Title: Iron and Magic
Author: Ilona Andrews
Series: Kate Daniels #9.5
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: Dystopia, Paranormal fantasy, Shapeshifters, Strong women
Dates read: 24th – 27th March 2020
Publisher: Ilona Andrews
5th sentence, 74th page: And Elara would fight to the bitter end.
No day is ordinary in a world where Technology and Magic compete for supremacy… But no matter which force is winning, in the apocalypse, a sword will always work.
Hugh d’Ambray, Preceptor of the Iron Dogs, Warlord of the Builder of Towers, served only one man. Now his immortal, nearly omnipotent master has cast him aside. Hugh is a shadow of the warrior he was, but when he learns that the Iron Dogs, soldiers who would follow him anywhere, are being hunted down and murdered, he must make a choice: to fade away or to be the leader he was born to be. Hugh knows he must carve a new place for himself and his people, but they have no money, no shelter, and no food, and the necromancers are coming. Fast.
Elara Harper is a creature who should not exist. Her enemies call her Abomination; her people call her White Lady. Tasked with their protection, she’s trapped between magical heavyweights about to collide and plunge the state of Kentucky intoa war that humans have no power to stop. Desperate to shield her people and their simple way of life, she would accept help from the devil himself – and Hugh d’Ambray might qualify.
Hugh needs a base. Elara needs soldiers. Both are infamous for betraying their allies, so how can they create a believable alliance to meet the challenge of their enemies?
As the propher says: “It is better to marry than to burn.”
Hugh and Elara may do both.
I have a really horrible habit of putting aside the series that I really love so that I don’t get too hooked into the books. Mostly when I have a lot of other work that I need to keep on top of. Which is why it’s taken me so long to get to this book. And it’s probably still a good way to go about things – because once I opened this up, I couldn’t keep my nose out of it! Or my mind away from it. And I’ve literally had to bury Magic Triumphs in a pile of books so I can’t quite pick that up quite yet.
Iron and Magic is a fantastic story. It’s one of those tales in which you suddenly see the other side of the story. Or, in this case, you finally understand even more about Hugh D’Ambray. And, for me, who kind of hated him in the rest of the Kate Daniels books, I came to absolutely adore him. I love the backstory and the reasons behind the horrors he commits. He’s not exactly a good guy, but at least I finally managed to begin to understand his actions and decision making.
Hugh is a fantastic male lead in this story. But, for me, as normally happens, Elara stole the show. She’s strong, independent and terrifyingly powerful. She’s also got this great sense of mystery about her past and her motives. It’s a great approach and adventure. Elara is so much more graceful and put together than any of the other women in this series. she might not be my favourite, but the whole “White Lady”, prayers mystery that springs up around her. The powerful people she surrounds herself with out of love and loyalty… it all works beautifully. And I still can’t stop thinking about what an amazing character this woman is.
This is an amazing story. I love the action, I love the drama. But most of all, I love the relationship between Hugh and Elara. Even when it takes on a more serious overtone, one of real emotion, they have this great, witty banter with each other. I love that there is this sense of rivalry and war between them. A power struggle that had me laughing out loud again and again and again.