It is no secret that I am a huge Ilona and Gordon Andrews fan. The Kate Daniels series was one of the first Urban Fantasy series I really got into and I have to say, I’m so impressed with how they have managed to avoid many of the pitfalls so many of my other favorite (or in a few cases…sadly, once favorite but no more) Urban Fantasy series, have fallen into. The Kate Daniels series manages to consistently hit the mark, the characters growing in maturity, yet still remain fascinating, the dangers were more real then ever, and the side characters are so real, they seem to actually breath.It is a great feeling to be a fan of a series and watch it suceed. It couldn’t happen to nicer people. Magic Rises hit #1 on the New York Times Best Selling List. Isn’t that amazingly awesome! Here is why this book kicks so much ass.
In Magic Rises, Kate and Curran have to confront their insecurities, in particular, jealousy. This book was at times…gut wrenching, surprising, and ultimately extremely satisfying and Magic Rises is quite possibly my favorite book of the series. The Andrew’s did not miss a single opportunity to entertain.
Kate and Curran are dealing with the heartbreak of several children going “Loupe” which is a death sentence. Curran is able to get ahold of some medicine but there is only enough to save one of the children and they are forced to put the other child into an induced coma, while they try to find more medication. There is a tribe of shape shifters who live in Europe, who have ready access to the medication. They will only give it to Curran, if he, and his elite squad of shifters, come to their location to guard a female shifter who is having twins, possibly fathered by two different men. Two tribes are waiting for the children’s birth and based on whoever the children were fathered by…big changes will occur politically.
Curran and Kate know they are walking into a no win situation, but they have to get their hands on the medicine. Coming with them on the trip, along with the usual cast of friends and allies, is Saiman, just to make things more interesting. We also get to meet and know Hugh, Roland’s General, who has his eye on Kate in more ways than one, and a beautiful Werewolf Princess who makes it clear she thinks she can steal Curran away from Kate.
Curran surprisingly seems intrigued and Kate is forced to deal with her heartache, deal with Hugh trying to get to know her better which is creepy and yet surprisingly seductive in some ways, and she must protect the pregnant shifter in order to stand a chance of getting their hands on the medication and saving Julie’s friend from going Loupe. Kate must look at what kind of person she would have been if she had gone over to the dark side, and given her childhood, her upbringing, her family, it is amazing that this woman is a hero and not a villain. The fight scenes are like watching a movie in your head. I keep thinking, they can’t write a better battle scene and each book seems to top the last one. Hugh was a wonderful surprise, even more dangerous and scary and yet sexy then I expected. Loved him. What a perfect villain.
Trouble is brewing in Europe and Curran, Kate, and the gang, are forced to deal with extremely hot headed, dangerous people. Kate and Curran’s relationship is tested in ways I never saw coming. There are terrific new characters, some of whom are mystical, and great insight into existing characters. We also lose a character I’d grown to care for and that was another surprising hit to my emotions. Far from being filler, Magic Rises is a triumph of Urban Fantasy fiction. Just like the sound of thunder on the mountain precedes a storm that is rising…there is a heavy feeling and tension that grips us as we realize, Kate (and the readers) need to prepare….because Roland, is coming and the next book is going to be simply amazing. I’m counting the days. Ilona has been teasing on her blog that she is writing the Roland scenes. Do yourself a favor and go to www.ilona-andrews.com. She and Gordon are fantastic to their fans and release snippets as well as free serialized fiction that has not been published.
PS. The art department has seen fit to give us at least four different Kate’s and that is just in America. Oh how I wish they had used this girl below, on all the actual books. The authors have no control over this stuff, its all marketing and that’s cool, but in one situation I guess they were able to pick their model and they used the below girl for Magic Gifts, their freebie for fans novella that came out for Christmas. I believe the art department used the same model but a different pose for the cover of the Kindle, which made me happy. This girl below…looks like she could kick your ass. I love her. This model will always be in my mind…Kate Daniels.