In the city of Solantha, mages rule absolute, with shifters considered second-class citizens and humans something in between. No one outside the mage families are allowed to have magic, and anyone born with it must agree to have it stripped from them to avoid execution.
Sunaya Baine, a shifter-mage hybrid, has managed to keep her unruly magic under wraps for the last twenty-four years. But while chasing down a shifter-hunting serial killer, she accidentally loses control of her magic in front of witnesses, drawing the attention of the dangerous and enigmatic Chief Mage.
Locked up in the Chief Mage’s castle and reduced to little more than a lab rat, Sunaya resists his attempts to analyze and control her at every turn. But she soon realizes that to regain her freedom and catch the killer, she must overcome her hatred of mages and win the most powerful mage in the city to her side.
*warning: swearing? honestly it’s New Adult. Fuck yes, there’s swearing*
By Magorah, I thought, a sharp burst of panic ripping through me as the Chief Mage’s face swam into view. They’re going to experiment on me now!
But when his hands touched me, they were surprisingly gentle. I stilled as a sense of peace stole through me, washing away the panic, and looked up dreamily into Iannis’s face. And as he looked down at me, his brows drawn together, lines bracketed around his mouth, I could almost imagine that he cared.
“Sleep,” he said, his deep, slightly musical voice like a balm to my battered soul, and I went under without another thought.
So as far as I’m concerned, this is FREE right now and if you haven’t read it or heard of it, you’re hearing about it now and I’m telling you NOW you have to go get it! I’ve seen it free on Amazon and other sites (B&N, Kobo) so feel free to look this shit up because it is. Off. The. Chaaaain.
“Who says that anymore?” This person. THIS THING IS- WOW. I don’t know if I’m more surprised that this was free, or that a freebie was so good. Usually it’s a somewhat good book with enough entertainment and love to get me through, but this?
The world nearly mirrors our own, so it wasn’t so hard to get the hang of things. It pretty much sounds like earth but with different names. It was fun!
Sunaya is a hard person to love if you’re not exactly what she’s up to dealing with. Her heart of gold shines through the rough exterior she has going on for herself, and her bad attitude would’ve lead her to an early grave if not for her quicker wit and capacity to survive. Like a cockrock. JUST KIDDING I just felt like one of her haters would’ve muttered that lol.
You’ve no idea how much I’m fangirling over this right now. Not only did I like the writing style, I also like Naya. She’s a bit brash and (okay) maybe a bit of a bitch, but in all honesty… no, she’s just a bitch. Like this one right here:
She’d eat that cookie, too! And I love her for that. Naya could totally be a little nicer, but she isn’t, and that’s part of her charm. She’s rough, she doesn’t give out any pleasantries if she doesn’t like you, and you either hate her or love her. I fucking adore her and the way she manages to find trouble. I also admire the way she gets shit done and doesn’t let anyone stop her from doing what she truly believes is right.
Iannis was a fun character to fawn over. She wasn’t crazy about him or his methods of keeping her alive, and that made me crazy for them. 😄 I can totally see them coming together as a great power couple. But until that happens *cough*bookthree*cough* let’s just look into the other wonderful things that make this book worth reading.
This series was so good, I immediately bought the other books until I hit the pre-order sign over book four. *sighs* I literally could not stop myself, and I had a mild heart attack when I realized that if I finished the third installment, I’d have to wait for all of July. In the end I read it anyway lol
So her home is made up of three types of beings: the mages, uppity people who rule, govern and pretty much are considered the rich and high class, and the only ones with magic; the shifters, descendants of the humans who long ago were experimented on by the mages to be turned into powerful warriors to be used (you can imagine the animosity); and finally, the humans, people who are considered better than shifters but aren’t quite as great as mages. There are different areas in the state, ones that cater to the humans, the mages, and all three respectively. And then there’s Witch’s End, a pier where all the foreigners with magic reside and do business. The only reason they’re allowed magic is because they aren’t civilians, and pay a hefty wage to be there. One of her best friends is a hedge witch, Comenius, and his assistant, Noria, is another dear one.
Sunaya’s life was pretty shitty with an option of tending bar or sucking off her boss to get out and do her actual job (she’d rather bite it off though, so she’s stuck grumbling). She didn’t have family. Her father was a no-show and her mother died early, leaving her teen self with an aunt who thought her an abomination. But at least she had people she cared for, and vice versa. These people, Com and Noria, some of her friends at work, and her mentor, Roan, they all kept her sane and content.
Until one of them was murdered.
Where do I begin with this??? Because of Sunaya’s attitude and charm, the writing style was very enjoyable and flowed nicely with me. I liked the descriptions of the world and how it came together so quickly in my mind. What reader doesn’t like that? Her friends were great, and had a bit of depth that allowed for the side stories to exist without actually taking up the pages.
I abhor a synopsis that spoils it for me (ironic I know) so I was glad I hadn’t read this book’s blurb, because everything was a surprise for me. Her reluctant exposure, the sleazy bosses and horrid working system. The non-spoken segregation and burning hatred for the inequality that-could-be-worse-so-no-one-says-anything.
Except for the resistance.
At first I was interested in her joining, but almost immediately, I was turned off by them. They’re such jerks and honestly, it scares me whenever Noria, her friend’s kid sister, talks about joining them. Like… no. Stay in school.
Iannis and Fenris are a great pair that she has to deal with in the Palace when she gets referred to him instead of being outright executed after being found out. Fenris was a good friend for her while being imprisoned, and Iannis-
He’s a danger to mankind, for all sorts of reasons. The Chief Mage is formidable, with mysterious power and incredible restraint. And yet he can show that he’s passionate in the way that he cares for his people. When she outraged her concerns for Solantha, he listened. He actually did things to see them changed for the better. Now, did he have a hard time dealing with her stubborn ass? Of course, and it was one of the reasons why their relationship was so hilarious. He can’t decide whether or not he wants to choke her or kiss her, she can’t decide if she wants to kill him before or after she escapes the Palace. Fenris just wants them to behave. It’s great!
This is a high recommend. HIGH. If you’re into new adult fantasy with saucy MCs and seemingly cold (but OH SO HOT) men in charge, and pages of magic and suspense and action, this is it for you. Not only did this keep me entertained the whole way through, I also couldn’t stop grinning. Sunaya is just too much for one book.
A Little Darling