Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Magic Slays by Ilona Andrews

Why I read it:  What can I say?  I'm a fan! :)

What it's about:  This is book 5 in the Kate Daniels series - if you haven't read the previous books, don't start here - it's worth the investment of your $$ and time to read all of the books, starting with Magic Burns. While each book has a distinct story they really aren't stand-alone novels.    Anyway, Kate's moved into the Keep with the Beast Lord. She's also quit the Order of Knights of Merciful Aid and started Cutting Edge Investigations.  There's a vampire on the loose, the Red Guard have lost someone, Julie's been kicked out of boarding school and Kate's got babysitting duty for a young bouda who's got too many hormones and not enough sense.

What worked for me:  I've been waiting for this book with baited breath ever since I finished Magic Bleeds and desperately hoping that, now that Kate and Curran are together, they would stay that way and I'd get to enjoy seeing them working out their lives as a team.  I'm happy to report that I got my wish.   There's plenty of romance. That's not to say all is a bed of roses; there are challenges and, as both are dominant personalities used to pleasing themselves when it comes to their actions, there's a lot of compromising to do.  Plus, there's the Pack to deal with.  That means there's enough natural conflict without having to manufacture nonsense Big Misunderstandings or other nonsense (as can be found far less superior books) to try and break them up.  It made sense, it was natural to the story and very satisfying.  Sigh.
Everyday I had to keep myself from making up bullshit reasons to call the Keep so I could hear his voice.  My only saving grace was that Curran wasn't handling the whole mating thing any better.  Yesterday he'd called me at the office claiming that he couldn't find his socks.  We talked for two hours.
Watching Kate continue to come to grips with the ties of relationships and love is a bonus too.  She's been raised to be alone and rely only on herself, to be prepared to walk away and sacrifice anyone left behind but, despite her fears that she is a monster, she is in fact a fierce defender of her own and her own is growing. *grin*   Kate has also to deal with some painful revelations about her mother which makes her question Curran's motivations - I don't think I'm giving away a spoiler in saying that Curran passes with flying colours.

Plus there's the excellent snark and humour that fans of this series have come to expect:-
...[they] had records so stellar, they had to lock their resumes in a drawer at night, so the golden light streaming from the pages wouldn't keep them awake.
Also, there is much kicking of ass - even Julie gets her licks in.  Kate was so proud!!

What didn't: I thought the book was a little slow to start but once it got going, I was very unhappy about having to put it down and in the end, I stayed up way to late to finish.  I also thought it finished  abruptly and I have questions about the magic Kate used right at the end (maybe they'll be answered in the next book?).  Sadly Raphael was missing in action in this one and we didn't get any more of Andrea and Raphael - their hot tub scene in Magic Bleeds was a hoot. :)  However, let me emphasise, there is Curran - lots of Curran!!

What else:  This is the first Kate Daniels book I've read first - the others I listened to on audio.  The magnificent Renee Raudman narrates and after my enjoyment of reading this book, I just know the audio will be even better.

We're heading toward a confrontation between Kate and Roland in the final book (I think I read somewhere there are planned to be 7 but I could be making that up) What will happen to Andrea and Aunt B?  Will she get back together with Raphael?  How's Kate going to manage Julie?  What's the deal with Hugh? Book 6 promises to be a ripper as well.  I can hardly wait!

Grade:  B+/A-


Kris said...

Me either! I love this series. :DDD

Jenny Schwartz said...

I'm another huge fan. Just amazed (and delighted) how strong each new book in the series is.

Kaetrin said...

I think one of the strengths of the series is that the overall story arc was clearly planned from the beginning - while I am sure there are things that have developed as the stories have been written, the series was always headed for the final confrontation with Roland. There's no meandering and it keeps things tight.