Blood Magic (Wing Slayer Hunter Series #1)

( 121 )

Overview

THE HUNTER AND THE HUNTED

In the days when powerful witches used their magic to shield humanity from demons, their allies and guardians were a group of men gifted with preternatural abilities of their own–the witch guardians. But when a band of witches traded their humanity for demonic power, the ancient bond was broken, and the guardians became the hunters.

Darcy MacAlister knows nothing of demons or magic. But this beautiful young woman is ...

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Blood Magic (Wing Slayer Hunter Series #1)

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Overview

THE HUNTER AND THE HUNTED

In the days when powerful witches used their magic to shield humanity from demons, their allies and guardians were a group of men gifted with preternatural abilities of their own–the witch guardians. But when a band of witches traded their humanity for demonic power, the ancient bond was broken, and the guardians became the hunters.

Darcy MacAlister knows nothing of demons or magic. But this beautiful young woman is about to discover the truth about her past . . . and her future. For she is a witch–not just any witch, but the key to breaking the curse that has plagued witches and the men who hunt them. For if a hunter kills an innocent witch by mistake, the price is no less than a piece of his soul.

Axel Locke, gorgeous leader of the Wing Slayer Hunters, has sworn never to shed the blood of the earth witches who have resisted the temptation of demonic power. But when his sister is cursed by a demon witch, he discovers that Darcy MacAlister may hold the cure–if she can master her newfound powers in time. When the chase begins and Axel and Darcy come face-to-face, this hunter must weigh his soul against his honor–and against his heart.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780345506344
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 2/24/2009
  • Series: Wing Slayer Hunter Series , #1
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Pages: 376
  • Sales rank: 669,298
  • Product dimensions: 4.10 (w) x 6.80 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Award-winning author Jennifer Lyon always wanted to be a witch. Since her witch-powers never materialized, she moved to plan B and now creates magic in her books. She has written several mystery series, and now lives with her husband and three sons in Southern California, where the horrendous traffic affords her plenty of time to dream up stories.

www.jenniferlyonbooks.com

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Read an Excerpt

1

Saturday: Day One of the Death Mark

The whispers were nothing new.

Darcy MacAlister followed behind her mother’s graceful white casket with the elegant raised scrolls as they left the MacAlister Funeral Home to process to the cemetery next door. Being the funeral director eased the knot of grief and sorrow in her throat. She was honored to oversee every detail of the service that celebrated Eileen MacAlister’s life, and show the community how well-loved her mother had been. She would not let the whispers affect her.

“They used to call her Dark Mac in high school.”

“Some say her father was afraid of her.”

“. . . Drove him to drink.”

“Hush! Darcy took care of your grandfather when he passed. She’s been nothing but kind to us.”

“She found my cat for me when he got lost. Just knew where he was.”

“There’s something strange about that one . . .”

Darcy stiffened her back, her black sheath dress sliding around her legs. She focused on the coffin and inhaled the briny, damp ocean air.

Joe’s arm slid around her shoulder, pulling her close to his side.

She looked up at her cousin. Joe hovered around six feet and weighed in at one eighty, and he knew how to kill, thanks to his years in the Special Forces. And right now, his jaw was so tight, she knew he wanted to hit someone. “Ignore them,” she said softly.

He barely nodded.

Not a promise, but the best she’d get from him. It had been almost nine years since Joe had left the seaside town of Glassbreakers, California, full of excitement about changing the world. When he returned a few months ago, he was a different man, grim and disconnected, like he didn’t care if he lived or died. Yet once he found out that her mom, his aunt, was terminally ill with a complication from lupus, he would show up at the house to do chores, barbeque, or take care of anything else that needed to be done. Any thanks just irritated him.

They stopped at the grave. The base of the casket was surrounded by flower arrangements; fresh greenery and baby’s breath was woven around the poles of the canopy under which the guests sat or stood.

Darcy cleared her throat, feeling the weight of her mother’s last gift; a silver Celtic knot pendant of loops and swirls that spread out like wings at her throat. “Thank you all for coming today. My mother asked me to tell you that she cherished each of you. That you all brought joy and happiness to her life. And now, she’s asked that you don’t grieve for her, but instead celebrate each of your days, and embrace your families and loved ones.” She looked out over all the mourners, warmed to see so many that truly cared about Eileen MacAlister. “Once we do the final prayers, we will have a reception back inside. We would be pleased if you would join us.”

