Magic Strikes

This review contains spoilers.

Magic Strikes by Ilona Andrews

 4345498

  • Genre : Urban Fantasy
  • Date Started :  July 22, 2015
  • Date Finished : July 23, 2015

Description: You can read the full description from the author’s website. This is the 3rd book in the Kate Daniel Series.

I am in love with this series and I’m finding it incredibly hard to not read ahead of my book club. Everything about this series has me hooked and ready for more. I’m usually that person who would skim the fighting scenes but not in this book. There is so much action in this book and it flows well. This book is about Kate getting pulled into a world of underground arena/gladiator style fighting.You read that correctly, gladiator style fighting, and apparently this is not her first time in this style of fight.

Much to Kate’s frustration she finds herself caring for a lot of people. I don’t mean caring for a sickly relative, I mean friends. Kate’s always been told to trust only herself and to not make friends. This is a constant struggle for Kate, especially as her bond grows with Andrea, Derek and the pack. Kate has a big heart, she can’t help it. So when she gets a call to help with a pack death and is told they don’t need her help, she is slightly uneasy. It’s not her job and if they needed help they would ask. After one of the longest days ever, she goes home and is in fairly good spirits because she knows she has 1 slice of pie left. Kate’s super excited about the pie, it’s sort of hilarious.

Kate gets a call from Saiman, informing her that Derek broke into his house. It’s Kate to the rescue and she finds out that Derek is after tickets to the Midnight Games. Kate negotiates Derek’s release but is then pulled into going with Saiman to the games to help him evaluate a team competing. Derek uses this chance to ask Kate to give someone at the games a note, a girl someone. Kate is suspicious but thinks Derek just has a crush on some girl.

During the first night at the games, Kate learns that the girl Derek is looking for wants to leave the cult/group she joined, the same group that Saiman wanted Kate to evaluate. The girl will give the pack information if they help her escape. Kate reads the note after the girl throws it away and discovers that Derek has arranged a spot to meet. Too bad the girl turns on him and Derek is left outside one of the packs properties and is severely beaten. It’s really bad and it made me feel so strongly for this kid and so much anger to the ones who hurt him. Derek may act like a man but before this incident, he was just a teenage smart ass with lots of confidence.

Jim and his group of guards hide Derek and the other bodies from Curran. Derek is in bad shape and they think he might go loup. Kate learns that the pack has been hiding it all from Curran. Turns out that Curran’s rule number 1 is the pack is forbidden from participating in the Midnight games after what happened when he took over. Jim has been investigating and has an inside man in the games and thought Curran would not understand.

Things are super tense and Kate, because she is awesome, makes a comment to Curran telling him that her and Jim are running away together. Of course, Curran gets pissed and it’s hilarious. The tension between Kate and Curran was fantastic in this book. Curran and Kate make a bet, if he can find her and the pack members before the pack grace period is up, she has to cook him dinner, naked. So much tension! Curran does find them, of course but she traps him in a loup cage and tells Julie not to let him out before the hour is up.

The pack wants revenge on the group that has been killing pack members so Jim, a few pack members, Kate and Saiman entering the Midnight Games. Lot of great fighting scenes happen when they are at the games. We discover Saiman’s true form, get to see Jim, Derek, Kate, Andrea, Raphael and Dali (a clumsy partially blind tiger) fight together. Shit hits the fan though when Curran, Mohan and Aunt B. show up at the Games. Curran replaces Saiman on the team and they end up kicking major butt.

We end up learning that they are dealing with mythological figures from India, who somehow have tricked M-scanners to think they are human. The bad guys in this book eat the pack members they take and want to steal the prize gem from the Midnight Games. This gem can cause the shifters to not shift and they want to use it to destroy the pack. We find out a little more about Roland and how he is connected to this group of mythological creatures and how the pack is growing too large for Roland to ignore anymore. We also learn Kate’s big secret and exactly why she is so worried about her blood. She shatters a weapon that can only be destroyed by Roland himself, which basically announces who she is.

Everything that happens to Derek in this book made my heart melt and you know his character has been forever changed. Julie’s school experience and how Kate handles what the kid is going through is completely heart warming. And now we just need to wait to see how Kate and Curran’s naked dinner turns out. Oh wait, I think Curran said she could wear underwear that he picks out.

