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Blood of My Blood by Barry Lyga

I’m pretty sure Barry Lyga can stick a knife in your spinal cord and paralyze you with how awesome he is. (For those of you who have read Blood of My Blood, wink wink).

Blood of my BloodTitle:  Blood of My Blood
Author:  Barry Lyga
SeriesJasper Dent Book 03
Publish Date:  September 9, 2014
Genre:  YA Thriller
Source: Purchased

Publisher’s DescriptionJazz Dent has never been closer to catching his father.

Jazz has been shot and left to die in New York. His girlfriend, Connie, is in the clutches of Jazz’s monstrous father, Billy–the world’s most notorious serial killer. And his best friend, Howie, is bleeding to death on the floor of Jazz’s new home.

Somehow, these three must rise above the horrors and find a way to come together in pursuit of Billy.

But then Jazz crosses a line he’s never crossed before, and soon the entire country is wondering: “Like father, like son? Who is the true monster?”

From New York City to the small town of Lobo’s Nod, the chase is on, and this time, Jazz is the hunted, not the hunter–while Billy Dent lurks in the shadows.

And beyond Billy? Something much, much worse. Prepare to meet…the Crow King.

From acclaimed author Barry Lyga comes the shocking conclusion to the bestselling I Hunt Killer trilogy.

Possible spoilers beyond this point.


Kat_Mandu_100Kat Mandu says…

If you could take all the bravery, all the cocky, all the sanity from Jazz, Howie, and Connie, Lyga just did it. In Blood of My Blood, Jazz has been shot, saved by the person you’d least expect, is now accused of murdering an FBI agent and finds himself on the run – and on the hunt for his father. Connie has found herself face to face with Billy himself and a stranger she thinks also needs rescuing.

Both manage to get out of trouble but find themselves in worse situations. Jazz has to get himself back home, back where he knows Billy lurks – and possibly his mother. Connie and Howie have to help from the sidelines, eliminating bad guys from the roster even as their parents and law enforcement crack down on them for helping. Even as Jazz turns numb in his pursuit of revenge.

Emotionally-gripping, packed with action, and stunning from beginning to end. This has scenes where Jazz impersonates a cop, manages to elude the furious NYPD detective Hughes, and has to figure out if he’s truly his father’s son. There are sad parts, ones where Connie and Jazz are on the brink of ending their relationship, and happy ones, as Jazz comes to terms with who he really is. Startling revelations come to light and bonds are broken forever.

badge5v4The gang’s all back to celebrate the ending too – G William plays another important role and so does Jazz’s long lost mother, his mysterious aunt, and Hughes. It’s such a great book. Amazing series. It took me a week or two to even compose a review for this, I was so mind blown. Naturally, I’m giving it a five.

Our reviews in this series…

Other reviews…

If you like this book…

… you might like How to Lead A Life of Crime by Kirsten Miller, The Naturals by Jennifer Lynn Barnes, or Don’t Turn Around by Michelle Gagnon.

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Game by Barry Lyga

What an ending! I love cliffhangers (and no, that’s not sarcasm. I really, really LOVE cliffhangers). I love that feeling of not knowing what’s going to happen next and all the intensity and drama is left dangling there, so close from your fingertips and yet so far away. That’s the kind of suspense Lyga brings to the table as he ends Game with a bang. Literally.

GameTitle:  Game
Author:  Barry Lyga
SeriesJasper Dent Book 02
Publish Date:  April 16, 2013
Genre:  YA Thriller
Source: Purchased

Publisher’s DescriptionI Hunt Killers introduced the world to Jazz, the son of history’s most infamous serial killer, Billy Dent.

In an effort to prove murder didn’t run in the family, Jazz teamed with the police in the small town of Lobo’s Nod to solve a deadly case. And now, when a determined New York City detective comes knocking on Jazz’s door asking for help, he can’t say no. The Hat-Dog Killer has the Big Apple–and its police force–running scared. So Jazz and his girlfriend, Connie, hop on a plane to the big city and get swept up in a killer’s murderous game.

