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Magic Mourns by Ilona Andrews

I loved, loved, loved this novella in the Kate Daniels universe. Andrea is an amazing character, and finding out more about her past and thoughts was a wonderfully fulfilling journey. She’s starkly different from Kate, not only in her weapons choice, but also in the ways in which she approaches the world and her task as a knight.

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Magic Strikes by Ilona Andrews

Magic Strikes finally lets us discover more about Kate’s unique and dangerous heritage. Something that has been niggling at me since I first started reading this series. Andrews is brilliant in slowly teasing out this information – each book reveals a new insight into her life before the series and provides an insight into her character and creation. Aside from the main plot line, this makes me want to continue reading the series.

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Magic Burns by Ilona Andrews

I loved Magic Bites, but Magic Burns was even better. Not only were the stakes increased, but Kate Daniels’ secret is closer to the surface and the challenges are WAY bigger. From the first moment, I felt thrust into the action. With Kate’s unique voice and independence, Andrews took us on a ride of pure enjoyment and enthralling fun.

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Magic Bites by Ilona Andrews

“jeans loose enough to kick a man in the throat” – quite possibly the best clothing description I have ever read. And this quote alone really sets the book’s tone and shows you how tough the heroine truly is. And what a smart ass she tends to be, a fact that I truly appreciate. Most heroines in books are gorgeous and they’re cheeky, but still respectfully so. Kate Daniels is not a stunner, she’s adequately alright looking, and she is so damn cheeky that throughout the book I constantly expect her to have her head chopped off (literally). I love the departure from traditional heroine, and this is definitely what drew me in.

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Bastion by Mercedes Lackey

This was a fantastic conclusion to the Collegium Chronicles. The slow lead up to understanding Mags’ past and his integration into the Heraldic society finally hits its climax and we are welcomed into a new age for Mags and his cohort. Getting a completely open look into his past let’s all the pieces of the puzzle that Lackey so painstakingly laid out fall into place.

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Redoubt by Mercedes Lackey

We all have a past, and no matter how hard we run from it, it will come back to haunt us. It’s true that the past has shaped us and all of those wonderful clichés, and Lackey reminds us beautifully of this in Redoubt. Mags doesn’t remember his past, but it constantly reappears in his life to torture and harass himself and his friends. It’s a fact that both fascinated and frustrated me throughout the story – it was easy to understand that Mags’ biological family had some amount of importance, but that was it. I like to know things, so not knowing drove me a little crazy. So, it was wonderful to finally find out more about his family and past.

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Changes by Mercedes Lackey

The challenges that Bear started facing with his familial issues really come to light in Changes. The conflict that starts to build in Intrigues is heightened and Lackey poignantly reminds us that family isn’t everything. I loved the contrast with Amily and Lydia’s families, they show exactly what unconditional love is all about. It’s a great reminder that blood isn’t everything and sometimes it is actually okay to say goodbye to family.

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Intrigues by Mercedes Lackey

Intrigues returns us to the world of Mags’ and the building of the Heralds Collegium. Mags is finally settling in to his new life and his small group of friends. I love that he isn’t a popular kid, he has a select few with whom he is close, and that is enough. I’ve never understood the idea of quantity over quality with friends, and Lackey helps to drive this home. You only need a few people who really care about you, not an entourage of characters that just happen to be there.

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Foundation by Mercedes Lackey

Foundation was a really unique book in my eyes. Most books have a very specific plot line and journey through the chief protagonist’s life. Foundation, not so much. It’s almost like a huge introduction for the remaining three books in the series. Not that this is a bad thing. Of all of the Mercedes Lackey books I’ve had the pleasure of reading, it is Mags that I feel the most connected to. So much so that when I finished reading this series, I turned right around and started to read it again.

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