This book came from the library, and I will never give you less than an honest review, no matter its source. I do provide informational and purchase links to make it more convenient for you to access the book. I also receive a percentage of the sale if you use one of my links to buy it. And that's not enough money to be less than truthful *grin*.
Other books by this author that I've reviewed include Must Love Hellhounds, Chicks Kick Butt, Dark and Stormy Knights, Angels of Darkness, Witchling, Changeling, Never After, Darkling, Hex Appeal, Demon Mistress, An Apple for the Creature, Dragon Wytch, Bone Magic, Night Huntress, Harvest Hunting, Blood Wyne, Courting Darkness, Shaded Vision, Shadow Rising, Haunted Moon, Night Myst, Night Veil, Magic Bites, Night Seeker, Autumn Whispers, Night Vision, Night’s End, Magic Bleeds, Priestess Dreaming, Burn For Me, Night Shift, Panther Prowling, Magic Shifts, "Flight From Hell", Flight From Death, Burn for Me, Magic Binds.
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Four short tales of witchy spells in this anthology with Yasmine Galenorn, Ilona Andrews, Allyson James, and Jeanne C. Stein.
“Magic Dreams” (Kate Daniels, 4.5))
“Ice Shards” (Otherworld / Sisters of the Moon, 9.5)
“Double Hexed” (Stormwalker, 2.5)
“Blood Debt” (Anna Strong Chronicles, 6.5)
Ilona Andrews‘ “Magic Dreams” is focused on Dali and Jim with brief mentions of Kate. A magical attack against one of the Pack’s outlying offices results in problems for Jim when he investigates. Since Dali is one of the few shifters who practices magic, Jim requests her help. A truly inspired aid when it becomes apparent that Dali has some experience with the culture behind the attack.
I’m curious if we’ll meet the Suanmi fire dragon again.
I had to keep checking that this was an Ilona Andrews as the writing felt odd. It wasn’t the couple’s usual style although, to be fair, it did suit Dali’s ethnic background. Andrews makes an interesting point about Kate and telephones. How can Dali’s mother not know that Jim is the alpha for the Cats?? When combined with the lack of empathy I felt for the story…it only rates a “3” from me.
Yasmine Galenorn‘s “Ice Shards” is a good story but I was not thrilled with the writing — wa-a-ay too much information, too much repetition, and too many little “adventures” that felt tossed in to stretch out the length of the story!
Although we do learn what really happened 600 years ago when Iris Kuusi, a Finnish house sprite, a Talon-haltija, turned Vikkommin inside out and imprisoned him inside a shadow. An act for which she was scourged, major power removed, and thrown out of the temple. Now Iris wants to give Bruce O’Shea the babies he wants and she must get the curse removed. Helping her are Camille, one of the three D’Artigo half-fae, half-human sisters, is along for the ride with Smoky, one of her husbands as is Rozurial, an incubus. The Elemental Lord, Howl, the Great Winter Wolf Spirit, has promised his aid on their trek into the Northlands. Trenyth, the queen’s adviser, shows up to help out as well.
Allyson James‘ “Double Hexed” finds Janet and Mick, Maya, Cassandra, Coyote, Fremont Hansen, Ansel, the mirror, and eventually Pamela and Sheriff Jones stuck inside her hotel when a hex manifests over the entire hotel preventing its inhabitants from leaving and emphasizing their particular strengths over and above reason even as it prevents Coyote from using his power. Cassandra is convinced that her former employer has sent his sorcerer after her, Emmett Smith, and a blood sacrifice is needed.
It’s an interesting stand-alone story since James incorporated everyone and included enough back history that I didn’t feel lost and she did it in such a way that I didn’t feel like I was getting the information dumped on me. It also provides us with a look into everyone’s abilities. Pretty amazing in a short story.
Jeanne C. Stein‘s “Blood Debt” introduces Stephen Powers into Anna’s life when the Elders send Samual to retrieve Anna for trial. It seems that Belinda Burke, the black witch whom Anna killed was in Sanctuary and should not have been touchable. Now Anna and one other must pay for the two lives Anna took.
This was a cute story — the comment on “flying United” was pretty funny — and I enjoyed it, but I wish Stein had been a bit more forthcoming as to Samual’s part in all this. Otherwise, Stein did a good job of providing back history and moving us forward in this short story. Oh, and Tracey has been with them for three months now.
The Cover and Title
The quintessential magical warrior woman in black leather pants and a zip-up empire vest over a blue and purple lycra crop top, long, black hair blowing in the breeze as she leans up against a grey stone wall inscribed with magical symbols in a circle.
The title is accurate enough for all four women are Hexed with some sort of curse.