Dead Witch Walking is ludicrously well written - excellent pace, characterization, universe building, etc. etc. Harrison is a gifted writer and created one hell of a character in Rachel Morgan. She had plot twist after plot twist - constantly revealing something new and exciting about this amazing universe.
So why haven't I given this book a five star rating? Well, mostly because it took me so damn long to finish it. I honestly blame this book for my book blogging slump, as it took me almost 2 months to finish! That is never a good sign.
What it all boils down to are the characters. And these characters I just could not care less about. I have read some reviews that claimed Rachel was the most annoying narrator they had ever read. This is an exaggeration. Anyone who has read the Werecats series by Rachel Vincent knows that Faythe knocks all competition out of the water. However, it is unlikely that you will grow to care about Rachel in this book. I sure as hell didn't despite my very best intentions. Had the book finished with her death, I likely would have shrugged and moved on.
Bottom line? Read it for the universe - the Hallows is an amazing place. Also, the series apparently gets a lot better by the third book. Oh, and get the UK cover! The US ones are just disturbing.