Saturday, August 8, 2020

Magic Burns by Ilona Andrews

When I was a teenager, one of my favorite websites in the whole wide world was Quizilla. It was a magical wonderland of user-made quizzes and bad fic, where you could spend the day finding out what anime girl element you were (with ~beautiful pics~) or you could spend the day reading smutty fanfic about Louis and Lestat. Or, if you were so inclined, you could browse original fic submitted by users, often written in the second person, where "you," the heroine, were some kind of hybrid angel-vampire-werewolf-faerie combination and had a veritable reverse-harem of male love interests to chose from, distinguishable only in the colors of their hair and the way they demonstrated their instant love for you.

The Kate Daniels series is leagues above the kind of trash I used to read on Quizilla (which is now sadly defunct), but it taps into that same insatiable craving for fun, addictive stories that balance action and romance. Set in a world where magic is at constant war with tech, Kate Daniels is that hybrid Mary Sue like character from my childhood-- only now she's all grown up and sporting big girl pants and a pretty intimidating sword named Slayer.

In this book, an arson case ends up leading Kate down a rabbit hole of missing witches, undead mermaids, and evil cauldrons. Every time there's a magic flare, something sinister happens, and it's dark and ancient magic. People are playing with deadly gods. Naturally, the Pack ends up being involved, and Kate clashes against the attractive werelion, Curran. But there's other attractive dudes, like the so-bad-he's-good thief, Bran, and Saiman, the seductive shape-changer. Basically every guy Kate meets in this book has some kind of interest in her, which should have been annoying-- but the way she's written, you can kind of understand why she's so magnetic. I found her compelling.

As always, the book is a little slow to start, but as soon as the action picks up, I'm questioning any doubts I ever had about this wife-and-husband writing duo. They've yet to truly disappoint me with any of their books and MAGIC BURNS was no exception. Luckily I also own books three and four, and I just checked out book five in ebook from the library, so I'm all set to binge read this series!

4 to 4.5 out of 5 stars

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