Title: The Swan and The Jackal
Author: J.A. Redmerski
Read the review for book 1 Killing Sarai
I am totally, completely, insanely, and unapologetically in love with this book, with this series, with Fredrik, and with this author, so brace yourself because this review might get a little long.
Ok, first things first…that cover. This author never hits a bad note when it comes to her covers, but really this has to be one of my favorites. It’s absolutely stunning. I know the old adage “don’t judge a book by its cover” exists for a reason but when it looks this amazing, I say judge away! And I know Redmerski has changed the cover of the first two books multiple times (and they are all stunning as well) but I really really hope she doesn’t change this one too. It’s gory and elegant and perfect. So let’s all take a moment to admire the majesty that is this cover…ok moment over. On to the story!
And oh what a story this was. The Swan and the Jackal is the third installment of the In the Company of Killers series, and I can’t believe I’m saying this because I was obsessed with the first two, but this one might be my favorite. While Izabel and Victor still play a prominent role in this book, this is very much Fredrik’s, the “specialist” with a very special set of skills, story. After reading Reviving Izabel, I found Fredrik to be one of the most compelling characters in this series and I had been DYING for his story. Finally getting it I can say that I was not disappointed on any level. Fredrik was just as sexy, lethal, cunning, violent, and conflicted as I expected him to be, but we get the added bonus of seeing just how deep his love for one woman goes, the lengths he goes to for her, and the torture he feels when he finds himself drawn to another woman. Make no mistake though. For all the swooning I did over Fredrik, he is still very much a fucked up individual. This is a man that tortures and kills people for a living, not only because he likes it but because he NEEDS it, he craves it, he HAS to do it or he’ll become even crazier than he already is without it. But he’s incredibly self aware for being so crazy. He very much recognizes how demented he is. On the outside he is the very picture of refinement with his Armani suits, unflappable attitude, air of superiority, and impeccable manners. But on the inside he has a murderous psycho streak as well as a strong romantic streak that runs deep and the polarity makes him all the more fascinating.
At the beginning of the story we find out Fredrik’s wife, Seraphina is still very much alive because as it turns out he could never bring himself to kill her all those years ago when she turned on The Order and betrayed him in the process. Now however, Fredrik is determined to find her because Seraphina apparently has completely lost whatever sanity she had left and is killing innocent young women in a sick cat and mouse game trying to get to Fredrik. The key to him finding his wife however, is Cassia, a young woman who suffers from amnesia, and is connected to Seraphina in ways that nobody could’ve guessed. While working to get Cassia her memories back as well as protecting her from his wife, Fredrik becomes drawn to her…her innocence, her vulnerability, her light. In every way she is the antithesis of Seraphina…his dark angel, his salvation, his partner who taught him how to channel his bloodlust and indulged every dark fantasy he ever had. He finds himself caught between these two women and the dilemma that in order to save one, he might have to sacrifice the other.
Every time I read a new book by JA she continuously surpasses my expectations and always manages to surprise me. She always has a twist in her stories, and holy hell did she have a doozy of a twist in here. I should’ve been reading this book with with a fainting couch and smelling salts because i swear she knocked me on my ass at one point and for good measure she did it again. And it was the kind of twist that had me going back and rereading the book because all of a sudden parts of the story starting fitting together like a puzzle piece making the picture so much clearer. This book had my emotions all over the place. I was scared to read the end but I was so addicted I couldn’t stop, and I didn’t stop except to pee and sleep. That’s it. I applaud the author for challenging herself and trying different genres because she’s too talented to limit herself to just New Adult or contemporary romance. In The Company of Killers is at times violent, dark, somewhat disturbing, and the characters are unapologetically fucked up. But this series is also compelling, seductive, superb, and completely addictive. I don’t know how many she plans to write but I don’t want it to ever end. If I could shout from the rooftops, take out a billboard in Times Square, or hire a sky writer to declare my love for The Swan and the Jackal I would because I love it that much and I can’t wait to see what the author does next because she no doubt will find new ways to break my heart all over again, but I always have faith that by the end of the story she will somehow put it back together.
“But I happened to like where I am, confined in a sunless, starless, rainless room with only my thoughts for company on some days. I guess it’s the price I pay for being in love with the Devil.”
“I want to take her. Now. Press her tight pink flesh against the wall and ravage her little body violently from the inside out. I want to mark her with my blade and lick the blood from her wounds, as I used to do with Seraphina.”
“I can’t bring myself to ask her if I’m hurting her. I want to hurt her. I want to feel her breaking beneath me. To see the tears in her eyes. To feel her shudder beneath me. I want to know that she wants the pain as much as I want to inflict it.”
“That treacherous little black heart that sits behind my ribs, as always when I think of her, begins to beat to a slow and ominous rhythm, betraying me so cruelly that I wish I could rip it from my chest and be free of it forever.”
Do you pin!? We LOVE Pineterst & JA Redmerski LOVES Pinterest too! SO to enter this giveaway all you have to do is 1 PIn this review on Pinterest! 1 winner will get all 3 ebooks in the series gifted to them from amazon. Ends 3/15/14 at 8pm EST