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Unsympathetic Magic (Esther Diamond Novels) Mass Market Paperback – 3 Aug 2010

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Unsympathetic Magic (Esther Diamond Novels) + Vamparazzi: Book Four of Esther Diamond (Esther Diamond Novels) + Polterheist (Esther Diamond Novels)
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Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 392 pages
  • Publisher: Daw Books (3 Aug. 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0756406358
  • ISBN-13: 978-0756406356
  • Product Dimensions: 10.5 x 2.9 x 17.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,111,685 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Part of the Esther Diamond series, the latest of which Polterheist is due out 5th Nov 12, Unsympathetic Magic is a fun, New York based adventure featuring Esther Diamond as the actress who unwittingly gets in the way, and gets into frequent scrapes in the supernatural world.
Esther is currently `resting' from her craft, otherwise known as waiting tables in a singing restaurant, whilst working a gig on the set of Dirty Thirty, a cop show starring the rather arrogant Michael Nolan. In the midst of a midnight shoot, Esther goes off to get food after Nolan apparently has a heart attack. On her travels through the NY night, she comes across a young black teenager brandishing a sword, followed by an older black man who loses his hand to gargoyle like creatures. Dressed in her prostitute costume, Esther tries to raise an alarm but is instead arrested for spouting her strange story. With her purse stolen, no ID and nowhere to turn, she has no choice but to ask for help from detective Connor Lopez, the insatiably sexy detective with whom she almost had a relationship the previous year.
Thankfully released, Esther turns to Max the Mage and his dog familiar Nelli, to investigate why bodies seem to be coming back to life in Harlem and what the gargoyle-like creatures are.
Here commences a `by-the-book' pardon the pun, urban fantasy novel, yet what makes this novel stand out is the humour and fun running through the narrative, the methodical research Resnick has conducted into Vodou and the strong characterisations throughout the book. Esther Diamond, though a little ditsy and sometimes accident prone, is a positive female `lead' and the narrative voice is also present and robust.
I look forward to more of Esther Diamond's supernaturally imbued world. Resnick I a voice to watch.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 21 reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Light hearted and interesting 11 Aug. 2010
By deelove - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I'm a huge fan of urban sci-fi/paranormal/fantasy books but most nowadays are dark, morbid affairs that, whilst riveting, can also be a bit heavy if continuously read. Enter the Esther Diamond series to add some light-heartened humor and a few good chuckles to the pattern. I liked the other books and this one has definitely got me interested in the next, especially as I'm hoping for a happy ending for Esther and her almost-kind-of-not boyfriend, Lopez.

Like the others, we return to Esther's life in which she's just trying to live day by day as a struggling actress. In true Esther-style though, she seems to stumble on another other-worldly event that she entangles herself in - this time it being voodoo. With trusty sidekicks like Max in tow, what ensues are many funny moments as she tries to solve it all and juggle her work and romance life too.

As a finicky person, I usually find glaringly obvious traits about protagonists that make the reading experiences less fulfilling than they could be. However, Esther is a character I fully like. She commits clumsy mistakes, makes the most of her unusual life, has a collection of possibly the most eccentric friends and partakes in quirky scenes that'll have you grinning in amusement. With a hunky cop to spice things up, the Esther Diamond books are light-hearted reads that are good for when you've been bombarded by the gory, gritty stars of the rest of the genre.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Solid Urban Fantasy 8 Mar. 2011
By SciFiChick - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Esther Diamond has a brief role as a prostitute on a controversial new cop show filming on the streets of Harlem. While walking down the street to grab a quick bite to eat in between takes, Esther stumbles upon a man being attacked by monstrous creatures that resemble gargoyles. But instead of getting help from the police, Esther is arrested for soliciting. But with the help of her on-again-off-again love interest Detective Lopez, her wise-but-eccentric mentor Max, and a few other friends along the way, Esther discovers the truth behind the attack, a ring of body snatchings, zombies, and other evil forces at work.

Esther is a brave woman and often selfless. Unfortunately, while trying to help someone, she always finds herself in the most unbelievable situations. Which is why Lopez thinks Esther is a bit crazy. Their chemistry is great, though Lopez never lets Esther make a full explanation, which can be a bit annoying. Of course, he's just in denial about magic in the world, ironic since Max is convinced that Lopez has hidden abilities. Resnick's characters are fun and eccentric, coupled with fantastic storytelling.

