Series: Kate Daniels

Rapid Reviews – Foundryside, Diamond Fire, Night and Silence, Magic Triumphs

September 21, 2018 Bonnie Adult, Book Reviews, Rapid Fire Reviews, Read in 2018 3 Comments

Sometimes review writing is hard. Sometimes you don’t have a lot to say. Sometimes you’re just lazy as fuck. These are Rapid Fire Reviews.

Rapid Reviews – Foundryside, Diamond Fire, Night and Silence, Magic TriumphsFoundryside by Robert Jackson Bennett
Series: Founders #1
Published by Crown Publishing Group (NY) on August 21, 2018
Pages: 505
Genres: Fantasy
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Audible
Goodreads

Also by this author: American Elsewhere

Short Summary: In the city of Tevanne, a thief gets embroiled in more than she bargained for when she steals an item of imaginable power and the individuals she stole it from will stop at nothing to get it back.

Thoughts: I thoroughly enjoyed American Elsewhere and absolutely planned on reading Bennett’s The Divine Cities trilogy, but Foundryside fell in my lap first and, oh man, Bennett is such a spectacular storyteller. Everything from the world building to the characters to the magic was vividly imagined, felt fresh and new, and was incredibly thrilling to read.

Verdict: I never would have thought I’d say that a talking key was my favorite character in a book but a talking key was absolutely my favorite character in this book. I LOVED this and I’m so anxious for the continued stories in this fascinating world.

five-stars

I received this book free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

 

Rapid Reviews – Foundryside, Diamond Fire, Night and Silence, Magic TriumphsDiamond Fire by Ilona Andrews
Series: Hidden Legacy #3.5
Published by Avon Impulse on November 6, 2018
Pages: 160
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Format: eARC
Source: Edelweiss
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository
Goodreads

Also by this author: Magic BitesMagic RisesBurn for Me

Short Summary: *This is #3.5 — Spoilers for the first 3 installments!* Nevada’s sister, Catalina, is the new star in this novella and the upcoming trilogy of the continued Hidden Legacy series. The plans for Nevada and Rogan’s wedding are well underway but when the family tiara is discovered to be missing, Nevada’s future mother-in-law requests that Catalina conduct the investigation behind it because it’s clear there’s at least one family member that doesn’t want this wedding to happen.

Thoughts: I was worried that this spinoff wouldn’t work after the latest spinoff fiasco I read and I was worried that I wouldn’t love Catalina as much as I loved Nevada but my worries were completely unfounded. Catalina is going to be an exceptionally strong lead and I can’t wait for the story to further explore her powers.

Verdict: This was a fantastically fun snippet of future Catalina stories and fans of the author duo are definitely going to be pleased.

four-half-stars

I received this book free from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Rapid Reviews – Foundryside, Diamond Fire, Night and Silence, Magic TriumphsNight and Silence by Seanan McGuire
Series: October Daye #12
Published by DAW on September 4, 2018
Pages: 368
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Audible
Goodreads

Also by this author: IndexingRosemary and RueA Local Habitation

Short Summary: Toby is once again faced with the kidnapping of her mortal daughter, Gillian, terrified that she’s once again responsible for her daughter being in danger. During her investigation, she manages to uncover a few jaw-dropping mysteries that will no doubt play a role in Toby’s future.

Thoughts: I swear, just when I feel like I couldn’t love this series more, McGuire manages to sneak in a new facet to the story that opens up whole new avenues and makes the anticipation for the next installment even worse. I have no idea how far she plans to take this series but even with twelve installments under her belt, this series doesn’t seem to be heading towards an end anytime soon, and I’m certainly not complaining.

Verdict: I read the first two installments in 2017 and the remaining nine this year so I could finally be caught up in time for the new release of Night and Silence. I now have to wait for the next release of this ridiculously good series like a PEASANT. BAH.

four-half-stars

I received this book free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Rapid Reviews – Foundryside, Diamond Fire, Night and Silence, Magic TriumphsMagic Triumphs by Ilona Andrews
Series: Kate Daniels #10
Published by Ace on August 28, 2018
Pages: 327
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Audible
Goodreads

Also by this author: Magic BitesMagic RisesBurn for Me

Short Summary: In the final installment of the husband and wife co-authored Kate Daniels series, Kate is battling an ancient enemy that almost succeeded in destroying her family once before and this time seeks to raze Atlanta and everyone in it.

