***This review might contain a few spoilers from Magic Rises (Kate Daniels#6)***
To say I had been awaiting this novel would be an understatement. It is one of those few books which one prefers to have on autobuy or pre-order. Ilona Andrews are that good.
Magic Rises had left us feeling happy for Kate and Curran – beautiful ending! Sad too, because Aunt B died a tragic and painful death, and we will miss her. A lot had happened in the book and there were a lot of questions raised after reading it.
Previously, Hugh was the evil serpent who maintained the persona of a charming gentleman till the end. It had made me interested to look forward to the time Kate came across him again. But his portrayal in Magic Breaks ripped off the persona of charm to reveal why Hugh is the right hand man to Roland. He came across as an explosive, ruthless and temperamental bastard. Add to that the fact that he is highly powerful and intelligent, and you have the formidable enemy Kate tackles in Magic Breaks.
In a nutshell, Magic Breaks has Kate scrambling together all her intelligence, connections and skills to protect the pack and prevent a war between the People and the pack. All of this happens while Curran is away. Then, due to a betrayal, she is imprisoned in a cell and almost starved to death. Afterwards, she gets to meet with her father. With all of that and more, you can safely surmise that this book is jam-packed with awesomeness.
To take a look at the emotions evoked while reading the novel, there was not a single scene where one or another emotion didn’t have me in its grasp. I just could not bring the emotions under control. Any time I let out a sigh of relief, the story threw another wrench in it, and I was left holding my breath in anticipation.
The world which Kate lives in has always been full of danger, but the new experiences and location took the danger to new heights. While Kate has to fight a large part of the battle against Hugh on her own, she holds strong. This book again proves Kate’s competence as the leader/alpha of the pack. However, I have to say, I am more than a bit tired of the hypocrisy of the pack. She bleeds for them, and they never accept her as one of their own, or as one worth fighting for. It grated on my nerves, especially in this novel, and I am happy at the way the book ended.
I had previously come across opinions where people were unhappy with the book because Curran was MIA, but I have no complaints. His absence was very much required, else Kate couldn’t have owned the show (and she very well did!). Like Kate, I awaited Curran’s arrival anxiously.
Kate’s faith in Curran, her belief that Curran will save her is humbling. There is no other word for it. That’s what I felt. Afterwards, while facing Roland, Kate is the kick-ass heroine we love her for. She is also intelligent. I loved the fact that she decides to live for herself, leaving her upbringing behind. For her to survive she knows what she must do and she does it, no qualms about it. No second thoughts or procrastinating her decisions.
Curran’s love, support and acceptance of Kate, is awesome. It made me want to give him a tight hug. Any lesser man or someone who loved Kate any less would have run, which makes me love Curran even more. Whatever grudges I held against Curran from the previous book, dissolved into dust in this book. I am cheering for Team Curran now.
Enough about the heroes, let’s have a look at the bad guys. There are very few villains you look forward to. Before Roland’s arrival it was Hugh. After Hugh lost his cool and became (in my very honest opinion) a sadistic and crazy ass, the mantle for the villain was taken up by Roland. And so again, we have a villain who is charming and lethal, but this time every quality is multiplied by a factor of 10 to portray the magnitude of reality.
A lot of stuff happens in the book, but to disclose the events would take away half the fun in reading it. Things which were earlier discussed upon, with the almost 100% possibility of never happening, actually happen in this book, which makes it a great read. The events in the book lead to an end with unforeseen consequences, but it makes me look forward to the next book even more.
It is quite hard to talk about the book without gushing about Curran, or about the dialogues, or about the suspense or the events. In the first reading of this novel, it is not that easy to grasp the humour in all the scenarios but that is because we are constantly reeling in shock over one event or another. However there were a few times when I did not feel drawn in. These few moments were interspersed throughout the book, but I guess they didn’t lessen the fun of reading because of the impact the rest of the story was having on me. Kate’s sarcastic sense of humour helped as well.
I had a few issues with the novel. For instance, the whole scene with Ted Monyohan. I thought he would get what was coming to his-arrogant-ass but I was sadly disappointed in the manner the whole episode concluded itself. It seemed obvious to me that even though Ted suffered through horrors, in the end, he is the one whose ambitions become reality. Though it will be interesting to see the impact this conclusion will have on Kate’s life, I did not like the bloodshed. Overall, some parts of the book happily astounded me, few made me laugh but a couple left me disappointed.
Nevertheless, Magic Breaks is a great blend of suspense, action, angst and awesomeness. I for one, am eagerly awaiting the next book in the series.