This book had me hooked. We learned so much and experienced a lot of important story building events.  It was really hard not reading ahead so I’m giving this book 5 stars. I would read it again and again and it only reinforces my love for all things Kate Daniels.

Tangled Taurus Book Review Rating 5 Stars

Grave Peril

This review contains spoilers. 

Grave Peril by Jim Butcher

91476

  • Genre : Urban Fantasy
  • Date Started :  July 6, 2015
  • Date Finished : July 9, 2015

Description: You can read the full description from the author’s website. This is the 3rd book in the Dresden Files.

This book in the Dresden Files series is about the spirit world crossing over into our world, Vampire politics and old enemies. This book is not as exciting as the first two but it’s still enjoyable. I did feel a little out of sorts when the book started though. I felt like I missed a few chapters and kept asking myself, who is this guy with Dresden? Were we supposed to know him or something? The whole book is based of an event that we were not there for. Little hints here and there about a case Dresden, Michael and Murphy and her agents worked. The entire book felt like I had missed out on something important. This really frustrated me.

So quick run down of the book. Susan and Dresden are apparently in a committed relationship. Bad guy breaks part of the spirit world while trying to take out people close to Dresden. Dresden frantically attempts to stop the bad guy before his friends are killed. Dresden goes into the spirit world to chase a ghost and runs into his grandmother/godmother, who wants to turn him into one of her dogs. Dresden attends the Red Courts ball with Michael to see if they can catch the person trying to kill people.  Huge big bad fight happens at the party, Susan shows up and annoys the hell out of me and we meet Thomas. Susan is bitten and then the bad guy makes a Dresden suit and wears it around to terrorize people and cause more problems for Dresden. The bad guy is defeated and Susan moves away.

Another quick and entertaining read. While the story was not the best and hard to follow at times, Butcher writes some fantastic characters and some not so great ones. Michael, a true Man of God, made me uncomfortable. I don’t do well around religious talk and it’s probably just me but his lectures to Dresden made me uncomfortable. If I met this man in real life, I would think he was nuts. Dresden handles him fantastically though. Towards the end of the book, he started to grow on me. Susan who is Dresden’s girlfriend is one of the characters that I can’t stand. I’m totally supportive of ambitious woman. I’m not supportive of woman who seem like they would do anything for a story. Every time Dresden and Susan talked I felt like she just wanted a story and not to mention what an idiot she is. I mean come on, why would you go to a Vampire’s party, uninvited and sneak in? Do you want to get yourself killed? I just don’t get what Dresden sees in her. The “love” they talk about is all talk and no substance. I’m glad she moved away. My last person I want to mention is Thomas and I loved him. Yes he is a vampire and I hope he does not become a totally asshole. I’d like to see and hear more from Thomas in later books.

I enjoyed Dresden in this one. His sense of humor makes me laugh and while his fighting style can sometimes bug me, his personality makes up for it. Attending the Vampire Custom party as a cheesy vampire, that’s pretty great. Overall the story was engaging and entertaining if not a little confusing. I don’t think I’d read this story again but I definitely look forward to reading the next book in the series. I’m giving Grave Peril by Jim Butcher a solid 3 stars.

Tangled Taurus Book Review Rating  Stars

Burned

This review contains spoilers. 

Burned by Karen Marie Moning

12444297

  • Genre : Paranormal Romance – Urban Fantasy
  • Date Started :  July 5, 2015
  • Date Finished : July 10, 2015

Description: You can read the full description from the author’s website. This is the 7th book in the Fever series.

Not a lot happens in this book and it was a let down compared to all of Moning’s other books. I still love the characters and the world and had a blast reading the dialog between characters and internal dialog but the story was just sooooooo boring. I kept reading thinking, is something going to happen and when is Dani coming back? We hear more about the story of the Unseelie King, the song of making and his concubine, but nothing worth knowing, yet.

Dani disappears into the mirror world or Shadows or whatever they call it pretty early in the book and stays gone for 75% of the book. I never realized how much I would miss Dani’s annoyingness, is that a word, until she was gone. Dani made things interesting and exciting because she was always rushing into things. Yes it was frustrating early on but it kept the story moving and me hooked. As soon as the smart ass, fast talking fast paced kid was gone, the plot slowed down to a slow crawl. I knew that Moning had to age Dani and had wondered how she would do that. I NEVER expected Moning to do it this way. I feel like the new character introduction was not surprising at all but multiple personalities, really? I miss Dani and while I’m starting to like Jada, I want a nice mix of them both and not straight Jada.

While Dani is lost in the other realm, Mac gets a huge entourage she can’t get rid of and then literally disappears. Yes she becomes invisible. I have to say, Mac becoming invisible was one of the best parts about this book. It’s Mac, you know she is going to do things she should not and see things she should not. Sneaking around Chesters and following Ryodan around, watching certain someone’s making out and getting it on. I enjoyed Mac in this book, she was fantastic. Her and Barrons bickering back and forth at the most inappropriate time. They were great. Still a little mad at Barrons for what he did to Mac and hope they make up.

Other happenings, Unseelie Princesses, who should not exist pop into town. Jada takes over the abbey when Kat disappears. Kat’s being helped by Ryodan and Kasteo. Lor pretends to be pri-ya in order to get laid. Jada doesn’t have her Sword, still have no idea what happened with that. They rescue Christian from the hag who he sacrificed himself to in ICED. In the process of rescuing Christian, one of the druids is killed. Towards the end of the book, Mac is sneaking around Chesters and discovers the druid being brought back to life and wonders if they made him like the nine.

Overall I still enjoyed Burned and Moning’s ability to bring her characters to life. I’m over the switching character point of views every chapter though. I understand it makes it easier to immediately know who the voice is of the chapter but it seemed unnecessary. I’m giving Burned by Karen Marie Moning a 3.5 stars because it was good and I might read it again, just in the distant, way off and out there future.

Tangled Taurus Book Review Rating 3.5 Stars

Night Veil

This review contains spoilers. 

Night Veil by Yasmine Galenorn

9673866

  • Genre : Urban Fantasy – Paranormal Romance
  • Date Started :  July 2, 2015
  • Date Finished : July 8. 2015

Description: You can read the full description from the author’s website. This is the 2nd book in the Indigo Court series.

Night Veil leaves off where the first book ends. Grieve is still with the big bad, the indigo court and the vampires Cicely made a deal with constantly want her to do their bidding. Things at home are not that great, relationships mostly and things just keep getting worse. Kaylin starts off in the book in a coma and Cicely must wake him up by visiting the Bat People and deal with his demon, who decides now is the perfect time to come out and play. Cicely finds out who her father is, but that’s not really a surprise. I mean that was fairly obvious from the beginning. Cicely is betrayed, has her home blown up and forced to go on the run with a her rag tag group.

This is a tough one. Here is my dilemma with this series, I enjoy the concept of the book and story but I don’t like the execution. Night Veil was easy to read and it kept me hooked but I felt like this book could have been a novella. We do learn a lot of back story in this book and discover characters true sides. I still feel like most of this could have been added to the first book.

Some of the plot points felt forced, like Kaylin and his demon issue and pretty much every scene with the vampires. Every scene with the vampires makes me feel slimy and gross. Galenorn does a great job writing the vampires as freaky and ultra creepy. I’m still not convinced of the romance between Grieve and Cicely. I understand they have a bond and are destined to be together but it doesn’t feel real. Their emotions are not, they are not what I would expect from lovers destined to be together.

There were a few surprises, things I did not see coming, not at all. Leo snaps and in a burst of rage hits Cicely and all of a sudden he starts acting weird. This was so out of character, no build up to his switch in personality and now he has ulterior motive? All of the characters interactions with Lannan were odd. At first he is like he was in the first book and then he decides to help Cicely and her group. Lannan who apparently we can be sort of trusted now? One of the biggest shockers and out of left field was a ritual with Peyton’s mom to strip Cicely and Grieve’s bond in order to “protect” Peyton from her father. To do that sort of magic against the will of the person apparently is pretty horrible and the execution left me disliking Peyton’s mom. I think her betrayal was more of a shocker than anything else.

Like I mentioned before, this book is easy to read and has potential to be pretty good but execution is still lacking. We are reading this series for book club and at this point, I’m still entertained. I’m giving this book a 2.5 stars because it’s not bad, it’s entertaining but I probably won’t reread the series ever again.

Tangled Taurus Book Review Rating  2.5 Stars

Sins and Needles

This review contains spoilers. 

