Into the Woods: Tales from the Hollows and Beyond
Into the Woods- Tales from the Hollows and Beyond (The Hollows -10.1) by Kim Harrison

Into the Woods: Tales from the Hollows and Beyond (The Hollows series #10.1) by Kim Harrison

(2012) ~ Collection of shorts an dnovellas from the Hollows / Rachel Morgan series (#10.1) by Kim Harrison

Genre and Sub-GenresEdit

Urban Fantasy


✥ Into the Woods is a compilation of all the previously published Hollows shorts and novellas, so if you're still scratching your head over who Art is and why is Daryl important to Ivy, now is your chance to find out in one volume. But since I'm not one to be content with the old, I put together another novella from Trent's POV of his "elf quest" to rescue Lucy from the Withons. ~Kim Harrison's Hotter Than Hell

✥ A true queen of urban fantasy - the New York Times bestselling author of the wildly popular series featuring bounty hunter witch-turned-daywalking demon Rachel Morgan - the phenomenal Kim Harrison explores the Hollows more deeply than ever before in Into the Woods, her first collection of short stories. Rachel is here, as are Jenks the pixie, elven tycoon Trent Kalamack, and an unholy host of vampires, demons, shapeshifters, ghosts, and other assorted supernatural beings, friends and foes. Into the Woods combines original work, including a new Hollows novella, as well as all of Kim Harrison's previously published short fiction gathered together in one volume for the very first time. No true Hollows aficionado will want to pass this up. ~ Fantastic Fiction

Supernatural ElementsEdit

Witches, pixies, throws, vampires, banshee, banshee baby, dryads (tree spirits), ghost, ghost of a witch, elves, familiar, Druid, nymph, spirit, demon, familiar, ley lines, powers to manipulate energy, realm parallel to humanity, statue possessed by an evil force...

  • "Throw": a person who can manipulate energy; can throw and control electricity or similar power


  • The Strand: either teach the "Throws" how to control their powers or burn them out to prevent a danger to society.

List of Stories Edit

Story Title Pg Series and Order # Previously Published Supes Lead(s)
"The Bespelled" p3 Hollows #6.1? Outlaw Demon Wails #6 demon, familiar, Ceri, Al
"Two Ghosts for Sister Rachel" p19 Hollows #5.5 Holidays are Hell #5.5 father’s ghost, ghost of a witch Rachel, Robbie, Pierce
"Undead in the Garden of Good and Evil" p103 Hollows #2.5 Dates From Hell living-vampires, vampires, Kisten, Ivy, Art
"Dirty Magic" p181 Hollows #4.5 Hotter Than Hell banshee, banshee baby, Mia, Tom
"The Bridges of Eden Park" p201 Hollows #5.4 For a Few Demons More #5 vampires, , , Kisten, Audric, Rachel
"Ley Line Drifter" p221 Hollows #7.5 Unbound pixy, Druid, nymph, Ley Line Jenks, Bis, Vincet, Sylvan the Druid
"Million-Dollar Baby" p287 Hollows #10.1 (original story) Elves, Pixies Trent Kalamack, Jenks, baby Lucy, Ellsbeth
"Pet Shop Boys" p369 Not Hollows none vampire-fae, realm parallel to humanity, Cooper, Felicity
"Temson Estates" p403 Not Hollows none dryads Will Temson
"Spider Silk" p419 Not Hollows none spirit: a dryad bound to a tree Lilly, Penn,
"Grace" p465 Not Hollows none "throw", manipulate energy Grace

To expand the table, right-press on a row of the table or (Control-press on a Mac)—choose add row.

Synopsis by StoryEdit

The Bespelled” (p 3) — originally in The Outlaw Demon WailsHollows #6.1?

✥ This quick, 9 page read, gives us the backstory of how Ceri became Al’s familiar. It seems that unlike any other would-be familiar he has brought across the lines, Ceri was willing to go. After 7 years of summoning Al, she had fallen in love with him. And he seemed strangely enamoured of her as well. Though it was not enough to keep him from breaking her will and torturing her for 1000 years.

