This review is not for people who have not read the book.
Verdict: It’s fine, but I wanted better.
Kate Daniels spends a lot of time saying “Why me?” sighing, and generally being irritated by everything that isn’t her son or her husband. Unfortunately, this translated into a book that left me feeling annoyed and dissatisfied. One of the strengths of the Kate Daniels series is the way Ilona Andrews portrays the magical people of Atlanta as people with petty concerns, squabbles, and personal quirks. Magic may have returned to the world, but human nature is still the same. Kate has always rolled her eyes at the vagaries of her fellow humans. I don’t know if there is something missing, or if the balance was off, but I had a hard time taking Kate or the big bads seriously. It all felt so plodding and onerous.
Here are a few things that annoyed me.
- Has the Pack made a deal with Roland? This is the thing I am actually angry about. Nobody who has read these books thinks that Jim and Dali would be dumb enough to side with Roland. Roland has threatened the pack directly, indirectly, and has made clear what he thinks of shapeshifters. Roland was going after the Pack before he knew Kate was in any way affiliated with them. It did not add any tension or uncertainty to the book. I resented every single moment in the book that was spent on this subplot. When it was resolved – Jim and Dali are not dumb enough to side with Roland – it felt like an anticlimactic waste of time.
- Using power words on the Sahanu. When Kate is attacked in Leonard’s office she goes through a whole thought process about not using power words because some of the Sahanu have enough of her father’s blood that it would bounce back painfully on her. A day later, she throws power words around while fighting a bunch of Sahanu with no concerns. Um, I do remember what happened a few pages ago. My attention span is not that short. It felt sloppy.
- Sunshine Realty. For all the energy this subplot received it sure went nowhere. I get that repeat sales calls are irritating, and there may have been a catharsis in having Kate and Curran scare a company out of doing it. It ended up being just another wtf for me.
Endings are hard to get right. It must be even harder to end a 10 book beloved series with a huge cast. The expectations are high. There were things I enjoyed. Kate and Curran’s son, Conlan was delightful. There were definitely moments of the kind of magic that has had me rereading this series over and over again. Like the other books in the series, Magic Triumphs sends Kate down a lot of roads before she pieces everything together and comes up with a plan. Usually, I’m along for the ride. In this one, the story felt disjointed, flat, and sloppy.
As a book it’s fine. As the last book in a series that I have loved, it’s a disappointment.