She took her seat, grateful that she didn’t have to worry about the reception. Her best friend, Carla Fisk, and her newest employee, Morgan Reed, were inside the mortuary right now setting up the sandwiches, salads, and cookies. Instead, she concentrated on the prayers and closing words that would send her mom to her final rest. For the last time, people streamed by the casket, cried, and hugged her. The day was nearly over.

“You’ve done your mom proud, darling,” Reverend Jack Masters said, leaning down and kissing her cheek.

Darcy rose and walked with the minister to stand by her mom’s casket. “Thank you, Jack. We planned this ceremony together. I just followed her wishes.” Those last months had been a blessing and a nightmare. Eileen had struggled with lupus since her early twenties, but in the last year her lungs had given out.

Words from two stragglers floated to them. “Strange that she doesn’t even cry for her mother.”

Jack’s face tightened, then he shook his head in disgust. “Eileen knew you loved her, Darcy. And I have worked with you on dozens of funerals. You’re a professional through and through. This is your final gift to your mother.”

She almost cried then, but hugged him instead. “Thanks, Jack. That really helps.”

“Can I walk you in?”

She shook her head. “I want to stay here for a few more minutes.”

He nodded and headed inside.

Darcy was finally alone. She inhaled the sea breeze mixed with the scent of recently cut grass and freshly turned dirt. Jack was right, she had done her mom proud. That felt good; it felt right. Her mom had adopted Darcy when she was only a few weeks old, and no matter how odd a child Darcy had turned out to be, Eileen’s love had remained rock steady. Always.

Turning slightly, she swept her hand across the glossy surface of the casket. “I’m going to give the house to Joe, Mom. I’ve thought about this a lot. He needs something, an anchor. I can’t live there, I just . . . can’t. But Joe . . .”

The warmth she felt vanished, replaced by a deep chill. She snapped her head up and caught sight of a young couple walking along one of the sidewalk pathways directly in front of her. Sweeping her eyes left, she saw three people: two men and a woman standing by a headstone.

They all looked like normal visitors to the cemetery.

Dropping her gaze, she said, “Guess I’m tired. Anyway, about Joe and—”

She felt it again. This time chills raced down her back and the hair stood up on her arms. Her heart rate increased quickly. Dropping her hand, she whirled to look toward the canopy.

A man was suddenly there, standing by the chair she’d sat in earlier.

Her heart swelled and banged against her rib cage. The man was extremely tall and wore a long, black suede coat. But something was off, his face was too soft, almost feminine, yet his build was huge. Pull yourself together, he’s probably just a late mourner. Taking a deep breath, she noticed a coppery smell then said, “You startled me. Are you here for my mom?” Perhaps he was an acquaintance of her mom’s that she hadn’t met.

Staring at her, he said, “I’m here for you, Darcy.”

His eyes were a vacant and cruel green. She broke into a cold sweat. A voice in her head screamed, Run! Darcy shivered once, then turned and ran. The heels of her black pumps caught in the thick grass. She stopped, turned, and saw that the man was still standing there watching her, a nasty smirk on his full lips.

Fear washed up the back of her throat. She yanked off her shoes and looked back. The man was gone.

Vanished.

Run!

Unnamed terror pulsed deep inside of her and she ran, heading toward the mortuary. It was too far! At least thirty or forty yards . . .

“Darcy!”

It was Joe, striding toward her from the left, Morgan at his side. Darcy turned and raced to him, her thighs burning. She couldn’t get the metallic taste of fear out of her mouth.

Joe caught her in his arms, lifting her off the ground and turning with the momentum. “What’s wrong?” He set her down and whipped back around, keeping her at his back.

Tears burned behind her eyes at the gesture. He had always protected her.

“Darcy, are you okay?” Morgan looked at her, her huge blue eyes full of worry.

Warm embarrassment began in the center of Darcy’s chest and spread like a bad rash. What exactly had she panicked over? “I think I might have just made a fool of myself.”

Joe did one more scan then turned to look down at her; both of his dark eyebrows raised over vivid blue eyes. “You looked terrified. What happened?”

She shrugged, then leaned down to slide one pump onto her damp foot. “This guy just freaked me out.”