❖ Algaliarept is a busy man, and he would rather not be doing paperwork, but he finds himself at his desk, quill in hand doing just that until he gets summoned by Ceridwen, a Dulciate elf he has been seeing every week for the past seven years, and he wants nothing more than to entertain her. Al is in his earlier mental mode of using everyone he came into contact with. He is a truly deplorable character with only thoughts of what he wants in life, rather than of other people. He has no concept of sharing his life with another, and as he has his own familiars and slaves, he can only understand others in these terms. Yet he is a demon, so it's to be expected, though even he has the possibility of changing. When things don't go so well for Al, Ceri sees him show a side of him that she has never seen before; he is almost desperate to keep her his, but he tries not to show her whether it is plain lust or love. You tend to get the impression he doesn't know anything of love, as that is essentially how a demon would think, and could never process what true love is. ❖

Two Ghosts for Sister Rachel” (p 19) — originally in Holidays are HellHollows #5.5

✥ We get a blast from Rachel’s past in this novella. It takes place when she is just 18 years-old and has decided she wants to join the I.S. Her big brother Robbie is against the plan, sure she is not strong enough. But he agrees that if she can do a spell to ask their father’s ghost –and he gives his blessing– Robbie will support her. When Rachel does the spell, though, she brings forth the ghost of a witch named Pierce, who hunted evil vamps over 100 years ago. He quickly realizes that a vampire he once hunted is kidnapping girls in the present day. He and Rachel work together to bring him down and save the child. This story gives us a chance to meet Rachel while she still feels the effects of her illness. But she already has that fire we love about her.

❖ Everyone has an idea of what they want to do with their lives, and Rachel is an independent girl who wants to do as she pleases now she is an adult, but her mother and brother have different ideas about what is good for her, and as she is so independent, she doesn't like them messing in her business. Rachel wants to join the Interland Security (IS) as she doesn't think she is cut out to live a normal life flipping burgers or working in a shop—she's tried both and they didn't impress her one bit, so she sees the IS as a way out, but her mother and brother see a different kind of future for her where she can become more than just a woman out catching felons for a living. Her brother can't understand why Rachel wants to be so active with martial arts instead of being a top notch witch in her field, but her mother does. This story gives the reader a good idea of what kind of girl Rachel is in the face of danger. She feels weak and strives to become strong, and it is this that defines the character. ❖

Undead in the Garden of Good & Evil” (p 103) originally in Dates From HellHollows #2.5

✥ Ever wonder what Ivy was like before she met Rachel? We get a little peek in this short story. It’s set a couple of years before the events in Dead Witch Walking. Ivy has been a Homicide Investigator at the I.S. for about 6 months. She is living with Kisten and they are in a relationship. This is before her blood-fast… she is still giving and taking blood. But she is very confused about what it means to her. She tries not to equate a blood exchange with anything emotionally meaningful, unless it involves sexual intimacy. And her boss, Art, wants both from her. If she doesn’t give in, he’ll never promote her. But she doesn’t like the man and if she gives in, it will be a huge blow to her self-respect. It shows us the Kisten/Ivy relationship that has been referenced all along in the series. It shows us the events that lead to Ivy abstaining from blood and gives us a better insight into her struggle with what her vampiric needs mean for her. And it introduces Art.

❖ Ivy Tamwood works at the Interland Security department, she is making use of her degree in a great job, but she is having dirty thoughts about Kisten, which she would rather not have being a vampire working the homicide division. In Harrison's work her vampires are split into two types, living and undead. It is an original take on the myth, and one that works well in this story. There are ones like Ivy who are born with the vampire virus embedded into their genome, so she has the vampire strengths and none of the hatred of sunlight, crosses or garlic etc., while undeads have all the failings of being vampires lusting for blood, and are jealous of the living vampires. This is more of a vampire evolution tale than the canon idea of vampires from Bram Stoker's Dracula. ❖

Dirty Magic” (p 181) — originally in Hotter Than Hell — Hollows #

✥ This story doesn’t directly involve any of the main characters in the Hollows, but instead, focuses on a banshee named Mia. We met her in “Undead in the Garden of Good & Evil,” when she was called in to help with a case Ivy was working on. She was the one who helped Ivy realize should could change her life. And we learn here what happened to that wish Rachel gave Ivy in Dead Witch Walking. She gave it to Mia. The banshee has since gone on to marry and have a banshee baby named Holly. And now, she is having an affair with a human named Tom. She is soaking up his love like a sponge, but in the process she is killing him. Can her wish give her the lasting relationship no banshee has ever been able to maintain? –This story is about 30 pages.

