Once Bitten, Twice Shy ~ Jennifer Rardin

once_bitten.jpgI’m Jaz Parks. My boss is Vayl, born in Romania in 1744. Died there too, at the hand of his vampire wife, Liliana. But that’s ancient history. For the moment Vayl works for the C.I.A. doing what he does best–assassination. And I help. You could say I’m an Assistant Assassin. But then I’d have to kick your ass.

Our current assignment seemed easy. Get close to a Miami plastic surgeon named Assan, a charmer with ties to terrorism that run deeper than a buried body. Find out what he’s meeting with that can help him and his comrades bring America to her knees. And then close his beady little eyes forever. Why is it that nothing’s ever as easy as it seems?

First, let me apologize in advance if the title of this book gets that Great White song stuck in your head. It happened to me, too, so I totally feel your pain.

Okay. What we’ve got here is the compulsively readable debut book in the Jaz Parks series. From the synopsis above you get a pretty good idea of what being in Jaz’s head is like; she’s strong, sarcastic, but there’s a whole lot of sensitivity there, too. Her backstory runs deep and unfolds over the course of the novel, which in turn adds another dimension to the running plot.

Another thing about Jaz? She kicks some serious rear. What makes it so great, though, is that Rardin did her research. Either that or she’s really good at karate. The “action” scenes are detailed and, what’s better, believable. Rardin and Jaz take the reader through the motions, so it really does play out like a scene from a movie.

And, par for the course – okay, well, for my course anyway – there are vampires. Vayl, for example; he’s got some really nifty powers. There seems to be a lot under his surface and hopefully his secrets will, ah, surface in the next installment.

Look for several more books in the Jaz Parks series (and you’ll want to after reading Once Bitten, Twice Shy.) Luckily, the next book, Another One Bites the Dust, is set to be released in December. (Yikes! Sorry, now you’ve probably got Queen stuck in your head. Don’t worry – I’m pretty sure the next book in the series is harmless. Really, no songs come to mind at all.)

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