Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Magic Bites ( Book One in the Kate Daniels series) by Ilona Andrews

So Mark finally got me to read this and as predicted, I loved it. I have only read Magic Bites, and am nearly  through Magic Burns, the second in the (currently) 5 book series. 

It goes like this...

There has been a magic apocalypse somewhere in the not so distant future. Technology had taken over the world and magic decided it wanted to come back in full force - descending upon the city of Atlanta (and everywhere else in the world) in random waves knocking out all technology. 

Kate Daniels is a Mercenary/Guild Member/ Trained killer with a bad mouth on her and a way of putting herself in bad situations. She is a strong willed and beautiful woman, who has a hilarious sense of dry wit. Quote "Nothing kills a party like an over sized hedgehog" - if you knew the context in which this was being said, you'd fall over laughing too.
The first book Magic Bites starts off with Kate's life long mentor, Greg, being murdered. Of course Kate goes on the hunt for the killer and during the process of attempting to gather information, she learns a lot more about Greg's acquaintances. They include the Pack, who is controlled by the ferocious Beast Lord Curran. Curran controls the pack with ruthless authority, and Kate really knows how to get under his skin. She learns that 7 members of the pack have all gone missing, and also 5 members of the "People" have also gone missing. The people are necromancers who control the living dead aka Vampires, who without the mind control of the people would be walking monsters tearing up and eating everything in their path.

The story ends in a major show down, with enough twists and turns to make you immediately  want to pick up the second book.

The plot is basically a murder mystery, with lots of sword fighting and gore thrown with a slight trace of romance. The main protagonist is Kate and the story is told via first person. Which normally would aggravate me to no end, but it suits the story. Being inside Kate's head is an interesting journey, she has secrets about her past that have not fully come to light ( me being only up to book two) but the way the authors hint at it is making me incredibly curious. I'm sure as I progress through the series I will work out what the secret to her blood is!

So to make it short and sweet. Seriously cool books, not at all what I expected ( which was along the lines of crappy heroine pouts after sappy lion etc etc).

Definately worth the read.

How Cool Is This...

Mary Victoria, author of Tymon's Flight has blogged about my little review...

I really love it when Authors are involved with their readers. They put so much work and effort into creating their novels that I can't help but marvel, and being in contact with them through the journey is really the best part! Thankyou Mary!

Now for a certain someone to finish his novels so I can blog about them too :P

Monday, October 11, 2010

Really need to make up my mind...

I keep changing the layout of this thing. I haven't really told many people about it because I can't seem to find a layout that I like! They're either too boring, too bright, too weird ( and I like weird) or too blah to warrant a stay any longer than a few weeks, then I loose interest. So I apologise if everytime you look *not that there is many of you* it is completely different.

It's sort of like my life. Each week something changes and I am either back to the beginning in a situation or I do a complete turn over and change everything, only to decide to put it back to the original. I'm a bit odd sometimes. The End.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Tymon's Flight ( Chronicles of the Tree #1) by Mary Victoria

Tymon's Flight
Mary Victoria 
Harper Collins Publishers
RRP: $22.99

I finally got around to reading this book! With proof copies from work constantly piling up, this book kept slipping through the cracks and ending up sitting on my bookshelf - but I took it to QLD for a week and finally had time to relax and immerse myself in this wonderful world. Nothing like relaxing on a beautiful beach, in beautiful weather with a good read :)

Tymon's Flight was a surprise to be honest. On first sight, the cover didn't really grab me, it was dark and the images didn't really capture me. But then I can be quite critical of  covers- when I have so many things to get to, often if the cover doesn't grab me, it gets put aside.

But this book is a classic example of  "Don't judge a book by its cover".

Set in the world of a huge tree where all life comes from, Mary Victoria has created a wonderful world- cities are supported by huge branches and every utensil the characters use are somehow based on the materials you would find when living off nature. It was amazing.

The tale follows Tymon, a young boy who dreams of adventure. He wants to command a dirigible and explore the canopy. The Argosian priests have banned science and travel beyond the confines of the tree, but Tymon yearns to discover if there really is another world above and below. He gets a bit more than he bargained for when he disobeys his orders and meets Samiha, a female foreigner and one of the Nurian pilgrims brought to the city every year as slaves - and sacrifices. 
Tymon is punished and exiled to the eastern canopy, a dry dirty place where the Nurians live - they show him there are other ways to determine the will of the tree, introduce him to magic and "grafting" and send him on a new path and a new fate.

The pace of the first few chapters is quite slow compared to the rest of the book. You can tell it is building up to something big, but it takes a while to get there. It is full of adventure and Mary's incredible world building makes everything feel so believable. It's all so natural - the way the societies are built around the system of the tree, the structure, everything- its hard to describe how complex it all is until you read it. 
The book has been marketed by Harper as an Adult book but after speaking with the author, I found out that she had originally planned for it to be a YA/Adult book. Its sort of a coming of age novel. Apparently the next two books in the series go quite a bit darker than Tymon's Flight, so I am definitely looking forward to that.
I couldn't fault this novel - its captivating, heart wrenching and the second book "Samiah's Song" looks to be very impressive ( i have read the first few chapters courtesy of Mary Victoria).