Book Review: Magic Strikes by Ilona Andrews

Magic Strikes by Ilona Andrews

Title: Magic Strikes

Author: Ilona Andrews

Series: Kate Daniels #3

Genre: Urban Fantasy

Rating: 5/5 stars

The Overview: Drafted to work for the Order of Knights of Merciful Aid, mercenary Kate Daniels has more paranormal problems these days than she knows what to do with. And in Atlanta, where magic comes and goes like the tide, that’s saying a lot. But when Kate’s werewolf friend Derek is discovered nearly dead, she must confront her greatest challenge yet. As her investigation leads her to the Midnight Games—an invitation-only, no-holds-barred, ultimate preternatural fighting tournament—she and Curran, the Lord of the Beasts, uncover a dark plot that may forever alter the face of Atlanta’s shapeshifting community… -Goodreads

The Review:

Kate Daniels is making a strong case to claim the spot as my favorite urban fantasy (to even be in contention is saying something – this genre is filled with authors that I absolutely love). I can’t believe how much better the second and third books have been. If it hadn’t been for my amazing Goodreads friends urging me to continue, it might have been years before I picked them up again.

Why do I now love it so much, you ask? Well, for one thing, the love story turned into a slowly developing segment that practically sizzles with romantic tension. It’s showcasing a fun dynamic between the characters that has me laughing out loud at every turn. I found this book in particular downright hysterical. Kate might be even funnier than Harry Dresden, if you can imagine. But the story also had a compelling mystery, which gave it the perfect balance of light and dark.

Magic Strikes contained an arena-style competition (and if you’ve been following my blog for any length of time you probably know how much I LOVE books with featured competitions) which sent the book from great all the way to the stratosphere as far as I’m concerned. I’ve been really stingy with solid 5-star ratings lately, even going so far as to re-rate a bunch of 5-star titles down to a 4 or 4.5. I decided it has more of an impact to only give 5 stars to books that make my all-time favorites list. And you know what? Magic Strikes made the cut – I am already itching to go back and reread it!

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by Niki Hawkes

21 comments on “Book Review: Magic Strikes by Ilona Andrews

  1. Competitions, romantic tension and dynamic characters, count me in! I need to try more urban fantasy. I haven’t read much in the genre. Thanks for the helpful review! :)

    Liked by 1 person

      • I’ll just have to scroll through your reviews to find a few others! ;) (I’ve had my eye on Moon Called, too.) I’ve been in the mood for epics and high-fantasies, lately, but eventually I’ll want something faster, and this sounds perfect! I’ll make sure to commit to two or three books before making any definitive judgement calls on the series 😋


      • Yes! Moon called would totally be one I’d hand you. Perhaps the first… :) I also am in the mood for epic fantasy right now – must be something in the air haha. I have a few plans to start ones that have been on my shelves forever. Like the warded man, the lightbringer series, and tad Williams. I’m thinking a few light UF will be in order to break it all up!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Reeeally…well, maybe I’ll start with Moon Called, then! I love the idea of a Native protagonist, so I’m hoping her heritage comes through in the mythology, etc. *fingers crossed*

        Your reading list sounds awesome! One of my good friends keeps telling me I need to try Tad Williams; and of course everyone ever has told me I need to try the lightbringer series…in fact, one of my 2017 backlist tbr goals is to finish the Night Angel trilogy so I can finally start lightbringer! I adored Way of Shadows <3

        I can't wait to read your reviews!! Sounds like you have some great reading planned for 2017!


      • Yay!!! And if you’re looking for Native heritage playing a roll, you won’t be disappointed! Especially further down the series. :)
        Hey!! Those are the books I’ve been discussing reading on Goodreads – are we friends on there yet? We totally should be. I need your GR name if we already are so I can set you as a top friend.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I LOVE this series. Book 3 was what really hooked me in — I thought the first one was very “meh” and the second one was fine, but I’d promised my sister to stick through to the third, and she was right! I’ve been falling behind on this series recently, but I’m excited to get back to it eventually. Glad you liked it! :)


    • I’m glad I’m not the only one with that experience! After everyone was raging about the new one on Goodreads, I started to wonder if I was just missing something. I get it now haha. I can’t wait to read on :)


  3. A lot of UF series seem to follow this pattern of taking off only after two or three books – I experienced the same Dresden Files and Mercy Thompson, etc. Makes me think that I should really get on this series, I’ve only read the first one and have been meaning to catch up!


    • I agree! There are a bunch that seem to find their stride a few books in. Kate Daniels wasn’t gradual like Mercy or Dresden, but rather a full 180 between books 1 and two. It makes me wonder if they got a publishing deal after the first book with a better team shaping their work. I imagine that if you like book 2, it only gets better from there haha.


    • Thank you! And I love your encouragement – I will definitely keep going now that each book seems to be getting better than the last. Although I’m almost afraid to get caught up because then I have to wait like everybody else. ;P


  4. Pingback: The Obsessive Bookseller’s Mini Book Review Blitz! | The Obsessive Bookseller

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