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Damsel Under Stress (Katie Chandler, Book 3) Paperback – May 1, 2007

79 customer reviews
Book 3 of 7 in the Enchanted, Inc. Series

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Frequently Bought Together

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The latest charming paranormal from Swendson (Once Upon Stilettos) stars plain New Yorker Katie Chandler, whose immunity to magic paradoxically allows her to see all of the enchanted beings at work around her. After Katie shares a kiss with powerful wizard Owen Palmer-at the office party for Magic, Spells, and Illusions, Inc., where both work-she's waiting for him to show up to their first real date when Ethelinda, an out-of-touch fairy godmother, materializes to work on Katie's romantic life. Katie waves her off dismissively, but when Owen shows up, he asks for a raincheck: cranky former friend Ari and absentminded bad-guy wizard Phelan Idris, who are in cahoots with some even badder guys, are out to bring magic to the masses. The two get to work, while, coincidentally, Katie's roommate Gemma is dating the rightful owner of the company run by Idris's backers. The loss of Katie's magic immunity and Ethelinda's old-fashioned meddling get added to the mix, and the book culminates in a fairy tale showdown. The unexpectedly poignant final pages hint at more sweetly imaginative doings to come.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

The third entry in Swendson's charming series, which began with Enchanted, Inc. (2005), finds Kate Chandler, whose immunity to magic makes her a valuable employee at the magic company where she works as Merlin's assistant, finally about to go on a date with her crush, handsome but bashful wizard Owen Palmer. While Kate waits for Owen to join her at a coffee shop, she encounters Ethelinda, a sloppy fairy claiming to be her fairy godmother, who unfortunately proves to be more hindrance than help. Matters become further complicated when Kate learns that Ari, a fairy who betrayed the company by helping their biggest rival, the wizard Idris, has escaped custody. Swendson blends chick lit and magic effortlessly, making the reader equally invested in the magical skulduggery and Kate's burgeoning romance with Owen, which includes a trip home to meet his icy foster parents. The novel culminates in an exciting ending guaranteed to leave readers thirsting for another chapter in this whimsical, clever series. Kristine Huntley
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books (May 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345492927
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345492920
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.6 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (79 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #926,559 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Shanna Swendson writes humorous contemporary fantasy for Ballantine Books and pop culture essays for BenBella Books. She's the author of Enchanted, Inc., Once Upon Stilettos, and Damsel Under Stress, and has contributed to Flirting With Pride and Prejudice, Welcome to Wisteria Lane, So Say We All and Serenity Found. When she's not writing, she's usually discussing books and television on the Internet. She's a member of Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America and Romance Writers of America. Visit her web site at

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

285 of 289 people found the following review helpful By Roxanne Pierce on July 21, 2007
Format: Paperback
In reading the reviews here for the 3rd book in the Katie Chandler Series, I saw that some of you had the same reaction that I did to the ending.

I mean, this poor girl, raised in a small town in Texas which she leaves in order to go to the Big City (Manhattan), finds out that magic exists and that she, with her magic immunity, can be an important part of that world, in the first book, Enchanted, Inc. (Katie Chandler, Book 1). She also finds out that the magic world isn't one big happy family when she gets entangled with a rogue wizard who believes that might makes right, and just might want to rule the magic world through unethical spells. And as a harbinger of things to come, Katie also meets a dreamboat orphaned wizard, Owen, who is both very powerful and very shy. Around women, anyway. In "Enchanted, Inc.", things end on a happy note as Katie takes an executive assistant job (assisting Merlin. Yes, that Merlin) with a very prestigious magic manufacturing firm (MSI, Inc.) and the rogue wizard has his plans (at least temporarily) derailed.

Things pick up pretty much where they left off in book 2, Once Upon Stilettos: A Novel (Katie Chandler Series, Book 2). Katie finds out early in the book that the rogue wizard in book 1 has recovered his footing after the events of book 1, AND he seems to have recruited someone employed by Katie's company, MSI, Inc., to help him. Because of Katie's immunity to magic, she's asked to assist in tracking down the traitor. This assignment throws her more and more into Owen's company, which Katie doesn't mind even a little bit.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Detra Fitch VINE VOICE on May 1, 2007
Format: Paperback
Kathleen "Katie" Chandler works at Magic, Spells, & Illusions, Inc. (MSI) She is immune to magic of all types. This is why Katie was sought out and hired by MSI. Being an immune means that Katie can see through any magical trick, spells, glamours, or illusions that MSI's competitors and/or business associates may try. It also means that Katie can see the magical creatures that walks among the normal human population.

Owen Palmer is the most powerful wizard at MSI, next to Merlin. (Yes, THAT Merlin. You read it correctly.) Owen and Katie have started dating. Dating is rough due to a major plot being hatched by some of MSI's rogue ex-employees. Not to mention the fact Katie is going to meet Owen's (foster) parents during the Christmas holiday, and they are pretty formal/regal people.

Enter the latest new magical creature to Katie's world, Ethelinda, her inept fairy godmother. Ethelinda means well, but it seems nothing goes as expected when she meddles.

Katie and Owen must work side-by-side to defeat the villains' plans. However, not only magical spells and rogue wizards are their problems. There are also subway-dwelling dragons to deal with and it looks as if Katie's two roommates may become targets are well.

***** YIPEE! The third installment of Katie Chandler's odd life is finally out! There is more going on with the villains in this episode. MSI seems to be dealing with some magical guerrilla warfare. Fans of this series may be a bit disappointed with the ending, but they may be assured it all means that there will be another MSI novel in the future. (Hopefully the NEAR future.) Clever, magical, and even some humor to keep you grinning all the while, DAMSEL UNDER STRESS is the perfect spell to cure your horrid Monday blues. Excellent! *****

Reviewed by Detra Fitch of Huntress Reviews.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on May 31, 2007
Format: Paperback
I anxiously awaited the release of this book after devouring Enchanted, Inc and Once Upon Stilettos and I was not disappointed. This book is equally funny and entertaining.

In this installment, Katie Chandler, Verifier for the head of MSI, Inc. is being harassed by a misguided fairy godmother while trying to help Mr. Mervyn (Merlin) and hottie Owen Palmer save the world from bad magic, while still trying to make a go with Mr. Right.

Some reviewers did not like the ending, but I think that's because there wasn't really an ending. There are supposed to be 5 books in the series, with the 4th, "Don't Hex With Texas" slated to come out in January 2008. This book does not so much end as set up the next book. There's no neat wrap up of the story, because the author knew the 4th book had been sold. While I did not necessarily like the way the book ended, I see it for what it was, the middle of the whole story. The hard part is waiting for the 4th book to see what wacky hijinx this group can get into next!

I recommend this series, if you start with Enchanted, Inc. you will have plenty of time to read all three before book 4 is released in January. Enjoy!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A Busy Reader VINE VOICE on August 22, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Damsel under Stress picks up with the action right after the ending of Book #2. Idris is still out there threatening MSI ... but what exactly is his plan this time?

Owen and Katie get some "help" in the romance department from their own fairy godmother. Katie also gets to meet Owen's foster parents, which introduces a little mystery there as well, sure to be addressed in later installments of the series.

The series isn't quite as fresh, and the problems here not quite as interesting as in the first 2, but it's still a fun read. I love seeing Katie's friendships with her roommates expand and develop, and how they are getting sucked into Katie's world.

I'm looking forward to Book #4 ... when is it coming out?
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