Death’s Rival (Jane Yellowrock #5) by Faith Hunter

Death’s Rival (Jane Yellowrock #5) by Faith Hunter
Roc/Oct. 2nd, 2012
Urban Fantasy
Kind thanks to Ace for providing a review copy

Jane Yellowrock is a shapeshifting skinwalker you don’t want to cross—especially if you’re one of the undead…

For a vampire killer like Jane, having Leo Pellisier as a boss took some getting used to. But now, someone is out to take his place as Master Vampire of the city of New Orleans, and is not afraid to go through Jane to do it. After an attack that’s tantamount to a war declaration, Leo knows his rival is both powerful and vicious, but Leo’s not about to run scared. After all, he has Jane. But then,a plague strikes, one that takes down vampires and makes their masters easy prey.

Now, to uncover the identity of the vamp who wants Leo’s territory, and to find the cause of the vamp-plague, Jane will have to go to extremes…and maybe even to war.

Jane is working for Leo Pellesier again and he’s got her hunting down the cause of a vampire plague that’s being spread by a mysterious alpha vamp. He’s making MOCs (Master of the City) and their minions sick, and forcing them to recognize him as their master before offering them the cure. There might be a traitor in their midst too. Jane is soon thrown into a maelstrom of murder and carnage, and it’s not helping that she’s not exactly in the best place, emotionally. She’s lost two of the most important people in the world to her in one fell swoop, and feels more alone than ever. With a new bodyguard, Eli, and his hacker brother at her back, Jane prepares for war, because war has been declared, and it will be epic.

Just when I think this series can’t get better, along comes the next book. Death’s Rival is the most personal of the bunch as Jane gets to the bottom of the tragedy that happened to her as a child, and subsequently shaped her entire future. Faith Hunter packs a lot into these books and has created a rich, fully realized world for Jane and her crew. Jane’s dual nature is fascinating, and Jane may still be the star, but Beast is starting to give her a run for her money.

You won’t find light and fluffy in these books. You’ll find a very complex, strong, wounded heroine who constantly questions her own violent nature, while longing to share herself with someone that understands her. I’ll be honest, I love Ricky-Bo, but Bruiser is my number one pick for Jane, but she’s constantly at odds with his undeniable connection to Leo, but is unable to ignore the smolder between her and Bruiser. How Faith Hunter manages to make a scene that has no sex in it whatsoever so darn hot, I have no idea, but she does it, to delicious effect. Death’s Rival is full of revelations and startling discoveries, and is a game changer for Jane, and for this series. Faith Hunter just took things to a whole different level with Death’s Rival, and you can bet I’ll be there for the next book. If you haven’t discovered this superb series yet, what are you waiting for?

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