Anyone who has asked me anything about books, and especially Urban Fantasy, knows that my all-time, hands-down favorite series is Kate Daniels by Ilona Andrews. The tenth and final book in the series is out this month if you’re interested in a complete series that will knock your socks off.
Iron and Magic is a spin-off book that will overlap with the ending of the Kate Daniels Series. Even if you’re not interested in an (epic) ten book binge, Iron and Magic is a standalone first novel. It will be a three book series about Hugh D’Ambray – the guy we learned to hate alongside Kate Daniels.
If you’ve read the Kate Daniel’s series, you’ll know what a colossal bad guy Hugh is, and somehow, magically, by the end of this book I ended up liking him as a character (he’s still an ass). The book begins after Roland (a warlock with god-like powers– and Kate’s father) cuts off D’Ambray and his army of Iron Dogs. The former Preceptor and his men are being hunted and killed by a lethal faction within Roland’s empire, and Hugh has to decide what he wants more – the release of death or the return of his honor.
Hugh’s journey leaves you rooting for him and his Iron Dogs. Although he doesn’t change so much to become a different character, you begin to see why he’s done everything he’s done – and how Roland has molded him into the bad guy we love to hate. He doesn’t lose any of his ‘assholey-ness’ but as he channels all his bitter experience and determination into saving his Iron Dogs, something truly magic happened. I started to like him.
To save his Iron Dog’s Hugh has to find a home base and an alliance stronger than all the broken promises of his past under Roland.
Elara, the White Lady, is a magically-powerful being whose mysterious and dangerous magic has driven her people from their homes time and time again. They’ve finally found a home of their own, a defensible castle with everything they need. Their coven is thriving. But powerful enemies are breathing down their necks, and Elara needs an army to defend their new home. One that won’t cut and run at the first sign of big trouble.
A bargain is struck, and in the time-tested tradition of binding contracts, Elara and Hugh agree to get married. But the alliance can’t be just a contract – breakable under pressure -their enemies have to believe their commitment is permanent. Elara holds her own against Hugh in personality and magic, and their banter is truly laugh out loud funny.
Neither likes the other, and both are too strong-willed to bend, but they agree to fake it until they make it – or die trying.
Speaking of Ilona Andrews: