Review: Cold Burn of Magic (Black Blade #1) by Jennifer Estep
I received this book for free from the mentioned source in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book nor the content of my review.
Cold Burn of Magic by Jennifer Estep
Series: Black Blade #1
Published by: Kensington -Teen, Kensington Books on April 28th 2015
Genres: Magic, Paranormal, Urban Fantasy, YA
Source: ARC From Publisher, NetGalley
View on: Goodreads
Grab it: Buy on Amazon
About the Book:
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. . .
Cold Burn of Magic is the first in a new Young Adult series from Jennifer Estep, and I have a feeling this one is going to be really popular. An urban fantasy set in the town of Cloudburst Falls, filled with magic, monsters, and mobsters, I am head over heels in love with this book.
Let’s talk about the town’s name for a second. Cloudburst Falls. How much more magical can you get? I don’t know what it is about it, but I really liked the name of the town. In Cloudburst Falls you have your usual humans, referred to as rubes by the magical folk, humans who have Talents, some sort of magical ability; and different creatures such as pixies, tree trolls, and the lochness that hangs out in the river. The town is run by different Families, or different mobs in not so nice terms. The different Families run different kinds of businesses on the Midway, and each family has a different family crest. I didn’t know how much I wanted a book about a town run by magical mafiosos until I picked this book up.
Lila Merriweather wants nothing to do with the Families. Ever since her mother died when Lila was young, she’s been on her own and she prefers it that way. Of course, when she saves a random boy from what looks to be an assassination attempt, she ends up being strong armed into being the bodyguard for Devon Sinclair, the son of the head of the second most powerful family in Cloudburst Falls.
Lila was such a great heroine. She’s been living on her own for a long time, so she’s clearly intelligent and resourceful, not to mention the fact that she kicks butt with a sword. She definitely has her issues with the Sinclair family, who she blames for her mother’s death. Understandably, she’s a little angry, but it’s nice to watch her grow throughout the book, and I’m excited to watch her grow even more throughout the rest of the series.
The side characters were great. I have a soft spot in my heart for Felix, the constant flirt. But even though he’s such a huge flirt, there was no love triangle in the book, which I really appreciated! Devon is a sweetie, and I did feel bad for him. He holds so much guilt for all of the people who have died trying to protect him. When Lila first used her soulsight Talent to see how guilt-ridden he was, I was a little concerned that he was going to be a very cliché tortured soul love interest, and to some extent he is a little tortured, but it wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be. Claudia Sinclair, the head of the Sinclair family was one character that I was really intrigued by, and I’m wanting to know more about her.
I do have one really minor complaint. I wish that the romantic angle would have either been developed a little bit more, or left out completely. I didn’t want the romance to overpower the book, because I don’t think that’s the point of the plot at all, but it felt kind of awkward and almost a little forced to me. However, I keep telling myself that this is the first in a series and there will be plenty of time for the romance to build to a different level.
I am giving Cold Burn of Magic 5 out of 5 controllers. I loved the plot, I loved the characters, I loved the writing, I loved it all. I have faith that the romance will develop over the series, and I also have faith that it won’t overpower the rest of the series. I’m so excited to see where the rest of this series goes.