Jaz is a smart, sassy, CIA Agent She s a sensitive who s died twice and been brought back by her spirit guide to help fight evil Her gifts continue to grow when she donates blood to Vayl, a werewolf and received tears from Asha Jasmine lost her old team including her sister in law and fianc With Vayl s help, she s been working on moving past the loss Vayl is a strong, intelligent, 290 year old vampire and CIA Agent, who s perfection on the eyes Vayl suffered from the loss of his two boys and is now trying to move past his loss and work towards his future with Jasmine Jaz and Vayl started off as a CIA team, became sverhamin and avahar, and are now a hot and heavy couple I love their chemistry.
Bergman is a genius who creates the best high tech gadgets Cassandra is a sophisticated psychic who s engaged to Dave, Jaz s twin Cole is an incredibly charming sensitive with mad language and sharp shooting skills Our fur friends include Jack Jacket Humper who s a great tracker and animal chaser Astral is a robo kitty created by Bergman to assist Jaz in her missions.
This book is based in Australia where the team must stop gnomes from destroying NASA satellites and causing billions of dollars of destruction The shaman has abducted a family and is forcing the father to give his life to birth of the gnome larve There s lots of twists in this book and we re surprised to find out who the shaman is and what the real story is all about There are multiple missions within this mission Cassandra s demon returns to claim her soul and ends up supporting the team in her mission and trading Cassandra s soul for some evil politicians Jaz is possessed by Brude and she must lock him away so he doesn t use the possession to ruin her relationships and destroy the mission The team loses two of their own and Jasmine considers leaving the CIA with Vayl and joining Bergman in his business A change would mean time off and not having to worry about being double crossed by evil politicians.
I ve loved every Jaz parks book and this one is no exception Keep them coming Jennifer Rardin I held on through book 5 hoping that book 6 would bring back the great protagonist I d initially met, the fun and interesting story lines I d seen in the first four books, and the snappy writing and dialog which helped push it along.
Not so much.
The story line for this one involves Jaz and her crew going to Australia to battle gnomes I m all for introducing new levels to alternate world and paranormal landscape but this came off as trying too hard Each book has introduced a slightly new element which added different dimensions to the world this story inhabits The gnomes felt like they were an invention made up entirely to put something new in, not because it added anything to the world Come to think of it, I got a little preview of that feeling in book 5 On top of that, there were a lot of new details about things that had already been introduced like the fact that there are different Vampire families which just seemed to be dropped out of no where Why wasn t this something that came up earlier in the other books Why is it important now It started to feel a bit like info dumping.
The editing and continuity of the book also left me frustrated There have been bits here and there which didn t add up throughout the books, but it reached a level I couldn t handle any I kept having to re read sentences because they didn t make sense, didn t flow right, or there were pieces left out.
There were sentence fragments which I assume were intended to make the book read like inner dialog It didn t work for me at all And there was a strange switching of style that happened at several points in the books where it looked like a script If it had brought something to the story then it would have been easier to swallow As it was, it felt like an easy out or a frilly new style that Rardin wanted to test out The tactic fell flat with me.
The plot was very disjointed and the emphasis was misplaced At one point during the middle of the book I had to re read the back cover because I couldn t remember what the mission was they were on Was it to see if Vayl and Jaz had time for a quickie between shooting people Was it to fight a demon that was tormenting the crew Or was it to figure out why there is a new voice in Jaz s head Wait, none of those things It was about gnomes and NASA Or that is what the back of the book said.
Which leads me to my final gripe about the story the Vayl Jaz relationship I don t want to read romance novels in particular A good romantic interest, a hot and steamy scene here or there, maybe even some drama and turmoil to keep it spicy But for the love of all things good, pick a format and stick with it This series started out with a relationship that was already in the works, which was fine with me, and explored the sexual tension that arose as each discovered about the other one Now they are supposed to be in a relationship but they continue to waver back and forth between commitment, constant flirting and sexual inuendos which don t really add anything new to their relationship or the plot and kisses that alternate between stopping Jaz cold and sending fireworks through her body No sex scene, no movement forward or backwards on the relationship, and all this hinted at stuff that just seems awkward and out of place.
As you can probably guess I m on the fence with what to do about the next book I want to see it get better but I m not sure it will I think I ll have to wait for someone else to read it first and see how they sus it out.
Jaz Parks Here But I M Not Alone I M Hearing Voices In My Head And They Re Not Mine The Problem, Or Maybe The Solution, Is Work And The Job S A Stinker This Time Killing The Gnomes That Are Threatening To Topple NASA S Australian Based Space Complex Yeah, I Know Vayl And I Should Still Be Able To Kick This One In Our Sleep Except That Hell Has Thrown Up A Demon Named Kyphas To Knock Us Off Track And Damn Is She Indestructible Yay The Jaz Parks books are always fun, but I felt like the action was kind of toned down in this installment I m glad though that there was much personal interaction between Vayl and Jaz however Vayl is quite delicious I like series, I like urban fantasy and kick ass heroines, and I ve enjoyed the books in this particular series to different degrees so far At this point, though, it just seems to be spinning its wheels I ve had to force myself to get halfway through this book, and it s taken weeks I m not a slow reader I m giving up.