Sins & Needles by Karina Halle

16029994

  • Genre : Contemporary Romance
  • Date Started :  July 10, 2015
  • Date Finished : July 15, 2015

Description: You can read the full description from GoodReads. This is the 1st book in The Artists Trilogy.

This book is about a woman with many names…Okay she is a Con artist hence the many names. In this book she decides to move back to her home town, stop grifting and conning. Ellie wants to start fresh. She thinks everyone she used to know has probably moved away because why would anyone want to stay in a small town? Her Uncle tells her she can’t live with him and she runs into her ex Highschool best friend in a coffee shop her first day back. Starting fresh has not been as easy as she thought and when she hears that Camden, her ex best friend is rich, the con artist in her can’t resist the temptation. Things heat up between the two and we learn that Camden has always loved Ellie, even after she broke his heart back in highschool. Everything turns to shit though when Ellie breaks into Camden’s home and tries to steal his money, because he is well off, it’s ok, right?

In a twist, Camden knew this was coming. He had hoped it would not but knew he couldn’t trust Ellie and set her up to take the bait. In his mind, he wanted to move past the hurt she caused when they were in highschool and hoped that they could, if she would have not attempted to steal from him. Camden gets really angry, holds Ellie hostage and threatens her. He’s willing to let her go though if she agrees to help him. See Camden is in trouble and wants his own fresh start and thinks Ellie can get that for him. They spend a few days planning his new life and making a plan and then Ellie’s past catches up with her.

Ellie panics and convinces Camden they need to leave NOW. So they run and take the money that Camden has. This money isn’t really Camden’s though, it’s his ex-wife’s families money that he has been laundering for them. Now Ellie and Camden are going to casinos to launder money the way Ellie knows how, gambling, so they can escape both their pasts and start fresh. Ellie’s past catches up to them and eventually uses her Uncle to track her down. Camden suspects this to be a trap but Ellie just can’t leave without helping out her Uncle. Sure enough, her uncle sets her up but Camden and Ellie escape, but not for long. Javier, who is Ellie’s past lover and one major reason she has been running all this time, decides to team up with Camden’s ex’s family. Camden’s ex wife and child are then held and threatened until Ellie agrees to go with Javier.

I don’t want to say this was a bad book because it was not. It reads well and while I enjoyed the overall story, I didn’t care much for the characters. The story was going great for me until Ellie attempted to con Camden. The story went down hill from there for me. Part of that has to do with them being flawed characters who make horrible decision and sort of do bad things. I understand characters who are not perfect, who have issues and are effected by them but I’m over the sad and pointless pity parties some characters throw themselves. I was not a fan of Ellie character at all, everything, all of what she was bugged me. As for Camden, I don’t want to say I loved him or disliked him but the abrupt change in his personality multiple times though out the story threw me. I liked to see a character with so many sides and while some of the emotions were natural and flowed, some felt like they came out of left field. I got nice and sweet, confident, playful, then flashes of rage that frightened me, then docile, then more flashes of rage, back to sweet and playful, then suspicion.

I finished the book 5 days after I started it because once they, Ellie and Camden went on the run, I lost interest in the story. This is the first book in the Artist Trilogy and I’m not sure if I want to continue or not. I might push on sometime in the future but right now, I’m done with this series. I might try another series of the author though, just not this one. Overall I’m giving this book a 2.5 stars because I did enjoy the book in the beginning but I will not be reading it again.

Tangled Taurus Book Review Rating 2.5 Stars

The Chief

This review contains spoilers. 

The Chief by Monica McCarty

6620670

  • Genre : Historical Romance
  • Date Started :  May 2, 2015
  • Date Finished : May 26. 2015

Description: You can read the full description from the author’s website. This is book 1 of the Highland Guard series.

This book is about a Highlander Chief, a lady with hidden talents, deceit, mighty warriors, war and love.

Wanting to stay out of Scotland’s war and to reclaim his clan’s honor, Tor heads to a meeting with Robert Bruce and other clan leaders. His clan comes first and since his parents death, he’s sworn off everything but getting back his clans honor. At this meeting, Tor, our Highlander Chief gets caught in a compromising position with a young lady. To appease the woman’s father and avoid bringing war on his clan, Tor agrees to marrying the lady and is manipulated into training Robert Bruce’s special army. Tor doesn’t want a wife or any part of the upcoming war but now he has both.

