Sunday, 14 June 2015

Cold Burn of Magic

Title: Cold Burn of Magic
Author: Jennifer Estep
Series: Black Blade #1
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Magic, Swords, Romance
Source: Kindle
Pages: 368 pages
Rating: 4 stars

Available at:

Blurb: (via Goodreads)
There Be Monsters Here. . .

It's not as great as you'd think, living in a tourist town that's known as "the most magical place in America." Same boring high school, just twice as many monsters under the bridges and rival Families killing each other for power.

I try to keep out of it. I've got my mom's bloodiron sword and my slightly illegal home in the basement of the municipal library. And a couple of Talents I try to keep quiet, including very light fingers and a way with a lock pick.

But then some nasty characters bring their Family feud into my friend's pawn shop, and I have to make a call--get involved, or watch a cute guy die because I didn't. I guess I made the wrong choice, because now I'm stuck putting everything on the line for Devon Sinclair. My mom was murdered because of the Families, and it looks like I'm going to end up just like her. . 

My Review:
This book had been nagging me to read it for a while now. My Kindle knows that I love Jennifer Estep, so it just kept on recommending it to me. So, even though my TBR list is ridiculously long and has several books ahead of it, I finally caved and read Cold Burn of Magic.

Have y’all read Estep’s Elemental Assassin series? Because if you have, reading Cold Burn of Magic might feel like a bit of a déjà vu. You have the badass female lead with a secret heart of gold that has rare and powerful magical abilities combined with her natural bad ass fighting skills. After her mothers murder, she is driven to destroy her murder while being cared for by a surrogate father figure. The antagonist for the overall series is basically the equally powerful badass mob boss who killed her mother. Sounds familiar right? All that has REALLY changed is the age of our heroine and the magical word she was thrust in… and the lack of a smart assed best friend/ partner in crime (which we MIGHT have here, but we will have to wait until book two to figure it out).

Now, saying that, you don’t fix what ain’t broke. There is a reason this has worked for Estep for so long, because it is awesome and it works! So, I can’t give points for originality here, but what we can’t give there is made up in so many other areas. Such as our characters! Character wise we hit everywhere on the spectrum. We have our resident badass, a no nonsense mother, a bleeding heart love interest, a motor mouth, a cocky SOB, a crooked father figure, star-crossed lovers…. You get where I am going with this, right? With some authors, this could be a bad thing. Characters could get blended together, or some may be left under developed because of page length constraints. I am so happy to say that is definitely not the case with Cold Burn of Magic. Despite there being numerous main, and secondary characters, everyone comes out clearly defined, unique, and properly developed given how much they appear in this first novel of the series.

Looking at the plot, you can’t go wrong here. Information was given at a even, subtle pace and I never felt as though information was being thrown at me. You can tell that Estep plans out her plot lines thoroughly because minor details in the beginning of the book that appear to be unimportant, become back later on to further the plot along. And not only is she plotting out this book, but she is setting up the plot lines for future books. I have absolutely nothing to complain about here. Of course, Estep never had a problem with her writing. While this novel is targeted at a slightly younger audience, Estep maintains her mature writing skills throughout the novel.

Overall, this really was a great start to a series. It didn’t feel as though too much time was spent on developing the world, the characters were developed nicely, and I was very pleased at the younger target audience. This books only real fault is that it is basically just a recycled version of Elemental Assassin.

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