2016 was a good year for me - I got to read a lot of books, both new and old. So here is a list of my favourite fifteen reads for this year.
The second full novel in the Jane Yellowrock series was a great, fast paced read and a fantastic follow up to the first story. Set not long after the explosive ending of Skinwalker, Jane is thrust further into the intriguing world of vampires and their politics. Molly’s presence in the story brings a much wanted layer of softness to the story to balance out Jane’s strong and unyielding presence.
Many of the Jane Yellowrock short stories are written from the point of view of other characters in the series, which is very enjoyable. First Sight is the first book that divulges the first impressions of another character within the stories. Especially when this first impression is that of a man who is interested in her.
Molly is a fantastic contrast to Jane, and telling the tale of Jane’s most successful vampire hunt through her eyes was refreshing and a very unique way to tell a new tale. Likewise, such a horrifyingly difficult hunt and journey was softened through Molly’s voice. Her ability to sense the dead and feel what they felt made the tale more tender and the deaths of the victims more tragic.
Changing the point of view of a story is always a nice change and a breath of fresh air, and Haints was no different. The Jane Yellowrock series allows us to delve into Jane’s experiences and her feelings about the Everheart family, but Haints tells of Molly’s motherly and caring attachment to Jane.
Kits further highlights two aspects of Jane’s life; her love for children, especially the Everhart girls, and the simple and honest friendship between Jane and Molly. The previous short stories have focused on Jane’s early life and her isolation from everyone else. Finding Molly and her small family is a beautiful moment in which Jane is able to have family and loved ones – people that she wants to protect.
Rick’s tatts in Skinwalker are a great source of fascination and intrigue. The story behind this provided a small insight into this fateful moment is both tragic and left me with a feeling of an unfinished future together. I love this idea of fate and future, and the ways in which Jane and Rick seem to have ties to each other and each other’s lives.
I love this short story – it takes us on a journey into Jane’s first job. It was so fun finding out more about Jane’s first day as a PI, and the way in which she had to prove herself to her new employer. The run down locale and shop front perfectly suits Jane’s persona, and it is incredibly easy to see her put in such a position. If Hunter had placed her chief protagonist in a place of good standing and a tidy, respectable front, it would be far more difficult to envisage.
I loved revisiting Jane’s first modern day experience of skinwalking. Reading Skinwalker, I had always wondered how she had discovered her paranormal capabilities, and this short story provided a great insight into this journey. It also provided more information about the importance of Jane’s gold necklace and the reasoning behind her name (Jane Yellowrock). I love that every detail about the protagonist’s life prior to the beginning of the first book was carefully planned and thought out by Hunter – an intricate reality that has layers upon layers, with more discoveries every time I read the story.
It was incredibly interesting to read a little more about some of Jane’s first years. Not only is it a great way to gain insight into her first transformations, but it also gave me a glimpse into the desecration of the land by white man when they first arrived in the Americas.