Jennifer Estep's Reviews > Dark Jenny

Dark Jenny by Alex Bledsoe
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Jul 24, 11

bookshelves: epic-fantasy, mystery
Read from July 04 to 06, 2011

Dark Jenny by Alex Bledsoe is the third book in his epic fantasy series about sword jockey Eddie LaCrosse.

In this one, Eddie recalls an adventure he had several years ago. Eddie is at court spying on a cheating husband when a Knight of the Double Tarn is murdered by eating a poisoned apple right in front of him. What follows from there is a spin on Arthurian legend, when Queen Jennifer is accused of murdering the knight, and her husband, King Marcus Drake, asks Eddie to prove her innocence and find the real killer. Eddie doesn't have much of a choice, since it's either find the killer or take the fall for the murder, so he sets out to get to the bottom of things. Only, there's more than one mystery to solve here -- and a lot of secrets that Jennifer, Marcus, and the rest of the Knights don't want to be discovered ...

I really like this series, which is a great blend of epic fantasy and detective noir fiction, and Bledsoe once again spins a smart tale that's full of twists and turns. Eddie is a great character, and I always enjoy reading his world-weary voice and seeing the scrapes that he gets himself into and out of.

However, this book didn't work for me as well as the others in the series have, especially the first book, The Sword-Edged Blonde, which is really great. I think part of it has to do with the fact that the book is so heavily focused on Arthurian legend, which isn't my favorite legend to read about. It's just never appealed to me all that much. Also, I felt like I could see a lot of the twists and secrets coming because it was Arthurian legend. I think that undercut some of the big reveals at the end. Plus, the fact that Eddie is telling this story and looking back on things also undermined the immediacy and the tension of the story for me a bit.

Overall, though, this is a cool book, especially if you like epic fantasy with a twist.
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