Narrator: Lauren Fortgang

Audio Review: Bitter Bite by Jennifer Estep

Posted March 16, 2016 by Jennifer in Book Review | | 8 Comments

I received this book for free from Author in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Audio Review: Bitter Bite by Jennifer EstepBitter Bite by Jennifer Estep
Series: Elemental Assassin #14
Narrator: Lauren Fortgang
Published by Audible on February 23rd 2016
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Format: Audiobook
Length: 10 hrs and 19 mins
Source: Author
Amazon | Audio | Goodreads

Which is stronger: blood ties or a battle-tested friendship?

It’s not easy being queen bee of an underworld abuzz with crooks and killers. Wielding my potent Ice and Stone elemental magic will only get me so far—my real secret is my tight-knit makeshift family, a motley crew of cops and criminals, dwarves and playboys. My foster brother Finnegan Lane is my right-hand man, but when his suddenly not-dead relative comes back into the picture, I’m the one on the outside looking in.

It’s funny how life works: one minute your best friend is rock-steady, and the next he’s doe-eyed and buying into this whole loving-relative routine to the point of ignoring you. I’d like to be happy for Finn, I really would. But all of my instincts are telling me that beneath the syrupy sweet demeanor and old-fashioned charm, this sudden interloper is planning something. The whole shtick leaves a bitter taste in my mouth. This person might have avoided the grave once, but I’ll put anyone who hurts Finn in the ground—for good.

  icon squee  icon fave narrator  Icon urban  
I received a print copy of Bitter Bite for review from Pocket but since I’ve not listened to a Gin adventure since book 7, Widow’s Web but mind you I have the whole series on audio because I love how Fortgang performances Estep’s writing especially her voice for Finn so I decided to wait for the audio. I loved slipping back into this world and characters via Fortgang’s delivery.

**Series Spoiler Head**

I was so excited at the end of the previous installment when it was apparent that we were going to get some long overdue details about a character I’ve been wondering about since the first book in the series, Spider’s Bite. Who is Finn’s mother? What happen to her? Was she and Fletcher married? We get these questions and more answered.

Deidre aka Mama Dee gets her hooks into Finn and of course, he’s the only one not seeing that she is bad news. Gin threatens to kill her if she hurts Finn. All the sugary sweet talk from Mama is just sickening to Gin and finally, Bria is on team “throw Mama from the train”.

Even though Finn’s MIA mother didn’t raise him, it’s easy to see that he takes after her more than Flecther. Speaking of Flecther he is around in flashbacks that we all love to see, leaving clues for Gin and a touching letter to Finn.

While the gang tries to figure out what Deidre is up to there are some connections from Gin’s past that come into play and I can’t wait to see the story arc for the rest of the series. Let’s just say that Bitter Bite earned its name and more than one of our characters feels the bite. Estep keeps cranking out quality characters and stories even at 14 books into the series.


Goodreads Status Updates While Listening:
    3.0% “1 hour in and there’s been references to the Black Blade series and Big Time series.”
 40.0%  “Bullshit! That bitch is lying!”
 40.0%  “That’s right Gin, tell the fucking bitch off!”
 50.0%  “And the little white pills make their trademark appearance.”
 70.0%  “Decoy!!”
 80.0%  “2 hours left in the audio and I’m surprised by the lack of food references.”
 90.0%  “Gin bring a new meaning to ‘blood diamonds'”
 96.0%  “Well now, there’s a turn.”
 99.0%  “There’s the food references. Estep made us wait for them. LOL”

About Lauren Fortgang

Lauren Fortgang lives in New York City where she currently works as an actor and voiceover artist. Born in DE, she alternated between the metropolis of Wilmington and a rural upbringing in a variety of northern California towns. She had early training at A.C.T.’s Young Conservatory and is a graduate of Fordham University: College at Lincoln Center, where she majored in theater. Her curiosity for finding new niches in the industry has afforded her a broad career spectrum, both in and out of the spotlight as actor, singer, spokesperson audiobook narrator, podcaster, and even costume designer.

About Jennifer Estep

Jennifer Estep is a New York Times bestselling author, prowling the streets of her imagination in search of her next fantasy idea. Jennifer writes the Elemental Assassin urban fantasy series for Pocket Books and the Black Blade young adult urban fantasy series for Kensington. Dark Heart of Magic, the second book in the series, will be released on Oct. 27.

