Title: Smoke and Magic
Author: Patti Larsen
“Banished to Victorian London
Auburdeen Hayle is the sixteen-year-old daughter of the next leader of her coven. When the transition of power becomes tense, Burdie is sent from her home in America to stay with old friends in London to keep her safe. But a handsome young man chooses to hide from the police in her hansom, drawing Burdie into an underground world of magic that challenges even her sense of adventure and puts her at odds with the very people who are meant to protect her.”
When magic flies… I hide. That’s always been my motto! Auburdeen ( Burdie) Hayle, it seems, has never shared my opinion. Burdie leaves her home in the states to live with family friends in London, for her own protection of course. While in London Burdie feels very alone and decidedly smothered by her overprotective caretaker. When she meets a mysterious boy who claims to want nothing to do with her, she is intrigued. Soon Burdie is caught up in his world and finds that the secrets she is unraveling are closer than she thinks.
When I am first introduced to Burdie, it becomes crystal clear almost instantly that she has a major attitude and a blazing temper. I almost get the impression that she WANTS to get into a fight with someone. She doesn’t listen or follow directions particularly well, and when things get tough, she keeps everything bottled up. Her natural curiosity and fearlessness cause her to be in more than one scrap. By the end of Smoke and Magic, I really feel like I have a good grasp on her no-nonsense, opinionated character.
This book is FULL of magic. Burdie and her whole family are witches and so is the family she stays with in London. This adds many fantasy elements to the book and definitely helps keep my interest. Smoke and Magic features other unique types of magic, and I think Larsen does a great job of explaining and working them into the story. In addition to being full of magic, Smoke and Magic also features lots of plot twists and turns. Some are predictable, while others… I’m still surprised that they happened.
Some of the dialogue seems unnatural to me, but it isn’t too distracting. I don’t like how the book ends; it cuts of very abruptly, making me reel in shock. I’m reading along, find some really surprising twists, experience a few moments of “Oh no they DIDN’T”, and then BAM. Story. Over. I guess the saving grace is that the next book is already out. But if it wasn’t, I would be REALLY upset at the abrupt ending!
I give Smoke and Magic 4 out of 5 hearts: Great Read!
Find put more about Patti Larsen at her website: http://pattilarsen.blogspot.com/
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