“That’s a switch. Usually it’s you freaking people out.”

She rolled her eyes as she balanced on one high heel, brushed a couple blades of grass from her foot, and slid on the other shoe. Then she stood and said, “He startled me. I didn’t hear him walk up, he was just . . . there. I asked him if he was here for mom, and he said ‘I’m here for you, Darcy.’?” Now that she said it out loud, she realized the man might have meant that he was there to support her at her mother’s funeral.

Morgan jerked her head around to stare at Darcy. “What did he look like?”

The fear coming off Morgan prickled her skin and nearly made her step back. In high school, Morgan had been popular and sure of herself while Darcy had been awkward; always trying to figure out how to fit in. Something had changed Morgan. She tried to answer, “Black hair, really weird green eyes, and his face was . . . well, it seemed almost delicate.”

“A small guy?” asked Joe.

“No. Big. Taller than you. He wore a black suede coat that went to his knees and black slacks under that.”

Morgan’s gaze darted around the cemetery, then she reached out and put her icy cold hand on Darcy’s arm. She opened her mouth, then grimaced before saying, “I need to tell you something. But I can’t seem to remember exactly . . .” She snatched her hand from Darcy’s arm and started rubbing her temples.

“Morgan, you need to eat. You’ve been working since this morning,” Joe said.

That was true, Darcy silently agreed. But she had felt the cold fear in Morgan’s hand. After being gone from town for a few years, the woman had returned scared and troubled by something. But then again, Darcy herself had just raced across the cemetery grounds like something out of a horror movie was after her, so who was she to judge? “Let’s all go inside. I’m acting like a nut house escapee and Morgan is forgetting things. We could all use some food, and we have guests waiting.”

Joe took her arm. “I’ll take a look around inside. If he’s there, I’ll get his story.”

She looked up at him. “Thanks.” It made her feel better that he took her seriously even when she felt like an utter fool. What had possessed her to run away?

It was nine o’clock by the time Darcy arrived home to her little apartment. The only thing that had gotten her through the last few hours was the promise of a hot shower and a big glass of wine. She lived in a ground floor unit overlooking a sunny courtyard with propane barbeques and benches shaded by a couple of large oak trees with sprawling limbs that bent and twisted like broken fingers. Tonight, it seemed dark and shadowy with too many hiding places.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 121 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(73)

4 Star

(29)

3 Star

(13)

2 Star

(2)

1 Star

(4)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 122 Customer Reviews
  • Posted February 8, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    This is a fabulous opening act of a wonderful urban romantic fantasy

    Funeral director Darcy MacAlister finds arranging her beloved mom¿s funeral is a catharsis of sorts although hearing some speak of the deceased as if she was evil bothers her enough that her Special Forces cousin Joe notices and tells her to ignore the fools. At about the same time that she buries her mom, witch hunter Wing Slayer Hunter leader Axel Locke is worried that his sister Hannah has been attacked by a death curse. He knows only two ways to save her: either the curse is lifted or a witch must die. Axel knows if he kills an innocent witch his soul will burn, but those witches who broke their sacred vow to protect humans from demons by switching sides are another matter as their former guardians like him are obsessed with killing the traitors. <BR/><BR/>Axel abducts a terrified Darcy whom he recognizes as an earth witch. He hopes to gain her cooperation by having her lift the spell. However though she commiserates with Hannah's dilemma, she never knew that witch blood flowed in her veins. Time is running out although she agrees to try to break the curse. <BR/><BR/>This is a fabulous opening act of a wonderful urban romantic fantasy starring two intriguing protagonists with an unwanted attraction pushing them towards each other and a blood curse pulling them apart. The story line is fast-paced, but owned by the lead pair as they ¿naturally¿ squabble while struggling to save his sibling. Jennifer Lyon bewitches sub-genre fans with this terrific thriller.<BR/><BR/>Harriet Klausner

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 22, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Blood Magic

    It is a good story to sit down and relax. it get your attention and keeps it thru the story.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 4, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Can't wait for more!!

    I enjoyed Jennifer Lyon's take on witchcraft- protecting humans from demons. The storyline is intriguing, romantic, and draws you in from the first few pages. I couldn't put this book down- so now I can't wait until the next book- Soul Magic comes out....urgh! I hate waiting..