Thoughts: This series began back in 2007 and while I was late to the party (finally started in 2011), Kate Daniels will always be one of the integral series that turned me into such a diehard Urban Fantasy fan. As a final installment, Magic Triumphs still manages to throw in some unexpected surprises, new monsters, and an open enough ending to pave way for future stories (or spinoffs more likely).

Verdict: While the story started off with the standard formula with Kate researching a crime, it was far from what I was expecting from a final installment (I assumed it would be full of verbal sparring between her and Roland — I would have been a-okay with that). The first 2/3 felt like the story was dragging its feet (yet still managed to read very clipped and rushed somehow?), the final 1/3 was full of the action I would have appreciated reading about for the entire book, yet the end was ultimately satisfying and fans of the series will no doubt be pleased with the ending the duo writers bestowed upon her.

three-half-stars

I received this book free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

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Early Review – Magic Binds (Kate Daniels #9) by Ilona Andrews

August 26, 2016 Bonnie Adult, Book Reviews, Early Review, Read in 2016 1 Comment

I received this book free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Early Review – Magic Binds (Kate Daniels #9) by Ilona AndrewsMagic Binds by Ilona Andrews
Series: Kate Daniels #9
Published by Ace on September 20th 2016
Pages: 336
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository
Goodreads

Also by this author: Magic Bites, Magic Rises, Burn for Me

four-stars

The latest novel in the New York Times bestselling series that “stands apart.” (Library Journal)

Kate and the former Beast Lord Curran Lennart are finally making their relationship official. But there are some steep obstacles standing in the way of their walk to the altar…

Kate’s father, Roland, has kidnapped the demigod Saiman and is slowly bleeding him dry in his never-ending bid for power. A Witch Oracle has predicted that if Kate marries the man she loves, Atlanta will burn and she will lose him forever. And the only person Kate can ask for help is long dead.

The odds are impossible. The future is grim. But Kate Daniels has never been one to play by the rules…

Kate Daniels series

Magic Bites (Kate Daniels #1) [Review]
Magic Burns (Kate Daniels #2)
Magic Strikes (Kate Daniels #3)
Magic Bleeds (Kate Daniels #4)
Magic Slays (Kate Daniels #5)
Magic Rises (Kate Daniels #6) [Review]
Magic Breaks (Kate Daniels #7) [Review]
Magic Shifts (Kate Daniels #8)

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Kate is back!!

It pleases me to no end how fantastic and thrilling this installment was. Things got a little rocky for me in the Kate Daniels fan club with installments 6 and 7 so if any of you happen to feel the same, don’t give up hope. While the tenth installment will be the last, you heard me, Magic Binds is the PENULTIMATE installment, I’m still oh so very excited to see how the chips fall. But yes, very soon, Kate Daniels’ story will be coming to an end.

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This both breaks my heart and reinforces just how fast time flies. Kate Daniels was one of the very first Urban Fantasy series I read and I only discovered it after joining Goodreads (in 2011!) and making friends with people who recommended some excellent books. It will be most sad to see this come to an end because this is hands down one of the top five best Urban Fantasy series of all time. This series has elaborate world building bringing total fantasy to the real world, complex characters that make it easy to grow to love them over time, exciting storylines in every installment, and I can’t forget to mention the unbelievable chemistry between Kate and Curran. It’s some steamy shit, people. If any of these descriptions seem mildly entertaining to you, get on it. But I’m getting sidetracked, back to Magic Binds.

I already said this, but this was one action-packed and exciting installment. We’ve got wedding planning shenanigans, we get to see Kate and Curran work through their relationship drama (showing a lack of perfection which is always appreciated), an oracle that comes bearing quite a bit of bad news, Kate’s ongoing understanding of her vast powers and fighting against the lure of becoming exactly like her father, and the hilarious dynamic between Kate and her father, Roland. Sure, Roland is setting up a future war between him and Kate, but their banter back and forth is laugh out loud funny.

“Father, you are sending mixed signals. You dispatched a woman to murder me today and now you’re upset about my wedding reception?”

There’s additional amusing banter between Kate and… well, it’s a bit of a spoiler. But just be aware that there is much banter. And it’s oh so good. There’s also a Pegasus named Sugar that is QUITE a character.

‘At least I had stopped worrying about Sugar flying off and leaving me to fend for myself. She seemed to find me amusing and stuck around. I’d learned to sneak off before taking a bathroom break, however, because she decided that pawing at me with a hoof after I found a secluded spot to pee was the funniest thing ever.’

