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Right Hand Magic: A Novel of Golgotham

Right Hand Magic: A Novel of Golgotham [Kindle Edition]

Nancy A. Collins
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Product Description

Product Description

Like most Manhattanites, aspiring artist Tate can't resist a good rental deal-even if it's in the city's strangest neighborhood, Golgotham, where for centuries werewolves, centaurs, and countless other creatures have roamed the streets.

Her new landlord is a sorcerer name Hexe, who is determined to build his reputation without using dark, left-hand magic. As Tate is drawn into Hexe's fascinating world, they both find that the right hand does not always know what the left hand is doing-and avoiding darkness is no easy trick...

View our feature on Nancy A Collins' Right Hand Magic.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 386 KB
  • Print Length: 302 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0451463668
  • Publisher: Roc (7 Dec. 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0049H9AW4
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #410,540 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
Okay, basic setup: Magic users and magical creatures live in an enclave (or 'ghetto') in a corner of New York called Golgotham and have done for centuries with lots of mutual prejudice between them and humans 'numps'.

Our attractive artist and human heroine called Tate moves into a spacious apartment where she can create her metal sculptures in piece. Her handsome Kymeran (humanoid six-fingered magic user) landlord Hexe practices only right-hand (good magic) and therefore needs the extra cash as you can't live off your principles. She has secrets and so does he and you just know they are going to get together sometime.

This book is more of a scene-setting for this new series and is well enough done to make it interesting in its own right as we see a strong clash of cultures between human and Golgotham. There is action and mayhem towards the end when they have to rescue a teenage were-cougar from the clutches of the villain and there's a general adult (as in grown-up) feel to the novel. There is ample scope with this scenario to develop other new characters as protagonists rather than continue to have Tate and Hexe up front all the time and I hope Collins will follow this route rather than take the easy way out of having the happy couple face new challenges, break up, get together again, face...

All in all a nice start and I'll be looking out for the next one.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3.6 out of 5 stars  35 reviews
19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars (3.5) Fantastic setting 8 Dec. 2010
By Kelly (Fantasy Literature) - Published on
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Tate, a young New York artist, needs a new apartment right away. She makes metal sculptures out of car parts and other odds and ends, and it seems her landlord isn't too happy with the noise level. Tate discovers an available room at a reasonable price and jumps at the chance, even though the building is in Golgotham, New York's magical neighborhood.

Golgotham itself is a fantastically intriguing setting and the best part of _Right Hand Magic_. It inspires a sense of wonder akin to what you might have felt when first discovering Diagon Alley. Nancy A. Collins stocks Golgotham with a wealth of detail, from leprechaun pubs to secret subway tunnels to huldra strip clubs to Tate's new landlord, Hexe, a handsome sorcerer. I wish Golgotham were real so I could go there and wander around for a day. Golgotham traces its history to a centuries-old conflict (and resultant prejudice) between humans and the magically-gifted, Technicolor-haired Kymeran race.

Tate and Hexe, it turns out, are both scions of wealthy families trying to make it on their own rather than coasting on their famous names. They learn they have a lot in common, and a cute romance begins. They court danger, though, when they take in a teenage were-cougar who has escaped from a fighting arena owned by Golgotham's magical mob boss.

_Right Hand Magic_ has its ups and downs. On the one hand, it's always nice to see an artist heroine, and I love the way Tate's work eventually ties in with the main plot. And if you don't think you could become emotionally attached to a statue, you might be surprised!

On the other hand, there's some clunky dialogue and several scenes around the middle of the book that don't seem to advance the story much. Most problematically, Tate is underpowered. She isn't able to do much during the climactic scene, a scene that ends up requiring several dei ex machina. This isn't necessarily a bad thing in the first book of a series. It's not uncommon for a character to start out on the weak side. I'm worried, though, about whether Tate will have a chance to -- pardon the RPG terminology -- level up. The way the world is set up, there's a fundamental divide between Kymerans, who can use magic, and humans, who can't. It doesn't appear that humans can simply learn magic through practice. She doesn't have mundane fighting skills either, and the one way she does contribute to the final fight -- while admittedly awesome -- is something that can't be done on the spur of the moment and requires Hexe's assistance.

The Golgotham series shows a lot of promise. The setting is fascinating, and it's peopled with interesting characters. I only hope Collins will find a way for Tate to become stronger as the series goes on.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars For a book with a gritty and immersive world as Golgotham, I found the writing, specifically the dialogue, to be lacking. 12 Dec. 2010
By AJ - Published on
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Whenever a series is named after its location, I expect that location to be as much a character as the protagonist. And the new Golgotham urban fantasy series delivers. The fictitious New York city of Golgotham is a strange and wonderful place populated by centaur cabbies, Amazon bikers, and warlocks for hire. I loved everything about Golgotham, if only the rest of the book had been as good as its setting.

