Everything has a cost. And every act of magic exacts a price from its user---maybe a two-day migraine, or losing the memory of your first kiss. But some people want to use magic without paying, and they Offload the cost onto innocents. When that happens, it falls to a Hound to identify the spell's caster---and Allison Beckstrom is the best there is. Daughter of a prominent Portland businessman, Allie would rather moonlight as a Hound than accept the family fortune---and the strings that come with it. But when she discovers a little boy dying from a magic Offload that has her father's signature all over it, Allie is thrown into the high-stakes world of corporate espionage and black magic. Now Allie's out for the truth---and she must call upon forces that will challenge everything she knows, change her in ways she could never imagine, and make her capable of things that powerful people will do anything to control.
©2008 Devon Monk (P)2011 Tantor
I'm currently re-reading this series (again) and decided to try the audio book this time.
I enjoyed it so much that I now own the entire series in both ebook format and audio format. I was impressed by the narrator, Emily Durante, who does a wonderful job bringing the characters to life & giving each character his/her own voice.
AS TO THE STORY:
Devon Monk's Magic/Allie Beckstrom series is one of a handful of series that I HIGHLY recommend to friends & fans of Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Romance. In it, the author introduces us to an interesting and well-crafted world in which magic is a reality, but comes with a price. Not only do I find Monk's take on Magic and the world she has created to be both unique and interesting; but I also greatly appreciate the fact that our introduction into this world is fairly seemless. I was never confused &/or overwhelmed by too much techno-speak or conceptualization, as can sometimes be the case in fantasy books with respect to world-building.
This book/series might be a bit more UF than PR, but there is a quickly formed romance (w/ complications) for you paranormal romance fans, plenty of magic (most of it out of the bedroom... though some quite literally in it, a fair amount of mystery/ detective work, and some interesting, multi-faceted characters. *(Some of my favorite characters aren't introduced for a few more books.)
MAGIC TO THE BONE ---- some romance, a lot of urban fantasy and some crime & intrigue --- It's a good start to a great series. If you enjoy the first book even a little, keep reading... the rest of the books are even more compelling.
I enjoyed this story although the ending was drawn out. Thought the magic concept was good, The heroine wasn't much for thinking outside of the box. Looking forward to future books.
Like any fantasy, the author tries to weave a world that makes sense to us in the ???real??? world while twisting our reality into theirs. Monk did a great job of it. His modern day United States that is a world where magic is commonplace, used and abused like any commodity in real life, I found intriguing and refreshing from the many fantasy stories I???ve read.
Need I say, ???Great love scenes????! Adding magic to the acts of passion, although not unique, was written well and I want to see how Monk will write more scenes with Allie and Zayvion. Like vampires have heightened sex lives, magic in Monk???s world can add to the sexual experience. I won???t spoil it by tell you how but will say that the telling of how has put Monk at the top of my favorite authors list.
Great job of narration. Durante???s character voices were easy to distinguish and her vocal expression of emotion was a great asset to my enjoyment of the story.
I???ve read all of the Dresden Files and this book is right up there with those. Not as much comic intervention, but just as great plot development and interesting characters. Can't wait to listen to book 2.
The story is a good one, the narrator does a good job with narrating...but this one did not seem to translate well to audio for me, I got bored with listening and went back to reading the book.
I loved the magic and the romantic interest in the story. The main character and the narration, not so much. The story did hold my interest to continue on--I'm currently on #3, but if the main character's flaws aren't corrected soon, I may stop.
She seems to be stubbornly oblivious to anything else but what she wants. This makes her very unlikable. And for someone who is supposed to be an investigator, she sure leave a lot of facts just hanging in the air. It feels too much to me like a bit of a lame plot device--left open for a big reveal later.
Despite my problems with the book, I loved the magic and this world. I see enough potential in this series for me to give it 3 books. I hope it lives up to it and I can finish it.
This goes for the entire Magic Series by Devon Monk: Allie Beckstrom is willful, stubborn, ignorant, distrustful to the point of paranoia, annoying and fairly inept. She refuses to learn and will not admit to mistakes. She manages to get people killed and injured on a regular basis and then wonders what went wrong. She is one of those leading ladies who, when told by the hero, "No matter what happens, do NOT get out of the car," promptly gets out of the car. The main problem is that she survives while most of the good folks around her don't.
Devon Monk is a redundant writer. He says the same things over and over again either because he doesn't think that the reader is smart enough to get it the first time around or that the reader is too stupid to remember what he just said. He also spends way too much time describing the surroundings while leaving nothing what so ever to the imagination of the readers. During action sequences, he spends so much time describing the scene that the reader forgets what the main characters are supposed to be doing. His leading lady just stands there doing nothing while the chaos goes on around her. Of course, most of the time she doesn't have a clue about what she needs to do because she has refused to listen or learn from those who have tried to teach her.
This is an annoying series which could have been great if Devon Monk was a better writer. As written, it demonstrates fuzzy logic worshiped to the point of religious insanity.
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