We’re given a bit of a cliffhanger which was honestly to be expected with the second to last installment but it left me feeling CONFLICTED.

Image result for nervous or excited gif

Both. Definitely both.

We’ll see how it all plays out… sometime in 2017. Until then, let’s all start hoping and wishing for a spin-off series.

bonnie blog signature

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Waiting on Wednesday – Magic Binds (Kate Daniels #9) by Ilona Andrews

February 10, 2016 Bonnie Waiting on Wednesday 0 Comments

Waiting on Wednesday – Magic Binds (Kate Daniels #9) by Ilona AndrewsMagic Binds by Ilona Andrews
Series: Kate Daniels #9
Published by Ace on September 27th 2016
Pages: 384
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Format: Hardcover
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository
Goodreads

Also by this author: Magic Bites, Magic Rises, Burn for Me

The latest novel in the New York Times bestselling series that “stands apart.” (Library Journal)

Kate and the former Beast Lord Curran Lennart are finally making their relationship official. But there are some steep obstacles standing in the way of their walk to the altar…

Kate’s father, Roland, has kidnapped the demigod Saiman and is slowly bleeding him dry in his never-ending bid for power. A Witch Oracle has predicted that if Kate marries the man she loves, Atlanta will burn and she will lose him forever. And the only person Kate can ask for help is long dead.

The odds are impossible. The future is grim. But Kate Daniels has never been one to play by the rules…

About Ilona Andrews

Ilona Andrews is the pseudonym for a husband-and-wife writing team. Ilona is a native-born Russian and Gordon is a former communications sergeant in the U.S. Army. Contrary to popular belief, Gordon was never an intelligence officer with a license to kill, and Ilona was never the mysterious Russian spy who seduced him. They met in college, in English Composition 101, where Ilona got a better grade. (Gordon is still sore about that.)

Gordon and Ilona currently reside in Oregon with their two children, three dogs, and a cat. They have co-authored two series, the bestselling urban fantasy of Kate Daniels and romantic urban fantasy of The Edge.

It’s been a while since I’ve read (and loved) Urban Fantasy, but in the last few weeks I’ve been on a UF binge read and it’s all Ilona Andrews fault. Read Burn For Me, then read the two Kate Daniels books I was behind on, and just yesterday the newest short story. And now news of the next book! So unbelievably excited I can’t even stand it.

What are you waiting on this Wednesday?

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Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Jill @ Breaking the Spine

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Book Review – Magic Breaks (Kate Daniels #7) by Ilona Andrews

February 4, 2016 Bonnie Adult, Book Reviews, Read in 2016 2 Comments

Book Review – Magic Breaks (Kate Daniels #7) by Ilona AndrewsMagic Breaks by Ilona Andrews
Series: Kate Daniels #7
Published by Ace on July 29th 2014
Pages: 418
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Format: eBook
Source: Library
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository
Goodreads

Also by this author: Magic Bites, Magic Rises, Burn for Me

three-half-stars

No matter how much the paranormal politics of Atlanta change, one thing always remains the same: if there’s trouble, Kate Daniels will be in the middle of it…

As the mate of the Beast Lord, Curran, former mercenary Kate Daniels has more responsibilities than it seems possible to juggle. Not only is she still struggling to keep her investigative business afloat, she must now deal with the affairs of the pack, including preparing her people for attack from Roland, a cruel ancient being with god-like powers. Since Kate’s connection to Roland has come out into the open, no one is safe—especially those closest to Kate.

As Roland’s long shadow looms ever nearer, Kate is called to attend the Conclave, a gathering of the leaders from the various supernatural factions in Atlanta. When one of the Masters of the Dead is found murdered there, apparently at the hands of a shapeshifter, Kate is given only twenty-four hours to hunt down the killer. And this time, if she fails, she’ll find herself embroiled in a war which could destroy everything she holds dear…

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‘There is a storm gathering on our horizon. We will make a stand, but I wonder if it will matter in the end.’

In the world of Kate Daniels, the return of magic has left technology an unreliable resource in a dangerous world where vampires, werewolves, witches, and other paranormal beasties roam. Kate Daniels has always been able to hold her own, however, a being more powerful than her has just learned of her existence and he’s coming for her: her father, Roland. When Curran is forced to leave the Keep for a diplomatic trip, Kate is left in charge and struggles to not only maintain control but to keep everyone around her safe from the warpath Roland is on to get to her.

