Supernatural Slayer (Supernatural Slayer #1) by Devyn Jayse
November 21, 2018
**A deep thank you is sent directly to the author for sending me an ARC in exchange for an honest review**
I love that I live in a time where more and more female authors are getting their voices heard and more and more female heroines are being created by these female authors. I look forward to books that have a strong female lead and perhaps that’s why many of them have not…panned out, the way I hoped they would.
I was excited to receive a copy of Supernatural Slayer by Devyn Jayse. The story seemed like exactly the type that would transport me into a new world. I was fully ready for this, but it just never got to that golden moment. While the story is there and the writing decent, the MC left something to be desired. She just wasn’t relatable and I found the character falling back on the very overdone trope of, “I want to make my girl tough, I know I will have her break all the men that come into contact with her.”
Trust me when I say, there are other ways to make your heroine a bad ass without having to incorporate a weird ball busting habit. It is unfortunate that this author decided to go the way of the trope.
Meet Aisha, a half witch/half human who works as a supernatural bounty hunter in Barcelona (this really doesn’t play a key part and honestly I kept forgetting where the story was taking place throughout the entirety of the book). She has a roommate who is half angel/half demon that falls into the very cliched “overly sexualized, but can’t find a decent man bestie” type. We also see Aisha take down a few supernaturals, one Shapeshifter and a Vampire.
GOOD POINT: I would be lying if I said I didn’t enjoy the fight scenes a little. Though they could have been written better I got the gist of what was happening and I always finished a scene being impressed at how the fight went down. Not to say that some of it seems impossible, but even if it is you have to write it in such a way that presents itself as possible. I think the author did alright with that.
These were bad ass scenes that played out well, but every time Aisha finished a job and had to go back to acting relatively normal, she couldn’t seem to pull it off. This made the character clunky and awkward to read. There were no smooth transitions from the bounty hunter fight scenes to the normal college aged girl scenes. These jump cut transitions made the story telling almost difficult to follow, but not unreadable.
Through these jobs as a bounty hunter we also discover that she moonlights as the feared Supernatural Assassin (#3 on the Supernatural Bureau of Investigation’s Most Wanted List) Ah, yes the SBI. Probably the cheesiest thing in this book and something I could have done without. Look, I get why it was needed for the story and maybe with the way the plot went there was no other way to showcase it. I just wish the author had picked a different name.
Anyway, the SBI, along with some other supernatural entities that are basically career criminals, are looking for her so she decides to go out on a double date with her Roommate. So of course she ends up having a one night stand with a dude she barely knows. Now, I’m all for women doing their thing and having fun one night stands, but if you are being hunted by supernatural police and criminals, perhaps this is not the smartest move. Because, surprise surprise, mister One-Night-Stand-Rafael is an SBI Agent who just straight up hands her over to his boss, after witnessing her murder another Vampire of course.
In order to avoid jail time she agrees to be a consultant for the SBI and at the same time, continue banging Agent Rafael, because why the fuck not? There is this really cliched scene where they have her fight the top agents in the bureau, taking them each down easily to prove her skills. Then she fights Rafael, but that becomes weirdly sexual. These were probably the only fight scenes I didn’t care for.
Now at this point we are about 65% into the book and we finally get to the entire point of the thing. The SBI is looking for Vampire Paul, who is mentioned earlier in the book a few times by Aisha as he is her ex-boyfriend that she killed. Honestly, this was an easy thing to see coming, but I’m not really sure there was any other way to go about it as I am not an expert in how to write murder mysteries.
So Vampire Paul is hellbent on exposing the Supernatural World to humans, which is apparently why Aisha killed him in the first place. I don’t know about you, but the way this explanation is written was incredibly weak. If I was in this world and listened to Aisha explain her reasoning for killing Vampire Paul I would have screamed “MURDERER” in her face. So he wants to expose the Supernatural world, but even she admits that he didn’t have much influence at the time and just straight up decided to kill him anyway. I just think this entire story line could have been much stronger had a deeper backstory been made.
At this point the heat is on to find Vampire Paul before he can follow through with his vile, evil plan to expose the supernatural world and all its inhabitants to humans through the use of…journalism. Yeah, big bad Vampire Paul who Aisha acts super scared of is literally enlisting the help of his favorite newspaper columnist from a no-name newspaper to “tell the story of the century.”
But, like how are you going to get humans to believe this without reducing this newspaper (which is probably on its last leg if it’s taking stories like this seriously) down to the new National Enquirer? The honest truth is you can’t! But this plot hole doesn’t seem to bother the author as we get almost a montage of Aisha sneaking around her and her beau’s old haunts hoping to find a trace of him. I never doubted Aisha’s tracking/bounty hunter skills before this point, but how are you the top bounty hunter and number three assassin with the hunting skills of a domestic house cat?
If I wait by this window surely a bird will fly by.
WHAT!? Who thinks, yes the boyfriend I attempted to murder will surely hold our special places dear to his heart and return to them often enough for me to find him, but the police will never have a clue and in fact know nothing of any of these places. This doesn’t make sense, especially if you want the readers to believe that the SBI is a force to be reckoned with. This makes them look like morons if I’m being completely honest.
After leaving a weird message with the journalist for Vampire Paul to find, both Aisha and Rafael follow her to her apartment under an invisibility cloak spell in order to ambush Vampire Paul. This works. Except Vampire Paul manages to kill the journalist and escape. Now that she’s dead under mysterious circumstances, per her instructions her editor will most definitely print her crazed story about supernatural beings in the human world. Solid plan.
Except Aisha comes up with the idea to take her to a Vampire friend and have him turn her to prevent the story from coming out and saving her life I guess. She then flits off to find Vampire Paul in the same god damn movie theater that she had been scoping out earlier. They exchange a few words that don’t really drive the tension the author wants us to feel home and then a swarm of SBI appears out of nowhere and arrests him. That’s it.
I know this is a series, so I anticipate that further books will elaborate on a few things. All in all I didn’t dislike this book, there were just a few things that I found less appealing as far as the story and characters are concerned. I can’t say for certain that I would pick up the next book in the series. As I said in the beginning, it just didn’t bring me into the world that was created and I couldn’t relate to any of the characters, so I think that would be a no from me. Though I will say that if you enjoy fantasy/supernatural stories that have a cop/crime show edge, then this may just be the book for you.
BAD POINT: Did it have to be more vampires?
2.5 Stars Out of 5
You should also read:
Book Review: To Laugh Well: A Novel by J.C. Alaimo
Book Review: The Colour of Magic by Terry Prachett