Magic Shifts (2015)

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The previous part of the series was pretty much a narrative milestone the series had worked toward for years. And while the meeting between Kate Daniels and her dad didn’t play out as most expected, it was everything that this meeting should have been and better, it managed to positively surprise with what it did. But often in long-running series, after such a high-point, the next novel or novels feel like filler, a respite with much slower pacing and less interesting stuff happening. Magic Shifts is thankfully none of that.

While the new enemy here could be seen as filler, he’s tied into some of the main characters in a way that makes the stakes just as personal as with almost every previous bad guy. He’s also packed a hefty magic oomph and beating him felt like a hard-won victory for our heroes.

Best of all, after leaving the pack I feared that the Beast Lord’s character was pretty much spent, but author duo Andrews managed to introduce a new occupation for him that isn’t just fun and ties to stuff from the earliest novels, but also could seriously boost Kate’s strike base in a conflict with her father down the road. There are also a couple of other new developments for a host of secondary characters that made this a really fun read and nullified my fears that not much of interest would happen.

Overall, I started reading this fully expecting a nice but ultimately lightweight and consequence-less filler, instead I got countless exiting new developments and a fast-paced sequel to Magic Breaks that managed to solidly build on the foundation of what happened in the last novel.

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