I positively adored the first five installments in this series, which I read pretty much read back to back, all to end up being massively disappointed with the sixth installment in 2013. There was a bunch of unnecessary drama that seemed so out of character for those that I’ve come to know and love and there’s nothing I love less than unnecessary drama. It was still an entertaining installment but enough to make me go on a Kate Daniels hiatus. I’ve been trying to catch up on some series and I’m on a major Urban Fantasy kick lately so I took the plunge and while I felt this was far better than Magic Rises (because no unnecessary drama), it still amounted to nothing but filler for me. But damn was it full of action and full of some of the best side characters that I sure hope get a bigger share of the spotlight in future installments (I’m looking at you Desandra). We might have been short Curran for the most part, but Kate, Desandra, Derek, and Ascanio were one hilarious bunch when you threw them all together.

Desandra shrugged her shoulders. “Hey, Kate? Have you thought of walking up to Hugh and telling him that he’s got the biggest dick ever?” She spread her arms to the size of a baseball bat.
“No, you think it would work?” I asked.
“It’s worth a try. May be he’ll be so happy you noticed his pork sword, he’ll forget all about trying to kill us.”
Pork sword. Kill me now. “I’ll think about it.”
Ascanio began patting his clothes.
“What?” Derek growled.
“Looking for something to take notes with.”

Can’t forget to mention Cuddles either.

“What the hell is this?” Desandra asked
“This is Cuddles. She’s a mammoth donkey.”
Derek grinned, leaning on the fence. “Do you have any self-respect left?”
“Nope.”

So while this group is trying to survive vampires, Hugh, and even a random Wendigo, they were still such fun to read about. For the most part, this installment just felt like a bunch of strategical maneuvering to get everything in its proper place and while I understand the ultimate importance of it, it felt far more long and drawn out than should have been necessary. We get more info into Kate’s lineage that only makes you wonder just what she is capable of with the proper teachings. I don’t think I’ll be staying away from Kate Daniels anymore because it was damn good to be back.

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Book Review – Magic Rises (Kate Daniels #6) by Ilona Andrews

August 27, 2013 Bonnie Adult, Book Reviews, Read in 2013 9 Comments

Book Review – Magic Rises (Kate Daniels #6) by Ilona AndrewsMagic Rises by Ilona Andrews
Series: Kate Daniels #6
Published by Ace on July 30th 2013
Pages: 355
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Format: Paperback
Source: Library
Amazon
Goodreads

Also by this author: Magic Bites, Burn for Me, Magic Breaks

three-half-stars

Atlanta is a city plagued by magical problems. Kate Daniels will fight to solve them—no matter the cost.

Mercenary Kate Daniels and her mate, Curran, the Beast Lord, are struggling to solve a heartbreaking crisis. Unable to control their beasts, many of the Pack’s shapeshifting children fail to survive to adulthood. While there is a medicine that can help, the secret to its making is closely guarded by the European packs, and there’s little available in Atlanta.

Kate can’t bear to watch innocents suffer, but the solution she and Curran have found threatens to be even more painful. The European shapeshifters who once outmaneuvered the Beast Lord have asked him to arbitrate a dispute—and they’ll pay him in medicine. With the young people’s survival and the Pack’s future at stake, Kate and Curran know they must accept the offer—but they have little doubt that they’re heading straight into a trap…

Kate Daniels series

Magic Bites (Kate Daniels #1)
Magic Burns (Kate Daniels #2)
Magic Strikes (Kate Daniels #3)
Magic Bleeds (Kate Daniels #4)
Magic Slays (Kate Daniels #5)

*Considering this is the 6th installment, it’s highly possible there are spoilers for the previous books in the series. Beware!*

 

I’ve been highly anticipating this latest installment forever. I blew threw the first five books practically all in a row and I’ve been hurting since. While this is quite possibly my least favorite of the series it’s STILL good. This series is why I love Urban Fantasy as much as I do and even though it had it’s flaws this is still one solid series. So, now for the details:

What I enjoyed: The inclusion of mythological and biblical aspects was awesome. It might not have been 100% believable (but then again this is UF, so whatevs) but it was an absorbing and fascinating concept and definitely welcome to mix things up.

What I hated: The stupid girl child thrown into the story just to create drama was borderline rage inducing. The drama was rampant in this installment and I ultimately felt it was all just entirely unnecessary. I was enraged for the vast majority of this book and it was a constant battle trying to calm myself.

