Title: Magic Bites
Author: Ilona Andrews
Series: Kate Daniels #8.5
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: Dystopia, Paranormal fantasy, Shapeshifters
5th sentence, 74th page: She looked away and pulled smoked venison and a jug of iced tea out of the bag.
Scarred, solitary Derek Gaunt has separated from his Pack, and is truly a lone wolf. With no family he answers to no one; but is fiercely loyal to a chosen few. So, when several of those close to him are murdered, he’ll stop at nothing to hunt their killer through the magic-drenched streets of Atlanta.
Never one to be left on the sidelines, equally determined—some might say stubborn—Julie Lennart-Olsen soon joins in his pursuit; and what began as revenge turns into a race to save the city. Their search pits them against powers they never imagined and magic so old, it predates history. It may cost Derek his life, but there are things for which even he would risk everything.
I haven’t read any of the Kate Daniels books for a little while, since I was waiting for this short novella to arrive, and honestly, I had forgotten how violent these stories were. And how much I LOVE them! The entire series is filled with sass and dry wit, and Magic Stars was absolutely no different. Derek’s first short story and his friendship with Julie are beautifully told in this story. As are some of the aspects of their lives that can’t make it into the main novels.
Derek’s role as the Grey Wolf and his opinions at his trajectory through the Pack are outlined within the first half of the book. Although we have watched his change from happy, bright young wolf to the Grey Wolf from Kate’s POV, it is nice to see how the circumstances of his past have shaped and changed him. As with his different status near loupism, Derek is completely unique and fascinating within the world of Kate Daniels. And definitely worth his own short story.
Julie’s childhood crush on Derek has been alluded to within other books, but as she seems to have grown into herself and her own powers, this seems to have become a more mature regard. Her views of him and simple acceptance of all that he is and does hints at a really great romance to come. Or at least, that’s the way I read the story.