Sunday, April 15, 2012

Magic in the Shadows (Allie Beckstrom #3) by Devon Monk

Magic in the Shadows (Allie Beckstrom, #3)

Magic in the Shadows by Devon Monk 

Allison Beckstrom's magic has taken its toll on her, physically marking her and erasing her memories-including those of the man she supposedly loves. But lost memories aren't the only things preying on Allie's thoughts.

Her late father, the prominent businessman-and sorcerer-Daniel Beckstrom, has somehow channeled himself into her very mind. With the help of The Authority, a secret organization of magic users, she hopes to gain better control over her own abilities-and find a way to deal with her father...


I give Magic in the Shadows by Devon Monk 4/5 stars for its ability to keep me interested and bring new meaning to possession. 

Though I will give no spoilers for Magic in the Shadows, there are spoilers from the first two prior novels. 

Magic in the Shadows: 

Allie Beckstorm is back again with all her humor and terrible luck. This time, the Authority, who we have heard about in the past two books but have not really seen, are finally ready to test Allie to see if she is worthy of becoming a member. In the beginning of the novel, Allie finds out that she must go in front of the members of the Authority in only three days to prove herself worthy. If she fails, Allie risks being Closed off. In order to improve her chances of succeeding, she is given a tutor, Maeve. However things are not that easy for Allie because the person who has been elected to help her get better with Magic is none other than wife of the man Allie’s father is responsible for murdering. 

Sadly, the upcoming Authority test is not the only thing Allie is dealing with. After the events that ended book two, Magic in the Blood, Allie is about to get up close and personal with her recently decease father, Daniel Beckstorm. If you thought the father/daughter scenes in the last novel were freaky, this is even more so. Why you may ask? Oh, well her father just inserted his spiritual self inside her brain and now possesses her from time to time. 

Sounds awkward? It is...let me show you. 

In this scene Violet, Allie’s step-mom (recent widow if her father, Daniel) appears and Daniel is more than happy to override his feelings into the situation:

Violet...sliding out of the passenger’s side, and wearing a full-length wool peacoat as blue as a stormy ocean, the wide hood pulled up. Her figure was still trim.

Violet pushed her hood back and put on her glasses. “I didn’t know you’d be here, Allie.”

In the gray light, Violet’s hair seemed to have a warmth of its own, the fiery hue of autumn leaves. I found myself unable to look away from her, unable to exhale, as emotions that were not mine poured through me in a river of heat.

Images flashed behind my eyes, memories, of Violet. And with those memories came emotions.

I wanted to take her in my arms and hold her. I wanted to feel her heartbeat against my own. I wanted to touch her. Love her.

Holy shit. I took a step back, away. Away from Violet. Away from the emotions raging in me. Emotions that were not my own, but my father’s.

It was only a second, a hot, vivid second of wanting a man, as my father wanted her, but it freaked me out.

I didn’t know if I should be sick or angry. Angry was easier. 

Allie Beckstrom: 

At the end of Magic to the Bone (book 1), Allie loses her memory of the time she and Zayvion had together. This is not surprising since one of the paybacks of using Magic, especially without a disbursement, is memory loss. Since this was the case, inMagic to the Blood (book 2), Allie spent the entire novel trying to work out her feelings for Zayvion. In a way, it was as if she had to fall in love and learn to trust him all over again. There are so few novels that allow this to happen more than once so it was kind of fun to read her experiencing this again. Having said that, I was ready for things to move on in book 3; have the relationship begin to grow out of the first stages. 

*crosses fingers Allie doesn’t lose her memory again*

Well, my wish was granted. In this newest book, Allie no longer needs to figure out her feelings for Zayvion; she is absolutely in love with him and is willing to do anything to make it work. It was very refreshing to get to read about her feelings expanding for Zayvion. Allie has not always had the best track record when it comes to men so allowing Zayvion in her life in a big step I’m glad she is willing to take. Plus they’re adorable together. 

Allie is the kind of heroine I enjoy reading about: fierce, protective, sarcastic, and strong willed. Though she does have one drawback: stubbornness to the max! When Allie has her mind set on something there is no going back. It doesn’t matter if it’s dangerous, if Allie wants to do it, she does it. 

