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Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Magic Slays

Magic Slays by Ilona Andrews

Grade: 4.8 stars out of 5. 
Sometimes starting your business isn’t all that much excitement. Kate Daniels has the reputation and the connections, but no one wants to hire her with the Order slandering her name and the possibility of pissing the Pack leader’s mate spelling trouble. When a renegade vampire comes barreling through streets toward Kate’s business, it means more than a little action for the day. It means a new adventure. Kate later gets hired to find a missing object and its owner and potentially save or destroy Atlanta’s residents including her own daughter, Julie. Trusty mutate poodle at hand and her best friend covering her back, Kate Daniels is ready.
Let’s face it I’m a shallow girl when it comes to book covers. I judge them, I rate them, I make rash decisions if I should buy a book because of covers. The covers for the Kate Daniels series had me avoiding the books at all cost in the beginning. The book ratings are high and the glowing reviews are numerous, but no, I just can’t. Let this be a lesson (which I’ll probably end up forgetting soon): never judge a book by its cover. The Kate Daniels series is action-packed, fun and sexy. Readers who liked Patricia Briggs’s Mercedes Thompson series will enjoy the Kate Daniels series.

The 5th book in the series doesn’t fail to impress long time fans. I’ve had ups and downs when it came to this series and I must admit Magic Slays has to be one of the favorites. For an author to continue to deliver to their fans without missing a beat or dragging the plot through the mud is such a welcoming sight. For so long I’ve been hooked on the first book only to be disappointment by the 2nd or 3rd. Magic Slays has all the elements that readers loved in its prequels and more. Magic Slays answers lingering questions while continuing to evolve the storyline.

As a not-so-big-of-a-fan of Curran and Kate in the beginning (because I found it to be so quick) I must say I look forward to their little scenes together now. While Kate and Curran definitely stand on their own without one another, together they create this dynamic relationship that just invites a grin. I love the power shifts which sparks some of the richest dialogue that deftly moves the plot along. The dialogue in the series is what brings the attitude, the somber tone, the teasing fun and the angst. Some of the important developments in the novel and not just their relationship occur in the dialogue between Curran and Kate. I enjoy that sometimes Kate wears the pants in the relationship while other times Curran does. There is nothing too cheesy about this couple; expect some strong fight scenes between the two that lead to, what else, some sizzling make-up scenes.

As far as the story line goes, Magic Slays further explores Kate’s powers and what she is capable of. Magic Slays deals with Kate’s blood powers and its properties. The novel also explores Kate’s extended family tree (you’ll never guess who is Kate’s aunt) and a couple of new characters and many old favorites. While I would have enjoyed some of the characters who were frequently mentioned actually make an appearance, I do find Ilona Andrews’ attempt to create more character struggles interesting.

Action wise, Magic Slays is spot on. Hope you won’t mind a little blood. Fight scenes are invigorating and a tad bit sadistic—always fun. The scenes are detailed without confusing readers about the very little (and pointless) nuances.

So yeah. This book is awesome.

Magic Slays was an excellent addition to powerhouse series that hits the spot. I cannot wait to see what else Ilona Andrews will come up with next, but I’m betting it’ll be good.

P.S. I've read this book twice in the past week or so. In the middle of finals week. No, I did not sleep. It was just too good for me to stop. And yes I realize these are fragmented sentences :)

Cover: see above. just not for me
Published: 2011 May 3rd
Source: unsolicited copy from Ace Fantasy
Amazon (available for pre-order)


  1. oh my goodness! I am SOO excited to read this one and am now even more impatient after reading your discerning review! *squeee* I can't wait for this goodness!

  2. My problem with some adult fantasy is that the covers are so....bleh. It's hard not to judge a book by their cover when we do it anyway!

  3. So... I should check out this series then is what you're saying? I am with you on the covers and the avoidance. ;)

  4. @Cat--YES! but take it slow. I ended reading the first 4 books in one go, which was a bad idea.

    @Zoraida--I know! I always try NOT to but I can't help it :(. These covers were very cringe-worthy for me.

    @Celesta--I can't wait for you to read it! Just a few more weeks until its release!

  5. I also judge books by their cover-- and, really, I think EVERYONE does, because we're human and like pretty things and so we'd rather have pretty covers on our shelves than fugly ones. :P But it's always nice when we can get past an ugly cover to enjoy the book anyway, though!

    So basically I'm glad you liked the book despite cover problems, haha!

  6. @Anastasia--haha I love your response because it's so true and you put it so much better than whatever I can say!