

  12. Viki S.

    How do you keep it fresh? It’s such a great series and amazing that it’s still “new.” So how do you do it 😉 – what triggers your thought process? Thank you so much for really good books :).

  13. Jen Boyett

    I love this series and Mythos Academy! You are a seriously talented writer.

  14. Tanya @ Rantings of a Reading Addict

    Something definitely needs to be done about Owen! He is frustrating me, I can’t stand to see Gin in pain.

    With a fictional city, you probably get to spend more time on story without having to make the cities layout fit. Always a good thing!

  15. Zeenat

    I wish Ashland was real, I would love to eat at the Pork Pit!

  16. Rebe

    Oh, don’t break up Finn and Bria!!! I would love to see Owen get his head out of his ass, though, lol!

  17. Denise Z

    I so love this series. I have them all up to Heart of Venom and cannot wait to keep going. Thank you for sharing and for the fun giveaway opportunity 🙂

  18. Kelli

    Love the Spider series! When a new one comes out, I rush to get it. Then I can’t put the book down lol. Once I’m finished, I’m anxious for the next one. I have even re-read the books several times before a new one is arriving. 🙂 Thank you, Jennifer for creating such an intriguing cast of characters that always leave us wanting more!!!

  19. Heidi

    This is one of my favorite series! Can’t wait for Kiss of Venom next week and Heart of Venom soon after. I’m pulling for a Gin/Owen reunion!

  20. Robin Raianiemi

    I’m a big fan of the “Elemental Assassin” and “Bigtime Superhero” books! I’ve been buying them all in the e-book format; I wonder if they read as well in the popular dead tree format?

  21. Barbara Elness

    The Elemental Assassin series is by far my favorite series. I’m always so happy to see a new story coming, I just can’t seem to ever get enough of Gin and her friends/family.

  22. JenM

    Thinking about the Pork Pit always makes me hungry. I love that Gin is an assassin, but also a great cook who loves to nurture people with food.

  23. Rain Maiden

    This is one of my favorite series, just wanted to know how many more stories to come? Thank you for a chance to win a copy.

  24. Rhonda Beyer

    Hi, guys I just wanted to say I love the Elemental assassin series. I also so hope that you Jennifer have many many more stories to write….

  25. Joani S

    I’ve read the first couple in this series and loved them. I was waiting for more to come before I caught up. I’m going to have to get cracking on them cuz they were really good!

  26. Kyla Patton

    Oh sheesh! I’m starstruck and have no idea what to ask you now! I LOVE all of your work! Can’t wait to read this one to! Super excited!

  27. Jen B.

    Ok, so were you always planning on killing the reader by breaking up Gin and Owen? Was Owen always the one for Gin or did their relationship grow organically as you developed the series? Did you always plan to make Donovan Caine a jerk? He is a jerk! Will Owen and Gin find their HEA soon? Pretty please?!

  28. Natasha

    Thanks for the chance to win!
    I hope to start this series really soon, it sounds amazing!!

  29. Kai W.

    I have heard and seen so much about the Spider Series. I haven’t gotten around to reading the series. It is still on my TBR List.

  30. nat ogu

    i just cant wait i always look forward to this series it has yet to let me down

  31. erinf1

    Congrats to Jennifer on the success of her series! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  32. Jennifer Estep

    Hi, everyone. Thanks for all the nice words about my books. I appreciate them. Here are the answers to some of the questions:

    As of right now, there will be at least 10 books in the series. I am hoping to write more in the series, but we’ll see what happens.

    I don’t have any plans to do a spinoff series at this time, but I think it would be cool to write some more stories, etc. from the different characters’ points of view.

    I do like to write fictional cities/settings so I can put things like businesses, homes, and more where I want them to go and so that I can also add locations to the story as a book/series goes along.

  33. Neon612

    Still haven’t had a chance to start this series yet, but it has moved to the top of the pile.

  34. Pamk

    I so would love a restaurant like the pork pit in my town. Sound like a great place to eat. Love this series.

  35. Katie

    Now I’m even less patient for the release date! I can’t wait to dig into Gin’s past.

  36. Enigma75

    Man, I’m so far behind in this series! 🙁 But I keep plugging away! 🙂 After reading a couple of the books, I decided to try this chicory coffee that was mentioned….blarg! That stuff is not for me!!! lol I had to mix it with regular coffee.

  37. Gidget

    I really love Gin. I was wondering if shes ever going to be able to retire like she wanted?

  38. Nicole E

    I hadn’t heard of this series before, but I definitely want to start it now!

  39. Vicki

    One of my must follow series. Gin Blanco is one of the best heroines of UF out there.

  40. Texas Book Lover

    I haven’t read this series but really want to! I have a couple of the books on my shelf and am slowly picking them up…so soon, very soon!

  41. Jolene A

    I so love this series! Thanks for the great giveaway and chance to win

  42. Caty R

    This is the book I was most looking forward to as part of this event. Thanks for the giveaway! This series is awesome 🙂