ARC Review : Chasing Magic by Stacia Kane


June 11, 2012 by thebookslayer

Chasing Magic
Stacia Kane
Release Date : June 26th, 2012
Rated : 

Okay, I know I have said ‘this book is the best so far’ starting at book 2 or 3 but I have to say it again. This book is my favorite so far! We all know and love Chessiebomb and Terrible. I mean they are my favorite couple along with Zsadist and Bella from BDB and a few more.  My point it that these books are pure awesome, right? Right. Now add…Zombies to this awesomeness and you get Chasing Magic. Yes, I said Zombies! I know I never expected it to happen in this series but Stacia Kane went there and I loved it!

Recommend : Anyone who has read the Downside Ghosts series will adore this book. If you haven’t given this series a try well do it.  You have nothing to loose and everything to gain by looking at life from the other side of town.

Let’s take a walk down Chasing Magic lane :

1. Debunking Gone Awry

Chess decides to go into the home of the family she is debunking for and handing over their sentence. They were found to be faking and therefore will be sent to jail. Now she was told that the Black Squad would be there for back up when she handed this over, but she was pulled in before they arrived. Trying put off the inevitable for her own safety an awkward silence decends.  They ask her to take a seat. This is where it all went downhill. Her phone beeps with a text saying that the calvary has arrived and so she delievers the verdict. Guilty with a nice sentence of prison for the parents and foster care for the children. However, they had bought protection from a Witch. Yes, Chess was being forced under his dark spell thanks to that stupid chair.

We all know that Chess is one bad mofo so she forces herself to chant the Banishing words to break the spell.  It was working until the witch hit her in the face. Oh no, it was on like Donkey Kong after that. Chess uses moves that Terrible taught her and packing them with her power. He didn’t know what hit him and Chess would have been done is Mrs. Darnell, one of the guilty parents, didn’t bring a gun to the fight. That lovely distraction gave the witch time to move in and the battle between them ramped up a notch. Where the hell was the Black Squad? Who knows, but Chess had to defuse the situation if she wanted to make it out alive. Dodging bullets she managed to wrestle away the gun which gave her the edge she needed to finish this fight and go home.

“The front door flew open-the Black Squad, their own guns drawn, their all-black uniforms and helmets like moving ink spots against the pale walls.
“You’re late.” 

2. Hit Man Hired

Lex being the ever caring individual that he is, and really I think he does love Chess in his own way, offers Terrible a job as His Enforcer.  This would kill two birds with one stone.  Terrible would no longer work for Bump and so they would not have to go after each other with Chess in the middle.  Also Lex would have an Enforcer which at this time he was looking at getting one due to the fact that he took over his fathers business.

Terrible has strong ties to Bump due to the fact that Bump took Terrible off the streets and raised him.  There is no way that Terrible would work for Lex even if it would make things easier for all.  Chess already knows this and tries to keep the pissing contest from escalating to beatings. Lex says his piece and Terrible declines but Lex leaves with this warning:

“Oughta give one more thing the mentions here.  You ain’t wanna come on with me … means I get on finding one who will, dig, get me a steelman of my owns.  Ain’t sure Downside got size enough for two, aye?  Rather not be fighting you causen of Tulip, but … got plans, I do, an I ain’t losing em.”

The most dangerous part about the whole situation is that Lex knows Terrible’s weakness thanks from past information.  Now Lex hires the gun and hands over the amunition to take down the man that Chessie loves.

3. Drug Rampage

It would not be a Downside Ghost book if we didn’t have any added drama of an attack on both Drug Lords.  This time our drama comes by the name of Speed. The major problem they are having with this drug is that it causes the user to go crazy, literally they are losing their minds.

“Mine friend, him taken the speed. Bangin it.  Him gone all fluffcutty, ain’t won’t leave him room, screamin them after he, screamin on ghosts in him head.”

“Him done gone out on the morn, come back with blood on he.  All wet blood. Fucked in crazy, him bein.  Talkin to he, ain’t like he, ain’t in he eyes.  The him come back, start screamin. Then go all silent on the again.”

People are dying from taking this Speed and doing all sorts of things that just aren’t normal, even for those on drugs. Highly addictive, this drug is being brought in from someone else. Bump is blaming Lex, but Lex’s side is being hit as well. So Chess is on the search for finding out why and where the Speed is coming from while Terrible is helping hunt down the dealers.

4. Zombie Control

Welcome to Stacia Kane’s Zombies. They are not the decomposing kind but  living, breathing people. She has woven the idea of Zombies with living souls that are under magic control.  I found that these zombies were quite unique from the typical view.

“His soul-if the soul is under that much control, I mean, if it’s been so strongly ordered to carry out a particular task, it’ll force the body to keep going.  Like, you know how under hypnosis, people can be injured without feeling it?”
“That’s kind of like what this is.  His soul isn’t his own, its powered by someone else, which means his body is powered by someone else.  So it doesn’t matter what happens to his body.  As long as it can move, it will.”

These types of Zombies pop-up all over the book. This one just happens to be the first sighting and also the reason that Chess knows there is more to this Drug problem than meets the eye. It was not only the speed in his system but a spell bag in his pocket that bound him.  Now the race is on to finding the puppeteer and getting rid of him before he gets rid of them.

5. Which Witch Is Which?

A Witch is running rampant making zombies to do his dirty work.  Thanks to the above highlight we know that this is a problem.  Chess is on the hunt for the witch and keeps running into dead ends right and left.

“So whoever made that spell got heself a killer ain’t can be killed, aye?  Got heself a weapon can be used anyplace.”
She nodded.
Bump raised his eyebrows, tilted his head. “Damn, then, Ladybird.  Lookin like you got some fuckin tough work coming, catchin em all.”

When does Chessie not have her hands full with working side jobs for Bump?

6. The Great Reveal and Elder Griffin’s Bonding

Elder Griffin asks Chessie to bring Terrible with her to his bonding. Chess agrees because out of everyone she really does want his approval since he is a father figure to her.  Terrible argues with her several times about how she doesn’t have to bring him and how it will look with him there. But Chess doesn’t care.

“Terrible.  You are coming.  And if anybody doesn’t like it they can fuck off.  That includes you.”
His lips twitched, “You givin me the orders now, aye?”
“Yes. So cut it out.”

Chess did manage to get Terrible to come with her.  The bonding scene was really sweet and I can only hope that Chess and Terrible will actually become bonded at some point.  Well after Elder Griffin and Keith were bonded she waited to introduce them to Terrible. Chess was relieved that Elder Griffin and Keith didn’t seem to judge Terrible when they met him but as Elder Griffin shook Terrible’s hand…

“His eyes cut to Chess, so fast she wasn’t entirely sure she’d seen it.  What was that?  It looked like a double-take; it looked like some kind of surprise or even disappointment.  Shock, really.  That was it, shock.”

We later find out that Elder Griffin felt Chessie’s magic in Terrible which lead to her telling him the story about how she saved Terrible’s life.  Since she bound him with a sigil and killed a psychopomp you can imagine how Elder Griffin took this.

“He’d seen her; he saw her clearly enough now.”

“Elder Griffin wasn’t realizing that beneath the surface she was perfect.  He was realizing she was worthless.  And he’d never be able to see anything else, at least so she figured. How could he ever forgive her?”

7. Tender Moments

I think this is my favorite part of this book.  I thought that Terrible and Chessie had the best moments in this book.  I mean really I probably cried more during reading this book than any of the others. You are warned that you might shed some tears.  I would like to share a few of these tender moments with you.

He came around to her side and opened her door for her, eyeing her up and down as she got out of the car.  His hand squeezed hers; a slight twist of his arm turned her to face him, standing not quite a foot away with his face in shadow.
“Shit.  You so fuckin pretty, Chessie.  True thing.  So … ain’t even can breathe sometimes.”

I don’t want too give too much away, but I had to put this scene in. Love it! I hope you enjoy too.

