Review: SMALL MAGICS by Ilona Andrews

Small Magics

Favorite story: Because I’m always thrilled to learn more about Kate’s protege, I was delighted to read “Magic Tests” in this collection. Julie shined in this story, especially because she’s not just a miniature version of Kate. She’s been influenced by all the adults in her life, and it shows in the way she handles interpersonal relationships and conflict. I also enjoyed this look into an educational institution in the world of Post-Shift Atlanta, especially because that is a world-building element often overlooked in fantasy series that are not primarily “magical school” narratives.

Story that I wish would be expanded into a novel: How do insurance claims work when magic and nonhumans walk the land? “Retribution Clause” not only featured a protagonist completely different from Kate Daniels, but an entirely new location and type of hero as well! (Gender, race, job, the works.) This was a fun story with a twisty plot, but the most exciting thing about it was everything that was new, such as its setting of Post-Shift Philadelphia. If this story is a “test pilot” to see whether readers are up for a spin-off series, count me in.

Rating: 5 (out of 5) stars.

Cross-posted to Amazon and Goodreads

Currently reading: Just One Damned Thing After Another (The Chronicles of St. Mary’s #1) by Jodi Taylor (63%)

Review: MAGIC STARS by Ilona Andrews

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MAGIC STARS by Ilona Andrews

I know that I have about a million favorite things about this series, but two of them are definitely Julie and Derek, the foster kids/proteges of the two main characters. Watching them “grow up” and come into their own skills and powers over the course of the books has been a treat, and it was delightful to read about their own mini-adventure in this novella.

I’m glad that the potential for romance is there, but currently unfulfilled due to age differences. While both of them have already had difficult lives, I’d rather see Julie have the chance to be “a kid” for a while before linking her fate to someone else. To be fair, I also totally support that Julie’s idea of being a kid means getting involved in her own shenanigans that would make Kate’s hair stand on end!

Rating: 5 (out of 5) stars. Cross-posted to Amazon and Goodreads.

Currently reading: Absolutely nothing. Line edits to book 3 have consumed me. Feed the author warm fuzzies by checking out the 99 cent sale for book 1, Steel Victory, on Amazon!

Review: MAGIC GIFTS by Ilona Andrews

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MAGIC GIFTS by Ilona Andrews

This is a fun filler novella that takes place during Ilona Andrews’ novel Gunmetal Magic. Because so much urban fantasy/paranormal romance involves a burgeoning romantic relationship between the main characters, it’s always a treat to stop by and visit Kate and Curran. Especially when they are trying to do cute couple stuff, which always seem to fail miserably. Despite the fact that they still have yet to get married in the series (at least as far as I’ve read), they are practically an old married couple even by the events in this story.

It’s not a long read, but like every story in this series, it still manages to pack in a lot of fantastic world-building. As much as I want Kate Daniels and co. to venture outside of Atlanta again, I know that there’s still so much to be explored right there!

Rating: 5 (out of 5) stars. Cross-posted to Amazon and Goodreads.

Currently reading: A Jinni’s Wish by B. Leslie Tirrell (33%)

 

Review: MAGIC SHIFTS by Ilona Andrews

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MAGIC SHIFTS by Ilona Andrews

Part of me keeps waiting for anything about this series to get stale or boring or overdone, because it can’t possibly keep being this damn good. Sure,  not every novel in the series  is the best thing I’ve ever read, but one thing I appreciate about Ilona Andrews (referred to as “they,” since it is a husband-and-wife writing team) is their absolute dedication to telling a damn good story, packed with action, drama, and humor. Continue reading

The Real World Returns…

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Can’t beat the view! Photo credit: Husband.

My husband and I are home safe from our amazing vacation. We spent a great 10 days aboard Royal Caribbean’s Grandeur of the Seas, which sailed out of Baltimore to tool around the Caribbean for a few days. The time was well-spent relaxing and recharging and just spending some quality time together before the husband leaves for 5 months of training in May.

Though I brought my computer along, I wrote a whopping 250 words. But as you can see by the above picture, I was never without a book to read. (After about a week, one guy would shout “The reader!” every time we crossed paths. He was not intoxicated each time, but still found himself to be hilarious.) I tore through the trilogy that a television show I’m enjoying is based on, caught up on stories by a few favorites, introduced myself to a new author, and goaded my husband into reading his Star Trek books faster.

My final reading tally, in no particular order:

Tomorrow, it’s back to the real world–including the first day at my new job! Check back regularly as I post reviews of the books listed above.

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Bare feet and reading make every vacation perfect.

Currently reading: Sweep in Peace (Innkeeper Chronicles #2), by Ilona Andrews (37%)