Christina wants a fairy tale love story and for her sister and her to be safe from their father. After being manipulated by her father and ending up in a compromising position with a Highland Chief, Christina uses her wits to get her sister sent to the nunnery of her choosing and she gets a husband that sparks passion within her. Things don’t go the way Christina hoped and it’s getting harder to illicit any sort of emotional response from her husband, well besides anger.

This book should not have taken me so long to finish. Why did it take me so long? Because I didn’t want it to end! I’m not exactly sure how to describe this book. The Chief is a typical Highlander romance but the way the author told the story seems to set it apart from others I have read. Christina, while wanting a silly ideal Lancelot, was not overly silly or annoying. She was young and in love and wanted more than what she was getting. She valued herself and what she could bring to the marriage and I didn’t have moments when I thought, WHY are you doing that?? Then we have Tor, who has a hard time with emotions. Out of the two mains, he was the one that frustrated me the most. He was so cut off and cold at times and his reluctance to trust Christina was infuriating. Those cold moments made the times when he was sweet towards Christina even better and more heartwarming, the small amount we got anyways. I let myself get into this book. I was sad and heartbroken when Christina was. I was happy when Tor was happy and I’m pretty sure I had tears a few times.

The only problem I had with the book was when Tor used a nickname with Christina. I get that you use the nickname to drill home the fact that Tor was being affectionate and was softening towards Christina, but the nickname itself threw me out of the story every time. I just thought of Napoleon dynamite, a stripper or Bob’s Burgers every time he mentioned the nickname. I’ll definitely read this author again but I’m still not sure about this book in particular. The level of romance and tension was just not high enough for me but I know I’m going to the library to pick up the next one in the series!

I’m giving The Chief by Monica McCarty 4 stars.

Tangled Taurus Book Review Rating 4 Stars

Shadow Of Night

This review contains spoilers. 

Shadow of Night by Deborah Harkness

11559200

  • Genre : Romance – Historical – Supernatural
  • Date Started :  January 10, 2015
  • Date Finished : May 7, 2015

Description: You can read the full description from the author’s website. This is the 2nd book in the All Souls Trilogy.

I really wanted to like this book. I loved the start of the series yet this book felt like a chore. I was expecting a book much like the first one and most of this book was a slow and somewhat boring history lesson. That’s not all I got but the entire time they were in London I wanted to fall asleep and dreaded continuing. I was expecting a grand adventure since the whole reason for time walking was to get the manuscript/book and find Diana a witch to help with her powers. I know the reason they traveled back to this particular time but really, can you pick a worse time to travel back in time to find a witch? Maybe a time in history where witch burning and hunts were not all the rage?

Most of the new characters you meet when they first get to the past are either forgettable or highly annoying. I did like his friends that at least tried to make Diana feel welcome. I really liked the stammering Henry, Phillip grew on me and Gallowglass was amazing. I found it heartwarming for Diana to take in Jack and loved watching Jack and Matthew’s relationship grow. I also enjoyed Diana taking in Annie and making her feel like part of the family. Even if Annie was meant to spy on them for a vampire. I did not like either of the main characters personality changes when they time walked. Matthew’s change of character was way more overprotective and controlling and Diana seemed to get more annoying. I gave some leniency to Matthew because he was a different person in this time period and he needed to keep up appearances. Diana on the other hand knows about time periods and still tries to be a 21st century woman. They each got better the longer they were back in time so that helped, a little.

Another thing I didn’t like about this book is how many villains there are. I swear, every time Diana and Matthew were in a good place and sort of happy, some new horrible person pops up to ruin everything. It was incredible frustrating. I know that you need someone to be the bad guy in books but this book was crammed full of people who either wanted to kill them, get in their way or were too nosy for their own good. The bad guy could also be a “friend” who is so drugged on opiates that he kidnaps Diana and plans to kill her to get Matthew back! Ugh I really hated Kit and was not at all sad that he died a horrible death! I still have no idea how Matthew and Kit’s talk went and whether or not Matthew forgave Kit like Diana suggested.

The story starts to pick up when Diana finally meets the witches who help her discover what type of witch she is. Learning about Diana’s powers was fascinating and meeting the Jewish weaver was pretty cool. The witches Diana meets really made the story enjoyable. I was a little surprised that, even with all the crap they were going through and all Diana’s time spent with the emperor’s dancer/painter, etc, that she pretty much forgot about studying her powers. I know the manuscript/book was so close and they were focusing on that but it still surprised me.

