Dark Heir Author: Faith Hunter Series: Jane Yellowrock 9 Publisher: Roc, April 7, 2015 Format: Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 384 pages List Price: $7.99 (print) ISBN: 9780451465962 (print) Review Copy: Provided by the Publisher
Shapeshifting skinwalker Jane Yellowrock is the best in the business when it comes to slaying vampires. But her latest fanged foe may be above her pay grade…
For centuries, the extremely powerful and ruthless vampire witches of the European Council have wandered the Earth, controlling governments, fostering war, creating political conflict, and often leaving absolute destruction in their wake. One of the strongest of them is set to create some havoc in the city of New Orleans, and it’s definitely personal.
Jane is tasked with tracking him down. With the help of a tech wiz and an ex-Army ranger, her partners in Yellowrock Securities, she’ll have to put everything on the line, and hope it’s enough. Things are about to get real hard in the Big Easy.
It is no secret that Faith Hunter is probably one of my favorite authors, and her Dark Heir is worthy to be included in the Jane Yellowrock canon. In the last few novels, Jane and the New Orleans vampires have been preparing for a visit from the European mithrans (vampires). There are many archaic gestures and actions that have to be met when inviting some of the oldest and strongest of the mithrans to America, with the fear that the Europeans may just want to try to take over the largest vampire group in the nation. However, everything is delayed when it appears that one of the worst vampire witches in history has escaped Leo’s custody and is terrorizing the city. Jane must find him before the Europeans declare war.
Hunter’s novels are better than average because her characters grow and evolve as a result of their adventures. In earlier novels, Jane loved and lost Rickie-Bo, a former cop now working for Psy-LED, the federal agency policing supernaturals in Jane’s world. Jane has taken a while to recover, and now Bruiser, former human servant to Leo, is wooing her as she deserves. It is fun to see Jane a little hesitant and uncertain about this new relationship, and Bruiser is a gentleman who is using every means at his disposal to treat her as she deserves. In addition, her relationships continue with her housemates and new family, Eli and the Kid. Eli, a former special ops soldier, is now Jane’s number two in charge, and his younger brother, Alex, has technical skills that help Yellowrock Securities, the company Jane started with the two. Lastly, Jane’s Cherokee heritage adds richness to the character as well.
The story starts off with a bang in the bowels of Vamp Central, as Jane calls it, Leo’s stronghold within the city. Unfortunately, an action that Jane failed to take in an earlier novel has dire consequences in this one. Leo’s captive has escaped, possibly with the help of some of Leo’s most trusted followers. In addition to tracking the escapee, Jane has to negotiate the vampire politics involved – determining who may have aided and abetted the escape and bringing the knowledge to Leo’s attention.
There is a tremendous amount of action in this story, and the pace is rip-roaring. I could hardly put the book down before I finished it. As usual, Hunter has done a wonderful job entertaining her readers, and I can hardly wait until the next installment.