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 24, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    BEST IN A LONG TIME

    I am new to this author. I was so happy I found her. The book was a can't put down from the start. Loved the story line, characters, and the thrill factor. I can't wait for the next book. I was so happy for more I hit the book store as soon as I was done reading the first, sad to find I had to wait. But totaly worth the wait.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 15, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Tending more toward graphic than interesting

    The idea for the story line was intriguing and the initial character development was good. Unfortunately, the author chose to interrupt the plot a number of times for graphic, multi-page, gratuitous sex scenes which did little or nothing to advance the plot. After the first one, I took to skimming past those pages so that I could get on with the story. I doubt that I missed anything innovative or interesting.

    I'll probably buy the second book -- Soul Magic -- when it comes out because the preview chapter at the end of Blood Magic was intriguing. However, if I find that the author insists on digressing from the plot in order to tell me more than I want to know about intercourse, I won't be picking up any others she might write.

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 2, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    A SEXY, PARANORMAL GEM!

    IN A SEA OF PARANORMAL ROMANCE, HERE IS ONE AMAZING GEM!, March 1, 2009
    By L.A. Mama "LWI" (los angeles, ca United States) - See all my reviews
    I am a big fan of paranormal romance, and very particular about, not just quality of writing and the plot, but the characters. Well, the characters in Blood Magic DO NOT disappoint. They stay with you long after the book is finished. I swear, Axel and Darcy jumped off the page, pulled me into their action packed, super steamy story and took me for one great ride.
    My only gripe is that I read it too fast, and now what? Is there another one coming? And if so, when? And who's story is it going to be? More WINGSLAYER HUNTERS please!!!

    Jennifer Lyon is definitely an author to watch!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 19, 2012

    Heather

    Parents are gonna murder me

    1 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 7, 2012

    Highly recommended

    Great start of the series. Yes, it's romance, but the story line grabs you and doesn't let go. You'll find yourself immersed in the lives of the characters. Lyon puts a fantastic twist on the world of witchcraft. But be careful because one book is not enough. "Blood Magic" is the perfect setup for the Wing Slayer Hunters!!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 1, 2012

    Okay

    This book was not as good as I thought it would be. The plot was predictable. Love, sex, heartbreak, sex, love. The book had slot of potential but just didn't cut it for me. I felt there were a lot of fake emotions and arguments that that could have been overcome simply instead of becoming more of a problem.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 25, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    A unique paranormal world of winged guardians, witches and demons!

    I loved the main couple of Axel and Darcy. I easily connected with them and they're relationship was incredibly hot, but the secondary characters were intriguing as well. The plot moved at a great pace and kept me turning the pages, an interesting twist was thrown in as well and I'm curious to see how it plays out in future books. Blood Magic is a truly captivating story and a fantastic start to a series, I just purchased the next three books and can't wait to get started on them! 4.5/5 Stars

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 19, 2011

    I Also Recommend:

    Great Paranormal Fiction...

    I have found too many paranormal series lately that are hard to stick with. The first book may be okay, so I give it another chance...and another, until I cannot waste any more time reading on. Blood Magic was a great first impression. The characters were engaging and well-written, the plot was exciting and made me look forward to what happens next. Already had the next book on my shelf and picked it up to start immediately. Hope the series continues as it has started!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 10, 2011

    THE BEST BOOK I HAVE READ THIS YEAR>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

    This is only the 2nd witch based paranormal romance that I have ever enjoyed. The other was Anya Bast's Elemental Witches. This author has found a good niche with this series. I read this book in one sitting; I didn't even put my nook down to eat dinner. After the first chapter I downloaded the second book, Soul Magic, because I knew that the moment I was finished with this book I would want to move straight into the next installment.

    This was my first book by this author and I am glad this book was recommended to me. The writing,, story, plot, and of course the heroes are smoking hot.

    The heroes in the story are a brotherhood of Witch Hunters. The witch hunters struggle with a curse that makes them want to kill the witches, they once protected. They also have vowed to destroy all rogues, witch hunters that have lost their souls due to killing a witch.

    There is a great mix of paranormal figures; gods, demons, witches, witch hunters, and several others. I commend the author on a great first book - I hope the series continues with an ever increasing number of characters and plots.

