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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars fantastic twists and turns
Love it, love it! Death and mayhem! Plot thickens and twists, everyone to the rescue! Love how Eileen Wilks has woven exciting patterns and plots together in this book. Many questions from other books were answered and she added many more that are left for the next book(s). You can read this one on its own but is absolutely helps if you have read all the other books. I...
Published on November 2, 2011 by Amazon Customer

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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A Little Less Romance This Time
Lily has been able to walk the fine line between her duty as a cop and to her lupi obligations pretty well for the most part. Until now. After a zealot senator is murdered, and her boss becomes the prime suspect, she's no longer able to see things as black and white. Her eyes are opened up to all the many shades of gray, and all the trouble that comes from that. No longer...
Published on November 1, 2011 by A Book Obsession..


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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars fantastic twists and turns, November 2, 2011
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This review is from: Death Magic (World of the Lupi Book 8) (Kindle Edition)
Love it, love it! Death and mayhem! Plot thickens and twists, everyone to the rescue! Love how Eileen Wilks has woven exciting patterns and plots together in this book. Many questions from other books were answered and she added many more that are left for the next book(s). You can read this one on its own but is absolutely helps if you have read all the other books. I was sad at the death of one of my favorite characters but understood it was time for her to go. I enjoyed the love that the main and secondary characters have for each other, plus I just enjoy Islen and how he treats women. I have read all her Lupi books and have not been disappointed. It is a good book to read and all ages will enjoy it.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A Little Less Romance This Time, November 1, 2011
Lily has been able to walk the fine line between her duty as a cop and to her lupi obligations pretty well for the most part. Until now. After a zealot senator is murdered, and her boss becomes the prime suspect, she's no longer able to see things as black and white. Her eyes are opened up to all the many shades of gray, and all the trouble that comes from that. No longer can she easily choose right from wrong as everything she has ever known is now in question. She has some hard decisions ahead that she must make quickly as much more than she realizes relies on her decision, as the fate of the world is truly in the balance.

Death Magic didn't quite live up to the previous installments. Don't get me wrong, it was still quite enjoyable, but not to the extent the past few books have been. Things really seemed to drag, especially in the middle, to the point where I kept getting easily distracted by other things rather than being completely engrossed. To be honest I'm not really sure why Death Magic couldn't hold my attention. Perhaps it was because, while the danger was there it was only in an abstract sense. There was talk of a prediction of a cataclysmic event in the near future that would crumble the government and end in militant control. So while everyone was scrambling to prevent this from happening, there never was a clear sense of what they had to do to prevent it. This just didn't make the danger feel real enough, so I just wasn't able to become fully vested in their endeavors this time around.

In the past the books in this series have been every bit as much about romance between the different couples as it was the overall plot and series arc. However, in Death Magic there was hardly any focus on romance at, which I really missed. Yes, Lily and Rule were front and center this time around, but the attention really wasn't on them as a couple, but more on everything else. Perhaps it isn't even the romance per se that I was missing, but the emotion that comes with it. Rule and Lily are both characters that keep themselves very closed off, except with each other. So by not having them really interacting a lot in private, we missed out on a good deal of emotion, which could be another reason I felt so detached this time around. That being said, there was one emotion that came across plain and clear from Rule, anger. For a good portion of this book I had thought he would spontaneously combust, but at least he was able to learn something from that anger in the end, making for some very good character growth.

While I cannot say that Death Magic was my favorite installment of the series, I'm still glad I read it. Several pressing issues from previous books have been dealt with, as well as countless more developments for the future. The war is only going to get uglier from here with losses on both sides. Here's hoping it will be the other side that gets hit worst in the end. I'll be looking forward to the next book to see where things are heading.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Slow to start but the 'Magic' is still there, November 23, 2011
The time for subtlety is passed and the enemy of the Lupi escalates from covert skirmishes to all out public war and if key players do not move into different roles - for Lily, one that goes against who she 'is' - the losses will be staggering.