Towards the end, they finally get the book, after the pages are ripped out of course. When they start preparing to travel back to their own time after spending MONTHS in Elizabethan London, they run into Diana’s father. He helps her discover more about her powers, with the help of the witches before he travels back to his time. He also tells Diana and Matthew that the book is going to have to stay back in time. So while they accomplished 1 of their tasks, the 2nd task, the manuscript/book is still incomplete and they have to leave it behind. The bright side, at least they got a chance to see the manuscript/book when it was whole, even for a brief time. They also discovered that the pages that were ripped out might be available back in their own time. The also learn that the manuscript/book is literally made from the flesh of dead supernatural creatures, creepy.

Then we get back to present day and find out Em, Diana’s aunt has died. No build up, no real explanation, just died during the birth. I better get an explanation about this in the next book! I also want to know how much trouble their 7 months back in the past effected the present. Every thing I’ve read about time travel says that small changes can throw the entire future out of whack.

I’m still trying to figure if I liked this book or not. I started reading this book back in January and had to switch to audio because reading it felt like a chore. The woman who reads the audio did a fantastic job and I’m so happy I switched. I would not have finished had I needed to read this book. For me, the main story is interesting and I wanted to know what would happen. The author’s description of the past make you feel like you are really there but at the same time, parts of the story felt unnecessary. It’s like listening to a friend who has a great story to tell but they won’t get to the point.

I’ve had a hard time deciding on what rating to give this book. If I would have read the book I probably would have given up but the story was interesting enough to find another way to get through the story. For me her writing just didn’t engage me enough but I don’t feel like this book deserves 1 star. I’m giving Shadow of Night by Deborah Harkness  2 stars.

Tangled Taurus Book Review Rating 2 Stars

Monster

This review contains spoilers. 

Monster by A. Lee Martinez

7159704

  • Genre : Urban Fantasy – Supernatural – Paranormal – Fantasy – Humor
  • Date Started :  April 23, 2015
  • Date Finished : May 1, 2015

Description: You can read the full description from the author’s website.

Based off the book description, I was expecting a very different book.

Monster is a human who works for Cryptobiological Containment and Rescue Services, basically he traps mythological creatures. Judy is a human who has horrible luck and works at a grocery store. They don’t really like each other but Monster seems to hate everyone and Judy just seems unhappy with life and takes that out on others. They end up meeting each other due to yetis destroying the grocery store that Judy works at. She calls animal control and they send Monster and his sidekick, Chester. Chester is a paper gnome who is the only voice of reason and logic, even though he is not from this world and does not understand puny little human thoughts.

They end up running into each other again after Judy’s apartment is destroyed by trolls. Lots of bad things happen to Judy and she asks to do a ride along with Monster. Judy’s thinking of maybe having a career change. Problem is, Judy’s ability to remember and understand what’s going on with the mystical world is fleeting because some human brains don’t accept it as magic. She has to wear a rune on her forehead that helps her remember what she has been through and who Monster and Chester are. The book explains this and how magic is dying in this world and making it harder for most humans to recognize a mythological creature as what it is vs just a dog.

We find out later that Judy is a special human who is the universes plan to stopping Lotus, the leach, who has been abusing the power of the stone (the universe) for billions of years. Essentially Judy is the key to saving the world. This explains why Judy has always had such bad luck. The universe and her subconscious try to help her but the universe is sort of stupid and does not quite understand the way the human mind works. It sends Judy or Monster creatures to help but tends to only make things worse. Of course they figure out what’s going on and after Monster joins with the stone to absorb some of its knowledge, they are able to defeat Lotus and right the world. They stop Lotus from destroying humans and turning them all into cats.

Overall I was expecting a story about hunting monsters and that’s not what you get at all. While the story was a good idea and could have been something entertaining, it fell flat for me. Up until about 75% of the book, it was slow going. Instead of a thrilling and humorous monster hunt I got a boring story about a guy who only cares about himself and hates his job, a woman who is content with her life of unlucky living and a plot to destroy the world that was just meh. The book is not bad it’s just rather slow and not what I wanted.

I’m giving Monster by A. Lee Martinez a 2 star.

Tangled Taurus Book Review Rating 2 Stars

Magic Burns

This review contains spoilers. 

