Early Review: Cold Burn of Magic by Jennifer Estep
Cold Burn of Magic by Jennifer Estep
Black Blade #1
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...
Wow, I really enjoyed this. Not only is there a fresh and unique world, but there's magical mobster families to boot. Add in a really strong heroine and I was hooked. I really couldn't put it down once I started. If it wasn't for the slightly heavy/descriptive world building that slowed things a bit at times, (also that I had figured out the "twist" almost right away long before the characters did) this would have been a solid five, which is no small feat for a first book in the series for me.
Even if the world behind the story hadn't of been so interesting, the main character, Lila still would have more than sold this book for me. She's sarcastic and strong, and incredibly brave. It really amazed me how much she's been through, and while she comes off as uncaring at the start of the book, that's only the surface. Her actions more than proved themselves throughout the book despite how she tried to pretend otherwise.
If this first book is any indication, I can easily see this series outshining the Mythos Academy books by far. It has all the elements to kick off a truly awesome series with plenty of potential; a fascinating and completely unique world, a stellar cast of characters, and a fast moving plot. So, if you are looking for something fresh and unique in the paranormal YA genre, you'll definitely want to but this one on your list asap.