As others have mentioned the first half of the book was slow (even slower for those of us who broke down and read the excerpt at the end of Blood Magic, since we covered the same ground twice) and much of what went down in that part of the book ended up being more to set the stage for the rest of the series than setup for the rest of the book. But even so, I still really liked Death Magic. Even with all of the setup there was still a good amount of action in the book and a really great twist - which was also a great relief for me since I was really anxious about the fate of a one of the characters that has been around since the beginning.

While the action was good, I loved how Wilks puts her cast through the ringer a bit this time. I love Rule - he is actually one of my favorite leading men. It was good to watch him struggle through with his crisis of faith -when a goddess is pulling your strings and putting the one you love in danger it is hard not to feel a bit resentful after all - and I really liked that it is Lily, who hasn't had that same unshakable core of belief to draw on, who says the right things to help him through.

Other things that I loved: Cullen in all of his gorgeous sorcerous geekiness, the little bit of Isen ( what was here was good but more would have been even better), getting to meet Ruben's wife and to get a glimpse of the feelings that he has for her, dragons, and the Leidolph healer.

Nits: greedy fan that I am I missed Grandmother and would have like to see just a bit of Benedict and Arjenie (but they do have their own short story in Tied with a Bow, so I guess that's a consolation prize). And I would have liked more of Lily's brilliance put to use in unraveling the plot - normally it is her unique clarity that unlocks the mystery, this time though she gets a lot of help with the final answers.

So, with things heating up with 'she who must not be named' and the Lady reaching out and touching lots of someones I am wondering how many books are left, seems like there can't be too many more. But I'll take as many as I can get, because each time I finish one Wilks' books, Lupi fan girl that I am, I find myself wishing that my TBR pile wasn't so high - I'd love to go back and do a reread of the series, it's just that good.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The war has begun, November 6, 2011
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Lily, a former homicide cop now working in the Magical Crimes Division of the FBI, struggles with the idea of a Shadow Unit created to work outside the law in order to prevent the worldwide disasters her pre-cog boss, Ruben, has been seeing. She understands that it's necessary and will keep her mouth shut, but she can't be part of it even when finding out that her lupi fiancé, Rule is already involved.

But she changes her mind after Ruben is accused of killing a senator, a vocal member of Human's First who would like to shut down the MCD and wipe out all non-humans and everyone with a Gift. Lily also still carries the Wythe mantle and they've yet to meet someone The Lady wants to pass it along to. It's healing Lily's arm but causing her other serious problems. And they still haven't identified the FBI insider who tried to kill Ruben.

The war has started and the opposing side has a plan to turn the tide with one fell swoop using very dark and devious means to prove to the growing tide of Humans First followers that their thoughts and fears are warranted.

Something happens to a character that shocked me, but I like the idea of it and can't wait to see how it's used in the future. A few questions from prior books get answers and by the end of the story Lily picks up a different type of ally. We also get to meet a troop of brownies--not the Girl Scout type. I hope we get to see more of them as they add a level of lightness to the story.

I've enjoyed each of the books in this series, but it really hit me in the middle of this one just how good the author is at world building. That's not something I think about when reading; things either seem to make sense or they don't. But the detail given in regards to how magic works seems so believable that it's just easy to accept as something real. If you're more interested in seeing the story move along without understanding why something will or won't work or how some conclusions are arrived at, there are a few parts that might drag for you.

It's still five months away from Rule and Lily's wedding. There's barely any time for them to sleep much less make love, so that's not, and hasn't been a big part of the story. Yet their love is evident by their words, looks and touches and that aspect leaves me somewhat with the feel of a Happily Ever After even though his isn't a romance book, nor (thankfully) is it the end.