❖ Banshees don't feature much in paranormal fiction, let alone romance fiction, but Mia is a Hollows Banshee and we first get an idea of what she is like from this story. She is thinking about her life, her husband, her lovely daughter and her past with Remus who certainly picked on the wrong woman with her. Mia takes power from others, and has to be careful how she does it, as it is a delicate balancing act of taking power and keeping that person alive. She bathes in their mixed emotions, drinking them in, and making herself feel better again. Her relationship with Tom isn't as easy for when they meet; she drains him of his life-force, making him weak and worse still, very ill. He loves her, even though she can't forgive herself. She wants to leave him alone so he can live, as other men have died from being too long in her presence, but she knows she needs him just as much as he needs her. The idea of her staying there with him is that love can conquer all, but sometimes this ideal way of life doesn't go the way she thinks. ❖

The Bridges of Eden Park” (p 201) — originally in For a Few Demons More #5 — Hollows #?

✥ This short story is about Kisten and Rachel after the tragic end of For a Few Demons More. It’s probably set chronologically, just before that book’s beginning. Our couple is having a picnic at the park, when they are interrupted by Kisten’s sister and his nephew, Audric. The child’s father is trying to kidnap him and sends thugs to get the job done. Kisten and Rachel work together to stop them. 

Chrissie and Kisten are out one day when their quiet time together is shattered by the vampires who are trying to snatch Audric from the school yard. These vampires know what they want, and have come for him, and his sister is in danger because of it. Through the story you never think of Kisten as just a vampire, he is a man with special powers, who also has deep emotions, the ability for love and forming attachments to people like anyone else. He also has a special friendship with Audric and does not want to see him get into the wrong hands of some deviant and equally powerful vampire leader. Kisten and Chrissie could be the perfect couple, but as readers will find out, other parts of his life keep getting in their way. ❖

Ley Line Drifter” (p 221) — originally released in Unbound — Hollows #

✥ Jenks gets his very own story in this novella. Another pixy comes to him, asking for help when a statue in his garden seems to be possessed by an evil force. The statue is endangering his babies and he doesn’t know what to do. So Jenks and Bis come to the rescue. It turns out that it’s a Druid trapped in the stone… and a nymph has been tasked with keeping him bound there. Jenks struggles to determine who is the good guy and who is the bad, so he can help the young pixy family in need. It was great to see things from Jenks’ perspective while we get a closer look at pixy culture. Somehow, I think we’ll see Sylvan the Druid again someday.

❖ Jenks thought his day would be an ordinary one until Vincet strolls into his life asking for help. At first he points him to Rachel but Vincet insists he wants him to help him, not anyone else. He has a problem where he is living. It's in a park he thought was goddess made and his family is in great danger if they stay there and worse danger if they leave as his family have younglings and they would die if they had to travel any distance to find another place to stay. When the killer turns out to be nothing more than a statue, Jenks is at a loss as to how something made of stone could do such a thing. "Ley Line Drifter" is a story that keeps the reader on the very edge of their seats, and rather than being a standard tale of pixies, it keeps the reader focussed on the darker side of the Hollows, but also the friendship that Vincet and Jenks have made in a short space of time. ❖

"Million Dollar Baby" (p 287) — Chronicles Jenks and Trent Kalamack’s adventure in Seattle following the events of Pale Demon.

