The Jaded Hunter
Michelle M. Pillow
Published 2004 202 pages
Jaden MacNaughton is a dhampir, the child of a human mother and a vampire father. After her mother died when she was a baby, Jaden was raised by her vampire hating (and vampire hunting) Uncle Mack.
Mack raised Jaden to be a bloodstalker, a vampire hunter, from childhood. Tracking, hunting and slaying dangerous killer vampires is all she has ever known. Tired of the hunting and the killing, Jaden looks to end her bloodstalker career permanently by letting herself be drained and killed by one of her vampire prey. It seems like the perfect plan to end her life with dignity - all she needs an eager young vampire that she can persuade to drain her blood….
Tyr is an ancient vampire, one of the legendary Dark Knights, sent to judge and dispense justice for the vampire council. He has been sent to investigate rumours of the torture and killing of vampires by the dhampir Jaden and her uncle. He doesn’t expect his first meeting with Jaden to be in a dirty alley with her offering him her blood and he certainly isn’t going to kill her before he judges her and brings her before the vampire council.
Marking her as his own with a kiss, Jaden has no chance of escaping him. Sworn to do his duty, Tyr must bring Jaden before the vampire council to answer the growing allegations against her. His duty is torn by his desire for Jaden but he can sense she is lying to him. When will she trust him enough to tell the truth and will that be enough to save her?
The Jaded Hunter is the second book in Michelle M. Pillow’s Tribes of the Vampire series. It is a stand alone story and you don’t have to have read the first book on the series to understand what is happening in this story. The story is a romance and follows the relationship between Jaden, a dhampir worn out by her constant battle against vampires, and Tyr an ancient vampire and Dark Knight.
Jaden and Tyr are natural enemies, so there is plenty of romantic conflict there for a start. Jaden has a desire for Tyr but also has a loyalty to her uncle - which makes her appear untrustworthy in Tyr’s eyes. Initially his character seems quite cold and unfeeling towards her but as the story is told from both Jaden’s and Tyr’s perspectives the reader eventually gains insight into his character and finds out that he is not as cold hearted as he seems.
I thought the vampires in The Jaded Hunter were great. The vampire mythology was both well thought out and well explained. The vampires come in eight tribes and each tribe has a leader who sits on the vampire council. Hundreds of years ago one vampire from each tribe was sworn into a group of Dark Knights. These knights police the vampires and carry out the orders of the council. The vampires all have different skills and powers but are mostly of the traditional type - sleeping in coffins and drinking blood, with super strength, telepathy and an inability to tolerate sunlight.
The Jaded Hunter is a fast paced read with a good mixture of both action and romance that makes the pages turn faster and faster, right up until the end of the book. The story is well written with interesting and complex characters that don’t follow the standard romance rules (for example Jaden’s desire for death is not usual for romance heroines) and the book is all the more enjoyable for it.
Definitely recommended reading for vampire romance fans everywhere.
LoveVampires Review Rating:
Michelle M. Pillow has written several romances with vampire themes plus many romances in other genres too. To find out more about Michelle’s books or the Tribes of the Vampire series visit Michelle’s website.