    If you like paranormal romances, I recommend you pick up this book...You won't want to put it down. I am off to start the second book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 1, 2009

    good book

    Great story if you like paranrmal or futuristic types of books. Took a little while to get ihto it, but it was a good readl.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 6, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Jennifer Lyon's New Book is Perfect

    I don't often rant, rave and press books into the hands of strangers. BLOOD MAGIC is the exception to the rule. Lyon has created a new mythos in the paranormal genre with compelling characters, plot, and originality. She had me laughing out loud on one page and crying a few pages later. Axel is the perfect alpha male and Darcy is a feisty heroine thrown into a situation that would make most women run screaming.

    Say hello to the Wing Slayer Hunters! Axel leads a group of immortals sworn to protect earth witches and the world from villains craving witch blood. Adopted, Darcy doesn't know she's a witch until Axel kidnaps her and demands she help his little sister, the victim of a death curse. Time is running out.

    Lyon writes an "all-or-nothing" adventure with more than enough romance guaranteed to keep the reader turning pages late into the night. Thank goodness, this is just the first book in a series! Look for her next book, SOUL MAGIC, in November 2009.

    This book is a keeper!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 21, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    So good!

    I went into this book not knowing what to expect, I didn't know the author and there weren't many reviews at the time. Let me say, I am so happy I picked it up anyway! Great story with an easy flow, great characters, and great sex, I hardly put it down. I am disappointed that I have to wait for the next one to be released.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 30, 2013

    Loved this book..

    Loved this book..

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 4, 2013

    Starrykit

    Just as good as your other ones!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 20, 2013

    Song

    I love it!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted March 17, 2013

    ¿Blood Magic¿ was a powerhouse of a novel, it had every element

    ‘Blood Magic’ was a powerhouse of a novel, it had every element you could want in a paranormal romance. ‘Blood Magic’ gives a new twist on the world of witches. I have read novels about witches and witchcraft since I was a little girl and never before have I ever seen it done like this. The story captivated me from the very first page and it just pumped out adventure and adrenaline filled scenes right after the other. Axel and Darcy have such a powerful love story happening that it is hard to turn away from. Darcy feels like she just wants to lose herself in him and Axel feels the same but he can’t allow the curse and his bloodlust to take over and take her life! The exchanges between those two were so passionate, powerful, and beautifully written. I am absolutely in love with these characters and I cannot wait to read ‘Soul Magic’ which is the next book in the series.

    Darcy had never fit in she always knew she was different but tried to be as normal as possible because her adopted father told her she was evil. Well it turns out Darcy isn’t normal at all she indeed an earth witch and she could possibly be the very most important and powerful one though she has never known it. After a series of confusing and terrifying events she finds herself prisoner in a witch hunter’s house. He has been cursed just like all the other hunters with a terrible bloodlust for witch’s blood but Axel and his men are determined not to go rogue and have dedicated their lives to protecting earth witches and killing rogues. Now Axel has run into a problem his four year old sister, Hannah has been cursed with the death mark and will die soon if they cannot get a earth witch to remove the spell. This is where Darcy comes in; Axel kidnapped her and is depending on her to save Hannah.
    Darcy has no idea where to even start considering she didn’t even know she was a witch but after seeing Hannah, she realizes she cannot walk away and let a poor little innocent girl die; she has to at least try. She begins to work on her witchcraft and she and Axel realize that they are in the fight of their lives, in more ways than one.
    Axel and Darcy have such a heavy lethal attraction to each other and soon begin to realize they need each other and can help each other more than they ever could have imagined. Besides the story of Darcy and Axel there are plenty of other characters that play their own parts in the story, each one is important and I really love the aspect of that. There is no meaningless character in this book.
    It is such a compelling and powerful story, just when you think everything is going to be ok, their world gets flipped upside down again. The whole time I was reading I was just waiting for Axel to take Darcy into his arms and overcome the curse but I never ever saw the ending coming. That is a rare talent, to completely throw the reader off throughout the book. ‘Blood Magic’ was such a captivating, thrilling story, with unforgettable characters that you won’t forget and it will leave you craving the next book. I give it five stars!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 13, 2013

    Rainstream

    Hi ! I love your stories . Here are some names . Fawnspot Screechtail Kinkfur Honeyfern Marigoldleaf Starshine Willowshine Foggytail Goldenfur . Ill giv you names in each one

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