Blood Cross by Faith HunterBlood Cross by Faith Hunter (Jane Yellowrock #2)

Genre: Urban Fantasy

Publisher: Roc on January 5, 2010

Source: Purchased

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Jane Yellowrock is back on the prowl against the children of the night…

The vampire council has hired skinwalker Jane Yellowrock to hunt and kill one of their own who has broken sacred ancient rules — but Jane quickly realizes that in a community that is thousands of years old, loyalties run deep…View Spoiler »

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Skinwalker, vampire hunter, and all-around badass Jane Yellowrock is back and better than ever in Faith Hunter’s BLOOD CROSS. You may recall how much I enjoyed the series debut, so it’s with excitement and glee that I say BLOOD CROSS was just as good as its predecessor.

Jane remains in New Orleans after the events of book one, working on fulfilling a new contract for the Vampire Council. Her task? Hunting down rogue-vamps who’ve been causing some…ahem…disturbances among the locals. And by disturbances I mean deaths, obviously.

Of course, that’s hard to do when the head of the Council is hell-bent on killing her. That’s right, Leo Pelissier, the vamp we love to hate is back in action and crazier than ever. He suffered a great personal loss in the series opener…one that he erroneously blames Jane for. Add to that the fact that he’s sunk into the Dolore – the irrational grief state of vamps – and things aren’t looking for great for Jane.

To make matters worse, Jane’s closest (only?) friend Molly is in town with her two young children in tow. What’s a skinwalker to do when she’s being attacked from all sides and she’s got loved ones to protect? If you’re Jane Yellowrock, you strap on your vamp stakes and your beloved Benelli (read: big gun) and head into battle. BLOOD CROSS delivers non-stop action as the hits keep coming for Jane; Faith Hunter does an excellent job of writing fight scenes and discussing tactical strategies. I wouldn’t want to come up against her in a fight, that’s for sure!

BLOOD CROSS also expands Jane’s world, diving into the history and culture of the vampires and revealing some tantalizing clues about our heroine’s mysterious origins. There are also some developments on the romantic front for our Ms. Yellowrock, as two very different men make their feelings for her known. While that situation didn’t play out the way I wanted it to in my little shipper heart, Jane definitely makes the right decision…for now. She’s made her position clear and it looks like we’ll be avoiding any love-triangle awkwardness for the foreseeable future. Girl’s got way too much ass-kicking to do to be weighed down in a senseless love-triangle.

The final pages of BLOOD CROSS present Jane with a potentially life-changing opportunity, one that comes with one hell of a paycheque, and a whole lot of danger…just the way Jane likes it. I’m intrigued to see how she responds to that offer in the next book, although I think we can all guess what her decision will be!

Another action-packed, creative, and compelling installment in the Jane Yellowrock series, BLOOD CROSS is a winner. But I will note that the mythos surrounding Faith Hunter’s version of vampires involves a highly modified version of some Biblical stories, so if that offends you then you should probably steer clear. Personally I thought it was brilliantly done, and finally provided a plausible explanation for why vampires have an aversion to the cross. It just makes sense people!

I’m loving this series so much I think I’ll have to add it to my “UF series to marathon” rotation. Bring on the vamp killing!

What are your thoughts on SFF books that make use of modified religious lore? Who is your favourite ass-kicking heroine? And most importantly, who would win in a fight…Jane Yellowrock or Kate Daniels?