Magic Slays: If you haven’t been reading the series, you should!

fantasy book reviews science fiction book reviewsurban fantasy book reviews Ilona Andrews Kate Daniels Magic SlaysMagic Slays by Ilona Andrews

Kate Daniels has opened her new business, Cutting Edge Investigations, but there’s just one problem: no clients. “If things kept going this way,” she muses, “I would be forced to run up and down the street screaming ‘We kill things for money.’” It’s not that she needs the money, really; it’s more that she wants to be a successful, independent businesswoman rather than just Curran’s consort.

So when a case comes her way, Kate takes it, even though it’s not the sort of mission she’s used to. Elite bodyguards were protecting an inventor of magical objects at a remote cabin in the woods. Someone got past the guards, killed one of them, and absconded with the inventor and his dangerous project. Kate must find out where the man and his device have been taken, especially once she uncovers a terrible truth about the device’s function.

Meanwhile, Kate and Curran are together now, but this is not a couple whose relationship was ever going to be all hearts and flowers. These two hard-headed people, both accustomed to living alone and to growling (literally for Curran, figuratively for Kate) at anyone who gets in their way, now have to figure out how to live together and make compromises. Then, while investigating her case, Kate is told something that casts the entire relationship into doubt.

In a third plot strand, Kate’s adopted daughter Julie has run away from boarding school and is missing.

The three plotlines become intertwined, of course, so Kate ends up racing against time to save Atlanta while struggling with relationship issues and trying to protect her kid. The authors weave an intense story filled with action, horror, emotion, and Kate’s snarky sense of humor. And I haven’t even mentioned Andrea yet, or the new information Kate learns about her mother and Voron. Suffice it to say that if you’ve been following Kate Daniels, you can’t miss Magic Slays — and if you haven’t been reading the series, you should!

I did have questions about the chronology of the kidnapping. The sequence of events is a little confusing and seems to require a lot of coincidence, in terms of when the magic was up, when the tech was up, when the wards stopped working, who got there when, and so on. We do eventually meet a character who was there that night, and I wish he’d given us a brief “Definitive Version of What Happened” so it would stop niggling at my brain. But other than that, the book is darn near perfect.

~Kelly LasiterKate Daniels (10 Book Series) by Ilona Andrews urban fantasy book reviews


urban fantasy book reviews Ilona Andrews Kate Daniels Magic SlaysIn Magic Slays we find Kate starting up her own private investigation business and trying to come to terms with her relationship with Curran and her new role as the First Lady Mate Consort to the Beast Master.

Kate has some angst about both of those things, but it soon gets overshadowed by a particularly difficult, and dangerous, couple of cases that Kate is offered. What do uncontrolled vampires on the loose and a disappearing inventor have to do with each other? And can Kate solve the cases and avoid getting herself and her loved ones killed in the process? It’s especially difficult when her ward, Julie, absconds from the private school where Kate had sent her and makes her way back to Kate, and Curran has major issues every time Kate walks into danger.

If you’ve read any of this series, you know what you’re getting by this time — lots of ass-kicking, sarcastic dialogue, conflicts and makeup scenes with His Royal Furriness, and freaky dangers — and this is a good one. The plot was a tense one, even if the ultimate bad guys didn’t strike me as particularly believable. But that’s really my only major complaint here.

~Tadiana Jones

Published in 2011. In this novel in the #1 New York Times bestselling urban fantasy series, war-plagued Atlanta has never been so deadly… Good thing Kate Daniels is on the job. Kate Daniels may have quit the Order of Knights of Merciful Aid, but she’s still knee-deep in paranormal problems. Or she would be if she could get someone to hire her. Starting her own business has been more challenging than she thought it would be — now that the Order is disparaging her good name. Plus, many potential clients are afraid of getting on the bad side of the Beast Lord, who just happens to be Kate’s mate. So when Atlanta’s premier Master of the Dead calls to ask for help with a vampire on the loose, Kate leaps at the chance of some paying work. But it turns out that this is not an isolated incident, and Kate needs to get to the bottom of it — fast, or the city and everyone dear to her may pay the ultimate price…

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KELLY LASITER, with us since July 2008, is a mild-mannered academic administrative assistant by day, but at night she rules over a private empire of tottering bookshelves. Kelly is most fond of fantasy set in a historical setting (a la Jo Graham) or in a setting that echoes a real historical period (a la George RR Martin and Jacqueline Carey). She also enjoys urban fantasy and its close cousin, paranormal romance, though she believes these subgenres’ recent burst in popularity has resulted in an excess of dreck. She is a sucker for pretty prose (she majored in English, after all) and mythological themes.

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TADIANA JONES, on our staff since July 2015, is an intellectual property lawyer with a BA in English. She inherited her love of classic and hard SF from her father and her love of fantasy and fairy tales from her mother. She lives with her husband and four children in a small town near the mountains in Utah. Tadiana juggles her career, her family, and her love for reading, travel and art, only occasionally dropping balls. She likes complex and layered stories and characters with hidden depths. Favorite authors include Lois McMaster Bujold, Brandon Sanderson, Robin McKinley, Connie Willis, Isaac Asimov, Larry Niven, Megan Whalen Turner, Patricia McKillip, Mary Stewart, Ilona Andrews, and Susanna Clarke.

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