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on 26 April 2017
This is the most novel book I have read in years. Has magic, shapechangers and other fantastical creatures but, more importantly, has a great plot, wonderful characterisation and storyline.

A must read. 5 stars!
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 2 December 2010
Having recently discovered the urban dystopia genre i'm avidly searching for books and authors I might like. Ordered this one and halfway through ( next day!!) had to order the rest of the series so far, to have ready to follow on. Kate is great - heroine with a hard shell and soft centre and the interaction between her and Curran is just right - teasing the reader, tempting us to want to see their relationship develop further. If you like the worlds of fantasy, shapeshifters and gutsy heroines this book is for you.
Fabulous series!
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on 2 July 2015
Read the first few chapters love it so far!
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on 3 June 2017
Well written, enthralling characters, delivered with wit and humor.
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on 11 January 2016
Held my attention, found it hard to put the book down. I liked the interaction between the characters. Good storyline.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 18 July 2007
Kate Daniels lives in a world where magic and technology struggle to exist together. As a mercenary she makes her living clearing up magical problems but as she investigates the murder of her guardian she's about to find herself caught between The Pack (shapeshifters) and the People (necromancers).

One of the best urban fantasies I've read this year. Kate is a feisty no-nonsense heroine, who doesn't let the fact she's not as strong as some of her adversaries stop her from doing her job. Although this is written in first person we only know what Kate tells us. A part of her is kept hidden, not only from the other characters but also from the reader. It suggests Kate has a secret she mustn't even think about - but intriguing hints are dropped that I hope will be followed up in the next book.

The book is peopled with interesting creatures and characters. Saiman a problem-solver (I'm not quite sure what he is) who charges $26 a minute for his time, the Lord of the Beasts a shapeshifter alpha you believe could rule - uncompromising and ruthless, he's prepared to do what is necessary to protect his people. This is not a romance but he and Kate have quite a chemistry together. :)

There's an intriguing new take on vampires, rather than sentient beings they are driven by appetite and are controlled by necromancers. They reminded me slightly of the monsters from Resident Evil. It's mentioned that they are constantly evolving (or maybe devolving) from a human base form and are an 'abomination in progress'. Scary.

Whenever a character says "I missed something" it makes me think as a reader I have too. I love stories where you want to think about the mystery and aren't 100% sure about who did what. If I had any gripes it would be that towards the end Curran blames Kate for something that he actually did. There could be some kind of shapeshifter politicking going on there, but it seemed a tad harsh.

Recommended for fans of Patricia Briggs Mercy Thompson series, Wen Spencer and Kat Richardson.

Book #2 Magic Burns to be released 2008
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on 23 July 2008
In this book, we see technogoly duel with magic. It's set some time in the near future and sees magic work somewhat like magnetism. When the "magic field" is strong, the world goes dark, technology (everything from phones to cars) doesn't work, and skyscrapers collapse. The problem is that the "magic field" isn't always present, so there are times when you need the old fashioned techology that we all rely on today.

Since the rise of magic, beings like werewolves, magicians and vampires have come to the fore. It is those beings that we see do battle when the "magic field" is on. In this book, Kate Morgan looks into who killed her guardian (who was a chief magician, for want of a better description).

The story reminds me of Laurel K. Hamilton's Anita Blake series, but with the key difference that it focuses on story, rather than who the central characters fancy. Because of that I'd say the series has potential. It should attract the Hamilton readers who actually believe in storylines.

This having been said, the book is far from perfect. It's good, but it can be a bit busy in places. It's a short book, but Ilona Andrews (the author) seems to have attempted to pack as much story as possible into the book. You want to say "enough already" on occasions, but that having been said, the series is one worth watching.
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on 27 September 2007
I really enjoyed this book. I sometimes think that urban fantasy kind of books over-explain things, but here, the magic/tech waves, the city in ruins, the magical beings etc were all presented in a straightforward way. It's nice to see vampires as something other than the coolest kids in town. I like the relationship potential not being guaranteed and the general emotional distance of the heroine felt right. I hate hate hate the title, so much so I wouldn't have read the book if it hadn't been particularly recommended to me. And the cover didn't help either, I thought it and the title both screamed young adult, so then I was a bit unprepared for the blood and gore (but not unwelcoming!).
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on 8 September 2014
It's a real pity about the naff cover and title; This series shows the overcrowded ebook werepack genre how it should be done.

Kate Daniels is a talented human mercenary with a secret, working in a world that has gone to hell, turned upside down by the return of magic and ferocious mythical creatures. When her best friend and mentor is found dead, she vows to find the perpetrator and make him pay, preferably slowly and painfully. Her investigation leads to an edgy alliance with the shapeshifters as they hunt the murderer through the ruined city of Atlanta. Kate is principled, self reliant and extremely dangerous. There are no cupcakes but plenty of black humour, entertaining dialogue and more intelligence and originality than usual for the genre.

If you don't warm to the idea of an aggressive, sword swinging heroine and her furry friends, or are looking for something highbrow, this isn't the book for you. But if you do, sit back and enjoy the ride.
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on 27 March 2011
I absolutely loved this book. It's so good to find a new 5 star series. I already am planning to recommend it to anyone and everyone.

It is an Urban Fantasy, so for anyone who needs a romance storyline all wrapped up neatly within the first book, you might not enjoy it for that reason alone. But I, for one, am quite happy to have a slow burning love story, cast over several books. It's all in the anticipation people! And there is a clearly a potential love interest here. Just as soon as they both get over themselves, and stop annoying the hell out of each other. Love it! I think it's great when they start off hating each other, it makes it all the sweeter when they finally concede defeat. In this case. I'm not sure who will break first. There was a kiss, but that was only really done for distraction, to stop the other person from thinking about how scared they were.

There are oodles of weird creatures in this book. It makes a refreshing change to have some new ideas in this area. There were Shapechangers, Necromancers and various other magic users. There were hints left here and there that Kate herself has some big secret concerning her genealogy. Although we know she has magic right from the offset, she, for some reason has to be really careful about her blood. Always making sure that if she bleeds anywhere, she cleans it up or burns it. Like as if someone were to smell or sample her blood, they would find out what bloodline she came from, and I'm guessing this would be bad. As I said, there were only clues to this so far, no actual answers, so I have no idea what the big deal is, but I am very intrigued at this point.

Another interesting twist was that, although this series features vampires, they are not the sexy, sparkly, gorgeous-looking creatures that many authors portray these days, but rather disturbing, insect-like creatures that scuttle about on the ceiling. They are also mindless, and have to be controlled, or "navigated" by a necromancer or necro-navigator. They were completely gross.

I like the whole idea of the world being post magical Apocalypse, with crumbling buildings and other leftovers from the tech age, before magic took over. It was also something new that I haven't read before. And for me to find something new with the amount of books in this genre that I read, is always a bonus.

I really liked Kate. It's so nice to find a protagonist who you just love. That's not to say she's not flawed, because let's face it, who would want to read about someone that wasn't in some way. Her smart-ass retorts are just hilarious but she doesn't quite know when to switch it off, which is so going to get her in trouble one of these days, I'm sure.

I cannot wait for the next one but at the same time I almost want to put of reading them because I don't want to run out of them...
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