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4.9 out of 5 stars
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4.9 out of 5 stars
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on 1 August 2014
What can I say about this epic book? Well I think the first thing is to re-iterate what the authors say in the preface: this book is an ending. Originally they were contracted for 7 books and the arc has been working towards it, and instead of taking the easy way out and padding out another couple of books (as so many successful authors have), the Andrews have actually been brave enough to move things forward in a significant way and to create a new dynamic going forward.
It's a compelling book and Kate is front and centre. Just over half the story takes place in a period of about 6 hours and features only Kate and 5 other characters: none of them Curran. This extended action piece could have gotten stale, but the character detail and non-stop action ensure that's not the case. It also lets us into Hugh's mind again and sets up the events of the rest of the book.
Over the last few books the story has been circling ever closer to the world at large knowing Kate's secret and the final showdown with Roland, so the tack the Andrews take on this is unexpected. I won't spoil, but suffice to say that Roland is going to continue to feature in the world going forward.
These books have always been tightly, intelligently, humorously written and this one is no exception. The authors seem to be able to get the balance between action, plot and character right, the romance is true and real but never sentimental and most importantly of all, the characters are likeable and real in spite of the fantasy world; they grow, learn from their mistakes and talk to each other.
Brilliant!
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on 2 August 2014
Magic Breaks is number 7 in the Kate Daniels series. There is a recap at the start, as well as brief character summaries but this is not a standalone book. To fully appreciate this book, all the previous books should be read.

Magic Breaks starts with Kate being forced into investigating a murder and trying to prevent a war. Then about half way through the book everything changes and from there you have a great ride to the end which concludes with a family reunion to remember. The whole series has been leading up to Kate's encounter with Roland and for me it was perfect.

This book has all the positive attributes of the series; awesome action, a great cast of characters and humorous dialogue. Kate and many of my favourite characters are back in this one. Characters from the previous works make some memorable appearances but this is Kate's story. Kate has truly grown over the course of these books.

On reflection Magic Breaks feels like a series ender with main story threads being resolved. I actually understand now why the authors wrote a disclaimer stating that it is not the end of the series. Thankfully we have at least 3 more books to go and after the ending in Magic Breaks I can not wait to see what happens next.
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I've said it before but I'll say it again - I'm an Ilona & Gordon Andrews fan girl, in fact, I'm a total addict of this series and Kate & Curran are one of my favourite fictional couples ever. So it would be fair to say that I was excited to get my hands on an advanced copy of Magic Breaks. In fact I was so excited about it that I actually read it twice before the release date - that's how fantastic this book is. So, you're probably wondering why it has taken me so long to write this review and my answer is that I've been feeling intimidated. How can I possibly describe the level of awesome that this book (in fact, this entire series!) has reached? I'm afraid to say that this review will probably involve a lot of gushing but I've decided that I just have to share my feelings about it and hope you'll forgive me for lack the of sensible insight.

Fans of the series will already know that this book is the cumulation of the long running story arc with Kate's father Roland, that doesn't mean this is the end of the series, just that Magic Breaks is a game changer. This confrontation has been a long time coming and it's fair to say expectations were high for Kate and Roland's first face to face meeting. I've spent a lot of time throughout the books wondering what would happen when they met but I don't think I could ever have been fully prepared for what actually happens. The showdown is nothing like I was expecting but it has totally set things up for exciting things in the future. That ending was epic and I can't wait to see where things go from here.

I love how much Kate has grown as a person throughout this series, she has come such a long way but she still has a lot to learn about her abilities and she doesn't have full control over her powers yet. The most special thing about these books has been seeing her go from a lonely young woman who felt she had to keep everyone at a distance to someone who has close friends and a self-made little family that she would give her life to protect. She has worked hard to find her place in the Pack and she comes into her own even more in this book when she has to take charge while Curran is absent. I love how her relationship with Curran has developed too, they have become such a strong couple and no matter what happens they never lose faith in each other. I adore them both and find myself wanting to reread every single moment they spend together.

