Read my reviews of the previous books in the R’iyah Family Archives series:

A Mage’s Guide to Human Familiars (#1) | A Mage’s Guide to Aussie Terrors (#2)

As much as I love the main trio that has been the focus of the first two books in this series, Wicky is such an enjoyable secondary character that I’m not surprised he’s gotten his own book. I worried a bit that his personality would be too manic to sustain from his perspective for too long, but Sherwood nicely balances his external intensity with a slightly more subtly direct internal narrative. The mystery itself centers nicely on Wicky while still allowing for relevant participation from Bel and his familiars, and I enjoyed the buildup toward a new character and new type of magic.

The full story is very much an extended meet-cute between Sun’s mission in life and how it leads directly to Wicky. Sherwood deftly avoids bland insta-love by instead allowing the characters to focus on the potential of their connection and using that to draw themselves closer more quickly than they might have otherwise.

Unfortunately, I’m not sure how well this book works as a stand-alone introduction to this world. We don’t get very much information on Wicky’s style of magic, and only a bit more on Sun’s elemental focus in how they contrast. I also felt like a lot more conflict was set up regarding Sun’s family that never quite materialized, giving this shorter novel no real external conflict or relationship dark moment.

I still enjoy this world, and reading this installment actually made me want to go back and re-read the first books in the series. I look forward to seeing how Sun meshes with this lovely found-family team of magic users for whatever comes next.

Disclaimer: I received a digital review copy of this novel from the author.

Rating: 4 (out of 5) stars
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