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Review: Junkyard Cats by Faith Hunter

I’ll admit right off the bat that I’m a huge Faith Hunter fan. I love her Jane Yellowrock series. But when she announced she had a new project coming out, one different from her current series, I was hesitant. Too many authors I like have started new series that lacked that special spark. Boy, did Hunter prove me wrong. Junkyard Cats is a fun romp in a new world and new genre.

Before I get to the review, I have to give a tip of the hat to Hunter on how she built up the story. She teased her fans about a “new shiny” she was working on. All she told us was it wasn’t set in any of her already known worlds and it would be audio-only initially. We waited, wondering, hoping for the next tease. It was well worth the wait.

Now for the important stuff.

Hunter-junkyard cats

From the author of the best-selling Jane Yellowrock and Soulwood series comes a tough new heroine who is far more than she seems.

After the Final War, after the appearance of the Bug aliens and their enforced peace, Shining Smith is still alive, still doing business from the old scrapyard bequeathed to her by her father. But Shining is now something more than human. And the scrapyard is no longer just a scrapyard, but a place full of secrets that she has guarded for years.

This life she has built, while empty, is predictable and safe. Until the only friend left from her previous life shows up, dead, in the back of a scrapped Tesla warplane. Clutched in her cold fingers is a note to Shining—warning her of a coming attack.

With dread, Shining realizes: someone knows who she is. Someone knows what she is guarding. Will she be able to protect the scrapyard? Will she even survive? Or will Shining have to destroy everything she loves to keep her secrets out of the wrong hands?

©2020 Faith Hunter (P)2019 Audible Originals, LLC

Look, I could spend a lot of time telling you why I love this story — and there are a lot of reasons. Simply put, it comes down to entertainment. From the very beginning, this audiobook drew me in and kept my attention. The narrator, who will be familiar to those who listened to the Jane Yellowrock series, does an excellent job pulling us into Shining’s world. Hunter does her usual superlative job dropping cookie crumbs for us to follow, planting questions in our heads that we want answered. There’s more, believe me.

I could answer some of the criticisms, most of which can all be answered by remembering this is a short novel. That means there isn’t room to spend page after page world building and giving the reader the detailed history of the war, our characters, etc.  There are some who have a hard time moving from one “world”, and one genre, to another where a favorite author is concerned. I’ll be honest, that was one of my concerns going into this.

But it comes down to one thing for me. Was I entertained?

The short answer is “Hell, yeah!”

This is one of those audiobooks I will be going back to very soon for a re-listen. But there’s more. I’ve blogged her before about how a teacher used reading for a punishment for my son when he was in elementary school. Thanks to a wonderful youth librarian at our local public library, I got him back into reading through manga and audiobooks. Junkyard Cats is one of those audiobooks we’d have listened to on our way to and from school (okay, maybe when he was a little older). It is one we would definitely listen to together now.

In short, Junkyard Cats is a great deal of fun.

Is it perfect? No, but then nothing is. I also want a sequel yesterday. From what I understand, and I really hope I’m right, Hunter is working on a followup. But the only way to insure it is to buy the audiobook, or the print version which will follow later, and leave reviews.

So here’s your chance. If you are a Faith Hunter fan, if you are a SF fan, check out Junkyard Cats. This is a must “read” (or listen, as is the case this time).


Featured image by Felix Lichtenfeld from Pixabay

About the author

Writer, proud military mom and possessed by two crazy cats and one put-upon dog. Writes under the names of Amanda S. Green, Sam Schall and Ellie Ferguson.


  1. Too bad, audiobooks don’t come in KU. If they did, I might try this one based on the review. 😉

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