Magic Bites by Ilona Andrews is the first novel in the Kate Daniels fantasy series, though apparently there is a prequel novella that I haven't read. I am blaming my new obsession with this series on Elle J Rossi since she is the one who recommended it to me. *shaking fist at Elle*
The first thing that I loved about Magic Bites was the absolutely fantastic world building. It is based in the familiar city of Atlanta but with a very magical overlay that comes and goes between technological cycles. During magic cycles, technology doesn't work and during technological cycles, magic doesn't work.
Kate is my favorite kind of female lead character. She is a sarcastic magic mercenary and a total smart ass. She has a mysterious power that she guards very carefully because just the knowledge of it would scare people enough to get her killed. She can kick ass with the best of them and has difficulty trusting anyone.
The Order is a rigid group but protects humanity and doesn't worry about money. The People are a group of power hungry necromancers who worship Roland even though none have ever seen him. To the People, money is everything. The Pack is the group of shapeshifters who live by following the Beast Lord and have a code of ethics. They are mortal enemies of the People. Curran is the Beast Lord in charge of the Pack but isn't sure what to make of Kate at all.
One thing in this book that I found rather amusing was that all of the male characters seemed to think that being a "leader" is synonymous with being an asshole. Kate really throws them for a loop which is fun to read.
Magic Bites is full of vivid details, has an interesting plot, and with a different twist on vampires and shifters. I knew what the bad guy was early on and figured out the who sooner than the reveal but that didn't lessen my enjoyment of this fantastic book one bit. I can't wait to read the next book!
Atlanta would be a nice place to live, if it weren’t for magic…
One moment magic dominates, and cars stall and guns fail. The next, technology takes over and the defensive spells no longer protect your house from monsters. Here skyscrapers topple under onslaught of magic; werebears and werehyenas prowl through the ruined streets; and the Masters of the Dead, necromancers driven by their thirst of knowledge and wealth, pilot blood-crazed vampires with their minds. In this world lives Kate Daniels. Kate likes her sword a little too much and has a hard time controlling her mouth. The magic in her blood makes her a target, and she spent most of her life hiding in plain sight. But when Kate’s guardian is murdered, she must choose to do nothing and remain safe or to pursue his preternatural killer. Hiding is easy, but the right choice is rarely easy…