Deadly Spells

January 23, 2015 - 2:45 pm No Comments

Deadly Spells
Author: Jaye Wells
Publisher: Orbit
Page count: 350pp
Release date: 12th Feb 2015
Reviewer: Theresa Derwin

Detective Kate Prospero of the Magic Enforcement Agency is back in her third adventure and it starts off with a bang; there was a body in the church. The fact that Prospero and partner Drew Morales have been called in, means that dirty magic is involved. When she gets to the crime scene to find the severed body, decapitated, the head turns up a clue she’d rather not have; the body belongs to an old acquaintance, Charm. Charm had stood there as a member of her coven, when Kate was a child and comforted her as she grieved the death of her Mom, who had overdosed on a potion. With the murder of Charm, Prospero has to do all she can to prevent a coven war. On top of trying to prevent a war, Kate has to deal with the tribulations of being guardian for her little sixteen year old brother and facing the challenges of parenthood.
Babylon is an intriguing city, filled with all sorts of magical crime, grime and seedy establishments, yet its inhabitants are vibrant and engaging to read. From Hot Pocket, the homeless man who sells an unmentionable part of his body for potions, to Aphrodite Johnson, the hermaphroditic religious coven leader who switches genders at the drop of a hat, to the enigmatic Mayor John Volos, Babylon’s citizens make this series of novels stand out from the crowd through its sheer diversity. And it is this wonderfully eclectic setting that makes Prospero’s investigations into magical crime so enjoyable to read. The pace keeps on in this instalment and after much violence and fighting, the end is a blessed relief. Wells also gets a chance to deal with the issue of discrimination in all its forms as she and Danny both experience ill treatment at the hands of so-called superior individuals. Wells deals with this expertly and certainly makes her feelings about prejudice in any form known to the reader.
All in all, this was a great read with a satisfying conclusion and I hope to read more of Prospero in the future.

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