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Thursday, March 4, 2010

Wild Magic by Ann Macela

Wild Magic by Ann Macela
Publisher: Medallion Press
Genre: Action/Adventure, Paranormal, Suspense/Mystery, Contemporary
Length: Full (229 pages)
Heat: Spicy
Rating: 4.5 Books
Reviewed by Water Lily

Irenee Sabel is a witch—a good witch, a sophisticated beauty, a member of Chicago’s old money elite, and a Defender of an ancient code of ethics that prohibits the indiscriminate use of power attached to magical possessions. As a Sword, Irenee is responsible for confiscating and destroying hidden relics of the sorcery realm still employed by practitioners of the craft for self-centered reasons. Her present target: an aging warlock.

While attending a gala party at Alton Finster’s Gold Coast mansion, she burglarizes his safe in search of an item of mystical mayhem. Irenee doesn’t anticipate Jim Tylan interrupting her break-in. From the moment they meet, she knows this is no ordinary man.

With an undisclosed search warrant from the Department of Justice and Homeland Security, Tylan enters Finster’s office to obtain covert financial records. There he finds a glowing handbag and an overpowering attraction to the benevolent sorceress holding the luminescent purse.

This mysterious encounter launches an escapade to expose pieces of the legendary Cataclysm Stone, an evil object of interest for the Defenders since the fifteenth century. In the heat of the chase, Irenee discovers that her real object of interest isn’t the famed stone, but the undercover agent destined to be her lover . . . her soul mate.
The world building in this story is fabulous. The premise of a secret magical society defending the rest of the world against magic isn’t unique to Macela, but the way she handles it is fascinating. The story of the magic alone would have kept me turning pages but there is so much more to this story than the world in which it happens.

Irenee Sabel, magical Sword and Defender, and DEA Agent Jim Tylan meet while executing separate warrants at Alton Finster’s mansion. Irenee is puzzled when her invisibility and “don’t notice me” spells don’t seem to work on the thief breaking into the room’s safe. Jim is shocked that a glowing woman is trying to rob his suspect. A glowing woman? Pressed for time to complete their separate missions, Irenee and Jim are forced to concentrate on the job rather than the intriguing competition. This book is like Harry Potter meets the old Robert Wagner series It Takes a Thief.

Both Irenee and Jim finish their appointed tasks, leaving with the items they’d set out to get plus a nagging interest in, attraction to, and suspicion of the other.

I was as intrigued by Jim and Irenee as they were by each other. The crimes committed by the Finster cousins span the magical and the mundane world causing Jim and Irenee to work together to end Finster’s evil corporate empire.

I raced through this book. Irenee and Jim spend so much time preparing for their battle against evil that the actual battle was a bit of a disappointment—enough to keep this book from being a “five,” but not enough to keep me from looking into other books by Ann Macela. This was a good book.