Kate Daniels Reread pt. 2

My next-to-last post was all about the world of Kate Daniels and such. Today we’re actually going to get into the books. I’ve read the first three, but this review may or may not talk about all three. From now on, the reviews will just be about one book at a time. I just got ahead in my reading. So, without further ado, let’s start reviewing!

Magic Bites

Magic Bites is the first book in the series. In it, we are introduced to Kate, a merc. She’s sitting in her house in Savannah, GA, drinking when a vampire shows up to ask if she’s talked to her guardian lately. Ghastek was the one who was navigating the vampire. He and Kate are going to have an interesting relationship over the series, so remember his name.

She rushes to Atlanta to find that Greg Feldman, the man who was her guardian after her father died, has been gruesomely murdered. He was the resident Knight-Diviner for the local chapter of The Order of the Knights of Merciful Aid. The Order is kind of like modern day Templars, only slightly less merciful. They will provide mercy, but sometimes that mercy is provided at the edge of a sword. The Order was founded right after the tech fell and the shift started. It is very regimented. Greg did get Kate into the Order’s Academy, and she tested out at electrum level, which is the highest you can go, and there have only ever been like 8. However, she walked out and became a merc, which drove a wedge in between her and Greg. There will be more about the Order in reviews to come. Anyway, she goes to the head of the local chapter of the Order to get help and ends up with permission to work with them to find Greg’s killer.

On the way to the solution, she goes to the morgue and meets Crest. She goes to Unicorn Lane and meets Curran, greeting him by saying “Here, kitty, kitty.” She goes to the Keep and meets Derek Gaunt, faithful, teenage, werewolf sidekick. And she goes to the Casino and has to talk to Nataraja. More to come in the spoiler section.

Magic Burns

In Magic Burns, a seven-year flare is coming. A flare is several days when the magic is extremely high. It’s a high peak of magic that plateaus during that time. Saiman, Kate’s magical expert, metamorph, and deviant extraordinaire, calls it the time of the gods. And he’s not wrong. During the flare, shifters have a hard time controlling themselves, Navigators have a harder time controlling their vampires, and magic users and magical people, like Kate, get a huge power boost.

This book starts out with Kate doing a merc job partnering Jim, a were-jaguar and the chief of security for the Pack. They are trying to track down a madman with a salamander. A salamander is a magical creature that starts fire. Just as Jim and Kate catch their firebug, he gets shot with a mysterious black arrow. Then Jim gets paged by someone in the Pack and has to leave. Remember, with the Pack, it’s us against them, and for Jim, he will drop everything when the Pack calls. He’s the Alpha cat and the security chief, so he’s super-duper responsible.

Later, Derek comes to ask Kate for help because someone has stolen maps from the Pack. Their maps are uber-accurate, and highly sought after. This person poofed in, grabbed the maps, and poofed out. While she was trying to figure out how to help with the maps, she runs across a street shaman named Red who had helped her a little bit in the last book, and his girlfriend, Julie. Julie’s mom is missing and Red tells Kate to take care of her. More in the spoiler section.

Magic Strikes

Magic Strikes starts out a few months after the flare. Kate is headed home from her job at the Order. She runs across Jim and some other shifters picking up a dead body. She offers them help, Jim turns her down. When she gets home, she gets a call from Saiman, telling her to come pick up something of hers. It turns out it’s Derek, who has snuck into his apartment to steal some tickets to the Midnight Games. The Games are an underground fighting tournament. In it, teams go into the Pit and fight each other. Derek has been working undercover in the Games and has found a young woman he’s trying to help, Livvie. That’s why he wants the tickets. Saiman extorts Kate into going to the Games with him, and Derek asks her to give Livvie a note from him. While this sounds like a minor little thing, it turns out to be pretty important.

So, we’ll leave it here until the spoiler section, which, as this is getting long, is going to actually show up tomorrow, I think. I don’t like to read long blog posts, so I don’t want to write them for people.

