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Once Bitten, Twice Shy (Jaz Parks) Mass Market Paperback – July 1, 2009


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Product Details

  • Series: Jaz Parks (Book 1)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Orbit; Reprint edition (July 1, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780316043540
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316043540
  • ASIN: 0316043540
  • Product Dimensions: 1.1 x 4.1 x 6.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (59 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,103,113 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Rardin fuses spy girl with vampire slayer in this entertaining but derivative debut. Jasmine Jaz Parks, a martial artist turned vampire-hunting government agent, is assigned to protect top-notch operative Vayl, a 300-year-old vampire on the side of the good guys. As Vayl helps Jaz to hone her supernatural abilities and she tries to keep from falling for his Romanian charm, they track down a dirty senator in cahoots with Mohammed Khad Abn-Assan, a terrorist who's making plans for a Red Plague spread through vampire-to-human contact. Rardin delivers all the paranormal touches that fans of Hamilton, Harris and Whedon enjoy, and Jaz's jittery narration amuses, but the fang-filled plot, replete with action licks and paranormal theatrics, will have trouble standing out in this overcrowded field. (Oct.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

Rardin fuses spy girl with vampire slayer in this entertaining [debut] ...delivers all the paranormal touches that fans of Hamilton, Harris and Whedon enjoy Publishers Weekly A heroine whose past is darker than those she hunts, and a storyline that keeps you guessing...sure to be a winner. Keri Arthur, NEW YORK TIMES bestselling author Bond meets Dracula - only better than that. Jaz is an awesome, awe-inspiring heroine Patricia Briggs --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

More About the Author

Jennifer Rardin was born in Evansville, Indiana on April 28, 1965. Her mom told her almost every year what crappy weather it had been that day. However she liked to think of her birthday as the first frost-free date for her planting area. (See what happens when you grow up around farmers? Scary, huh?)

After a youth spent up to her eyeballs in fairy tales, Nordic myths and supernatural legends she made the solid and practical decision to go to college and major in English. After which she never really held a well paying job until Jaz Parks came along! Which is why her kids loved to sing that song to her from the musical "Avenue Q." The one that begins with the line, "What do you do with a B.A. in English?"

Once she figured out the answer to that question, she wrote Once Bitten, Twice Shy. She spent most of her adult life in an old farmhouse along with her husband and two teenagers. No pets since the cat died, but the birds seem to appreciate his absence. They come to feast at the feeders where she used to write on the back porch in the cool of the morning. A lovely tribute to a wonderful writer.

Jennifer died suddenly at home in September 2010, just after finishing the last Jaz Parks novel.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By SciFiChick VINE VOICE on October 9, 2007
Format: Paperback
Jaz Parks is a government agent. Her partner Vayl is a 300-year-old vampire. Their latest assignment is to assassinate a plastic surgeon involved in terrorism. But after one night of investigating Assan, they discover he's into a lot more than just helping to fund terrorism. Assan and his conspirators begin talking about releasing a deadly plague. And a high-ranking senator seems to be pulling the strings.

I can't begin to tell you how much I enjoyed this novel. Rardin ads a perfect blend of humor and humility to an otherwise strong female lead character. The story and characters pull you in and don't let go. I'm simply amazed that this is her debut novel. I can't wait to see Rardin's skills develop further in future releases. If I don't receive review copies for the sequels, you can bet I'll be standing in line at the bookstore on the release dates. Once Bitten, Twice Shy is in now in my list of top favorites for the year.

With a seemingly over-abundance of vampire novels, Once Bitten, Twice Shy stands out as a fun, light-hearted, supernatural, spy novel. Blending some of my favorite elements: fantasy, espionage, mystery, action, and just a touch of romance, makes a recipe for one extremely entertaining story.
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29 of 36 people found the following review helpful By L. J Lewis on March 28, 2008
Format: Paperback
Meet Jaz Parks. She's a flippant, barely competent CIA-trained vampire hunter easily distracted by a pretty male face. She has a strained relationship with her family. She has a tentative vampire love interest. And she's a special snow flake with a power so unique that no one else has it. In essence, she's just like every most other urban fantasy heroines that have been cluttering up the landscape as of late. To make matters worse for Jaz, she's trapped in a derivative shoe-string plot padded with heaping helpings of filler and the story still manages not to clear three hundred pages.

Seriously, when reviewers are almost unanimously commenting on how unoriginal the plot is they should not be awarding the darn thing five stars like Halloween candy.

This book was an utter chore to read. It seems like whenever someone attempts the vampires turned secret agent plot it turns out badly. See the horrible, stinky, braindead mess that is the Darkwing Chronicles.

Jaz and her vampire partner Vayl are deep undercover so they can rub out a plastic surgeon with ties to the Raptor, a vampire terrorist. Strike one against Jaz is when she's a party staking out the bad guy's mansion and she runs into a man in the lady's room and promptly blows her cover. Strike two against Jaz occurs when you realize that she only has one mood and that's snarky. She yammers on like she doesn't take anything seriously and her humor falls flat. Authors need to realize that while the wise-cracking heroine is a genre staple, you parcel out the wit. If the characters do it at inappropriate times, they just end up sounding stupid rather than tough.

The plot involves Jaz and Vayl unraveling a vampire bioterrorism conspiracy that involves one of their CIA handlers.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Rachel Thern on March 8, 2008
Format: Paperback
Jaz Parks, who narrates the story, is a CIA assassin with a traumatic past. Her boss gives her an unusual partner: a 300-year old vampire named Vayl. Together they travel to Miami to crash the party of a doctor who is funneling money to a terrorist organization. Once there, they find that he is involved in a dangerous conspiracy involving other vampires and possibly a senator, and it could result in the deaths of countless people if they don't intervene.

The main problem I have with the book is the narrator - we're supposed to believe that she's deeply traumatized, but she comes off rather chirpy and every scene is interrupted with her thoughts involving random pop culture references, regardless of the amount of danger and violence going on. She also has giggling fits when in stressful, sensitive situations. She is meant to be 25 but seems more like a teenager. That the CIA thinks she is emotionally competent to be a "top assassin" really stretches the credibility of the plot (I know believability is not meant to be a top point of this book, but a book's world should be internally consistent, and Jaz's world seems to be pretty much like ours with a few supernatural elements thrown in). Vayl has the potential to be interesting but his character is not very developed, and why he fixates on Jaz remains a mystery, at least to me.

Given Florida's water table, it seems unlikely to me that Miami would have extensive basements or underground spaces, but if I've got my geology wrong, feel free to correct me.

I don't usually read in this genre, but I thought I would enjoy this. If you enjoy all vampire romance type series, you might want to disregard my review, but I'm sure there are books out there similar to this one but with much better world and character development.
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12 of 16 people found the following review helpful By C. Farley VINE VOICE on November 9, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
derivitive? Take the best aspects of many of the urban paranormal novels out now--a fussy, picky but oddly supportive boss, unusual cases featuring a lot of ancient magic, a compelling, attractive but distant male partner, an affinity for wearing lots of weapons, using guns/knives extremely well, etc., etc. You got the picture. We have travelled in this territory before--but I don't really mind with this book because we like and care about the characters, setting, action and story are first rate. So bring on the rest of the series--I'm hooked again!
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