Monday, November 7, 2016

Series Review: Jasper Dent by Barry Lyga

I kicked off the Horror-tober reading a day early with I Hunt Killers (Jasper Dent #1) the last day of September. Here’s that review.

I finished the second and third in the series and figure I would review the series, which I usually don’t bother with. But I usually don’t read a series all at once, either, so I guess we’ll see how it goes. I’ve tried to be spoiler free but I’m not sure I actually know how to do that. If you are worried about that, do not collect $200. 

In summary, this story is about Jasper Dent, the 17 year old son of the world’s most notorious serial killer. Good ‘ol dad, Billy, raised Jasper with a health respect for cops, a disdain for the media, and Billy’s intrusive thoughts about how to tie up and kill women. The details related to the murders in this series are graphic but it’s really the way that Jasper and Billy think/ talk about humans and their bodies that send shivers up your spine. If you shy away from gore and the range of terrible things that people do to each other, don't read this series. 

In book 2, Jasper joins up with a big city detective to try and figure out the identity of a serial killer that has been evading the police for months. The case may or may not be related to Jasper’s father but his childhood education comes in handy in figuring out how sociopaths think and throw off being captured. Of course, he’s just a kid, overwrought with guilt and dread, and has two best friends who would never think to leave him alone to get killed. Book 2 ends on a god damned cliff hanger with our favorite characters possibly bleeding out and/or at a nutso’s mercy. I really liked this book but maybe a little less than the first one. Once again my favorite parts are getting to know Jasper’s friends, which Connie (Jasper’s girlfriend) becoming one of the alternating narrators of the story. She is determined to keep Jazz chained to sanity and to reflect the light in him that only she (and Jazz’s friend Howie) can really see. One of the things I like about this book (and the series) are the small touches related to Connie being one of the only Black girls in a small town. I also like that she wears a satin bonnet to sleep in because Truth.

In book 3, the hunter becomes the hunted, more shit hits the fan, and an asshole makes a bunch of racist grammar jokes. I don’t want to spoil it. If you get through book two, you’ll definitely be reading this one. YOU HAVE TO. It's the best book in the series, I think.
Turns out there is one related enovelas (Lucky Day) and a 16- page prequel (Career Day) that I haven’t read. I probably won’t read them… unless they come out in audiobook eventually.

Lucky Day tells the story of how Billy Dent finally got caught by the man that would become the closest thing Jasper has to a normal father figure. 

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