Urban Fantasy aka Mary’s Crack
448 pages, paperback
Available July 31, 2012
Publisher: Ace Fantasy
Review copy provided by publisher for honest review
Some people have everything figured out — Andrea Nash is not one of those people. After being kicked out of the Order of Knights of Merciful Aid, Andrea’s whole existence is in shambles. All she can do is try to put herself back together, something made easier by working for Cutting Edge, a small investigative firm owned by her best friend, Kate Daniels.
When several shapeshifters working for Raphael Medrano — the male alpha of Clan Bouda and Andrea’s former lover — die unexpectedly at a dig site, Andrea is assigned to investigate … and must work with Raphael. As her search for the killer leads her into the secret underbelly of supernatural Atlanta, Andrea knows that dealing with her feelings for Raphael might have to take a backseat to saving the world …
Oh, Ilona Andrews, how do I love thee? (Well, actually, it would be more of a “y’all”, considering this is actually a husband/wife team.) I’ve been kind of scatter-shot about reading the Kate Daniels books but that’s changing. Right. Now. Because I seem to have forgotten how awesome this world is and how much I adore Kate and Curran (who make an appearance in this novel and have a novella together as a bonus in this novel, too).
And Andrea. In the previous Kate Daniels books, Andrea is so very broken, crushed by a horribly abusive childhood, people who wouldn’t accept her for what she is, and the loss of her place with the Order when they found out she wasn’t human but a shifter. But in GUNMETAL MAGIC, she finds a new, stable place at Cutting Edge and begins to build herself a life she can be proud of.
With places like the Glass Menagerie, an area of the ATL where glass grows and twists and hiding deadly creatures, and Centennial Park and the Central Library, where nature has gone wild and enveloped the area, supernatural Atlanta is a tricksy place, harboring many secrets. When one secret is unveiled, people die. That’s where Andrea and her investigative skills come in. While Kate’s a slash-and-burn kind of girl, Andrea’s a strong hunter, puzzling out the pieces, following the trail until she gets her man (or creature).
Tagging along on these investigations is Ascanio, beloved male child of Clan Bouda and intern at Cutting Edge. He adds so much humor, curiosity, and teenaged surliness to the story, and he assists Andrea in ways she never knew she needed, keeping her moving forward, even when she’s ready to rip things apart with her bare claws.
Because the need to rip things apart arises more than you’d think, and life is never simple, especially when it involves your ex-boyfriend. An alpha ex who just recently hooked up with an empty-headed human, flaunted her in front of you in your place of business, and is quite possibly engaged to said airhead. An ex who hasn’t forgiven you for leaving him or choosing the Order over him. Oh, and who needs your help figuring out what happened to some of his people. Awesome. The claws and teeth definitely make an appearance.
GUNMETAL MAGIC slides effortlessly into the series line-up, creates a very distinct voice with Andrea, and adds depth and color to the world of Kate Daniels.
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