Billy Blade is a hardworking, hard-living, razor-sharp musical force. Mysterious behind his dark shades, the rough-around-the-edges Texan mesmerizes with his haunting harmonica and tantalizes with his dangerous looks and smooth country charm. His latest album is topping the charts. He's the newly crowned King of the Bacchus Krewe. He's definitely living the rock star dream.
Exotic Creole beauty Thyme Bellerose couldn't be more content. She has it all. An adoring grandmother. A handsome Tulane medical student beau. A satisfying job in the heart of New Orleans' French Quarter. Her life is as rich as the ice cream she creates. She's got everything under control.
But control is an illusion. Dreams can turn into nightmares. And now, during Mardi Gras, otherworldly powers stand ready to shape their destinies in ways they could never imagine.
Shadow and light, magic and mystery, reality and myth: all come together in a place where rules bend and lines blur- even those between life and death.
Please note. This is part one of a two-part novel. It does not stand alone.
©2014 Michelle Mankin (P)2015 Michelle Mankin
This is one of the best books I’ve ever read. It’s got everything I could want in a novel – characters I love, the struggle between light and dark, themes of integration and discrimination, a great love story with almost-insurmountable obstacles, and Greek mythology (which I never thought I’d like, but I love in this!), all set against the magical backdrop of New Orleans. Each chapter begins with either a quote or a stanza from a poem, which sets the stage perfectly, and this is backed by haunting music that reflects the tone of the story.
Rocker romances are my guilty pleasure, but this book is really a paranormal story. The country/rock star aspect is secondary and a minor detail to get Billy to New Orleans for Mardi Gras. I discovered Michelle Mankin’s Raging Tempest series a few months ago and fell in love with it. I didn’t think she could top it. But this, this is genius.
Some people may need a trigger warning for one scene. It’s actually glossed over and not graphic at all but happens at the end of the first part and gets talked about in the second part, again without details. There is graphic violence in the first part. If you’re squeamish or easily grossed out, you might want to skip ahead, but the story is definitely worth listening to.
Of course, Kai Kennicott and Wen Ross do a fantastic job with the reading. They both put the perfect amount of pain, joy, or resignation into their voices, depending on the scene. I love the way both their voices sound when they read the quote at the beginning of each chapter. It's perfect.
What is already an epic story bringing an exciting adventure with Magic, Mythology, and Love, plus a raw Nawlins flavor, is truly brought to life by the amazing narrators, whose dual narrating makes you feel like you are right there with the characters, not to mention they both have very pleasant, attractive voices. I could listen to them all day. Good thing this is only part one of the story. I am gonna listen to part two, now, and you should absolutely join me in enjoying this epic tale!!!
I loved this book, I hope there are more to come in this series.Kai & Wen are the best duo I have heard yet. Keep up the good work.
i am looking forward to part two of this book. Kai and Wen did an amazing job of bringing the character to life. can't wait to hear more from them.
I think they are equally as good but the audio edition just puts a voice to it and brings it to life even more!!
I loved it all by but the scenes unfolded and surrounded you and the characters seemed so real!
I can't say I had a favortie scene because I loved it all
I couldn't stop listening once I started it!
BLOW YOUR SOCKS OFF... hang that was 4... oops.
I liked the genre, the way the author 'Michelle Mankin' has intertwined a real life event within the story, leaving you wondering the true cause...
As all Kai & Wen's performances are different, I think it's unfair to compare their works.
There were some very touching moments in this part of the series, but I didn't have any extreme reactions yet....
I'm looking forward to listening to the second part of this series...
Willow Star Serenity
Started reading it expecting a typical story about a typical life of a rockstar and bam paranormal happens. I was thrown threw loops across the board. I loved it though! The story was great. The narrators were fantastic! I can't wait to hear the rest!
A grand love story is built up then the lovers are tortured and sacrificed in a grissly Vodoo ritual by the devil himself. The heroine evidently comes back as some sort of spirit in the next book after a cliff hanger ending. I consider mutilation, Vodoo, and devil worship horror, not fantasy. The book is marketed in a misleading way.
The creepy music and foreboding poetry quotes gave this book more ambience than reading the book ever could! They accentuated the dark undertones never letting you forget that not everything was what it seemed.
I don not compare books.
This was not my favorite performance by Kai Kennicott and Wen Ross, but only because they seemed to struggle a bit with the foreign words and accents. For all I know it could be that the words were not the ones I thought they were. It is hard to know for sure without any written component to check against. Otherwise the performance was very good. Maybe I am a snob and expect too much lol. I still really enjoyed the listening experience greatly :) I still love the way these two bring each and every character to life instilling them with loads of emotion and personality! I will definitely be listening to the next book! I am positive it will be even better :)
A few words were pronounced weird but otherwise it was very well narrated as always :)
This series must be listened to (or read) in order. This is the first book. I can't wait to listen to Strange Magic: Part Two!
Billy is a musician just out of rehab. Too bad that didn't solve his problems. He probably didn't even need rehab. When he plays his mouth harp he sees angry dead. Ghosts that appear out of nowhere. He would think it a gift but he never sees the ghosts he wants to see. Being named King of the Bacchus Krewe should have him deliriously happy but instead all he can think of is his apparent curse. Will the dead leave when he quits playing? Why has he received this honor? Who is the beautiful girl with the violet eyes begging him to help her?
Thyme has a pretty good life running a successful ice cream shop in the French Quarter. Her boyfriend Shane is her best friend as well as the love of her life. She has the best grandmother in the world who loves her unconditionally. Even though they are not related by blood she has always had a true home with her. If only she didn't still miss the mother she adored who abandoned her. If only she knew who her father was. Why does the sinister Leon want to buy her ice cream shop so badly? What does he see in her that makes him change his mind? What does he really want from her?
***This series is suitable for adult listeners (or readers) who enjoy urban fantasy filled with Old Gods and creatures of legend with suspense, intrigue, black magic, thrills, mystery and horror as well as a dash of romance :)
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