Customer Reviews for

Magic Bites (Kate Daniels Series #1)

Average Rating 4.5
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

18 out of 25 people found this review helpful.

Great urban fantasy

In the near future, the world is a very different place as magic has returned but it ebbs and flows. When it flows, technology fails, but when it ebbs technology works. Kate Daniels belongs to the Mercenaries Guild, taking care of magical problems that organizations w...
In the near future, the world is a very different place as magic has returned but it ebbs and flows. When it flows, technology fails, but when it ebbs technology works. Kate Daniels belongs to the Mercenaries Guild, taking care of magical problems that organizations won¿t touch. Her mentor Greg Feldman wants her to join his group the Atlanta chapter of the Chapter of the Order of Knights of Merciful Aid but she refuses as she prefers being a lone wolf.-------------- When Greg is killed, she goes to the Order to tell them she wants to find her mentor¿s killer. They tell her she can perform a sidebar investigation under their rule and provide her the information they know and the pictures they have. The crime pictures show the same entity murdered Greg and a vampire. It looks like a shapeshifter is the culprit, which implies hostilities are erupting between that species and the Masters of the Dead, necromancers who control the mindless vampires. Kate has a hunch that someone is orchestrating things behind the scenes to cause a war between the two wary adversaries but she has no idea who has the power to pull off such a diabolically sly ruse.------------------ Ilona Andrews is the newest fantasy magician who makes her world seem plausible yet entertaining mindful of Rosemary Edghill and Mercedes Lackey. The heroine is an enigmatic interesting individual who learns over her investigation that she is capable of trusting others as well as gaining the confidence of Pack King Curran while still keeping much of what she learns to herself. MAGIC BITES is an enchanting paranormal whodunit that takes the supernatural into new natural directions.----------------- Harriet Klausner

posted by harstan on December 9, 2008

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Most Helpful Critical Review

6 out of 31 people found this review helpful.

AM

You know Harriet you should have been an author or at least a critic. I lost count of the books I passed on because of your reviews. You are one gigantic plot spoiler. If you talk as much as you write, I bet you don't have many friends. Then again, its my fault for...
You know Harriet you should have been an author or at least a critic. I lost count of the books I passed on because of your reviews. You are one gigantic plot spoiler. If you talk as much as you write, I bet you don't have many friends. Then again, its my fault for reading your posts.

posted by 15240361 on October 11, 2012

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  • Posted January 29, 2010

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    Magic Bit me

    Ilona Andrews (they are actually man and wife tandem. wow) did not hold my hand while I navigate the first few chapters of Kate Daniel's world. I was not used to it I felt lost. The vampires call themselves as the People (and their face / personality, everything leans more on hideous), Magic Guild Mercenary (this is where Kate belongs, assassin of some sort), The Pack that have seven clans and not all of them are werewolves and the Order of the Merciful Aid (the politicians, lol). Fascinating groups, now all I have to do is get use to them and their terms.

    I wasn't really jumping up and down with this book. It is actually hard to review this one. It is complex. Kate Daniel's world is somewhat futuristic. Magic is loose to the world and humans live a long side our favorite monsters. But how did it come to that? Did I miss something? Normally I like this kind of a challenge but I wasn't up for it while reading. So the research to understand more came in later. As a result while I was reading, I almost decided not to finish the book. I was confused and sleepy up until about the last few chapters.

    But here's what kept me going: There is a mystery in Kate's blood. When she spills she have to make sure that nobody can get a sample of it so she burns her bloodied clothes or whatever after a fight. Or she kill the person/creature who took samples. Her blood is either something special or she's hiding from someone/something and I'm itching to know. Then there's Curran, not impressed at this point but I will give him a chance he is after all the leader of the Pack, I need to read more of his antics.

    To those who read this book already, how many are you out there revel on the goriness of that one scene where Kate cut of a vamp's head and order it to wake up and tell her who his master?

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 18, 2009

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    I Also Recommend:

    Not sold yet, but going to give the second installment a chance.

    Despite misgivings about any book titled MAGIC STRIKES, I picked up the ARC from work without knowing a thing about the book. Of course, it didn't take me long to realize that MAGIC STRIKES was the third in a series...and I was without the first two. Despite being frustrated, I decided to give Andrews a shot (though, to be honest, this decision was helped along by the blurb that Patricia Briggs has on the cover of the Andrews series). After a few weeks of procrastination, I shelled out a few dollars to get the first book, MAGIC BITES. Things turned out with very nice timing, though, considering that MAGIC STRIKES will be released on the 31st of March.

    Kate Daniels is a penniless mercenary who specializes in neutralizing magical "problems". In Kate's world, there are tide-like periods of "magic" and "tech" that ebb and flow. When the magic "is up", human technology fails: cars, phones, guns... When the tech comes back up, the magic has left a string of problems. The plot of MAGIC BITES does not, however, revolve around one of these everyday (for Kate) occurrences. Instead, the death of her guardian puts Kate both on the path of solving the mystery and revenge.

    Andrews drops the reader into Kate's world with a pace that requires the reader to either hit the ground running or fall to the ground due to the momentum. I took pretty well to this approach, though I felt that a little more explanation wouldn't have hurt the reader (or the size of the book, because the poor volume feels sadly thin at 260 pages). Regardless, I found Kate's world immediately intriguing. Though the world is filled with the usual suspects (vampires, werewolves and the like), each has a very original twist. How can one put any originality into vampires--outside of something silly like making them sparkle? Well, in Andrews' world, vampires are undead and mindless, but also generally used as vessels to be "driven" by the minds of necromancers. As for the "were"-creatures, they come in many forms. Not only werewolves, but were-lions, were-rats and... Kate, herself, is a human who wields magic and a magic-sword, but seems to have more to her than is divulged within this first book. I'm very much hoping for a secret worth waiting for.