There is romance in the series, but there isn’t really any in the first books. Kate and Curran get a little kissy face going on, but nothing else really. It’s not until the fourth book that their romance really gets going. In these books they are still dancing around each other and kind of confrontational. Really, I think foreplay for them involves arguing and physically fighting with each other, in a sparring way, not in a bad way.

It’s a good series, well-written and enjoyable. The way the books work, they build on each other. Each book adds more to the characters and to the world, so there is always something new to find out. I really love that.

So, here is where this quick overview of books 1-3 ends, and we get ready for tomorrow’s post, which is going to be spoiler-iffic. And I’m going to leave you with this beautiful picture of a Barbary lion, just because.

TVCWAx9

Advertisements

Urban Fantasy Pt. 3

Make sure that you check out Part 1 and Part 2. That way you’ll get the whole impact of my thoughts, opinions, and favorite authors.

Ilona Andrews

This husband and wife team have several series which would fit right smack dab in UF. One also works as post-apocalyptic. One, the Innkeeper series, I’m balancing between UF and straight fantasy. I haven’t quite decided how I would classify it as of yet. I haven’t read the Edge series, I’ve read synopsis of the books, and they just don’t grab me.

Kate Daniels is the main character for the Magic… series. She is a mercenary with a heaping helping of personal magic, and a huge secret that she is hiding. Her secret could get her killed. Her father, Vorin, taught her how to fight so that she would be ready when it came time to enact her revenge. Along the way, she meets and falls in love with Curran, the Beast Lord, defeats her all-powerful aunt, and tries to kill her real father.

Ilona has said that she based Kate’s sword fighting style after Cossack sword dancing, which makes sense, since Vorin was of Russian descent, and so is Kate on her mother’s side. BTW, Ilona is of Cossack descent herself, check out her blog post about it. Their blog is fun to read. They have snippets of WIPs, slice of life snippets, and a little bit of everything, including a look into the world of a professional author.

Cossack sword dancing is very cool to watch. Very cool.

This is what I think Kate must look like when she’s fighting.

And just because this fighting style is so fucking pretty, have another video.

I read the Kate Daniels books regularly, usually at 2x a year. That includes the companion novellas and the shorts. The upcoming book, the 10th Kate Daniel’s book, is going to be the final in the series. Sadly. I think there are going to be more written in that world, and be Kate-adjacent.

Hidden Legacy

Hidden Legacy takes place in Houston. In this series, various Houses pretty much rule the world, sometimes behind the scenes, sometimes not. Each House a type of magic associated with them. In walks Nevada Baylor, who has what she thinks is just a little truth sense talent. Turns out it isn’t just a little bit, and she’s a Prime. She’s a PI and while looking for Adam Pierce, she comes to the attention of Mad Rogan, one of the most powerful Primes ever. He’s very focused on her. They get their HEA, eventually, and sorta by the skin of their teeth.

So far, this is just a trilogy, and the last one just came out this month. Hopefully, there’ll be more to it. It’s a fun series, with a kickass hero and her cute, focused, somewhat insane boyfriend.

Innkeeper

The Innkeeper series started out being serialized on Ilona’s blog, but was popular enough that they were turned into books. In this series, there are special inns that are sanctuaries where the paranormal, alien, what have you, can stay if necessary, or hold meetings, and such like. The Inns are somewhat sentient, but they are under the control of their Keeper. This series has an inn that was closed off, but Dina, the Keeper, is determined to get her Inn back to good shape and get it highly rated again.

I like this series. It’s a pretty light series, all things considered, and generally a little less intense than the other two.

We’re going to have more posts about some of my favorite authors in this genre, but I think next week we’ll take a break and talk about something else.

As a reminder, 22 great authors, some of which I know, got together and wrote a set called Royally Mine. It’s only $.99 on pre-order, and it comes out 8/22. I’ve read some ARCs from the set, and they are hot, hot, hot!