Case in point (not really a scene in the book but basically a conversation she would have):

Person: Allie, don’t do (insert dangerous activity). 
Allie: I’m doing it now because you told me not to. 


This dude is amazing. Having been so closed off for the first two novels, I was really surprised how open he was to Allie. I wasn’t use to him talking so much about himself and his Magic abilities. Plus, he is so sweet under all that strong Zen-like persona. I’m excited to read the next novel in this series because I can’t wait to read more back him. I have Zayvion fever!


If you have read anything about this series, you know Shamus is quite the character. Seriously, I see more Shamus hype then Zayvion hype. It’s to be expected. Shamus is EPIC. Since the moment he appeared in this novel, I knew he was going to be one of my favorite characters in this series. What can I say about him? Well, he is super sarcastic, goth, powerful, and believes in saying anything he wants just for the shock factor. Shamus is the kind of character this series really needed; Allie cannot be expected have all the funny dialogue. 

Yes. This series keeps getting better as it goes. I can honestly say I enjoyed this novel more than the first two. 

Magic In the Blood (Allie Beckstrom #2) by Devon Monk

Magic In the Blood (Allie Beckstrom, #2)

Magic In the Blood by Devon Monk

Working as a Hound-tracing illegal spells back to their casters-has taken its toll on Allison Beckstrom. But even though magic has given her migraines and stolen her recent memory, Allie isn't about to quit. Then the police's magic enforcement division asks her to consult on a missing persons case. But what seems to be a straightforward job turns out to be anything but, as Allie finds herself drawn into the underworld of criminals, ghosts, and blood magic.


**Spoilers have been hidden in white. No need to fret. (just scroll over the white area to see spoiler text)**
I give Magic in the Blood by Devon Monk 4/5 stars for being just as good as its predecessor, Magic to the Bones, and maybe even more so. 

Is there multiple perspectives this time around?: 

I have to start out by saying that I really disliked the multiple perspectives POVs in Magic to the Bone between Allie and Cody. I'm rarely a fan of multiple perspectives to begin with (I think I only like two series that have this: City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments, #1) series and Forsaken (The Demon Trappers, #1)series.) If you disliked this feature in the first book because of this, like me, rest assure, only Allie’s POV in this installment. 


I really wish I would have reviewed this novel after reading it. Now, more than halfway through the next installment of this series, Magic in the Shadows, I have found myself unable to truly capture the awesomeness of this novel; mainly due to that terrible thing called memory loss. Oh, why can’t I remember everything single thing that takes places in a novel! I’m just as bad as Allie except my memory loss isn’t magic related.

Magic in the Blood: 

I can state that in this second novel in the Allie Beckstrom series, Devon, once again, does not disappoint. There is more mystery and suspense in this newest novel than one can handle. I stated this many times throughout my reviews: when it comes to novels with mystery, I prefer to not be the one solving things before the heroine. This is definitely not the case in Magic in the Blood. So many times I really thought I had everything figured out only to find I was in the wrong the entire time. 

Only problem I found:

I will put a spoiler warning but it really isn't too spoilery. 

(spoiler) Why did I give this novel a 4/5 rating? Why isn’t it 5/5? Well, I found the timing off a little bit. This entire novel takes place basically in one day. It just felt too much. I was confused how Allie was able to accomplished so much in such a short period. 

6:00am- 8:00am: 

Allie wakes up, showers, writes in journal, leaves for the police station (20-30 minutes to get there), answered a few questions and took a tour around the station, drove with police offer to Magic job location, performed Magic to figure out crime (this takes around 10-40 minutes), rode back to the police station to talk about magic job, decided to walk to coffee shop, attack scene at coffee shop, talks with coffee shop manager, returns home by bus. 

That was just the basic description of her morning. I left a lot of details out I’m not going to give away the entire first few chapters). 
However, maybe I’m wrong. Allie could be perfect at time management. (spoiler)


Quiet. Strong. Smart. Sexy. Zen attitude. Need I say more?


Yes. Whereas I felt Magic to the Bone dragged out a few times throughout the novel, Magic in the Blood did not. The pacing was pretty good (despite my reservations in my “spoiler section”). I significantly liked this novel much better than the first.