Author: Barry Lyga
Series: Jasper Dent, #3
Released: September 9th 2014
Publisher: Blackstone Audio
Lenght: 10 hrs and 52 mins
The game is over in this heart-pounding finale to the I Hunt Killers trilogy.Jazz Dent has been shot and left to die in New York City. His girlfriend, Connie, is in the clutches of Jazzs serial killer father, Billy. And his best friend Howie is bleeding to death on the floor of Jazzs own home in tiny Lobos Nod. Somehow, these three must rise above the horrors their lives have become and find a way to come together in pursuit of Billy. But then Jazz crosses a line hes never crossed before, and soon the entire country is wondering: Like father, like son? Who is the true monster?The chase is on, and beyond Billy there lurks something much, much worse. Prepare to meet the Crow King.After three wonderful and surprisingly original installments, including this heart-stopping conclusion we’ve all been waiting for, I’m ready to give my final verdict on the Jasper Dent trilogy: with these books, Barry Lyga brought a much needed breath of fresh air to Young Adult fiction, which makes him pretty amazing in my eyes, but Charlie Thurston, the narrator of these beauties, is absolutely brilliant.
I’m getting ahead of myself here. Let’s start from the beginning. After three novels and too many cliffhangers to count, we finally have our answers and Jazz and his friends have a right to rest. In a heart-stopping, bloody conclusion completely up to this series’ extremely high standards, Billy Dent and the infamous Crow King brought all their dirty secrets to light.
This book is much darker than its two predecessor, not for its blood and gore (of that there’s actually less), but for its psychological side and its character development. After being brave and true for so long, despite his horrendous upbringing, in Blood of My Blood, Jasper Dent is finally pushed over the edge. A new Jazz arises, a cold, detached, sociopathic version of him. In other words, Jasper-my-boy really becomes Billy Dent’s son.
It was incredibly painful to watch Jazz’s descent into almost-madness. He was sometimes too clever for his own good, but that cleverness caused us to have endless faith in him, so when he finally couldn’t take any more, we were left with our mouths wide open in surprise, hoping against hope that something would turn him back and make him who he was once again. But at the same time, the adult inside us, the person who knows that not all damage can be repaired, doubts a positive outcome for Jazz.
Unfortunately, the biggest question for us wasn’t who, as it should have been. Instead, it was just how. The identity of Ugly J was pretty obvious from the start, and the only thing we didn’t know was how everything would go down. I honestly think that the characters should have caught up sooner, except maybe Jazz, whose ignorance was completely understandable. But I loved how it all played out in the end, and I was more than happy with the way Lyga handled things.
I think I need to repeat Charlie Thurston’s name once more, to make sure you remember him well in the future. He made this great series infinitely better, and even those rough spots along the way were smoothed out by his excellent narration. Billy Dent would give anyone the creeps, but Thurnston’s voice somehow made him seem multi-layered: crazy and sociopathic, sure, but also hilarious and oddly likeable too.
I’m not sure what we can expect from Barry Lyga in the future, but I’m pretty sure it’s going to be awesome. Perhaps we can even hope for more from this world! I’d love to check in now and then to see how everyone is doing, that’s for sure. I’d say Lyga deserves a standing ovation.