“I ain’t … Don’t know how to say it up right.  Never-Fuck, Chess.  Thought you was dead once before, you recall?  Never felt so bad in my life, not ever.  Then on the other day, thought you was gone and just … I ain’t can do it, bein without you.”
He rubbed his neck, pressed his palm into his furrowed brow and took a swipe at his eyes.  Cleared his throat, twice.  “Don’t want to.  An even if I did, ain’t can leave you down there on your alones.  How I can do that one, aye?  Leave my Chessiebomb there without me. ‘Specially knowin you scared on it”

“I don’t want to be here without you, either.  I can’t-I don’t want to be anywhere if you’re not there.”
“Naw, naw, Chessie, ain’t wanting you- Only had the thought you come down see me, ain’t meant-“
“No. No, I don’t want that. Being here without you-I’d rather be in the City.  With you.  I don’t want to be without you.  I don’t care where, I can’t do it, I don’t-“
His hands on the side of her face lifted her to her tiptoes, lifted her almost off her feet.  Maybe he actually did; she didn’t know, because she was floating, flying, his mouth on hers sending her off the roof and into that blank lonely sky above.  The sky that suddenly didn’t look so lonely, the sky that was maybe … peaceful.
“Love you, Chessie,” he murmured.  “Ain’t never … Fuckin love you, more’n anything.”

8. New Kid on the Block

Chessie gets a break in the Speed/Zombie outbreak.  Terrible was able to get a dealer to interrogate about where the drugs are coming from.  Chess had a hard time at the beginning with watching Terrible work until she paused and thought about what was truly happening.

“…she thought of living people trapped inside bodies compelled by another person, their souls crying out but unable to escape, their freedom stolen.
Flesh was a hell of a prison.”

Terrible did manage to break the dealer who happened to be from the gang Southpaws in Baltimore.  Oh yes, there is a new kid in town who wants to take all of Downside.  It is actually quite brilliant get both sides to fight each other and swoop in when the most damage has been done. I know the news just keeps getting better and better. But Chessie thinks that this type of planning is too elaborate for a regular gang someone has to be pulling their strings.

9. Sinking of the Titanic

We get to take a walk down by the seaside during this book.  Chess is able to make a link from person to person till she ran into a ship.  This ship is suppose to be the future of trade and comes attached to a man who has a daughter that is/was caught up in all the drug deals.  Not picking up an ounce of magic from the owner or his household Chess takes Terrible down to the ship to check it out.  Wouldn’t you know during this little trip they meet Mr. Witch.  Barely managing to make their escape they decide to make a plan to take down the witch and his zombies.  Lex and Terrible have to work together yet again but the tension is high with a truce only being called till the witch dies.

Things go from bad to worse before the Agneta Katina or as I like to call it the Titanic ends up sinking to the bottom with no hope of resurrection.  Trust me this last stand is intensely awesome.  The whole zombie army idea was the best I have seen in this series. Loved it.

10. Knock Out Drag Out Fight

After being beaten up and drowned Chessie drags herself over to the Fight.  Oh yes, the ending to this book was well worth it.  Hit Man and Terrible are in it to win it.  No holding back; it is kill or be killed and this fight scene will pluck your heart strings till you cry.

“He wasn’t moving, holy fuck he wasn’t-She couldn’t breathe.  It felt as if someone had taken a sledgehammer and slammed it into her chest.  Yes, he had the sigil on him, and it would hold his soul, but what if his body was too damaged to recover, what if his brain was damaged, would he want to live if he couldn’t walk, if he- Shit. A bird. 
A bird screeched over head, and she couldn’t help but look up at it, couldn’t help but see it.  A bird. A psychopomp, here to collect a soul.  Oh fuck…”

I hope you enjoyed taking this walk with me.  There are still many things in this book that I have not brought up and that  I think you will love along as well.  This book truly out shines the last 4 books. I am excited to see where Stacia Kane goes from here.

To end my review I would like to sum this book up with one word, Change.  I think for Chessie this book is all about her changing her life; seeing what needs changed and finding the will to do it.

I want to thank Netgalley for providing me with a copy of this book to review.


2 thoughts on “ARC Review : Chasing Magic by Stacia Kane

  1. Better catch up! Better catch up! I'm only on book 3 😦 I can tell I'm missing out on a lotTalk Supe

  2. Oh yeah. I loved book 3 and book 4 and I really love this book! lol They keep getting better and better. You must continue! Thanks for stopping by.

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