Both the stakes and the body count are higher in this suspenseful and unstoppable sequel from acclaimed author Barry Lyga.

Possible spoilers beyond this point.


Kat_Mandu_100Kat Mandu says…

Three different situations left for hell alone. Jazz has been shot by a serial killer and left for dead. Connie’s life is now in the hands of someone very dangerous. And Howie, poor Howie, may have bitten off more than he can chew. So much craziness I was giddy by the end of the book.

Such great characters! Although Connie isn’t a stupid character, she certainly does stupid things in this one. But she does it in the name of love and all things Jazz, so I suppose she can be forgiven. Except she goes against her parents, her boyfriend, and the law all because she’s got this rah-rah teenage spirit that says she can do whatever the hell she wants, damn the consequences. I wasn’t a really big fan of her in this but she drove the story forward in a way that you knew exactly what was going to happen. Not that this story is predictable by any means, but well, in this Connie is one of those bad-horror movie characters that you scream at the tv for but it happens anyway.

And Howie. Goofy, dirty-minded, and always whipped Howie. He gets his own little action in this book as well, falling for Jazz’s Aunt Samantha and trying to woo her with his perverted charm. But that ending scene with him. DAMN.

That goes for Jazz’s ending too. Poor thing just can’t a break.

badge5v4I love this. I love how well researched and realistic it is. I love all the characters. I love the intensity of each scene and how creepy it is. Like a train wreck you can’t look away from. Such a wonderful world and now I’ve only got one more book to read. Sad day.

And maybe a sad ending. Guess we’ll see.

Our reviews in this series…

Other reviews…

If you like this book…

… you might like How to Lead A Life of Crime by Kirsten Miller, The Naturals by Jennifer Lynn Barnes, or Don’t Turn Around by Michelle Gagnon.

Blood Boy by Barry Lyga

Welcome to Saturday Shorts where we feature short stories and novellas. Today we’re catching back up with the Jasper Dent read-along held late last year.

Blood BoyTitle:  Blood Boy
Author:  Barry Lyga
SeriesJasper Dent 0.8
Publish Date:  August 27, 2014
Genre:  YA Thriller
Source: Purchased

Publisher’s DescriptionThe author is donating his profits from this story to the Adam Lynch Award, a scholarship established by the Hemophilia Association of New York.

Fan-favorite character Howie Gersten — Jazz Dent’s hemophiliac best friend from the I HUNT KILLERS series — finally gets a story all his own! Set one year before the events of the series, “Blood Boy” takes you inside Howie’s hilariously twisted mind for one night only. Enjoy Halloween as only Howie can, learn more about his relationship with Jazz and Connie…and discover exactly what it is he’s keeping a secret from both of them.

Possible spoilers beyond this point.


Kat_Mandu_100Kat Mandu says…

Howie sincerely makes my day. If he’s not quipping sexual innuendos, he’s probably dead. He really has the best lines and his humor is great.

I loved this even more since Barry Lyga is donating every purchase of this novella to the Hemophilia Foundation of America. Since Howie himself has hemophilia, it’s not only kind of the author, but great that he can share a character who has what can really be classified as a disability. Because simple scratches and bruises that people receive every day and brush off, could literally kill Howie.

badge5v4He’s had to deal with it all his life. In this short prequel novella, it’s Halloween and he, Connie, and Jazz are off to a party outside of town. Reading his mind is like reading a dirty romance. He meets a girl dressed up like a goat and they hit it off. It’s cute, it’s funny, and it’s everything I love about Jazz’s best friend.

A fat five cause I dig it.

Our reviews in this series…

Other reviews…

If you like this book…

… you might like How to Lead A Life of Crime by Kirsten Miller, The Naturals by Jennifer Lynn Barnes, or Don’t Turn Around by Michelle Gagnon.

Neutral Mask by Barry Lyga

Welcome to Saturday Shorts where we feature short stories and novellas.  Today we’re catching back up with the Jasper Dent read-along held late last year.

