Title: The Best Kind of Magic (Windy City Magic #1)
Author: Crystal Cestari
Pub: May 2017
Genre: Fantasy, Urban Fantasy
I received an eARC via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review
The cover pulled me in and the premise sounded interesting and angst worthy. Amber Sand is no witch, but comes from a well-known family line of witches. But she’s a matchmaker, capable of seeing someone’s true match by only making eye contact.
She grudgingly goes about her life, surviving school bullies and going to her job at Windy City Magic, her mother’s magic store. But when school cutie Charlie Blitzman, son of the mayor, comes to her form help, she says “why not?”, and enters a pact that might be too much for her.
Amber is in the business of love and you would think she’d be more positive and nice. Yes, she’s sarcastic and funny, but her sass also comes with a dose of mean. Amber’s narration style is entertaining and her voice jumps off the page, but I ultimately didn’t feel like supporting Amber in any way.
I also don’t really know much about Amber. Her background, her feelings toward her mother. Her hobbies and ambitions are touched upon, but not enough to make me want to root for her.
Similarly, we don’t know much about Amber’s family and friends. Even Charlie, the love interest, doesn’t get much characterization.
The pacing is fast and works for the type of story it is. Enough mystery, with a dash of action, and romantic pining.
My favorite aspect of this story is the inclusion of supernatural, mystical beings as an every day real life occurrence. Amber interacted with vampires, goblins, fairies, and elves. The school bully is a siren!
In the end, The Best Kind of Magic is a fun read, but Amber is a rather passive character who could’ve benefited from some character development along the lines of being a better, nicer person, and having confidence in herself.
Make note, there are some language usage (like “bastards”).
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