She is also the author of the Bigtime paranormal romance series and Mythos Academy young adult urban fantasy series for Kensington. For more information on her books, visit Jennifer’s website at

Review Breakdown
Narration (Audio)
Overall: four-stars

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

Read It, Track It – Taken With You by Shannon Stacey

Read It, Track It – Taken With You by Shannon Stacey

Posted January 22, 2015 by Jennifer in Book Review | 1 Comment

      Read It, Track It  is a  way for me to track books for my reading challenges and they will be super short. You don’t have to be a Kowalski to get your HEA. TAKEN WITH YOU is a fun romance where opposites attract. Ok I cheated a bit on this TBR Jar read. I waited and waited for  TAKEN WITH YOU to be released on audiobook because I love Lauren Fortgang’s narration of the series. But after waiting for so long I bought the ebook for my Nook. Then I was contacted by Fortgang to review the audio. I jumped at listening! Lauren brings Hailey and Matt’s story to life with her narration. Her pacing and tones are spot on for Shannon Stacey’s characters […]

Twisting Plot with Great Heroine. Dark Hope by H.D. Smith

Twisting Plot with Great Heroine. Dark Hope by H.D. Smith

Posted June 27, 2014 by Jennifer in Book Review | 1 Comment

First Thought Lauren Fortgang is the narrator? Hell yeah sign me up! What I liked Dark Hope started out as a kind of light UF story that turned into a complex story that had me wondering where the roller coaster was going to stop. I liked the fact that I couldn’t easily figure the plot out by chapter 5 like other books I’ve read. Dark Hope is an audio you need to listen carefully to because you can find yourself lost if you check out from time to time. A lot of plot twists happen. What Didn’t Quite Work For Me I actually took a break with only 2 hours left in the audio because I was as lost and pissed as Claire and just wanted […]

Audio Review: Love a Little Sideways by Shannon Stacey

Audio Review: Love a Little Sideways by Shannon Stacey

Posted March 5, 2014 by Jennifer in Book Review | 4 Comments

This is book 7 in a series so expect a few series spoilers below.  I’ve been waiting for Liz and Drew’s story since they hooked up at Mitch’s wedding in book 4, All He Ever Needed. Liz is the only girl in the Kowalski Family and she’s been living away from home for about 15 years. She moved across country from the family’s home, Northern Star Lodge in Maine to New Mexico with her loser of an “artist” boyfriend that none of her brothers liked. After Liz returned home for Mitch’s wedding she saw that her brothers and cousins were moving forward in their lives with weddings and babies and she got home sick. She already gave the boyfriend the boot but instead of staying […]

Audio Review: All He Ever Desired by Shannon Stacey

Audio Review: All He Ever Desired by Shannon Stacey

Posted February 19, 2014 by Jennifer in Book Review | 4 Comments

As always the writing and narration team of Shannon Stacey and Lauren Fortgang is a winner! I’m really enjoying the Kowalski family. This time around we get’s Ryan’s story. He’s been avoiding going into town when he’s home and his family thinks they know the reason… Lauren Carpenter. Lauren married Ryan’s best friend right out of high school after they found out she was pregnant which made things for Ryan hard since he was in love with her. So he left town to go to college and start his business. 15 years later the two are now divorced from other people and the attraction is still there but they are pretty much strangers now since they’ve not spoken in all this time. Lauren has it tough as […]

Audio Review: Yours to Keep by Shannon Stacey

Audio Review: Yours to Keep by Shannon Stacey

Posted December 31, 2013 by Jennifer in Book Review | 6 Comments

First Impression: I’ve found a new author and series to add to my auto buy list. Favorite Line/Quote: “Oh yes, Sean Kowalski. Your amazing kisses have made all rational thought fly out of my besotted brain. If only you could fill me with your magic penis, I know we’ll fall madly in love and live happily ever after.” The Narration: I love Lauren Fortgang’s narration of the Elemental Assassin series by Jennifer Estep so I wanted to check out some more of her work. I listened to books 1 & 2 in the Kowalski Family and loved the narration and writing so it was a no brainer for me to listen to this one too. What I liked: Everything really. Shannon Stacey knows how to write […]

Audio Review: Widow’s Web by Jennifer Estep

Audio Review: Widow’s Web by Jennifer Estep

Posted January 30, 2013 by Jennifer in Book Review | 1 Comment

Oh where to begin? Well first if you follow me you know that all the books in this series have been 5 stars and favorites for me. Well kiddies, Widow’s Web is still a favorite and I still have my Gollum moments (My Precious) but I could only give it 4 stars. Why? One word, or rather name…OWEN. Owen you broke my heart in this one. I knew you were too perfect. But I have hopes that you pull you head out of your ass in the future. But I’ll back up a bit and leave Owen where he belongs…bitch slapped and tie up somewhere. For now. I love how Widow’s Web starts. Gin has been planning an assassination for weeks on her current targets and you […]

Audio Review: By a Thread by Jennifer Estep

Audio Review: By a Thread by Jennifer Estep

Posted January 18, 2013 by Jennifer in Book Review | 6 Comments

Gin has been busy the last few weeks after she finally took down Mab Monroe (Hey I’m not spoiling you, points up to the book summary). Every scum bag in Ashland that’s trying to make a name for themselves has been trying to take out the Spider. Gin is sick of the constant death threats…yeah right, they’re not really threats since she kills all the lowlifes that is too stupid not to learn from other’s mistakes. Come on, the Spider was the only one that could kill the big bad fire elemental, Mab Monroe and you think that you can take her out with your pea shooter. Please! Then you are too stupid to live. Gin realizes that the attacks are not going to stop anytime soon, […]