Review: Gunmetal Magic by Ilona Andrews

Posted October 30th, 2012 in book review / 8 comments

Gunmetal Magic

Book #1 of the Kate Daniels World Series

by Ilona Andrews

Publisher: Ace (July 2012)
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Format: Paperback (326 pages)
Source: Won in Giveaway
Purchase: Amazon / Barnes & Noble / Book Depository
Rating: ★★★★½ (4.5 stars)

After being kicked out of the Order of the Knights of Merciful Aid, Andrea’s whole existence is in shambles. She tries to put herself back together by working for Cutting Edge, a small investigative firm owned by her best friend. When several shapeshifters working for Raphael Medrano–the male alpha of the Clan Bouda, and Andrea’s former lover–die unexpectedly at a dig site, Andrea is assigned to investigate. Now she must work with Raphael as her search for the killer leads into the secret underbelly of supernatural Atlanta. And dealing with her feelings for him might have to take a back seat to saving the world… ~ Add on Goodreads

At a Glance
Squeeeeee! So. Freaking. Excited. Many of you know I am obsessed with all things Kate Daniels. So to have more of her world through the eyes of Andrea was awesomesauce. Really, Ilona Andrews can do no wrong in my eyes when it comes to her books (Well, mostly).

The Good
Here’s The Story…
Andrea has just come back into town after a messy firing from the Order of the Knights because of her shapeshifter status and a maybe-maybe not breakup with the only man she has ever loved. Left with no other choice, Andrea begins working for her best friend as a private investigator. But before she can move on with her life, the Pack asks her to investigate murders of some of their own. And since these dead shapeshifters happen to have died on a job run by Raphael, Andrea’s ex, she is forced to work close with him to uncover the murderer. But this is not a simple case by any means because the killer has a few tricks up their sleeves.

Our poor, poor Andrea. Her life really does suck right now. She was fired from her job for being a shapeshifter and she comes back to town to find out her boyfriend has moved on with another woman. It really doesn’t get worse than that. My stomach was in pain as I read the hit after hit Andrea took. I girl can only take so much. I didn’t really blame her when she snapped and…well, I wont give that away. You will have to read the book to find out. Overall, Andrea handled herself the best she could. She is still our strong, independent woman we have come to love. She knows she has made some mistakes, some bad decisions. She is even willing to own up to them, but she will not put up with Raphael’s crap. She is a fighter like Kate, and she definitely shows her teeth and unsheathes her claws in Gunmetal Magic.

Now it All Makes Sense…
I think Andrews did a great job on explaining the reasoning behind Andrea’s bad decisions from the Kate Daniels series. Truthfully, I didn’t like her for a little while. I just couldn’t believe what she did, picking the Order over the Pack. But after Andrews had Andrea explain her side of it all, it totally made sense. Andrea has risen up from some pretty bitter and dark ashes, she has the right to do what’s best for her. Oh, and before I forget, Andrea handled Aunt B PERFECTLY. I finally feel settled when it comes to Andrea’s position in the Pack.

Damn That Handsome Devil…
But Raphael. Grrrr. I wanted to kick him in his twig and berries many a time during this book. He was insufferable. He hurt Andrea more than I thought he was capable of. I get it, I do, but I just wish he could have taken the high road instead of the asshat road. But, then again, it made for great entertainment. I was glued to the pages every time Andrea and Raphael were put together. And, once again, Raphael ended up capturing my heart. Damn him! That irresistible bastard can freakin’ do no wrong because he always finds a way for us to forgive him and love him once more.

Andrews Strikes Again…
Okay, now on to the story. Again, Andrews spins a tale of complexity and mystery beyond comparison. The lore and mythology were fascinating. I love how Andrews never does simple, she interweaves storylines that make you actively think and analyze along with the characters. I am always blown away by how far Andrews goes and who the culprit turns out to be. The action was off the charts, the blood and gore were terrific, and the suspense was spin-tingling. The humor was, once again, above and beyond hilarity, and the romance was sizzling.