I'd rate this 4.5 stars.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Picks up after a slow start, December 14, 2011
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Kindle Customer (Northeast Florida) - See all my reviews
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I've enjoyed all of Eileen Wilks' Lupi series, some more than others, and her latest Death Magic (IMO) ultimately ends up being a very enjoyable read in the series. Unfortunately Death Magic has a very slow start and by the time I had reached chapter 9 I was seriously thinking of putting the book down as too boring. The first 8 chapters were tedious with back story & the usual Lilly Yu angst and her even darker than usual musings on the future (lack thereof). Lilly has no sense of humor at all and whatever liveliness of character & mind that she had in the earlier Lupi books has been replaced with a leaden seriousness that quickly becomes depressive. Even Rule's teasing about her mother's wedding plans falls flat for Lilly.

So I flipped to the end to read the last chapter and when I realized that my favorite Lupi character Cullen Seaborne had a significant secondary role, I decided to give the book another chance. Frankly I was curious what was going on in Cullen & Cynna's life after the birth of their baby girl (a lupus); so I did a Kindle word search on Cynna's name (I absolutely love her as a character and the books where she is the main character are my favorites in the series) and then I paged back to the first mention of her name when Cullen arrives and is showing Lilly his baby pictures. I recommenced reading from there. I was disappointed that Cynna is only a mention, but the story telling did pick up and all the tedious back story & angst were now at a minimum. Wilks introduces several new secondary characters, some of whom I will like to know better in future books in the series. I particularly liked Deborah the wife of Rubin (head of FBI's magical unit).

Wilks comes up with a very good plot twist that resolves Rubin's health issues but she also introduces a ghost who has decided to haunt Lilly and I think that could become tedious (particulary if Wilks continues to use him to advance the plot with Deus ex Machina type clues & hints solving whatever the case du jour may be.)

Ultimately I give 4 stars for a book that was periously close to being a 2/3 star for me. Fans of the Lupi series will definately want to read this one but newcomers need to steer clear despite all the back story that I found so tedious (or maybe *because* of the back story that I found so tedious.) New readers should start with the older books in the series and not rely on the backstory in Death Magic, else they will be forever put off (IMO).

p.s. it seems Wilks has settled on Lilly as her detective main character for all future books. I hope I'm wrong because I really liked the series better when she was moving around the Lupus universe focusing on different folks as protagonists.

And finally, some readers may be put off by Wilks heavy handed treatment of religious evangelicals as the bad guys in this series. With the exception of the quasi religion Wicca and Father Michael (who Wilks hastens to explain is not Irish - and I wondered what the heck was that about?!?), regligious folks are always protrayed as bigots.

And I do have a quibble with Wilks' insistence of bad mouthing the South (subtly and sometime not so subtly). The Carolinas are the location of the rube inflexible Leidolf clan (villains in earlier books). The core "Humans First" crowd seem to be mainly from the Carolinas. And in Death Magic Rubin (a precog) "sees" 5 different catastrophe scenarios for the US and in all of them the South descends into anarchy while other regions of the country have a better chance (if you don't count the west coast being nuked :). The thing is, the west coast is obliterated by outside events, but the South *descends* into anarchy. When I read that I stopped reading and thought WTF??? It gets boring, it really does.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful fast paced, intelligent, complex UF novel. Loved it!, December 1, 2011
Not only have I heard of Eileen Wilks' World of the Lupi UF series, I have also read the prequel and first book, but when I was asked to review Death Magic I was a bit worried (terrified would do more justice to what I felt). Why? Because jumping into a story with the 8th book without having any prior knowledge what took place in the previous 7 novels was more than a bit daunting. But I can tell you that despite starting Death Magic without practically any prior knowledge of the world, I still enjoyed the story, the characters and the worldbuilding a lot. Sure there were moments where I was a bit lost or confused, but these blank spots didn't hinder much my appreciation and enjoyment of the novel.

The mystery of the story is complex and multilayered, Death Magic combines elements of police procedural, urban fantasy and bits or paranormal romance novels. The unique worldbuilding of the World of the Lupi series is colourful and incredibly rich: besides werewolves, shifters, witches there are also dragons, elementals, brownies, and a lot of different magically gifted people. Reading about their powers and traditions was more than interesting, Eileen Wilks opened a whole new world to me.

