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Armed & Magical (Raine Benares, Book 2) Mass Market Paperback – April 29, 2008


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Armed & Magical (Raine Benares, Book 2) + The Trouble with Demons (Raine Benares, Book 3) + Bewitched & Betrayed (Raine Benares, Book 4)
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Product Details

  • Series: Raine Benares (Book 2)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Ace; 1ST edition (April 29, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0441015875
  • ISBN-13: 978-0441015870
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 4.2 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (45 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #227,057 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Lisa Shearin currently works as the editor at an advertising agency. She has been a magazine editor and writer of corporate marketing materials of every description. Lisa enjoys singing, reading, writing novels, and fencing (foil and epee, as well as rapier & dagger dueling). She lives in North Carolina with her husband, two cats, two spoiled-rotten retired racing greyhounds, and a Jack Russell terrier who rules them all.

More About the Author

Contrary to popular belief, most authors do have day jobs just like everyone else. Lisa's happily freelancing for an advertising agency as an editor and proofreader. In her previous corporate life, she's been a magazine editor, advertising copywriter, and writer of corporate marketing materials of every description.

Lisa is the national bestselling author of The Raine Benares novels, a series of six comedic fantasy adventures. Her next series--The SPI Files--is an urban fantasy that's been described as Stephanie Plum meets Men in Black. It will debut on December 31, 2013.

Lisa is a voracious collector of fountain pens both vintage and modern. She lives in North Carolina with her husband, two spoiled-rotten retired racing greyhounds, and a Jack Russell Terrier who rules them all.

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
5 star
32
4 star
9
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4
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See all 45 customer reviews
A fun and magical story with engaging characters and an an interesting premise.
Amazon Customer
Raine the Invincible - I loved Raine's character - she is loyal, fierce, and utterly sarcastic.
Janna K.
Overall however a wonderful book, and I am eagerly looking forward to the next in the series.
HHK

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

21 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Janna K. on May 8, 2008
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I just finished reading Armed & Magical, the new installment in the adventures of Raine Benares and I absolutely loved this book! Not a lot of time has passed since events of the last book, and Raine is now on the island of Mid in the care of Mychael, who is a paladin to the Conclave Guardians. She is still connected to Saghred, which is being held in the shielded containment rooms, and is determined to find a way to part with the soul sucking rock without parting with her own life. Even though she left her homeland for the time being, her troubles followed her all the way to Mid, acquiring new ones on the way. As more people learn that Saghred resurfaced after nine hundred years and about Raine's link to it, more fractions are now competing for its power. The political situation on Mid is delicately balanced and any shift in the power scale can mean death and imprisonment to Raine and her friends, especially the young and talented Piaras.

That pretty much sums up the content of the book without giving much away. As I mentioned before, I enjoyed this book quite a bit, but I did have a couple of issues with it. Therefore I decided to add pros and cons to my review.

Pros:
1. World building - The author created a very unique alternate universe with a few urban fantasy additions. The writing style had a perfect balance of world building and action, therefore I was rarely bored with too much narrative about the scenery. The antagonistic relationship between Elves and Goblins and their physical differences were well written, not to mention subcategories of mages and humans to add to the mix. Overall, this world was beautifully imagined and realized, which in my opinion very few fantasy writers are able to accomplish.
2.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By SciFiChick VINE VOICE on April 30, 2008
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Sorceress Raine Benares excels at finding missing items and people. But after being bound to a stone that captures souls, Raine desperately wants to be free to live a normal life. The stone has amplified her powers, but she'd gladly give it up. When students begin disappearing at the school she is visiting, Raine realizes that she is the best person to find them. But Raine is a target as well.

Told from a first person narrative, Armed and Magical has a distinct feel of urban fantasy but is not set in modern times. Raine is an elf, in a land of magic where elves, humans and goblins reside. She is a fun and spirited character, with a couple love interests that never seem to go past the flirtation stage.

With a thread of mystery throughout the story, villains and suspicious characters abound. Not having read the first installment was not a problem either. It was easy to jump into the story, and the characters were well explained. A nice break from the darker high fantasy novels, Armed and Magical is an amusing tale of magic and adventure. One I thoroughly enjoyed.
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Cees Jan Mol on May 31, 2008
Format: Mass Market Paperback
He is charming, hellishly attractive and smoking. And there's the other one: tall, blond, warm and reliable. The one's a cold-blooded dark mage turned rogue. The other one the paragorn of virtue. And you're the girl in the middle, unable to decide which one to taste a little more of...

Raine is a character interestingly undecided and struggling. At the same time, she's trying to fend off a really evil dark magic that has her in its clutches, a secret goblin elite shaman troupe, nasty bureaucratic elves, elves warped into bureaucratic naivité. And she only wants to live... And protect her friends.

Although this book is about white and black and mostly the grey in the middle, it's also about a world in which magic is a threat as much as a miracle. It tastes like a young wine, with a lot of delight, color and sparkle. It's a whirlwind adventure that leaves you wanting for more. More! More!

You'd never think this was a sequel. It's fast-paced, engaging and imaginative and wondefully alive. Hopefully there's much more to come!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Amy C on May 24, 2009
Format: Mass Market Paperback
THis is your generic tough-gurl fantasy stuff. Raine is a likeable enough heroine, fighting all the usual baddies and trying to sort out her love-life at the same time. Her narration is snappy, if a bit out of synch with the setting (she asks for a "user's manual" for the stone she is linked with at one point, which just didn't fit the genre setting). It's a quick read, a bit boring in the middle, while the author rather belabors the point about spellsingers and political maneuvering. It's just your standard fantasy stuff--no real original elements or new directions. You don't put this book down and go "man, that was GREAT!" to yourself at the end.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By P. Nevitt on April 29, 2008
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Armed and Magical picks up almost right where Magic Lost, Trouble Found left off. It's a week later and Raine is on the Isle of Mid with her cousin, Phaelan ("He was a pirate. Excuse me, a seafaring businessman."), and the leader of the Conclave Guardians, Mychael ("an enigma, wrapped in a riddle, coated in yum"). Raine's young friend Piaras is also there as a student. He is the most powerful young spellsinger to come along in decades.

I don't know what to make of Piaras. He's way too powerful to be a sidekick. He gives Raine some serious competition power-wise, even with her Saghred-induced "resume enhancement". I like being befuddled like this. I keep wondering if before the series is over, Raine might find herself facing Piaras. It could be heart-wrenching. However, this is all idle speculation. I have no insider knowledge!

As the blurb suggests, the protective Raine finds herself hunting down some missing students. She makes a trip to the library and makes her library-use roll big-time. She finds a tiny, almost unimportant-looking volume that turns out to be a journal of sorts, and the author is mighty interesting. Naturally, getting out of the library with the book is a lot more interesting than going in. Raine really can't go anywhere without running into excitement.

Remember Sarad Nukpana, the power-mad sorcerer who tried to get his hands on the Saghred in the first book? Well, now that he's safely nestled inside the Saghred, they've become bosom buddies. And he's anything but neutralized.

In this novel, Raine is a bit darker and a bit snarkier. She's still every bit as protective over those younger and/or weaker than she, so you still gotta love her. Still, the novel reads, very subtly, as if the Saghred is affecting her personality.
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