I’ll admit, I am generally not a fan of companion books, but the authors manage to suck me in with well placed novellas buried inside. In this case, I heard there were stories from Bruiser’s POV and I really wanted to hear his voice. Sadly, I found the first 15% of this book to be an utter waste. It starts with an assortment of Jane quotes. Then historical bloodlines. Then a completely inane Q&A with Beast, where I couldn’t even force myself to read all the way through. I’m just going to spare you and jump ahead to the stories.
First Sight – This is one of those Bruiser stories, but it was WAY too short. This is actually his POV on the first time he and Jane meet in Skinwalker. I love how drawn he is to her right away and I enjoyed seeing her through his eyes. But it was only a scant few pages. Less a story and more a vignette.
Dance Master – Another Bruiser story, but this one switches from 1st person to 3rd. Back to back, that felt kind of weird. But this story confirmed for me that Bruiser is the guy who Jane should be with. I haven’t been without my concerns surrounding him, but his inner dialogue proves that he likes and respects Jane for who she is –and has no desire to diminish her. He also sees Rick for what he is, ruminating, “(Rick’s) history suggested that he was incapable of maintaining a romantic relationship with only one woman for any length of time. And it was even more unlikely that he would survive his next full moon, though George wouldn’t wish such pain and madness on anyone, even a faithless, charismatic rival. ” True dat.
This is also sadly short, but it’s satisfying and sexy, and if I wasn’t Team Bruiser before, I am now.
What follows is more filler: a story chronology, a recap of the previous shorts and novels, chapter by chapter. This takes up the bulk of the book. I can only say this may be useful as an alternative to a series reread if you like to do that before new installments. Otherwise, a waste.
Beneath a Bloody Moon – This is the longer novella in the collection and Hunter draws from it heavily with a follow-up later in the Black Water anthology. Rick the Dick calls Jane to the bayou town of Chauvin to track a werewolf problem. She has to put herself in grave danger to make it through the case, and Rick was there, being called her sorta-boyfriend, and setting my teeth on edge. (I hate how his inability to be faithful is just an aside, no big deal, like the color of his eyes.)
Despite my hate for Rick, it’s a fairly good story action wise and we get time with Eli and the Kid. Plus, Black Water makes way more sense if you’ve read this one.
Overall, the story offerings were fairly good. I enjoyed the Bruiser POVs, but they were terribly short. Despite this, I can’t really say it’s worth the money with so much filler content. I’d only recommend it if you can ever catch it on a $.99 sale. I think you’d end up really frustrated if you shell out nearly four bucks for it.
Click to purchase: Amazon
Jane Yellowrock World Companion
by Faith Hunter and Carol Malcolm
Release Date: December 10, 2013