"His mental voice was different from Sam's - cool and precise, yes, but without the razorlike quality, and with a whiff of flavor.It was like the difference between Arctic ice and a snow cone dribbled with a few drops of Bahama Mama."

Sadly having jumped into the series with Death Magic, I have no idea about everything Rule and Lily have gone through, all the hardships and struggles they had to surmount to get where they are in their relationship in Death Magic, but the quiet intensity of Rule's love and Lily's confident and calm sense of security and affection in their love were soothing and heartwarming. Death Magic is more focused on the mystery storyline and the action than the romance between Rule and Lily but we still got some wonderfully intense and heart-squeezing scenes:

"Look. I get that you've been worried about me, but -""
"Do you?" In two quick paces he was in front of her, his eyes blazing. He seized her arms. "Do you really have any idea? Because worried is a thin and puny word that would snap like a twig beneath the weight of my feelings."

"You don't know who you are if you aren't first a cop. I knew that, but I didn't ..." He sifted her hair with his fingers as if he might find words there. "I didn't understand in my gut. Now I do. I learned that I'm not ... I'm no longer the Lady's first. I still serve her, but she's not first. If I must choose between you and her -"
"Don't. Don't try to choose."
He placed his hand over hers. "Too late. I already have."

Besides Rule and Lily, Eileen Wilks features a vast cast of supporting characters, whom seasoned readers may know from pervious books. My personal favourite was Cullen, who is simply adorable with his know it all, cocky attitude :-)

The writing was wonderful. Detailed and deep to convey emotions, yet fluent enough not to weigh down the break-neck pace of the story. I also appreciated how Eileen Wilks lightened the tension with bits of humour peppered into the story.

Rule spoke. "What book?"
"Ars Magicka. A grimoire. By Eberhardus Czypsser."
"Gesundheit," Lily said.

Rule and Lily when talking about their (werewolf) wedding plans:

"You are so full of s***," But she started laughing. "Doves, sure. Our guests would love some flying hors d'oeuvres. Maybe we should have some cute little bunnies for them to chase after the ceremony instead of cake, sending our message of fuzzy, yummy love to flesh eaters everwhere."

Verdict: Death Magic was a fantastic story full of excitement, thrill and break neck action. I loved Eileen Wilks' extremely well developed worldbuilding and her fully fleshed out and varied characters, her fluent and engaging writing style made the story a quick read I gobbled up in no time. If you are new to the series you will still enjoy Death Magic, but I would advise you to read the books in order because that would enhance your enjoyment of the small details and plot/character development even more.

The World of the Lupi series is a fantastic urban fantasy series, one that all fans of the genre will unequivocally enjoy!

Plot: 8/10
Characters: 8/10
Writing: 9/10
Ending: 9/10
Cover: 8/10 - vibrant and definitely leaves an impression. Suits the story well, even if I picture Lily to be much more petite and fragile.

Wonderful fast paced, intelligent, complex UF novel. Loved it!

I give Death Magic 4.5 stars!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excitement and Tension Fill This One, November 27, 2011
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This was another exciting episode in the World of the Lupi series. Lily and Rule are in Washington, DC to testify before Congress. One of the senators who is extremely anti-magic is murdered and, when Lily investigates, she finds out he was killed with death magic. Also, it looks like it was her boss Ruben Brooks who killed him. It is obviously a frame-up but it is very well-constructed.

Lily and Rule have to find out who is using the death magic. They also have to find a new home for the Wythe mantle which is being carried by Lily even though she is not lupi and can't use it. However, the mantle is doing bad things to Lily. While it is healing the arm muscles that were hurt in the previous book, it is also sending out tendrils into her brain and causing mini-strokes (which it is also healing). This causes major problems for Rule since he is the one who encouraged her to take the mantle. It is damaging his trust in the Lady that all the lupi have vowed to support. The lupi are the earthly weapon of the Lady who is an Old One and who is battling another Old One that the lupi call the Great Bitch. Neither can work directly in the human realm but both can find agents. The Lady has the lupi. Thus far they have been able to thwart the attempts of the Great Bitch's agents in their attempt to bring chaos to the human realm.

