Blood Cross (Jane Yellowrock, Book 2)
by Faith Hunter
Review by Beth Slater
Roc Mass Market Paperback ISBN/ITEM#: 9780451463074
Date: 05 January 2010 List Price $7.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Official Info /
Ah, New Orleans! Jazz, witches, beignets, vampires...
Jane Yellowrock has remained in New Orleans after finishing her initial job (Skinwalker) because she has been hired by the Vampire Council to find one of their own - hunt and kill a vampire who has been changing young ones and releasing them upon the world as rogues. Jane, unbeknownst to all but her best friend Molly, is a Cherokee skinwalker, which allows her to be one of the best vampire hunters in the country. But Jane has two problems – well, more than that – to deal with immediately: first, Molly has brought her two children to New Orleans to stay with Jane despite the knowledge of the vampires and the violence taking place. Second; as soon as her task is complete, the master vampire of New Orleans will kill Jane in vengeance for killing his son in her previous job (see Skinwalker). Will she even be able to make it out of town?
Jane soon finds out just how dangerous her situation is when her home is attacked by Master Vampire Leo Pellissier and his minions amidst a hurricane – breaking the truce of the contract with the council. Only when Molly's daughter arrives at her side – a witch child, no less – do the vampires back off, questioning Leo's sanity and ability to lead in his grief. Vampire law, sacred to them, prevents the harming of children, and to them Leo had just brought them directly into conflict with the law and therefore the council. There was a double issue with this, though; Molly and her offspring are also witches. Throughout history vampires and witches have not gotten along, but in New Orleans there is an uneasy truce – this attack, even on visitors, would have broken that and possibly started a violent and widespread war.
This scene – something of a spoiler, I fear, is but a small one in the beginning of the book, but is important for the rest of Jane's work. Jane has to use all of her resources, not just Beast and her Skinwalker abilities, to find out the secrets behind the mysteries of the shadows of New Orleans. With Bruiser (aka George Dumas) at her side, Jane is able to attend some of the vampiric events to search out scents and clues to track down the rogue vampire, but this leads her to more questions – among other things – like yummy Detective Rick. He's still on desk duty recovering from his mauling, but this proves useful to her when she needs to do research on "questionable" cases in New Orleans history. This also steams up her dreams and Beast's libido.
The plot is a tad more complicated than one initially expects, and at times it can be distracting to try and figure out where Jane is on which case or line of inquiry, but it all wraps up in the end. Not quite all the questions are answered, though. You know that the next book is going to come out of things that were in this one, but if it doesn't answer some of my questions I'm going to be very frustrated! Jane does have human faults, but sometimes the details she misses don't make sense to me, because they seem like something that an animal would notice as amiss and she relies on her animal senses so much.
However, I think that I am overcritical of her because I enjoy her character so much, and find her so unique and interesting that I want more stories of her and more history and depth and yet it isn't there because she's only two books along. So please keep writing Jane Yellowrock/Beast. We're hungry.
I read this one a while back and loved it too. I have the others in my TBR but haven't read them yet. Looking forward to them though. Great review.