Magic Burns by Ilona Andrews

1811543

  • Genre : Urban Fantasy – Supernatural – Paranormal
  • Date Started :  April 30, 2015
  • Date Finished : April 30, 2015

Description: You can read the full description from the author’s website.

I’ve read this series before and am even more in love with it the 2nd time around.

This book starts off with Jim asking for back up on a Mercenary Guild gig. Towards the end of this gig, that has spun out of control, Jim gets called away on pack business and their mark is killed. Kate is forced to deal with the body and the object they were supposed to retrieve. She needs both to get the bounty and ends up cutting the head off the guy and grabbing the orb thing. Typical Kate Daniels, fast thinking and resourceful.

After dropping off her bounty, Derek, her amazing sidekick/babysitter makes a pretty simple request from the pack. The pack needs some help retrieving maps that were stolen from them. Sounds pretty simple and straight forward right? If you think about it, not so much. Even Kate questions how something like maps could be stolen from the pack, turns out the thief just disappears. Since Kate has followed in her old guardian Greg’s footsteps and has the honor of being friend of the pack, she feels obligated to help. Regardless of how much she wants to stay away from the pack and their leader Curran, she’s there to help. This straight forward task ends up putting Kate in the middle of a huge battle that could destroy Atlanta and with no one else there to help, it’s up to Kate.

After some investigating and tracking down clues, Kate finds herself tracking the same guy who killed her earlier bounty, a bowman named Bran. Turns out witches who worship Morrigan had their cauldron, a VERY special cauldron stolen from them by Morrigan’s greatest enemy. Bran is there to find the cauldron and while he is a pretty cool character, he’s also pretty secretive for 75% of the book. The enemy that stole the cauldron is also looking for one more thing and Kate keeps getting in their way. Things happen and they find what they are looking for. There is a magical dome over a part of Atlanta and the bad guys are filling it with an army. Kate, the witches and the pack defend the city in a bloody and brutal battle.

A lot happens in this book and we get to meet a few new characters. We learn more about the magic/tech issues going on. We learn that every 7 years there is a flare and that makes things go wonky for a while. I thought it was interesting that during these flares, the people shut down their operations. Learning about how the vampires are navigated was interesting as well. Made me think of a role playing game but way cooler.

We also get to meet Andrea who works for the order and is a beastkin. Her father was a hyenawere. When Andrea is injured we get to meet Clan Hyena. We also meet Red and Julie, Red is a power hungry jerk so I won’t talk about him. He gets what he deserves but you need to read the book to find out more. Julie is essentially an orphan that Kate is forced to take guardianship of. While I found it odd that Kate would form a bond so quickly with the kid, I loved Kate’s protectiveness of Julie. I’m assuming this bond is due to Kate’s own lack of a mother and her ability to be conscious of other people’s feelings. Ok so I just really like Kate Daniels. I love her wit, her bravado, her strength and her attitude. If I had a fictional hero it would be Kate. Speaking of Kate’s attitude, we get more banter, fighting and tension filled goodness from her and Curran. I’m reading this series again for my book club and it’s incredible hard to stop myself from reading the next book.

Overall this series has to be one of the most enjoyable series and author’s I’ve read. You get great characters, a growing and evolving world, plots that engage and an overall story that keeps you hooked.

I’m giving Magic Burns by Ilona Andrews a 5 star.

Tangled Taurus Book Review Rating 5 Stars

When do you decide to give up?

That is me every time I attempt to read Shadow of Night by Deborah Harkness. I have a hard time giving up on books. My curiosity screams at me, “We must know what happens” and unless it’s a HORRIBLE book, I just can’t. This book is not a horrible book but It’s just so heavy with unimportant events and a slow moving plot and uninteresting characters. Hence my continued struggle to make it through Shadow of Night, I mean look at my updates…

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Since January I’ve returned this book twice to the library. I’m so over reading this book. I dislike giving up on pretty much anything so I decide to find an alternate route to get this book finished. Last night I found and requested the audio version from the library and hope that the audio will be easier to get through. As much as I want to know what happens and how things develop, I’m not reading another word! I’ve heard the lady who does the audio book is fantastic so that is a plus!

Question for readers. At what point do you let yourself give up on a book? Do you toughen up and just keep going or do you throw the book away and be done with it? If you did power through a book, did you feel like it was worth it?

Tiffany – The Tangled Taurus