✥ An exciting adventure following Trent and Jenks on their mission to reclaim Trent's baby daughter. The story is told from Trent’s perspective but there are plenty of contributions from Jenks to keep the story light whenever Trent’s introspective, angsty self-examinations get too much. It’s a dangerous mission for Trent, since the only options are success or certain death at the hands of Ellasbeth’s family, and he needs all of his and Jenks’ skills to keep him one step ahead of Ellasbeth and her many henchmen.

✥ This tale is alluded to in either Pale Demon or A Perfect Blood, but we never do find out the details of how Jenks and Trent got Trent’s daughter Lucy away from his ex-fiancée, Ellasbeth Withon, and her family. Very action-packed, and since it was told in third person limited to Trent’s point of view, we get some important information about him. Trent does he does to save the elves—he’s done some pretty terrible things, and he actually wishes he hadn’t done all of them. He fears he is turning into his father, who was a very talented but ruthless man. He fears his daughter will never love him if he continues on the same path he has been on. He wants to be a better man. And Jenks is an amazing backup for Trent here. ❖

Stories Beyond the Hollows:Edit

"Pet Shop Boys" (p 369)

✥ This short story is set in a world where vampires and the Fae live in a realm parallel to humanity. Cooper, a 20-something pet shop employee finds out about their existence the hard way. It all starts when a strange young girl (Felicity) and her beautiful mother enter his shop to buy a cat. The woman invites him to an exclusive club where he quickly discovers all is not as it seems. There is something sinister behind the ratio of beautiful people to average-Joe's. Can he get away or was his fate sealed the moment he entered the door?

❖ Cooper is about to get off his shift at the pet shop when a young girl comes in and takes a fancy to one of the dogs, and wants to swap it for her bat. Cooper is shocked at this until her mother appears and offers to give Cooper a night to remember. Cooper can't believe his luck or refuse her as she is a beautiful woman, but his going to her home comes with a price. Felicity is not what she appears, and that is what gives this story its charm and mystique, as with every moment Cooper sees her he grows ever fonder for spending time with her right up to a point where all he wants to do is leave. ❖

"Temson Estates" (p )403

Will travels across the ocean to claim his inheritance when his grandfather dies. It's a huge plot of woods and he realizes he can sell the land for logging. He could really use the money to help in his life. But his grandfather's sister has other ideas. She knows there are dryads (tree spirits) inhabiting the woods. So she sets out to help him learn the truth about the family land. ❖

"Spider's Silk" (p 419)

✥ For her entire life, Lilly's mother has told her stories of the spirit Penn that lives in the trees. It wears the guise of a young man, hoping to lure girls into the woods for his own nefarious ends. Her mother says she trapped Penn inside a tree in her youth, but now he's back and he is targeting Lilly's daughter. Lilly initially thinks her mother is crazy, but as the story progresses, she becomes less and less sure. Then, it seems Penn has set his interest on her. Is she strong enough to fight his lure, when he knows exactly what she needs?

✥ Dryads are the fairy people at the core of this story, and the place they live in isn't what they would call a decent abode, but a prison of a place that can stifle their normally pleasant lives. Meg is heading for a strange time when she reaches twenty and the curse is passed onto her. As a story it shows how she handles the problem of growing up, and the stress that come with it. ❖

"Grace" (p 465)

✥ It's title character is a "throw"—a person who can manipulate energy. Her job is to collect young people with the same abilities, so that her employer, The Strand, can either teach them how to control their powers or burn them out to prevent a danger to society at large. The story follows Grace on a particularly tough run, one that will test her skills and her moral compass. Making an already difficult situation worse is the re-emergence of an old flame into her life.