Neutral MaskTitle:  Neutral Mask
Author:  Barry Lyga
SeriesJasper Dent Book 0.6
Publish Date:  July 28, 2014
Genre:  YA Thriller
Source: Purchased

Publisher’s Description: Connie is the new girl in town, but she already has friends…and maybe even a boyfriend. Her father isn’t happy that Connie is dating a white boy like Jasper Dent, and things get even worse when she realizes that Jasper is the son of Billy Dent, one of the world’s most notorious serial killers! This is the story of how Connie and Jazz overcame their early troubles and fell in love.

Possible spoilers beyond this point.


Kat_Mandu_100Kat Mandu says…

This another short prequel of Lyga’s that introduces us more to Connie and Jazz’s relationship. Connie discovers Jazz is the son of a notorious serial-killer for the first time and even though Jazz assumes she’s going to break up with him, she stays regardless. Ginny Davis is also introduced when Connie convinces Jazz to participate in drama club. She performs a “neutral mask” routine and Jazz has to come up with one before next week. Connie is wowed when he performs, like the rest of the class, and it’s eventful and heart-wrenching for most of the audience.

The only reason I gave this a four was because the story didn’t flow well for me. It started out being about their relationship and that theme was consistent throughout as Connie discovered his connection to Billy Dent and still wanted to be with him. But I thought it was going in a different direction than it did from the beginning; the summary itself explains that it’s all about how Connie’s father feels about the situation and although there was a scene with him in it, his approval still clear on the white boy standing, that’s pretty much all that happens. I expected a scene later where Connie revealed to him the name of who she was dating but there was no such thing, so I was left kinda disappointed…as if I didn’t get any questions answered again.

Sure, if you read the main novels, you know that her father is worried because he’s Billy Dent’s son. But I was just hoping for the first initial reaction.

badge4v4And not that the rest of it wasn’t good! I still rated it a four. I thought the neutral mask thing was cool and that Jazz’s performance was spot on. This has good emotion and a great setup for the following novels.

Our reviews in this series…

Other reviews…

If you like this book…

… you might like How to Lead A Life of Crime by Kirsten Miller, The Naturals by Jennifer Lynn Barnes, or Don’t Turn Around by Michelle Gagnon.

Career Day by Barry Lyga

Welcome to Saturday Shorts, where we feature short stories and novellas. Though this novella is much shorter than Lucky Day, it doesn’t pack any less of a punch.

Career DayTitle: Career Day
Author: Barry Lyga
SeriesJasper Dent Book 0.5
Publish Date: July 28th 2014
Genre:  Young Adult Thriller
Source: Purchased

Publisher’s DescriptionJasper has a problem, and everyone knows it: His father is Billy Dent, world-famous serial killer. Even though Dear Old Dad is in jail, Jasper still feels like everyone is watching him, like everyone thinks he’s dangerous.

Even he thinks he’s dangerous. Sometimes.

His best — and only — friend Howie is always ready with a joke or a goofy nickname, but Jasper needs more. Maybe that new girl in town, Connie, is what he’s been looking for…

Possible spoilers beyond this point.


Kat_Mandu_100Kat Mandu says…

What do you want to be when you grow up? This question sticks with Jasper as he struggles with a homework assignment after Career Day that focuses on his life. Chilled by his father’s legacy, Jasper realizes he doesn’t exactly know what he wants – he just wants to be safe.

badge5v4There is a bit of humor in this, brought up by naturally Howie, who gives the dark short story moments of hilarity. And Jasper’s first encounters – and first kiss – with Connie are recollected to give a nice introduction to her character. Not to mention his nickname “Jazz” is invented in this.

Fun, short read with great story telling.

The Jasper Dent series is the focus of the current read-along.  

Our reviews in this series…

Other reviews…

If you like this book…

… you might like How to Lead A Life of Crime by Kirsten Miller, The Naturals by Jennifer Lynn Barnes, or Don’t Turn Around by Michelle Gagnon.