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Ratings and Book Reviews (11 36 star ratings
11 reviews
)

Overall rating

4.5 out of 5
36
5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star
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  • 3 person found this review helpful

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    Magical

    I’m not a romance reader. And still, I’ve read my share of romances – usually disguised as something else. I’ve read many cosy mysteries which were actually romances with an idea of mystery. I’ve occasionally read historical novels which were really romances with the barest sense of a historical context. It is usually quite a disappointing experience. Spellbound is a romance, there’s no question about that. But it is also a very good fantasy (with a dieselpunk inclination, I should add) as well as a very nice historical novel. And these are essential parts of the story, not some convenient disguise. I had no problem loving this book. There’s magic in this version of 1925 Manhattan, secret magic unknown to the majority of people. Magic people conceal their abilities to almost everyone, especially when they are young and inexperienced – not to mention secluded and scared – as Rory. Magic can be dangerous and very difficult to wield. But there are also normal human beings like Arthur who live and act in close contact with the magic world. Besides, as someone says, Arthur’s charm is almost like magic. Rory and Arthur are remarkable characters, with great personalities and a strong drive. They also have a sense of humour, which is always a bonus. Because of them, I felt immediately at home inside the story and I deeply cared about what happened. Right away, it was clear that the romance was about them. It has all the characteristics of a romance (including the exaggerations I tend to dislike), but their relationship was also very much about personal growth. That’s why, even as a non-romance reader, I could enter the story and stay firmly there. The fantasy plot is strong and would carry the story even without the romance (by this I mean that it sustains itself beautifully, as a good fantasy story does). It centres around relics – very powerful, very rare magical objects – and the fight – partly grounded in personal issues – to conquer them. In this post WWI world, relics and their power have a sinister light to them. The war is over, but what would happen is someone could put their hands on something as powerful as a relic? I can’t wait to see what they will evolve into in the following novels in the series, because I sense some great secret conspiracy ahead. Seriously, how can I resist that? There is a very diverse cast of characters here, and I loved how the author handled it. I’ve read a lot of novels in recent years that used diversity as a badge. Not something I appreciate. Here, diversity is a mere matter of life. It simply exists, just like humans being and their personality. Loved it. Can’t wait to read more in this series.
  • 0 person found this review helpful

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    LGBTQIA Paranormal Historical Romance

    Spellbound by Allie Therin Magic in Manhattan #1 Stepping into a magical paranormal romance set in 1925 New York was a delight. The plot and characters were perfect to time, place and this story. From page one I was hooked and I kept reading eagerly to find out what would happen next. Rory and Arthur were an absolute delight as they found way to one another. I fell in love with both of them and am so happy they found one another. This book has a cast of characters with and without paranormal abilities. There are relics with power, people who want the relics to gain the power and while Arthur and his band of paranormal people are doing their best to keep that power contained and away from the corrupt evil people after the relics. One of the side benefits that I love about getting to read advanced reader copies of books is that sometimes I stumble on a new-to-me author that I want to read more by. This time I found a debut author that I see a great future for. I loved this book and am eager to read what will happen next in this series. With seven magical relics mentioned and characters with paranormal abilities I want to know more about I am hoping that there will be more books to look forward to soon. What I liked: • Arthur: a noble hero without “magic” but who is magical lifeline to Rory • Rory: a younger man with magic that has so much to give • The Paranormal Friends of Arthur: so much I want to learn about them • Mrs Brodigan and her sister: good women who were there for Rory • Everything...still smiling as I think about this book What I didn’t like” • Exactly what was meant not to like Did I enjoy this book? Yes Will I read more by this author? Without a doubt! Thank you to NetGalley and Harlequin-Carina Press for the ARC – This is my honest review. 5 Stars
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    A very fun tale of magic and mayhem in 1920s NYC

    This was a great find ad a promising start to what I hope will be a fruitful series... Therin has created a world-within-the-world that I found utterly engaging and fascinating. I liked that she chose to set her tale in 1920s New York - it offered opportunities for fantastic scene-setting and historical detail (e.g., Prohibition and speakeasies, the relative novelty of driving, which only one of the characters - and the oldest! - can do) that I felt added to the depth of the story and made the tale that much more robust as a result. The characters are well-crafted and offer a great complement of personalities, quirks, and strengths. Throw in a well-plotted adventure, secrets and lies and misdirection, and magic and Therin had me hooked from the opening salvo! Thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for my review copy.
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    Cute romance

    Having been reading a lot of YA M/M romance I've been craving a change of pace in setting. This book hit the spot perfectly. The romance was integral to the plot while not stealing the spotlight from the wonderful details that brought 1920's NYC to life. An ever so minor quibble would be that I felt the antagonist could've used a bit more clarity regarding their motivations.
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    Just as good id on rereads

    I love this s book so much, it is easily my fave of 2019 and a 2020 reread confirms it. Can’t wait for the sequel.
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