    Like all books in the urban fantasy genre, I have parts I love and hate respectively. I do adore a strong female protagonist--and Kate definitely has some traits in common with Patricia Briggs' amazing Mercedes Thompson. Alternately, Kate was interesting on her own, but if she seems to run along the danger of being too much this tough persona. Sure, MAGIC BITES covered weaknesses Kate supposedly has, but none really felt real. For one, her grief over her lose of Greg--whether or not their relationship was complex--was not nearly covered well enough.

    Additionally, I have to wonder why every urban fantasy starring a female protagonist follows the "everyone must lust after the protagonist" formula. Testosterone driven males everywhere! I won't even bother to explain how unrealistic it is that all these males are so driven to find a hard-headed, "tom-boyish" female that is prone to threats and posturing. Nearly worse is that you can almost always spot the love-interest-to-be by (a) how much he and the protagonist butt heads to begin with and (b) by the fact he is usually the "dominant" male of the story. (Honestly, the near-romance with the unas

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 1, 2009

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    I Also Recommend:

    A Heroine Too Detached

    I read the whole book for two reasons. First of all, I bought it, as opposed to borrowing it from the library, and I always feel bad when I don't finish the ones I've bought. Second of all, the writing style was pretty good and I kept hoping that the character development would get better.

    Unfortunately, it didn't. I get it; Kate was supposed to be detached, a loner. That's fine. It's the way of heroines in science fiction to world over. However, it's important that the reader have the opportunity to bond with the subject of a story and Kate remained detached and inscrutable throughout the entire story. By the end of the story, I didn't feel as if I had any better grasp on her life than I had at the beginning; less even, because I'd realized that whatever she had actually felt for Greg was a paternal feeling and not romantic (as was suggested in the beginning), which seemed to distance me from her even more.

    I knew it wasn't going to work with Crest; Derek hit the nail on the head. I kind of new that something might develop with Curran, but I couldn't get my mind around how it happened. It was forced. You can't insist that someone is a glory hound, which to me means shallow and insecure, and then suddenly realize unspent feelings. The kiss was wrong and he never came close to apologizing for his assumptions about her. I think a woman like Kate would have needed some kind of concession. She wouldn't be with a man who thought her weak.

    I wasn't impressed; I was frustrated, too frustrated to keep reading.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 11, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    I¿d been hearing a lot of bloggers talking about how awesome Cur

    I’d been hearing a lot of bloggers talking about how awesome Curran is and how sexy of an Alpha he is. So I quickly added the book on my list and waited for my library to get it in. Which they finally did, a year later. I went into this book picturing something like Halfway to the Grave by Jeaniene Frost but that is not how this story goes. We don’t really get to interact much with Curran in this book. It’s a lot of story building that takes place and not a lot of the sexy Curran that I’d heard so much about.

    Even though I went in expecting one thing, I still found the story to be entertaining. The world of magic that Ilona creates is definitely unlike one I’ve read before. I’m still confused on a few things that take place, like what exactly Kate is, and the workings of the Order and the People but I’m sure that will all iron itself out as the story goes.

    Kate is definitely an interesting character. She plays up this persona of a ruthless merc, but that’s not really who she is deep down. I even believe one of the characters in the book call her on this. I think that Kate’s likability definitely helped me grab onto the story. Actually, all the characters were a huge part of the story, even when you thought they were just passing through.

    Hopefully in the next book there is more Curran and I will be able to see what everyone is talking about.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 22, 2012

    Really enjoyed this book. Looking forward to the second one.

    Really enjoyed this book. Looking forward to the second one.

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  • Posted November 20, 2012

    Must check out!

    This is a new author for me. Came across this series after reading a short story in an anthology. It peaked my interest to start the series. Great storyline. It is set in a near-future world where magic and technology kind of fight for supremacy. We meet Kate Daniels, a merc for hire to help, clean up or kill the bad guys/demons/monsters/etc. She lives life under the radar making sure no one knows her, becomes friends with her, recognizes her blood thru magic. She has a secret. She is a bad-ass fighter with a moral code sky-high. This is a very good urban fantasy/sci-fi. the mystery unfolds and grabs you from the start. The underlying secret about the characters makes me come back for the rest of the series. My secret: I finished the ENTIRE SERIES within two weeks. It was THAT good!!!

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  • Posted July 6, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Definitely Not An Attention Grabber!

    Compared to other books in this genre, I found Magic Bites to be a bit short. I think the author could have used a few more pages for character and emotional development. It was very easy for me to put this book down as I felt little connection to the characters or the storyline. On a side note, this was my first fantasy book involving shapeshifters, and I did not enjoy reading about wererats and werehyenas...seemed a bit silly to me at times. I just didn't get a good mental image from her descriptions. I liked the idea that magic and technology alternate, calling for different modes of transportation. I also liked the idea of the vampires being remotely piloted, and if the pilot dies, the vampire turns into a bloodthirsty monster. Overall, this book could have been much better, and the main character's "witty" comments (that a lot of other reviewers like) actually made Kate seem a little insecure to me.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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