Wednesday, 12 February 2014

Review: Gunmetal Magic by Ilona Andrews

Gunmetal Magic (Kate Daniels, #5.5)
Gunmetal Magic (Kate Daniels #5.5) by Ilona Andrews
Narrated by Renee Raudman
Publisher: Tantor Audio
Publication date: July 31st 2012
Length: 12 hrs 43 minutes
My rating: 4.5 stars

When several shapeshifters die unexpectedly at a dig site, Andrea and her former lover, Raphael Medrano, must work together to investigate the crime.

After being kicked out of the Order of the Knights of Merciful Aid, Andrea's whole existence is in shambles. She tries to put herself back together by working for Cutting Edge, a small investigative firm owned by her best friend. When several shapeshifters working for Raphael Medrano—the male alpha of the Clan Bouda, and Andrea's former lover—die unexpectedly at a dig site, Andrea is assigned to investigate. Now she must work with Raphael as her search for the killer leads into the secret underbelly of supernatural Atlanta. And dealing with her feelings for him might have to take a back seat to saving the world . . .

My Thoughts:
Ilona Andrews completely monopolized my attention until I flew through the Kate Daniels series and all the novellas the winter of 2012.  When I looked at the dates I couldn’t believe it had been so long because the series still burns pretty bright in my memory.  It’s taken me a year to get back to this series, and I might have been a little hesitant to pick this up because Gunmetal Magic stars Andrea and Rafael instead of Kate and Curran.  To be honest, I was a little worried I wouldn’t love it as much as the rest of the series, but I shouldn’t have.  Andrea and Rafael’s story was just as compelling and captivating! And I relished getting to know these two better.

Andrea is in a bad place after being forced into retirement by The Order of Merciful Aid, when they find out Andrea is a shapeshifter.  She’s still licking her wounds over that, and to make things worse is the situation with Raphael, the love of her life. At best her relationship is in limbo, at worst, things are over.  Raphael feels Andrea betrayed the shapeshifters by putting The Order first in their last epic battle. But when several shapeshifters are murdered at Raphael’s job site, these two must put aside their differences and work together because Andrea is heading the investigation.

There’s a load of emotions Andrea needs to sort through in this installment. Her sad and damaged past, her rejection by the order and her true self as not only a shapeshifter, but as a Beastkin, an oddity even to her own kind.  All of these things seemed to have come to a head since her ousting from The Order.  On top of all that is the pressure from the shapeshifters to join or move out of the area. Yet, this must take a back seat, and I love how the personal issues are interwoven with the danger and mystery of the investigation.  Witnessing Andrea process and deal with everything won her a place in my heart right next to Kate. 

While Raphael and Andrea have their share of speed bumps, their feelings are intense, and passionate! I was irritated, alternately at both of them. They are both so clearly in love with each other you know these two HAVE to work things out.  Out of everything I was most interested in how this played out, and the story did not disappoint.

Kate and Curran make appearances, and there’s enough to make you swoon at their love.  Curran, as usual is oh-so-possessive!  Kate and her sense of humor as usual had me cracking up more than a few times.  I’m really warming up to Ascanio after this installment and his mother, Martina was just what the doctor ordered for Andrea.

Reading Gunmetal Magic made me realize how much I missed these characters and the brilliance of Illona Andrew’s writing.  If you haven’t read the Kate Daniels series, you are definitely missing out.  It’s one of my all-time favorites!  

As for the audio performance, Renee Raudman’s narration in the first book was spot on for Kate, but not so much for the male characters.  That was quickly remedied (by book two) and I think she does a fabulous job with both now. 


  1. This is one of the series that I've always wanted to read! I remember while reading Night Huntress I would come across interviews that Bones and Curran did together and they were always so funny! Now that NH is over, I'm definitely planning on picking this series up! I really hope it lives up to the hype!

  2. I'm so glad you enjoyed this one, Rachel! I adored it as well and I'm really hoping that Ilona Andrews continues with this spin-off from Andrea's PoV as I'd love more of her and Raphael! ;) Fantasic review!

  3. It's one of my all-time favorite UF series, too. I adore Curran and the whole crew -- the team of Ilona Andrews rocks. And now I have the urge to reread this whole series AND Gunmetal Magic (yay Andrea!).

  4. I really loved this read and I agree with everything you've mentioned. I loved getting to know Andrea a lot more, especially when it came to her past, that was always in the back of my mind reading the Kate Daniels series.

  5. I've never read this series, but that's great you loved this latest installment. It's great when things just come back to you. I'm so bad at remembering previous books in series.

  6. Just reading your review has made me realize how much I've missed these characters Rachel! I think I stopped Kate's series around book 5, so I need to go back and get caught up on those and this one as well. I love that Andrea gets her own story and I can't wait to see how everything plays out for her and Raphael. I'm sure I'll have moments of irritation with the two of them as you did, they're both hugely stubborn, but I know I'll love it in the end:)

  7. I've heard such good things about this series, and do hope to give it a try. I am shocked the mc is named Andrea. Andrea's (in books) are always crazy best friends. (Not that I'm sensitive or anything. lol)
    Great review, Rachel!

  8. What's with that cover!? Sorry, but it doesn't seem like job well done to me. But I'm glad that author did her job though. I have heard amazing things about this series but still haven't read it. I must to that too. I'm so glad you enjoyed it and Andrea seems great :) Great review, Rachel :)

    1. I agree, Tanja, the cover is unfortunate. :( But the insides more than make up for the outsides. I really don't care much for any of the covers of the Kate Daniels series, to be honest.

  9. Girl, you are on fire with these UF/PNR audiobook series lol! I love it when my UF/PNR series are spiced with romance and a passionate one at that? Yes, please! I'm glad you got to see your previous favorites making comebacks in this one:) I haven't read anything by Andrews before, but I need to get caught up with my previously unfinished UF series and start the ones I've been dying to read since forever, but I will still look out for this one. So glad you enjoyed:)

  10. I have got to start this series this year. I think it will be next audiobook series now that I am cuaght up on The Hollows and Iron Druid.

    1. Oh, yes, Heidi! I think you'd love this series! :)

  11. I need to read this, especially since it's a paranormal and I love them. Somehow I have been completely missing out on this series oops. Good to hear that it's going strong <3 I know Andrews writing is amazing.

  12. Arrgh, I need to get caught up on this series! I still haven't read #5 yet even though I love Kate and Curran. I think there must be something seriously wrong with me.

    So glad you enjoyed this! Huge marks for so late into a series.

    Wendy @ The Midnight Garden


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