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Dime Store Magic (Women of the Otherworld) Mass Market Paperback – April 27, 2004
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From Publishers Weekly
Unlike the Wizard of Oz, the witches in this sexy supernatural romance, including the murdered mother of 23-year-old heroine Paige Winterbourne, are not evil entities inhabiting a fairy tale land. They're an ages-old race of women so frightened by the possibility of exposure and endangerment that they've allowed their magical powers to atrophy. When Paige inherits her mom's mantle as Coven leader, however, she also inherits caretaking responsibility of Savannah Levine, an extremely gifted but rebellious 13-year-old who possesses her dead mother's penchant for dark magic-and for attracting the unwanted attention of darker magical beings (including Savannah's long-lost sorcerer father). The only person Paige can depend on is the one person she doesn't want to associate with: Lucas Cortez, an endearingly nerdy lawyer/sorcerer ("It was a sad world when a witch had to rely on a work-starved sorcerer for help"). As in Armstrong's debut novel Bitten, this story's special strength lies in its seamless incorporation of the supernatural into the real world. A convincing small-town setting, clever contemporary dialogue, compelling characterizations and a touch of cool humor make the tale's occasional vivid violence palatable and its fantasy elements both gripping and believable.
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"A convincing small-town setting, clever contemporary dialogue, compelling characterizations and a touch of cool humor .... This story’s special strength lies in its seamless incorporation of the supernatural into the real world."—Publishers Weekly
Top customer reviews
I enjoyed watching Paige's life slowly spiral down hill (I'm not a sadist, I just thought the drama was funny). Nothing seemed to go right and everyone was pretty much against her. Add a reckless and powerful teenager into the mix, and things only get worse. Savannah was an interesting character. Naive, audacious, but trying to be good despite her history and familial connections. She was also the main reason for Paige's new disastrous life. Leah, supposedly Savannah's father, wants full custody of his daughter, but Paige knows something is wrong with him. And she's right. Leah and his many underlings were pretty frightening. They could do real damage with just one phone call or flick of a finger. I was anxious most of the time to see how Paige was going to win against such an evil, powerful opponent.
Watching Paige and Lucas butt heads was pretty fun. I like how Lucas just inserts himself into Paige's life with little explanation. Their back and forth and constant bickering was hilarious. I found their relationship adorable overall.
Armstrong really went all out with the history and background of magic, witches, and sorcery. I always find an author's unique version of supernatural things captivating to read. I think Armstrong did a good job with her rich and descriptive writing. Her world building was impeccable and easily digested. She doesn't make things more difficult than they have to be. She knows what she's doing.
The first half of the book barely held my attention. Getting to the real action and supernatural happenings took forever. I don't care for reading about mundane, everyday proceedings. I found myself able to put the book down very easily.
Paige was a somewhat weak character. She was naive, rude, and annoying. I didn't care much for what happened to her. Savannah may have been a brat, but at least she had the excuse of being thirteen years old.
We get one sex scene that is more about foreplay than actual intercourse. The romance between Paige and Lucas was slow building but lacked the passion I was hoping for.
If it wasn't for Armstrong's amazing first two books, Bitten and Stolen, maybe I would have liked this book more. But when comparing them to Dime Store Magic, this book just didn't hit the mark. But I can't deny the book got substantially better halfway through. Recommended for those who want to continue this series and need to be introduced to Savannah to understand the rest of the series.
"Mind if I give you hiccups?" I asked Cortez.
"Hiccups. I need to give you a case of hiccups. Is that okay?"
"I can't say I've ever had a girl offer to give me that."
Once again, Armstrong creates a very convincing world of witches and sorcerers, Covens and Cabals, spells and rituals. I thought the hierarchies, the structures of the societies of the two races, even politics and history were very well thought out and written, and yet for some reason I wasn't taken by this new world as much as I was by the werewolf world in "Bitten" and "Stolen." Maybe it has something to do with overwhelming presence of elderly women and lack of strong sexy men, maybe I prefer violent cut-throat world of werewolves more, or maybe witches are simply not my thing.
The romance part also lacked. Paige's love interest Lucas is a nice enough guy, but nothing more. He is rather uptight, proper, and a bit goody-goody for my taste. This book certainly missed the passion and drama of Clay/Elena relationship. Plus, the entire romance part was very secondary to the main story line and introduced almost as an afterthought.
I will continue reading the series, maybe I will warm up to Paige and Lucas in the next book about them. Also, I am curious to see what will come out of Savannah's character. Right now she is one spoiled and snarky 13-year old. I think she will make a great protagonist in the future books (I heard she'll narrate books 11 and 12 of the series).
Most recent customer reviews
I want to read all of her books. She has exciting stories. Keep them coming please and thanks.
Dime Store Magic is the third in Armstrong’s Women of the Otherworld series, but it stands alone.Read more