Alice's Reviews > Killing Rocks

Killing Rocks by D.D. Barant
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's review
Jan 25, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: urban-fantasy

** spoiler alert ** This is the third book of the Bloodhound Files. The protagonist, FBI profiler Jace, is still stuck in another universe, where as a human she's part of a minority in a world populated by golems, vampires and weres.

This book returns, from the slight diversion of the last book, to Jace's hunt for the human terrorist Aristotle Stoker. That said, another nemesis is revealed who may become the main villian of this series. Asher is the sorcerer who originally brought Jace over into this universe, and this book (at the very end) finally gives up an answer to what Jace and readers have been wondering. Why her? To not be too spoilery, I'll just say that I loved how it led back to Jace's own profiler roots, which was (she has been told) the reason she was originally kidnapped. Asher/Ahaseurus is the creator of the Golem spell, amongst other things and is revealed to come from yet another universe, Nightshadow.

Las Vagas is taken over by Golems who suddenly want to impose a new world order where humans are at the top. Jace is separated from her team (including her golem partner Charlie who's gone rogue) while hunting Stoker and Asher as the universe she's in and Nightshadow merge. Asher is revealed to be behind these events and Jace is joined by an intelligence operative from Nightshadow called Azura in trying to foil Asher's dastardly plot, whatever that may be.

The first two books seemed a little disorientated as to the direction the series was headed in. However, Killing Rocks ties things together and reveals a direction for the series. I was a little disappointed and confused by the second book, but crucial plot points from it help propel the third. Taking place in Las Vegas means Gretchen and Eisfanger are in the background, but Cassius, Charlie and Tair are back along with Silverado and the artifacts lost in Death Blows.

One of this series' strengths is its worldbuilding. However, there is a slight sense of information overload with all the different magic systems, mythology and characters introduced. In fact, some characters are introduced and die before I can straighten out who they are. Dying Bites was sort of thematically tied around deity based magic, Death Blows dealt with comic books. Killing Rocks focuses on magic based on mythology and there is a lot of it, including mythology from Nightshadow.

I started reading this series when the first book had just come out so it's been awhile between each book. This is a series that probably rewards rereading, I'd forgotten a lot of the plot and information given in the previous books. It also makes me think about how, after three books, little about Jace we've actually been told, there's not a lot of background exposition about characters. In the previous books I found it frustrating as I couldn't really understand or empathise with Jace. Now I find it one of the series' strengths.

I looking forwards to the next book, more of Jace and Charlie, hopefully more of Azura and her world, and Tair/Dr Pete. Stoker has, for me, finally become a character rather than a plot device so I'm eager to find out where his "alliance" with Asher will lead.
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