Ilona Andrews Rocks My Socks Off…
To just crawl around Andrew’s brain for one day is my life’s dream. No one can compare to her writing style and expertise in entertainment. She knows what her fans want and she gives us everything plus more. Without her, I don’t know if I would have the same passion for books as I do. (Side note: Yes, I am aware Ilona Andrews is a husband and wife writing team but it’s just easier to refer to them as one person.)

The Bad
Though Andrews often has lengthy descriptions of Atlanta in her books, this was the first time I found it irritating. I just wanted to get back to the story, not spend 3 pages on how a building looks and its extensive history.

The Snuggly
We get some hot scenes with Andrea and Raphael but nothing overdone. Andrews doesn’t ever focus on the sex, but when she spends those few pages on some snuggly, she freakin’ scorches the words off the page in a surprising minimal way.

I pretty much loved every minute of reading Gunmetal Magic. Andrews knows what she’s doing. She writes characters we care about and stories that keep us reading. If you haven’t read at least one book from Ilona Andrews, then you have never really read a book. Please read this book, like now!! Highly Recommended.

Kate smirked
“Your horse is pink.”
“If you paste some stars on her butt you’ll be riding My Little Pony.”
“Bugger off.” I patted the mare’s neck. “Don’t listen to her, Sugar. You are the cutest horsey ever. The correct name for her color is strawberry roan, by the way.”
“Strawberry Shortcake, more like it. Does Strawberry Shortcake know you stole her horse? She will be berry, berry angry with you.”
“I can shoot you right here, on this road, and nobody will ever find your body.”

“Did those nice church ladies come by again?”
He nodded. “I asked them if a man died and then the woman remarried, and then the three of them met in heaven, would it be a sin for them to have a threesome, since they were all married in God’s eye. And they decided they were late to be somewhere else.”

book review

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8 Responses to “Review: Gunmetal Magic by Ilona Andrews”

  1. Sarah (saz101)

    !!!!!!!! OK, as you know (and seriously, why you tolerate me I’ll never know) I’ve only read Magic Bites… and I loved it… but…


    I kind of want to swallow up the books RIGHT NOW so I can read this and and and…

    Is this going to be like First Drop of Crimson and Eternal Kiss of Darkness in NH? Like, each side character gets one book? Or is Andrea getting her own spin-off series? Because she sounds like a cool chick.

    Also: this is the first Ilona Andrews cover I have ever liked. LOVE ♥

    • Jennifer Bielman

      You know, while I was writing this review, I was thinking of you. I was thinking of the friends I have who have yet to read the whole series and how bad I want to slap their noses with rolled up newspapers. Why must you make me suffer? Read these books now!!!!!.

      I am totally not in the loop as to if this is a new series or if a few characters will get their own books. I have tried to find the answer on the author’s website but it’s a no-go. Either way I would be super excited.

      Andrea is amazing, but Kate is way freakin’ cooler. You have to read the Kat Daniels series first. Not that you couldn’t make sense of this book, you could read this book first but Kate Daniels gives you such a better introduction to the world.

      And I agree, this cover is a lot better.

  2. Julie

    Great review! I’m not sure how but I haven’t gotten around to reading the Kate Daniels books yet. I’ve heard great things. Guess I should move them further up the list.

  3. Elisa

    I LOVE THESE BOOKS TOO! Of all the PR/UF I love these amongst the best. (I have to include Patty Briggs books in the love) The snark and the strong women who work well (or not – heehee) with strong men. It is the humor, and the emotions without being emotional. They f’ing rock. After the first book I didn’t feel the intense love, there were confusing scenes or something, but I bought 1 & 2 at the same time so I kept going and now you couldn’t stop me!
    Purple shag, awesome stuff. I need to reread it! Makes me happy to think about doing that.

    • Jennifer Bielman

      I know, right!!! Best series ever. It really is the snark and strong characters. They are one of a kind. I love strong women and Kate and Andrea couldn’t be more strong.

      Many people don’t get pulled in by the first book, even Ilona said she wants to rewrite that book if she could, but the series is amazing. You just have to keep reading.

      Oh yes, the purple shag, priceless.

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