11 May 2013

Blast from the Past Reviews: Magic Bites by Ilona Andrews

Blast from the Past... Magic Burns

What they say: When the magic is up, rogue mages cast their spells and monsters appear, while guns refuse to fire and cars fail to start. But then technology returns, and the magic recedes as unpredictably as it arose, leaving all kinds of paranormal problems in its wake.

Kate Daniels is a down-on-her-luck mercenary who makes her living cleaning up these magical problems. But when Kate's guardian is murdered, her quest for justice draws her into a power struggle between two strong factions within Atlanta's magic circles.

The Masters of the Dead, necromancers who can control vampires, and the Pack, a paramilitary clan of shapechangers, blame each other for a series of bizarre killings—and the death of Kate's guardian may be part of the same mystery. Pressured by both sides to find the killer, Kate realizes she's way out of her league—but she wouldn't have it any other way...

What I say: I absolutely love this series and I've read all the books several times. Even though I have dozens of new books in my TBR pile when I woke up to terrible rain I couldn't help myself from rereading Magic Burns again - I think that in itself says a lot about how addictive the Kate Daniels books are!
It's hard to say too much about the plot without giving anything away. In summary: Kate lives in a world where magic battles it out with technology (post shift), shapechangers live amongst humans, along with other supernatural beings. Vampires are the vicious reanimated corpses of the dead controlled by necromancers or navigators, still with me?
Kate works cleaning up magical messes and investigating supernatural problems. Kate's guardian is murdered and she takes it upon herself to find his killer. This leads her to the shapechangers and the Beast Lord Curran. Kate has secret and powerful magic coupled with mad warrior skills! She's lethal with a sword and takes no prisoners. I love that Kate's strong and unpredictable, she has some brilliant one-liners and is a fab heroine - you really wouldn't wanna get on her bad side.
Curran is the ruler of the changers and is used to getting his own way. Controlling, arrogant and manipulative he's all animal BUT these traits are not a bad thing with him. They make him a great sparring partner for Kate and I love how she stands up to him and is determined to do things on her terms. Curran is how he is partly because he has a lot of responsibility and his possessiveness come from his beast side. He's not human and follows different rules.
The narrative is fast paced and a lot happens, yet it never seems rushed! I remember when I first read Magic Bites I was desperate for the follow up to be released and eagerly checked Ilona's blog for snippets and excerpts. On a side note Ilona Andrews is actually two people, Ilona Andrews and her husband Gordan. I wasn't sure about this at first, but it actually helps because you get male insight which helps make the male characters more believable and so the books really work!
Check out their website for more info! http://www.ilona-andrews.com/kate-daniels
The changers Jim and Derek (boy-wonder) are great secondary characters and play increasingly important roles in the series. Nostalgia aside I really like Magic Bites!
4 Stars in my Sky!

My fav non-spoilery quotes:
  • “It's a reflex. Hear a bell, get food. See an undead, throw a knife. Same thing, really.”
  • "What kind of woman greets the Beast Lord with 'here, kitty, kitty'?”
  • “For a second I thought I might actually be alive,” I said, looking at Nick’s unshaven face. “Now I know— I’ve gone to Hell and you’re my nursemaid.” 
  • “Eleven out of twelve work fine. I'd say that's better chances than getting an orgasm with a blind date and women still try." He blinked and laughed softly. "I never know what you'll say next." "I don't either.” 

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