Those who oppose the attempts of the Great Bitch have formed a secret unit. Lily's FBI boss is the leader, Rule is second in command. But when Lily is asked to join, she can't. Her image of herself is as a cop and she can't see herself operating without the bounds of the law. But when Lily is also framed for a crime and is in danger of losing her job, she knows that she has to become part of this secret unit to stop that agents of the Great Bitch and to get her life back.

This story was exciting and entertaining. I highly recommend this series to lovers of urban fantasy. Lily is a wonderfully strong female character and Rule is a perfect romantic hero - strong, stubborn, supportive, and hotter than hot.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars deep urban fantasy, November 1, 2011
Separate assassination attempts on FBI Agent Lily Yu and her Magical Crimes Division chief Ruben Brooks (see Blood Challenge) have both believing a traitor onside the agency wants them dead. Ruben decides the brutal combat between the Old Ones with no regard to collateral damage to human and supernatural beings needs a special solution. He establishes a top secret shadow force of various trusted individuals from different species. Whereas Lily declines a position in this unit because of her values that insist the government needs to adhere to the law regardless of circumstance, her Lupe fiancé Rule Turner accepts as his people are in mortal combat with an ancient adversary.

Someone using Death Magic assassinates US Senator Bixton who was a supporter of the volatile Humans First movement. The prime suspect in the high visible murder is Ruben. Lily investigates while wondering if her boss stepped outside the law to eliminate a senatorial threat. That doubt changes when the killer assaults Lily, which makes her realize the new cell is the only hope to prevent something big and ugly from happening.

The latest Lupi FBI urban fantasy is an entertaining entry in which the heroine's internal ethical battle brings a strong morality element involving human (and paranormal) rights at a time in which torture and assassination are acceptable practices. The story line is fast-paced as Lily begins to understand why Rule did not blink when offered the opportunity to join a cell working above the law. With plenty of action and a deep look at morality, readers will appreciate visiting Wilks' wonderful world.

Harriet Klausner
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great addition to the series, November 3, 2011
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Amy Henley (VA, United States) - See all my reviews
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I've been reading this series from the very first book and have loved every one of them. I don't want to give too much away in the plot because there are a few surprises, but it all boils down to same as usual - Lily defeats the bad guys with a little help from her friends. All the good guys are there - Lily, Rule, Cullen, Ruben, Isen and some new characters both good and bad. The only con is I don't think the bad guys are very well developed. They kind of run together or don't really seem to matter as characters - more as foils to develop the plot and get to the finale. Also, Friar and the Great B---are just specters overshadowing everything. I enjoyed reading it, and did so in one day, so it is a fast read. I didn't want to put it down. I liked how the ends all tied up at the end, but leaves room for future books in the series. If you like her previous books, I think you will enjoy this one too. If you are new to the series, I would start from the beginning because they aren't really stand alone books, and you would miss out on some great books.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Urban Fantasy!, February 11, 2012
I really like this urban fantasy series. While the core of the stories are about humans and werewolves, the universe works because Wilks has developed a sophisticated magic system which forms the Newtonian physics of her universe. It provides for demons, dragons, the fey court and potentially dozens of other magical creatures seamlessly coming together in the novels. There is always a good mystery and plenty of action, and the romances--especially the maturing romances--are depicted with great skill. My only complaint, and it seriously colored this latest novel for me, is that Wilks has an aversion against letting any of her heroes be involved in a bad relationship. It's a small thing, but I found it jarring when a rather unpleasant woman in a previous novel turned into a simperingly sweet member of the cast in this one just because she's married to an increasingly important character. But that won't stop me from buying the next book in the series the first day it becomes available.
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