Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Shadow Rites ~ Faith Hunter

Hunter, Faith. 2016. Shadow Rites. New York: Roc Publishing.

Faith Hunter continues her Jane Yellowrock series with the 10th book, Shadow Rites, in which Jane and her entire crew get caught up in some extreme magical attacks enacted by two angry witches out for revenge.  The witches and vampires have hated each other for centuries and have enacted wars to rid the earth of each others' species.  In previous books, the ruling councils of witches and vampires in the U.S. have grown closer to a d├ętente, and in this novel they are scheduled for a formal meeting to adopt new rules for dealing fairly with one another.  There are some witches with powerful magical abilities who refuse to accept the easing of tensions and embark on violent attacks on Jane and her crew throughout this book.

It’s always a good day when I get to spend time in this excellent urban fantasy world that Faith Hunter has created.  Jane has grown and allowed herself to become attached to her unusual slew of friends, which in this book now include a vampire Primo, a werewolf and a Grindylow.  My only negative comment about this latest title in the series has to do with something I’ve noticed over the past couple of books.  The descriptions of the magical workings and other paranormal situations are very complicated and, at times, difficult to follow.  I found myself skimming some of it because it was doing my head in!  The denouement also feels a little rushed, and I would have liked to have seen a final image of how Jane is settling in with the new characters, as well as a preview of the status of the upcoming visit from the European Council of Vampires, which has been alluded to in the past several books.  Other than that, as always, I enjoyed spending time in Ms. Hunter’s unique urban fantasy world with Jane Yellowrock, a skinwalker who shares a soul-home with, and can shift into "Beast," a large puma concolor.

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