✥ Boyd and Grace are on a mission to get an older child. They want to initiate him into the Strand, but before this happens, the child has to already display unusual abilities such as telepathy, ESP, or telekinesis. Either way it has to be seen by those in the know to be a strange ability to humans, or almost considered impossible to them. These two have the task of finding them and bringing them in, but it doesn't always go well for them, and the boy in question isn't one to go without a strong fight. They need to assess the child's ability and whether he can control his powers. If he can't, they will either take him back and help him with that control, and he will have a steady job working for the Strand like Boyd and Grace, or if he refuses help, they will take away his powers from him forever if they believe he is a threat. The story shows how Grace feels when she is on her missions collecting those who would be a threat or useful to the Strand. She feels for each individual, as does her partner, but they try to hide it, as she has her own past problems to deal with if she intends to look to the future. ❖

~ Sources: 


Kim Harrison

Author Edit

Kim Harrison

Bio: Kim Harrison, dark urban fantasy author of the New York Times best selling Pale Demon, was born and raised in the upper Midwest. After gaining her bachelors in the sciences, she moved to South Carolina, where she remained until recently moving back to Michigan because she missed the snow. She's currently developing a young adult series between working on the Hollows books and a Hollows-based graphic novel, and is a member of both the Romance Writers of America and The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America. When not at her desk, she's most likely to be found landscaping her new/old Victorian home, or scouring antique shops to fill it. ~ Kim Harrison ~ FF

Cover ArtistEdit

Artist: Larry Rostant — Source: Cover: Into the Woods: ISFdb

Publishing InformationEdit

  • Publisher: Harper Voyager
  • Book Page: Into the Woods - Kim Harrison - Hardcover
  • Book data: Hardcover, 513 pages, Publ: Oct 12th 2012—ISBN: 0061974323
  • Book data: Paperback, 513 pages, Publ: July 2nd 2013—ISBN: 0062197630

Cover Blurb Edit

For centuries, the woods have been a pivotal part of the wonder and danger of fairy tales, for once you enter anything can happen. Elves, druids, fairies –who knows what you will find once you dare step into the forest?

And now, New York Times bestselling author Kim Harrison ventures into these mysterious, hidden lands of magic and mystery in her first short-story collection. Into the Woods brings together an enchanting mix of brand-new, never-before-published stories and tales from Harrison's beloved, bestselling Hollows series.

The tales here include an original Hollows novella, Million-Dollar Baby, about Trent Kalamack's secret elven quest in Pale Demon; two original short stories, "Pet Shop Boys" and "Temson Woods," that explore just what happens when humanity and the supernatural collide; and two novelettes, "Spider Silk" and "Grace," set in new worlds of imagination and adventure. Into the Woods also contains all of the previously published Hollows short stories – together in one volume for the very first time. ~ Love Vampires and Goodreads and Harper Collins

First Sentence Edit

Paperwork, Algaliarept thought in resignation as he blew gently upon the ledger book to dry the ink faster. ~ “The Bespelled” #6.1?

Quotes Edit

“Familiars were known for their loose tongues until you cut them out. It was a practice Algaliarept frowned upon. Most of his brethren were bloody plebians. Removing a familiar's tongue completely ruined the nuances of their pleas for mercy.” — Algaliarept
“'We’ve been out of the closet for about 40 years.’ His lips parted. ‘Out of the closet?’ A grin came over my face. ‘Sorry, we came clean, uh, we told them we existed after a virus hiding in tomatoes, a sort of a plague, started killing humans. It dropped their numbers by about a quarter. They were going to find out about us anyway because we weren’t dying.’ Pierce watched my moving foot and smiled with half his face. ‘I’ve always been of the mind that tomatoes were the fruit of the devil’, he said.” — Rachel

~ Shelfari

"He was an artist, and destroying her as he made her into what he wanted, would be his finest masterpiece."
"They say when you're ten, you think your parents know everything. At sixteen, you're convinced they know nothing at all. By thirty, if you haven't figured out they really did know what they were doing, then you're still sixteen."
"You can live above your fate," she mocked. "You can be who you want to be."
"I'm all right," she said, squinting from the morning sun. "I like who I am today."
"She shouldn't be here this soon, but the memory of his love was like the scent of flowers, begging to be inhaled and irresistible."
"You look like a sorority sister in hell week with that discount sheet around you! What is that, a one-fifty thread count? My three-year-old can weave better than that."

Rainy Day Ramblings

Trivia Edit

External Links Edit


Excerpts and Freebies:



Story Reviews:




Kim Harrison Bibliography:

Kim Harrison Series:



See Also Edit

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