Book 6 in the Jaz Parks series, set in of all places, Canberra.
Vayl, Jaz and all the team including Raoul get to come to Australia and get stuck fighting Gnomes to save the Canberra based NASA Space Command Centre Jennifer Rardin obviously did a lot of research on Canberra, kangaroos and our Space Command Centre And only one glaring mistake did I spot, flaming jerk , which hasn t been used here in at least 60 years, but there were certainly a lot of mates thrown around too, but I ll let that one pass as we do still use that one LOL I enjoyed this instalment immensely, I think particularly as I know Canberra and will be spending a weekend there next month, as well as the fact that all the team was there and we got to know the newest member, robotkitty, Astral She was a scream and I think even upstaged that wonder doggy Jack The use of appropriate musical sound tracks was inspired.
Only 2 books in the series, plus a couple of shorts to go.
Looking for a turbo charged actionfest Want a solid urban fantasy read with a heroine that doesn t make you want to smack her for being stupid or neurotic Want a fine hunk of a vamp to partner with her Protect her Be willing to die for her Even though she doesn t need him to because she s strong in her own right Well then look no further, peeps, because Rardin s Jaz Parks series delivers it all on a silver platter for your reading delight.
If you re unfamiliar with the series then start with book 1, Once Bitten, Twice Shy The series is layered, plots and characters intertwined, and while each book has its own arc, none can be fully appreciated as a stand alone There are too many things that go on as a result of occurrences in previous books, too many nods given to past moments.
I ve been a fan of the series since the beginning it s absolutely one of my favorite series in the genre Not because the books are perfect on their own they re not In fact, there are aspects of the story telling in each book that I would have preferred done differently, but in this case, the experience of the series as a whole is greater than the sum of its partsif you know what I mean.
Rardin has a few quirks as an author that tend to disrupt the flow of the narrative she has a tendency to slip into a description of what happened at some point days, minutes, or hours previously to get Jaz and her crew to where they are in the books without warning the reader that it s coming, so I ve had occasion to wonder if I m reading past events or current ones at times That s mostly but not exclusively done in the beginning of each book, so you jump into the action right away, then find out how you got to that action a bit later It s a little disconcerting Another grievance I have is that Rardin has a tendency to throw everything and the kitchen sink at Jaz and Co in a seemingly never ending barrage of badness during each mission and in so doing, she sacrifices cohesion in the plot I ve never felt that any mission was written in any sort of easily followed, linear fashion and as a result, I haven t been able to really cheer for the CIA aspects even when they re successful.
Oddly enough, that s what keeps each book from garnering a solid five star mark from me, yet it doesn t affect at all how much I love the series Because the things I do love about the series, Rardin is absolutely fantastic with And that s, quite frankly, the people The characters Their lives Their feelings Theirstory.
Jaz Parks is a tortured, flawed, and in some ways slightly nutso heroine whose loyalty and bravery are unequaled She s got a dark side a very, very dark side that she hides from the people she s sworn to herself to protect, yet she carries on funny and insightful conversations with her dead grandmotherin her headas Granny Mae plays poker or canasta or whatever with Bob Hope and Abe Lincoln.
Vayl is a nearly three hundred year old vampire and while he s the country s top assassin holding that position for the past eighty some odd years, he s got his own baggage Industrial sized and hefty weight baggage in the shape of two sons lost centuries ago The drive to find their reincarnated souls pushes him for so long that they are the reason for his entire existence until Jaz Parks blows into his tattered soul and clings.
Their relationship is complex, fraught with insecurity and past demons, yet changing and strengthening through each book I m a paranormal romance fan and while this isn t what I d consider a romance laden series, it s still satisfying the romance lover in me It s written brilliantly, and in a very satisfying way And I can t say enough about the wide and varied array of secondary and ancillary characters that have wormed their way into my heart There are a legion of them, and they are vital to the series as a whole and written as three dimensional and as important as Jaz and Vayl Kudos on that.
So it all boils down to thisI didn t give a synopsis of the plot Bite Marks because the main plot of each book isn t really why I read the series I suppose I could say that Jaz and Vayl have another mission and all hell breaks loose on this one, just like on all the others That s the quick and dirty And largely unimportant to me It s the fierce artistry in how they handle it and how Jaz manages to continue to triumph over past traumas and losses one labored step at a time that is really the driving force in the series for me and that just can t be summarized easily You just gotta experience it.