I don't want to say too much about the plot of Magic Breaks because I would hate to give spoilers but I will mention a few other highlights. I loved the bickering between Derek and Ascanio who had me laughing out loud numerous times with their antics. Kate's confrontation with Jennifer was a long time coming but so worth the wait - that really was the best smack down EVER. I enjoyed getting to learn a bit more about Gastek and his background and I'm actually kind of starting to like the guy. Andrea is awesome and she always has Kate's back no matter how dangerous the situation, how fantastic is it to have more than one strong female character in a series! Magic Breaks is everything I want from a book in this series, it is humorous and has some fantastic one liners, it is action packed and full of unexpected surprises and most of all it has the best characters, the strongest friendships and a wonderful relationship between the main characters. There is so much to love about these books and it's quite unusual to find a series that is still this fresh and exciting seven books down the line, I never want it to end.
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on 26 December 2015
This is the tricky final book in a seven volume series set in a magic-ravaged Atlanta and the husband-and-wife duo behind the Ilona Andrews name pretty much crack it. And there's more to come as the authors make clear in their foreward, as they are now contracted to write a continuing series. Magic Breaks sets that up beautifully with an unexpected final confrontation between Roland, the heavy-duty mage bad guy, and his sole-surviving child, the heroine Kate Daniels, who spent most of the series trying to avoid being discovered - dear daddy tends to kill his children before they become rivals to his power. Roland has been the unseen presence throughout the series, with his enforcer Hugh d'Ambray acting as the sadistic stand-in for his master. That kept the mystery surrounding Roland, who as well as being ancient, created the first vampires and may even have been worshipped as a god. Kate is definitely his daughter, with superior survival skills, magically-charged blood and budding supernatural powers. The authors weave everything from Assyrian legend to all the modern tropes of shapeshifters, vampires and other supernatural critters into the series and bring it all to fruition in Magic Breaks. They also dare to have Kate as the central character for most of this book, with her mate, the Beast Lord Curran, initially unable to help when trouble breaks as he is on a diplomatic mission to another group of shapeshifters. Kate has to deal with the accusation that one of Curran's shapeshifters has killed a local vampire leader, with d'Ambray leading the charge for war. She's given only hours to defuse the situation with help from a select crew of shapeshifters. Meanwhile she has to deal with the politics of Curran's Pack, some of whom resent her influence. The plot basically has it all - the mismatched crew on a mission; a kick-ass heroine; kidnapping (Kate is finally snatched by d'Ambray); the hero to the rescue (Curran tracks her down) and multiple bad guys, some of them even human. It's also pretty hard edged with occasionally graphic violence, some of it carried out by the heroine. That's one of the things I like about the series - it ain't soft and cosy, with the authors willing to kill off major characters and the supernatural critters definitely nasty. The final confrontation between Roland and Kate is well-handled. Everything makes you think it has to be a blood-bath ending. It doesn't arrive the way you expect leaving the series to continue with Roland taking a no-doubt unhealthy interest in the future of his daughter and Curran. Recommended.
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on 4 August 2014
Yet another fantastic kate Daniels book by lions Andrews, an amazing author who will draw you into her book and keep you turning the pages until the end and wanting more after. If your new to the series start at the beginning and I guarantee you will become as drawn into the series as much as the rest of us.
In short an amazing book I read this in a few hours, not because it's short but because I couldn't put it down, take a break from reality and go to post shift Atlanta for a break from reality
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on 9 May 2016
Ilona Andrews books suck you into the story from the first chapter & spits you out at the end like you've been on the best & most exciting roller coaster through a world more magical than Mordor & would nuke Hogwarts to a pile of ashes!!! Her characters are just brilliant & grow with every book & storyline. I can't dip-in-&-out of these books as they're like quicksand. They pull you under & before you know it it's 3am & you've got to be up for work at 5am!!! They are some of the best Paranormal books out there & Ilona Andrews makes up my trio of unmissable authors along with Darynda Jones & Nalini Singhs archangel series.
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on 4 August 2014
Fantastic.

I love this series and book 7 is just a total pleasure to read, action, humour, magic and finally Kate meets Daddy.

This is the perfect urban fantasy.

Still laughing about Jim and the Kittens, and have read the walk to Roland a few times Kate is awesome and I did really love this book BUT

SPOLIER

when Kate meets Hibla - there is a BIG error - well at least in the Kindle version, a "character" suddenly makes an appearance that isn't possible - hope the kindle version gets updated at some point

As others have said you will benefit from reading the previous books,which are also very good - the first book I think is the weakest but don't let that put you off.
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on 3 August 2014
Exciting non stop action, intense, heartbreakingly sad in places.... all you can expect from a book by Ilona Andrews and more! After the way it ended, I don't really know what to expect from the next installment....
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on 31 January 2015
If I'm honest I wouldn't look for this level of violence in a UF series but given where the series is heading, a confrontation with Hugh and showdown with Roland, I can see it is justified. Irritatingly, Kate comes across as unnaturally helpless and dependant in the first section for a character who has built her existence round self reliance and survival . What saved it was humour, strong characterisation, including some intriguing new ones, and a lack of overt romance in much of the novel (excluding the whining). However Ilona Andrews does include a very explicit sex scene to make up for that. So if you are handing this over to under 18s be warned. Again, I would prefer more subtlety; they are clearly pandering to the romance readership here (and perhaps warming up for Burn for Me), but at least it doesn't permeate the whole novel. I enjoyed the ending and felt Ilona Andrews managed the climax well (I'm referring to the narrative, not Kate and Curran) but <spoiler>I still can't work out the purpose of the witches' jumper. Did it just keep Kate warm in the water? </spoiler>Having said that I think the Ilona Andrews team put out reliably good reads. Not sure why the UK cover of the Kindle edition seems to have a picture of Jordan on it, but hey, perhaps that' s just me.
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on 23 October 2014
I was a bit nervous starting this Ilona Andrews book. After the previous one, Magic Rises, it seemed inevitable that the story was reaching the point where Kate would have to face her father. And I couldn't imagine that happening without things going really badly for Kate and her allies, the way things did in Magic Rises. I don't want to spoil everything, but it wasn't the bloodbath I worried it might be.

I love this book. However, it's hard to say that I love it on it's own merits, or to review it on it's own merits. Magic Breaks works, for me, because of the series as a whole. It's the little bits and pieces from the earlier books starting to really pull together and reach a head that makes me appreciate it so much. It's seeing Kate stand up and do things that are a world away from what readers might have expected from her in the first few books. The characters and situations are meaningful because we got to know these characters, like Derek, Ascanio, and Barabas, to pick out just a few.

There are some acceptances and realisations in Magic Breaks for Kate and others that come out of just the events of this book. But overall, I felt like it was a culmination of things that came before. It's the proof that events in the previous books are still affecting Kate and Curran. The events of Magic Rises in particular are very much still felt.

I'm not saying that I think it wouldn't be a good book without the rest of the series. It's a great book. But it's hard at this stage in the series, with such a strong link of the story arc going between them, to take it as a stand-alone. It's not. It's the next chapter, and that took it from being a great book in a great series, to being one of my favourite reads this year.

With Magic Breaks, Ilona Andrews has a story with character development, romance, revelations, tough decisions, and unexpected twists. I can only hope that the remaining couple of books in the series live up to this. 10/10.

~Ailsa
[Review originally posted by me on my book review blog, link in my profile.]
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