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Death Blows by Don DeBrandt



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Audio- 3.7 stars. This second book in the series was better than the first. There was more of a mystery, more action and more focus. I still don't care the the narrator. The third book I bought in print.
Jace is still human, still in this alternate universe and still trying to solve a case to get home. She is struggling along when big boss calls her to follow up on another case. This case is hitting buttons and will open some new and deadly doors to her. One of her friends will be lost, a new life arrives and some truths are finally told. She still treats David like he has no feelings, this irritates me,big time.
I keep looking for a romantic liaison, there are some really interesting choices here but it's not happening, at least not yet. The doctor were, the older and distant vamp, the steady and witty golum. The one character I really want to have a romantic trust doesn't have the equipment for it. I am thinking that relationship will not go anywhere, dang it ! Why write a character with no equipment ?
3.7 stars ( )
  TheYodamom | Jan 29, 2016 |
Jace is from an alternate reality and she has been brought to a world were vampires, werewolves, and golems make up the majority of the population. Jace is tasked with finding and arresting Stoker, a rogue human determined to end the domination of the supernaturals and get justice for the dwindling human population. Jace is sidetracked from that mission when a superhero created by the government is murdered. When magical artifacts start to go missing the case intensifies. Can Jace follow the clues from the comic world to find the killer?

My biggest complaint with this book is that there is simply too much going on. I am not a fan of comic books and too much of this book focuses on breaking down comics to microscopic levels for clues. Barant, who is obviously a fan of comics, did some name dropping of famous comic artists, weighed DC and Marvel against each other, and went into the story lines and origin stories of many superheros. I suppose on some level this is meant to remind us of the similarity between Jace's originating world and the world she inhabits today, and the fact that they are connected but for me, it plain and simple just dragged on and on.

In Dying Bites, Jace had several men seemingly vying for her attention. I liked that it never really became a paranormal romance type thing but in Death Blows, all of that disappears altogether. There is one awkward date with Cassius at a save the human event. I suppose this was meant to build the will they or won't they vibe but the fact that Cassius has "a thing" for humans is just super creepy - particularly after meeting his ex girlfriend.

In terms of character growth, we learned all about Dr.Pete's background and some of Cassius's past as a superhero. It became clear that Jace had developed a really good working relationship with Charlie, though I would like to see them on a more social level at some point. Jace also really cares deeply for Rachel but despite all of the concern, I have yet to see the work that went into building that relationship. If Death Blows had spent more time working on the relationships and less on the comic books and weird magical world building, it would have been a far more interesting book.

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  FangsfortheFantasy | Jun 21, 2015 |
This one worked for me in a way book one didn't. Jace isn't as angry, she's not overtly being held hostage, and the relationships she started in book one really start to gel. Her banter with Charlie in particular was fantastic, and the twist with Dr. Pete was both unexpected and titillating. ( )
  Capnrandm | Apr 15, 2013 |
I grew up on comics but this was simply a bit much. My eyes started to cross by the last page and I don't think it was the muscle relaxer. ( )
  pjh1984 | Mar 31, 2013 |
Jace is still stuck in the alternative universe and she is busier than anyone there with werewolves and vampires going insane. I would give four stars if I were really into comics. Her new case is all about banned comics, superheroes and villains and your the story doesn't have a single peaceful moment. 3.5 stars. ( )
  Morana.Mora | Mar 30, 2013 |
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Book description
FBI profiler Jace Valchek was pulled into this parallel realm to hunt for Aristotle Stoker, a human serial killer who preys on vampires and werewolves. Now she works for the National Security Agency of the Unnatural States of America—and her boss is a vampire.

At a bizarre crime scene, Jace finds a bloodsucker murdered by magic, fried to the bone and dressed in the costume of the comic book hero the Flash—a character who isn't supposed to exist here. Comic books have been outlawed for their powers, including crossover spells like the one that transported Jace to this world. Soon, she's following a trail of dead bodies into the sinister underworld of black-market comics—where a deranged madman gives new meaning to the term "super-villain"…

Death Blows is a fast-paced, exciting follow-up to Dying Bites—DD Barant and The Bloodhound Files just keep getting better, and Jace Valchek's world keeps getting stranger ...

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Drawn into a parallel world where only one percent of the population is human, FBI profiler Jace Valchek now works for the National Security Agency of the Unnatural States of America--and her boss is a vampire. At a bizarre crime scene, Jace finds the victim dressed as the comic book hero The Flash, a character who isn't supposed to exist in this world. Comic books have been outlawed for their powers, including crossover spells like the one that transported Jace. A trail of dead bodies leads to the sinister underworld of black-market comics and a deranged madman who gives new meaning to the term "super-villain."… (more)

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