Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Queen of the Night by J.A. Jance

Title: Queen of the Night
Author: J. A. Jance
Publisher: William Morrow, an imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers
Date: 7/27/2010

Queen of the Night is the fourth in the Walker family series. This series has always struck me as a bit darker and grittier than Jance's other series, but with Queen of the Night she seems to have written a more intricate suspense novel that takes the focus off of the evil deeds of the bad guys and places it on the connections between characters. The resultant beauty in those connections and the blessings that can come out of tragic events and circumstances is a major focus in this book.

The complex character relationships could have been difficult to follow, but Jance's story flowed exceptionally well and made those connections effortless to follow. The relational aspect of the book also had an extraordinary symmetry to it -- rather like the "circle of life" concept. There was a lyricism to this story that I haven't fully experienced in Jance's other works and, I think, makes this one shine above the rest.

For those, like me, who have grown up in the Southwest there is plenty of regional atmosphere. The desert flora is represented by the Night-blooming Cereus which blooms once a year and has symbolic significance to the Tohono O'oodham people. Jance also weaves into her own story some of the legends of the Tohono O'oodham people (Desert People).

This is, hands down, the best Jance novel I have ever read. Get it. Read it. Really.

Thank you to the publisher, William Morrow an imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers, for providing me with a review copy of Queen of the Night through the LibraryThing Early Reviewers program.


  1. I read a few books by this author but then was disappointed in one or two so i stopped:(

  2. I've no idea who this author is, yet in the summer, I tend to read "out of comfort zone" and may have to take a look, so thanks for this! Also, intersting to hear you grew up in the southwest - I've been to Sedona a few times but otherwise have NO knowledge of the SW except that I keep telling husband that I think we will one day move to Santa Fe!

  3. Diane: Sorry to hear that. She has several series. I've had fun with the Joanna Brady series (Bisbee, AZ) and the J.P. Beaumont series (Seattle). The Walker series (Tucson area) starts out pretty dark and it took me awhile to appreciate the Ali Reynolds series (revolves around Sedona).

    Oh: I hope you try Jance. And I still need to go to Santa Fe!