Magic Burns is the second book in the Kate Daniels series. If you have not read the first I would start there. However, there is enough background thrown in that you would not be completely lost starting from book two.
In Magic Burns Kate turns into a more relatable character. She starts building ties to the pack as well as adopts a ward who needs Kate to find her missing mother. Like all Kate Daniels books, this book contains mythology and magic. The world premise is like no other and the characters are all very well written.
Ilona Andrews is one of my favorite authors due to their great charter development, writing skill, and unique world building. While the series stays true to the theme of the world, it does not develop into cookie cutter plot building. At the end of the book you feel Daniel's pain and frustration and look forward to where she is heading next.
The Kate Daniels series isn't my favorite series. However it is in my top five. The writing is good. Although there are times my mind wanders in the descriptions. Yet that is probably because I have read this book at least five times. The main reason that I enjoy this series is that it is different. Ok it follows the formula of a kick ass female main character who has something unique about her. And there is a strong alpha male who is interested in her despite her lack of feminine whiles. I suppose that says something about me that this formula describes all the series in my top five list.
What is different about the Kate Daniels series is the setting. It is held in an alternate reality where technology and magic are at odds for dominance. Since tech has had the upper hand for centuries magic is fighting back with a vengeance. As the world is sometimes ruled by tech, all things familiar to us, and at other times magic.
All the main characters are also on board with this series. You have vampires, shape shifters, and witches. Yet these paranormal creatures all have a slight unique twist to them. Nope they don't sparkle. In addition there are also many less common or unique creatures added as well. It is interesting reading the interactions between all of these groups.
It does not hurt that the series is also set in Atlanta, my current stomping grounds. You can not drive past the world of coke without wondering what creature is stalking inside.
Overall it is truly a five star series. One I am happy to be reading again.
When the Eye Sees Itself is a complex novel about a society that uses personality traits to classify individuals in society. You can be an aggressive, a vulnerable, or a citizen. A citizen is the only one with rights, for an aggressive or vulnerable to obtain these rights they have to undergo a psychologically damaging reclassification procedure.
The novel focuses around the challenges to this system. What happens when someone is so aggressive and so vulnerable that the two traits even themselves out? How would this impact an already polarized society?
The novel also looks at technology and its impact. Devices start appearing on the black market that not only allow you to connect with the internet but to each other's minds. What happens when these devices are used to commit a crimes?
This novel is extremely packed. It also contains violence, terrorism, and hacking. There is a wide assortment of characters that interact in very complex ways.
While I enjoyed reading When the Eye Sees Itself, I think it would have been better served sectioned out into multiple books. There is just so much going on and so many people involved in the action. This is not genre fiction, or rather it is not a book to pop open on the beach for some light reading. The story is complex and the topics may be disturbing to some. Part of the novel is an investigation into violent acts against others. The descriptions never get graphic but the tone is aptly set. In addition there is drug abuse and other pretty heavy themes.
I really enjoyed the writing. The story itself could have been aided by some restructuring, but the writing is spot on. The words flow well together, it is well proofread, and it is just overall well done.
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