And another note on the drama: Curran. Dude. You could’ve handled that so much better than you did. And that’s the second thing that bothered me the most… if drama can be avoided and it’s NOT then you’re an idiot and I hate you. Don’t be dumb. Avoid the drama. If I was Kate, your head would have been on a spike. I assumed it was going to end fine but that still didn’t make going through the drama any easier because his actions were so. freaking. irritating.
And my biggest issue with the storyline: Kate and Curran didn’t need to go through this in order to prove their relationship is everlasting and durable and all other adjectives that best describe tupperware. Kate is a badass chick and is supremely confident in herself and didn’t need to be transformed into an insecure maniac for me to believe that their relationship is solid. Again, to repeat myself for the nth time… the drama was supremely unnecessary and I really could have done without.

The ending was exhilarating, shocking and I loved it… if the drama llama hadn’t trounced on the other 300 pages this would have garnered a higher rating from me. As it stands though this is still one of my favorite UF series, ever, and I will be anxiously awaiting future installments.

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Book Review – Magic Bites (Kate Daniels #1) by Ilona Andrews

December 30, 2011 Bonnie Adult, Book Reviews, Read in 2011 1 Comment

Book Review – Magic Bites (Kate Daniels #1) by Ilona AndrewsMagic Bites by Ilona Andrews
Series: Kate Daniels #1
Published by Ace on March 27th 2007
Pages: 260
Genres: Urban Fantasy, Vampires
Format: eBook
Source: Library
Amazon
Goodreads

Also by this author: Magic Rises, Burn for Me, Magic Breaks

three-half-stars

Atlanta would be a nice place to live, if it weren’t for magic…

One moment magic dominates, and cars stall and guns fail. The next, technology takes over and the defensive spells no longer protect your house from monsters. Here skyscrapers topple under onslaught of magic; werebears and werehyenas prowl through the ruined streets; and the Masters of the Dead, necromancers driven by their thirst of knowledge and wealth, pilot blood-crazed vampires with their minds.

In this world lives Kate Daniels. Kate likes her sword a little too much and has a hard time controlling her mouth. The magic in her blood makes her a target, and she spent most of her life hiding in plain sight. But when Kate’s guardian is murdered, she must choose to do nothing and remain safe or to pursue his preternatural killer. Hiding is easy, but the right choice is rarely easy…

’Magic could not be measured and explained in scientific terms, for magic grew through destroying the very natural principles that made science as people knew it possible.’

So I finally got around to reading about this ‘Kate Daniels’ I’ve heard so much about. I found the world building to be extremely choppy and confusing, but by the end it started coming together and making more sense. I won’t bother trying to explain it to you though; I would only fail miserably so instead I’ll just tell you what I thought about the book.

This story was quite a bit more gruesome than I was expecting! Quite a few eww moments. I’ll share a few with you:

’Garbage fell, revealing yellow bones and shreds of rotting oozing putrid juices.’
‘The flesh and cartilage parted before the blade and I pulled her rib cage open like a bear trap.’
‘The vamp must have been turned on its side to allow the stringy clot of its nearly atrophied intestines to fall out.’
And my personal favorite:
‘Slayer sliced through decaying tissue in a spray of putrid sluice.’

I think by now you get the picture.

The author(s) also had an interesting and original take on vampires.

’Homo sapiens immortuus, a vampire. The vampires knew no pity and no fear; they couldn’t be trained; they had no ego. On a developmental level they stood close to insects, possessing a nervous system and yet incapable of forming thoughts.’

Definitely a diversion from the norm, and like Maja stated in her review, it was not one that I particularly enjoyed as I’m quite the vampire lover (the normal vampires that is).

I loved the characters and oh how wonderful it is to find another snarky and spirited female character in the world of Urban Fantasy. Kate is my new best friend; definitely my kinda girl. Despite the fact that ‘snarky’ is slowly becoming commonplace is many novels I read these days, I must say, I’m not getting tired of it at all. Derek was also an enjoyable additional character.

“Derek, never ever tell a woman that someone is prettier than her. You’ll make an enemy for life.” “You’re funnier than she is. And you hit harder.”
“Oh, thank you. Please, continue to reinforce the fact that she’s more attractive. If you say that I have a better personality, you’ll find out how hard I can hit.”

And of course I could never forget Curran. 🙂 Rawr. I took an immediate liking to him, despite the fact that he can’t hammer for shit. 😀 I look forward to seeing what happens between the two of them. AND finding out what the hell Kate is! Ack!

I must say I was quite impressed overall and am really looking forward to continuing the series.

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