Series: Jane Yellowrock #7
Format Read: eGalley
Source: the publisher in exchange for an honest review
Release Date: January 7, 2014
Buying Links: Amazon* | Book Depository* | Barnes & Noble
* affiliate links; the blog receives a small commission for purchases made through these links.
Blurb from goodreads:
Jane Yellowrock is a shape-shifting skinwalker who always takes care of her own—no matter the cost...
When Evan Trueblood blows into town looking for his wife, Molly, he’s convinced that she came to see her best friend, Jane. But it seems like the witch made it to New Orleans and then disappeared without a trace.
Jane is ready to do whatever it takes to find her friend. Her desperate search leads her deep into a web of black magic and betrayal and into the dark history between vampires and witches. But the closer she draws to Molly, the closer she draws to a new enemy—one who is stranger and more powerful than any she has ever faced.
This concludes my series of reviews of the Jane Yellowrock books. Over the past three days, I've reviewed books four through seven, which is today's review. I also featured a quote from "Raven Cursed" as part of the Friday 56 meme. I hope you've enjoyed visiting Jane's world and getting to know her and her companions. At the end of this post is a giveaway for a print copy of "Black Arts" and there's also a guest post by Beast on essential items to take on a trip to New Orleans.
The story starts with a bang and doesn't let go. "Black Arts" is fast-paced but character driven, full of vampire politics, romances, and family relationships. As always, it builds on events in previous books; this is a series that you really have to read in order.
Jane has grown so much over the series, both emotionally and as a skinwalker. Though she and Beast often disagree, they work much more smoothly together than they used to. Jane has made friends and found, no made, a family. and learned the joys and sorrows of having both friends and family. She's developed more self-control, become more introspective, and matured. I freaking loved Jane in this story; she was strong, snarky, funny, loving, vengeful, compassionate, and unafraid to do what needed to be done, even when it cost her.
"Black Arts" really shows off Jane's loyalty and her love for her family and friends. Her best friend Molly, whom she has not spoken to in months due to her involvement in the death of Molly's sister Evangelina, goes missing and Jane moves heaven and earth to find her while caring for her children and dealing with their angry father, Molly's husband. Of course, Jane also has other problems to deal with - missing vampires, her status as Leo's Enforcer, Leo and his demands, her boyfriend Rick, etc. Hunter puts Jane through an emotional wringer in this book and it was heartbreaking at times. I felt so badly for Jane.
There's some forward movement finally in the love triangle and less time spent describing the weapons so I was happy about both of those events. There are twists and shockers and more changes for Jane as Hunter puts us all through the wringer. "Black Arts" is a roller coaster ride, a wonderful story, the best yet in the series. It's a near-perfect blend of action, character development, magic, romance, history, and love. I can't wait to see what happens next.
About the Author:
Faith Hunter, fantasy writer, was born in Louisiana and raised all over the south. The Skinwalker series, featuring Jane Yellowrock is taking off like a rocket withSkinwalker, Blood Cross, Mercy Blade, Raven Cursed, Death’s Rival and Blood Trade. Her Rogue Mage novels, a dark, urban fantasy series—Bloodring, Seraphs, and Host—feature Thorn St. Croix, a stone mage in a post-apocalyptic, alternate reality, urban fantasy world. These novels are the basis for the role playing game, Rogue Mage.
Under the pen name Gwen Hunter, she writes action-adventure, mysteries, and thrillers. As Faith and Gwen, she has 20+ books in print in 28 countries.
Hunter fell in love with reading in fifth grade, and best loved SiFi, fantasy, and gothic. She decided to become a writer in high school, when a teacher told her she had talent. Now, she writes full-time and works full-time in a hospital lab, (for the benefits) tries to keep house, and is a workaholic with a passion for travel, jewelry making, white-water kayaking, and writing. She and her husband love to RV, traveling with their dogs to whitewater rivers all over the Southeast.
Find Faith Online:
Top Five Things to Bring to New Orleans from Beast’s POV (adapted from a Bitten By Books interview of 2012)
I am big-cat. I am Beast. Beast is not prey. (Looks at reader. Reader understands prey and Beast.) This is good.
I go where Jane goes, on Bitsa, her Harley-bike. Bitsa is a machine. Machines are confusing—they have hearts and breathe. They roar like lion in far-away place called Africa, but then they die and sit silent until they come alive again. Bitsa is alive and not-alive, but not dead. Confusing. Like vampires. I do not understand, but I like Bitsa. Bitsa is not prey either. Bitsa is predator, hunter like Jane. (rolls over and looks at winter sky, paws in air)
Jane was mountain predator, like Beast, but now Jane lives and hunts in New Orleans, in the city Leo Pellissier claims as hunting territory. Leo is a vampire and I want him as mate. He is good, strong hunter with much hunting territory and many prey to feed upon. But Jane does not think Leo is good mate. Jane thinks Ricky-Bo is good mate, but Ricky-Bo cannot mate now. He is sick with were-cat-taint. And Bruiser… (Beast rolls back to paws, thinking.) Bruiser would be good mate, but Jane cannot see this. Jane is confusing, too.
Jane wants me to give five things her fans should bring to her city. Leo’s city. I can count to five. (Shows killing teeth to reader.)
5. Reader must bring own deer. Deer are small here, but are mine. (Starts low growl, deep inside.) Deer here are Beast’s! Beast has claimed hunting ground and deer. (lifts lips in snarl)
4. And rabbits. Reader must bring own rabbits, reader’s own meat and reader’s own prey. Beast will not share except with kits and mate.
3. Reader should bring big rock to sleep on in sun. New Orleans has no rocks. Bring your own rock, so sun will warm it. Or you could use log. But rock is better. (flicks ear and thinks) That is three. (flexes out claws, still thinking)
2. Bring killing claws. Must be able to defend self and mate and kits. Jane uses steel claws, and flying claws that she throws. Jane has longer reach than Beast’s claws, and Jane is good hunter. Jane brings down big prey.
1. Bring killing teeth. To hunt and bring down prey. To defend against vampires. To defend against were-creatures.
I am Beast. Jane will take you dancing. I will take you hunting. (huffs with amusement) Embrace your inner Beast!
Thanks to the publisher, I have one copy of Black Arts to give away to a US reader. Please read my Giveaway Policy. The giveaway ends at 11:59AM EST on Monday January, 6th 2014. To enter, leave a comment below. I'll use random.org to choose the winning comment.
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