This latest Esther Diamond adventure has her pitted against a dark voodoo practitioner. With non-stop adventure and suspense, this series is pure enjoyment from beginning to end. Since this latest story dealt with zombies and possession, there was plenty of creepy excitement, ending in a climactic showdown that left me wanting more. Plenty of humor, action, magic, and a bit of romance make this urban fantasy a sure favorite. Don't miss this exceptional series.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.5 stars - Zombies and Zany fun 22 Aug. 2010
By melindeeloo - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Sometime actress Ester Diamond is back and again a magnet for supernatural trouble and the first paragraph gives hints of what's to come: zombies, voodoo, aborted human sacrifices... Unsympathetic Magic is all that and more - lots of magical mayhem with a touch of humor as Esther tries figure out who's responsible for raising the dead and for what nefarious reason.

I really enjoy this series, Esther is a lot of fun and not your typical kick butt tough UF herione - she's an actress who somehow always manages to stumble upon supernatural wierdeness and zaniness ensues almost as often as brushes with death. After three books there's also some reappearing characters who are on hand to makes sure things are even more muddled before they help Esther save the day.

Since Resnick series is more UF-ish, there's not much in the way of sex, but with resident skeptic and sexy police detective Lopez around there is a bit of steamy attraction - and even a few flames - so even though Lopez thinks Esther is deranged, I can't help but hope that their time will come.

Unsympathetic Magic was so much fun, I can't wait for the next one Vamparozzi.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Fast-Paced & Funny - Esther Diamond Is Back! 7 Nov. 2010
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I finally got around to reading "Unsympathetic Magic" by Laura Resnick...it's been sitting in my ever-growing TBR pile since mid-August. Instead of regurgitating (lol) the plot - I'll break it down to what I liked/disliked about this book.

LIKE: Esther Diamond - The more I read of Esther Diamond, the more I like her. She's always willing to charge headfirst into a situation if she feels someone's life is in jeopardy. She's quite openminded (mostly due to the influence of Dr. Maximillian Zadok) and willing to forego preconcieved notions.

LIKE: Dr. Maximillian Zadok - How can you not like a 350 year old mage who simultaneously runs a rare book store and is constantly keeping the forces of evil at bay? Max employs his vast wealth of knowledge to determine the reasoning behind any unnaturual events. Plus his "unique" concerns regarding Lithuanians makes him a quirky kind of funny.

DISLIKE: Connor Lopez - At first, his reluctance to believe made him the perfect "straight man" to Esther's foibles...but now, third book in, it makes him annoying. His refusal to believe, combined with his believing Esther's borderline insane, is grating at best. Connor Lopez is the type of character who would use the ever patronizing "I believe that you believe you saw something".

In the next installment, I'd like to see either Connor Lopez start to believe...or to start to go away. Permanently. Get Esther a man who believes in her instead of one who patronizes.

All in all, "Unsympathetic Magic" was a solid book...funny, intense, and interesting. I can't wait for the next in the series!
Funny urban fantasy 31 July 2012
By Graves - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
In "Unsympathetic Magic" the third book in the Esther Diamond series our heroine finds herself facing evil zombie magic and a still unbelieving would be boyfriend while just trying to get ahead in acting.

While filming a roll for a gritty police drama in Harlem she becomes embroiled in a fight with weird gargoyle like creatures and a zombie. Although almost all evidence disappears Esther, being Esther, can't help but shove her nose in and with her wizard friend Max, an old boyfriend and a couple of locals in tow she is soon teaching acting classes to kids at a local community center that seems to be at the middle of the problems.

I agree with a lot of people that her erstwhile boy friend Conner Lopez is getting too much. It's one thing to not believe in the supernatural. He's a detective and likely to be pragmatic so I don't mind that he doesn't believe her when she says she's seen ghosts or something BUT his assumption she's being drugged by Max and she needs drug tests or mental health counseling is way over the top and should cool off even the hottest desire.

I liked this story but not as much as the prior story "Dopplegangster." I found the mystery was way too direct and a lot of the humor was missing. It is funny and in a field of urban fantasy's dominated by wizards, werewolves, witches, vampires and who knows what, a girl who just wants to be an actress but can't help interfering is down right refreshing. Read this but only after reading one of the earlier books. You'll like it better that way.
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