Sunday, May 6, 2012

Review: Magic Burns (Kate Daniels #2)

"Down in Atlanta, tempers--and temperatures--are about to flare..."

Magic Burns, by Ilona Andrews, is the second novel in the Kate Daniels series. In post-apocalyptic Atlanta, paranormal energy ebbs and flows like waves. People live in two worlds: one moment, you can use technology for ordinary tasks; the next instance, magic renders it useless. Every seven years, a major flare hits the city, creating explosive magic and havoc in the air.

Kate, a mercenary by training, is on a mission to retrieve stolen maps for the Pack, a paramilitary clan of shape-shifters. It comes to her attention that the thief is a heroic warrior with superhuman abilities, including teleportation. To make matters worse, she also plays caregiver to a malmourished young girl who is homeless and in grave danger. In searching for her missing mother in Unicorn Lane -- where dark magic disrupts and consumes everything it touches, Kate discovers the girl's secret -- a magical gift so powerful that evil enemies want to exploit her.

Meanwhile, Kate gets more than what she bargains for when reeves and their sea-demon servants begin to appear on the streets on Atlanta. These monstrous beings want to take advantage of the magical flare to awaken their master, a god-like figure from Celtic mythology, bringing him from the underworld. Kate realizes everything is at stake -- she must fight to the end in order to protect her friends and humanity from ultimate destruction. If Kate cannot stop the awakening, the city may not survive.

This is the second Kate Daniels novel by the husband-and-wife writing team. Full of adventure and dark humor, the protagonist dives deep into action as she slays supernatural beings and investigate for more clues. The authors use their skills to add a touch of Celtic mythology to test Kate's knowledge and stamina. Curran, the Beast Lord of the Pack, and Kate are also an amusing couple: he tries to dominate and she refuses to submit. I sense that Kate will eventually fall for Curran, even if she does not desire His Majesty, in in future novels. Kate discovers her best friend's secret, and vows to protect her from the Order of Merciful Aid. While the missions become more dangerous, it's thrilling to watch Kate grow as a person and care for others' well-being. This book series is growing on me, and I am enjoying it immensely. I highly recommend it.

Stay tuned for the next review in the Kate Daniels series, Magic Strikes.

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