01/06/2012. Contributed by Sarah Bruch
pub: Orbit. 300 page paperback. Price: GBP 6.99 (UK). ISBN: 978-1-84149-708-2.
check out websites: www.orbitbooks.net and www.JenniferRardin.com
‘ Bitten To Death’ is the fourth novel in Jennifer Rardin’s series of seven books about Jasmine (Jaz) Parks and her adventures working with her vampire boss, Vayl. This follows on from ‘ Once Bitten Twice Shy’, ‘ Another Bites The Dust’ and ‘ Biting The Bullet’.
This novel centres around Jaz, Vayl and Dave (Jaz’s brother), with a few new characters joining the mix and mostly leaving it in a bloody fashion. The premise of this book is that there are only two vampires who have ever managed to leave their Trust (a family of vampires) and live to tell the tale. These are Vayl - the CIA special agent, and Edward Samos - the ultimate vampire baddy. In this book, Vayl has to go back to his Trust in order to try and continue the CIA’s hunt for Samos in order to terminate him. in the Trust. Vayl, Jaz and Dave encounter a massive power struggle within the Trust during their time there with some full on werewolf/werebear blood-fests, plus some new and completely terrifying new evils.
I didn’t find myself enjoying this book as much as the others in this series. This was probably because I found some sections of the book a bit of a chore to have to read. I also found myself to be quite lost at points, too. Maybe this was to do with the use of Vampere (the vampire language) some of which was explained as other characters didn’t understand it neither, but most of it was left to the reader to discern by looking at the context. Quite often, it was really hard to gain the full meaning of some of the words, so I would have suggested having some kind of glossary to help readers like myself to get a grasp of the language.
Some of the characters in this book I’ve found to be quite boring, simply because they haven’t really been fleshed out a great deal. In this group, I count Vayl, which is disappointing because one of the main storylines in this series is that of a simmer on-again-off-again romance between Vayl and Jaz. Because I find Vayl particularly one-dimensional, it makes it hard for me to see why Jaz sees anything remotely romantic in him. There are a few more intense scenes between Vayl and Jaz to do with their relationship, but it didn’t really seem realistic to me. Ironically, the characters I find to be more enjoyable weren’t even in this book, I hope this small team doesn’t remain for the last three books as I really missed the other characters.
Jaz seems to take an enormous leap into crazy town in this book, with lots of characters including her grandmother and an alternative version of herself talking to her. Not only do they all have internal monologues with her (can you have a monologue with other people in your own head? Not sure.) but she even places them in different scenarios! I’m not sure where Rardin is going to take Jaz next in terms of mental problems, now she has OCD, sleep terrors, voices in her head...what next?!
I will continue to read this series as there are only three more books and I’d like to see how everything pans out, but they might not be the first book in my to be read pile that I pick.
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