Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Bookish Thoughts: Magic of the Gargoyles by Rebecca Chastain

With one last twist of a filament of earth magic, I fused together the delicate seams of the quartz tube. ~ Opening of Magic of the Gargoyles


Magic of the Gargoyles by Rebecca Chastain
Mind Your Muse Books, 2014
Fantasy; 79 pgs

After having read and enjoyed Rebecca Chastain's A Fistful of Evil last year, I eagerly accepted her offer to read and review her novella, Magic of the Gargoyles. I love urban fantasy and this particular story sounded different and interesting.

Mika Stillwater is in a serious financial bind, trying to work her way into a better life. The side job she took on is on a tight deadline and the boss on her day job is strict about attendance.  When a baby gargoyle shows up in her apartment, however, she is forced to put everything on hold.  Gargoyles are a great source of magic and someone has kidnapped a nest of baby gargoyles in order to use them for dark purposes.  The gargoyle who sought Mika out sensed the earth elemental magic in her and believes only she can help.  Mika doubts she is powerful enough to find and save the baby gargoyles, but she will do her best. Hopefully it will be enough.

Despite this book being a novella (and therefore short), Rebecca Chastain does an amazing job of setting up the world in this novel, including the social hierarchy of those with magical power and skill, without sacrificing the story.  I really like Mika. She is not afraid to push the boundaries and test her limits. I also like that the author captured the struggle Mika felt between helping the gargoyles and sacrificing her own life goals. Mika's roommate, Kylie, is quite a character herself. She's a good person to have on your side.

I have not come across too many stories involving gargoyles in which they play such an integral part of the story. I really liked the way the author brought them to life, gave them personalities and told their story.

The story itself is intense from the beginning to end as Mika races against the clock to save the gargoyles. She proves herself resourceful, especially given she has little idea what she is doing at first and must learn as she goes. I thoroughly enjoyed Magic of the Gargoyles and hope this won't be the last book set in this world. I would love to see a full length novel featuring either Mika or even Kylie.

Rating:  * (Very Good)

To learn more about author Rebecca Chastain and her work, please visit the author's website. You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads

Source: I received an e-copy of this book from the author for an honest review.


© 2015, Wendy Runyon of Musings of a Bookish Kitty. All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Musings of a Bookish Kitty or Wendy's feed, be aware that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.

16 comments:

  1. Away to add this to my wish list. I don't know why but anything remotely gargoyle related holds a fascination for me so this sounds like my kind of read.

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    1. Tracy - I couldn't resist this given how it centered around gargoyles. :-)

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  2. The only book I've read in which a gargoyle played a large role is The Accidental Alchemist, but the gargoyle "made" the book. This one sounds like fun, too, even though I prefer full-length novels to novellas. Maybe the author will take note of your hope for a longer adventure!

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    1. Jenclair - I haven't read The Accidental Alchemist, but you've got me curious. This one is a fun read. Nothing too serious. The author is thinking of writing more, so that's good news!

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  3. Oh wow, gargoyles--what fun! I've never even seen a UF book around featuring them. I would definitely give this author a try. I don't read a lot of UF, but when I like it I read it (example: Patricia Briggs). I'm not into zombies and vampires, so if you come across PN or UF that are different, please keep sharing :) Thanks!

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    1. Rita - This was my first--at least in which gargoyles played a major part. I hope you like this one if you do read it.

      I really like Patricia Briggs' myself--although I am way behind in reading her books.

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  4. I enjoy urban fantasy occasionally and this sounds great. My attention was first drawn by that cover - it's great. I hope you get that longer novel with the characters you love. That would be great.

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    1. Darlene - This was a fun read! I enjoy urban fantasy quite a bit, and it's great to come across something that is different from other books out there.

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  5. I've heard about this author before but for some reason, I can't recollect where. I don't read much urban fantasy, but I love books about magic. This one sounds very enjoyable!

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    1. Athira - I am a sucker for books about magic. If I see the word magic in a title or in reference to a book, I have to know what it's about. LOL

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  6. I always find there's something about gargoyles - dark, mysterious and intriguing. This sounds like a wonderful read. I think a novella is good for me if I'm new to an author's work so I may consider picking this up.

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    1. Melody - Yes! Gargoyles are quite mysterious, aren't they? I think this is a good place to start if you want to sample the author. Novellas are good for that, I agree. I admit, I don't always jump at the chance to sample an author that way though--depends on the price of the novella.

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  7. Magic of the Gargoyles sounds like an interesting one. The gargoyle aspect is different.

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    1. Naida - Different and definitely fun in this case!

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  8. Noticed you haven't posted anything in a bit. Hope you're well (no pressure, of course, just sending you happy thoughts!). xo

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    1. Trish - My plan to take a week off turned into five. :-S Thank you for thinking of me. :-)

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