Most urban fantasy titles fall into two camps: open world (the supernatural elements are common knowledge) or closed world (most of the population has no clue that supernatural creatures exist). In RIGHT HAND MAGIC we get the best of both worlds. Magic and supernatural beings are openly known to exist, but they are essentially segregated from the main population. Humans, or numps as they are derogatorily referred to, are largely ignorant of magical culture and what is and isn't possible. When Tate moves to Golgotham she's as clueless about her new surroundings as we are. She has to learn everything, but gets to avoid those often tedious `I can't believe this is real' passages that often drag down other books.

For a book with a gritty and immersive world as Golgotham, I found the writing, specifically the dialogue, to be lacking. I'd be reading about some very cool underground were fight club, and someone would say something so redundant or over the top maniacal that I got completely pulled out of the scene.

Weak dialogue aside, I did like the character of Tate and her romantic interest Hexe. The romance isn't overpowering and does build credibly (none of that instant love at first sight). Even the supporting characters including a teenage werecougar and a demon/cat familiar were entertaining comic relief. The real selling point of RIGHT HAND MAGIC is Golgotham, and it's strong enough that I'll be checking out the sequels LEFT HAND MAGIC followed by MAGIC AND LOSS sometime next year.

Sexual Content: A brief, non graphic sex scene.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars wow! i loved this book 20 Dec. 2010
By Renee S. - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition
top five reasons to read this book
1. WORLD BUILDING! reminded me of "neverwhere" in the best of ways with an american girl artist instead of a complaining british dude.
2. equal opportunity paranormal creature universe. i learned about a lot of rare creatures.
3. loved all 3 of the main characters: tate hexe and lucas... no... they are not in a love triangle... thank know what i mean.
4. the story and writing were tight. lots of interesting descriptions of people and locale... i want to know MORE about this not so secret city in Manhatten.
5. just the right amount of realism to make this world truly that aspect it reminded me of a harrison novel...even though tate has no apparent magic of her own i didnt miss it since nearly everyone else did. i could relate to her in this way quickly.

top 3 reasons not to read this book:
1. ok... the forbidden matches has been used a lot in this genre lately. i will be forgiving because it is a book 1 and i know it wont be in future installments.
2. the short sex scene at the end seemed a little anticlimatic. i would have been happy to have this postponed until book 2.
3. there is no reason 3! this book was fun... imaginative... and fast paced with lots of little adventures.

dont really know why only 3 people before have written reviews... when this book ROCKED!
also... i didnt really find inappropriate use of dialogue like a previous reviewer said. anyway... i give this book 5 stars!
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars love the story, writing not what I expected from her 18 Jan. 2011
By HappyBookWorm - Published on
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I enjoyed Nancy Collins' horror novels, so when I saw this book, I bought it immediately. I wish that I had read a page or two first.

I like the story, and want to know what comes next, but I keep getting hauled out of the story.

Sentence structure contained too many clauses (I could not help but wonder how many times the word 'which' was used), and there were way too many cliche'd phrases. I don't have the book with me, but think 'dark of night'. Heavy as lead. Sink or swim. Word choice was a little pedantic at times for the character. After a while, I really wanted a red pen.

Also, the main character wanted to make it on her own ... and was living on a trust fund and reluctant to apply to her parents (the meanies!) for yet another advance. That seems pretty juvenile for a woman in her late 20's, and I found it difficult to be sympathetic to the character. I can only pray for that kind of independence. ;)

I was also a little skeptical about someone welding metal and presumably pounding on it in an apartment building (the one not in Golgotham). That just seems a little unlikely. I have a feeling there are laws against that.

Character development for supporting characters was spotty, also. Vinnie the furniture mover was a charicature of a tough guy New Yorker. Made me wonder if she'd ever been there.
6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Reads like Young Adult Fiction 23 Dec. 2010
By Mcfynnan - Published on
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This was nicely written, the part I read. I enjoyed Nancy Collins's previous dark fantasy/horror but it was a bit too dark, with little romance and lots of doom and sad endings and violence. However, this book reads like no darkness, a 180 from the author's earlier works. The main character is young, naive and bland... as are other characters. It had little bite or meat to the story or characters. I wish the author would mix the two worlds she created and present a happy medium with heroes you love, who have interesting flaws and dialogue along with difficult, scary situations. Too bad, but this effort did not hold my interest.
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