Okayand I admitI just have to know what Bergman s going to dream up next snickers Robokitty HeeReviewer s note I m deeply saddened to have learned of the untimely death of Jennifer Rardin late last year My sympathies and condolences are extended to her family and friends Her talents and her presence will be missedReviewed for One Good Book Deserves Another.
Vayl and Jaz s assignment is of the utmost importance If they fail, NASA s entire infrastructure will crumble leaving one heck of mess in its wake The job should have been just another notch in their belts, but when Cassandra s Demon comes out to play things get a little hairy as she is one heck of a force to be reckoned with Add in some crazy voices in Jaz s head, and you have one heck of bumpy ride that may just lead to disaster for this assassin team They haven t failed a mission yet, but this one may be the one to knock them down Permanently.
Something I have loved about this series is that while it is full of action and high stakes, there also is plenty of humor and witty comments from the characters This book however took the humor to a whole new level, yet still maintained that sense of looming danger making it one heck of a ride Between Cole s kangaroo issues and Jaz s conversations with the crew her head, I can t count how many times I burst out laughing There was another hilarious aspect that was a new element to the series I won t say too much to keep from spoiling things, but just wait till you meet Jaz s new cat She sure has one heck of personality that will leave you in tears from laughing so hard Jaz and Vayl s relationship is still growing and there are some trust issues on Jaz s part However, since she is literally what you would call damaged goods, I imagine full trust is still a long ways off She has either lost or been betrayed by everyone she has ever cared about in her entire life, so it is no wonder none of this comes easy She also has a tendency to let her temper over run her and jump the gun in certain situations However, this is all why Vayl is the perfect match for her as he calms her fire and stays the voice of reason she so desperately needs at times It also seems like Cole has finally realized he just wasn t they guy for her, and is taking it with his usual sense of humor Which of course causes problems of its own, but at least he isn t trying to come between them any This book had a whole lot going on Between Jaz s possession, the gnomes and their plot to destroy NASA, and a Demon that is bent on dragging Cassandra to Hell, I barely had time to catch a breath A lot of series by this point can give a sense of deja vu with the dangers just seeming to be a rehashment of previous ones This is definitely not the case in these books, and I really admire the author s ability to keep things fresh Bite Marks is a must read that will suck you right in and make you desperate for I d recommend having the next book ready as you won t want a delay in being able to dive into reading it Definitely another great installment in a fantastic Urban Fantasy series I keep reading these booksand yet I ve only really enjoyed one installment What is it that keeps me going I suppose it s the handful of moments toward the end of each that show what Rardin is capable of accomplishing There s usually a fight scene or a splattering of gore that s particularly exhilarating In this one, the final showdown is entertaining, as is the audacious use of kangaroos It s exciting, but I saw the resolution coming many, many chapters before, soeh We do get a compelling glimpse into Vayle s past, in his own voice a piece of writing that, stylistically, far surpasses anything coming from Jaz s disjointed mind It s that discombobulated mind that causes most of my irritation with the series Once again, we re faced with a maddening internal dialogue, as anthropomorphized aspects of Jaz s personality battle an invading influence This girl is nuttier than a fruitcake, and it does not endear her to me Nor do her incessant potty jokes which I still can t see someone like Vayle tolerating Pair this up with Jaz s massively stubborn refusal to trust those around her and all I want to do is bind her in a straight jacket and pump her full of meds Oh, and I found it anti climactic to suddenly have the answers to our Vampere sverhamin avhar questions dropped casually in our laps during a chat on the patio All this dancing around the topic for five books, and it s suddenly laid out for everyone in three pages flat Bizarre.
Jack is cute and I want to know why he s so damn smart His robokitty playmate Astral is hilarious after her meltdown Bergman grows a set, which is nice, but I always liked his conspiracy theory neuroses Cole is breezy and amusing, but I don t know how he doesn t get killed amid all the wisecracks.
I m not sure I ll read the next I ll ponder it when the reviews roll in.
Jaz and her team find themselves on an assignment to stop a horde of gnomes led by the followers of the god Ufran from getting their larvae into the Canberra Deep Space Complex She also finds herself with some extra company who makes her life even difficult Pretty crazy This book is one of the serious ones when it comes to the relationship between Jaz and Vayl I found it was a turning point in the series.
Their personal life is mixing with their professional life, and we get to see how they handle it In Bite Marks Bergman and Cassandra also both play pretty important roles in the plot, and we get to see of some other characters motivations Like always, Cole is hilarious At times, I wish Jaz and him were together, but most of the time I love Vayl I think there was a set up for the next story with Cole and Kyphas from Cassandra s vision.
something big is going to happen I hope Cole will be okay He s a sucker for a girl with good looks shakes my head All that said, Rardin outdid herself with this one Like all the Jaz books, it was filled with great action and twists I loved it and cannot wait to read Bitten In Two.