Skinwalker (Jane Yellowrock #1) by Faith Hunter

Blood Trade, the sixth book in Faith Hunter’s Jane Yellowrock series, releases on April 2nd. Over the next five weeks, several other fans and I will be reviewing the series to date, culminating with a review of Blood Trade on its release date. (I won an ARC in a drawing, so I figure the least I can do is post a review.) Hopefully I will do the books justice and hook you into one of the best urban fantasy series in print and e-ink. The books are like chocolate-covered bacon smothered in awesomesauce. (Those of you who know of my love for chocolatey, yummy bacon know just how big a compliment that actually is.)

And so, with no further ado, I give you… (insert drum roll here) Skinwalker!

Skinwalker

From the cover: Last year, Jane nearly lost her life taking down a deadly family of vampires who preyed on the helpless populace. Now, after months of recuperation, she’s back and ready to fight again. Except this time, she’s been hired by those she’s trained to kill – vampires.

Jane Yellowrock is the last of her kind–a skinwalker of Cherokee descent who can turn into any creature she desires–and hunts the undead for a living. But now she’s been hired by the Katherine Fonteneau, one of the oldest vampires in the New Orleans, and the madam of Katie’s Ladies, to hunt down a powerful rogue vampire who’s killing other vamps.

Amidst a bordellos of real “ladies of the night” and a hot Creole biker with a panther tattoo who stirs her carnal desire, Jane must stay focused and complete her mission … or else the next skin she’ll need to save may be her own.

There are many reasons I fell in love with this book, first among them the heroine, Jane Yellowrock. Jane epitomizes the urban fantasy protagonist: strong, independent, driven to fulfill a unique (and hazardous) mission, faces long odds and keeps coming out on top. She is a Christian, a Cherokee, rides a Harley, fights dirty and carries more weapons than your average SWAT team. She yearns for family and close friendships but has no experience with them and so stumbles over social graces. She’s flawed and she knows it, and actively struggles with her inner demons. Despite the peculiarities that make her unique, Jane Yellowrock is relatable.

Beyond Jane’s character, Faith Hunter’s writing style really sets this book apart. It’s action-packed and well-paced, skillfully blending advancing the plot with developing characters. There are enough unique elements to the supernaturals in Jane’s world to make it interesting, but the world building is not so complex that you need a glossary to follow along. Also, Faith excels at describing scenery. She blends the five senses so you really can imagine yourself walking through New Orleans. You picture the architecture, hear the blues, swim in the humidity and taste the spices wafting down the street.

Bottom line: Skinwalker has it all. A kick-butt heroine, intriguing characters, action and adventure, and excellent storytelling. Check it out today – you won’t be sorry and you’ll have enough time to read the next four novels before Blood Trade is released on Apr. 2.

On Amazon:
http://www.amazon.com/Skinwalker-Jane-Yellowrock-Book-1/dp/0451462807/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1362001371&sr=8-1&keywords=skinwalker

Links to other reviews:

http://www.dreyslibrary.com/2013/02/26/jane-yellowrock-1-skinwalker-by-faith-hunter-repost/

http://mudepoz.wordpress.com/

http://darkerpassions.net/2013/02/26/skinwalker-jane-yellowrock-1-review-series-read-along/

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