Willow’s Review of the Jane Jameson Series by Molly Harper
Book Descriptions by Goodreads
Maybe it was the Shenanigans gift certificate that put her over the edge. When children’s librarian and self-professed nice girl Jane Jameson is fired by her beastly boss and handed twenty-five dollars in potato skins instead of a severance check, she goes on a bender that’s sure to become Half Moon Hollow legend. On her way home, she’s mistaken for a deer, shot, and left for dead. And thanks to the mysterious stranger she met while chugging neon-colored cocktails, she wakes up with a decidedly unladylike thirst for blood.
Jane is now the latest recipient of a gift basket from the Newly Undead Welcoming Committee, and her life-after-lifestyle is taking some getting used to. Her recently deceased favorite aunt is now her ghostly roommate. She has to fake breathing and endure daytime hours to avoid coming out of the coffin to her family. She’s forced to forgo her favorite down-home Southern cooking for bags of O negative. Her relationship with her sexy, mercurial vampire sire keeps running hot and cold. And if all that wasn’t enough, it looks like someone in Half Moon Hollow is trying to frame her for a series of vampire murders. What’s a nice undead girl to do?
Once a devoted children’s librarian, Jane Jameson now works at a rundown occult bookstore. Once a regular gal, she’s now a vampire. And instead of a bride, she’s an eternal bridesmaid — which leads her to question where exactly her relationship with her irresistibly sexy sire, Gabriel, is headed. Mercurial, enigmatic, apparently commitment-phobic vampires are nothing if not hard to read. While Jane is trying to master undead dating, she is also donning the ugliest bridesmaid’s dress in history at her best friend Zeb’s Titanic-themed wedding. Between a freaked-out groom-to-be, his hostile werewolf in-laws, and Zeb’s mother, hell-bent on seeing Jane walk the aisle with Zeb, Jane’s got the feeling she’s just rearranging the proverbial deck chairs.
Meanwhile, Half Moon Hollow’s own Black Widow, Jane’s Grandma Ruthie, has met her match in her latest fiancé. He smells like bad cheese and has a suspicious history of dead spouses. But Jane’s biting her tongue. After all, would a nice girl really think she has a future with a vampire?
Nothing sucks the romance out of world travel like a boyfriend who may or may not have broken up with you in a hotel room in Brussels. Jane Jameson’s sexy sire Gabriel has always been unpredictable, but the seductive, anonymous notes that await him at each stop of their international vacation, coupled with his evasive behavior over the past few months, finally push Jane onto the next flight home to Half Moon Hollow — alone, upset, and unsure whether Gabriel just ended their relationship without actually telling her.
Now the children’s-librarian-turned-vampire is reviving with plenty of Faux Type O, some TLC from her colorful friends and family, and her plans for a Brave New Jane. Step One: Get her newly renovated occult bookstore off the ground. Step Two: Support her best friend, Zeb, and his werewolf bride as they prepare for the impending birth of their baby…or litter. Step Three: Figure out who’s been sending her threatening letters, and how her hostile pen pal is tied to Gabriel. Because for this nice girl, surviving a broken heart is suddenly becoming a matter of life and undeath….
This was an enjoyable series filled with enough humor to send this cat falling off the bed in gales of laughter and quoting various lines to her fellow felines for days. The series also kept me out of mischief because I wanted to find out what happened next.
I loved how Harper starts each chapter off with a line from a book which is pertinent to Jane’s life at the time each novel takes place. These lines, though meant to be tips and lessons for Jane, could also be adapted to feline or human life. Some of the tips from the “Mating Rituals and Love Custom’s of the Were” found in book 2 are especially appropriate for those who are in the process of planning weddings.
One of the greatest things this series brings to readers is the opportunity to watch Jane grow and change as she tackles each event in her life. Throughout each novel Jane becomes more sure of herself, stronger, and less reliant on her friends to pull her out of tight jams. Admittedly she still has moments where she is naive and whines a lot, but who doesn’t fall into that trap now and then?
As I read each book, I found myself becoming attached to each character, especially the secondary characters, in the series. By book 3 I was both crying and cheering as Harper took two of my favorite characters and completely changed their lives. It’s refreshing to find an author who makes her secondary characters just as special and important as her main characters.
These books are fast paced reads and well worth the time checking out. For further adventures in the Jane Jameson series, check Molly Harper’s companion blog to read a short story which takes place shortly after the events of the third book. Also be on the lookout for the next book in the Jane Jameson series, Nice Girl’s Don’t Bite Their Neighbors, due out February 2012. You can bet that this feline will be picking it up and reading it!