Industrial Magic by Kelley Armstrong

Industrial Magic is the fourth book in Kelley Armstrong’s “Women of the Otherworld” series, and continues the story of Paige Winterbourne, her partner Lucas, and ward Savannah from book 3, “Dime Store Magic.” This review WILL CONTAIN SPOILERS from “Dime Store Magic.” Consider yourself warned.

This is the first book in the Women of the Otherworld series that I have really enjoyed. The first three books were alright…obviously, or I would not have continued reading the series. The first two books followed a different character who I didn’t particularly like. Paige though, the star of this book and the one before it, I liked a lot.

Paige Winterbourne is a witch. Her mother was also a witch and leader of the witch’s Coven in Boston. When Paige’s mother dies a very early death, leadership of the Coven passes to Paige when she is just 22-years-old. After much drama, and making what she feels are  the best choices in a series of very bad situations, Paige is thrown out of the Coven, and her home in Boston. She moves to Portland, Oregon with her ward Savannah, daughter of a dark witch, and one of the reasons she was removed from the Coven, and her boyfriend Lucas, sorceror and son of the leader/CEO of the most powerful Cabal in the world, who wants nothing more than to destroy everything the Cabal stands for.

At the opening of “Industrial Magic,” Paige is trying to form a new Coven, one geared towards younger witches in the 21st-century. Due to her past and the company she keeps, she is having little success, and she and Lucas are struggling to survive. Enter Lucas’s father, who asks Lucas and Paige for help finding a killer who is hunting the children of Cabal members. Lucas and Paige would desperately prefer to avoid Lucas’s father at all costs, since he is the leader of the vicious and evil Cortez Cabal…but when Paige finds out the most recent victim was a witch, she can’t help but join in the investigation for the killer. It becomes much more difficult than simple detective work–eventually involving an eccentric necromancer who makes a living communicating with the dead on TV, a very old vampire who hates Paige, and a clairvoyant who has gone insane from working for the Cabal.

I really enjoyed this novel. It spent time developing the relationship between Paige and Lucas, which I found interesting. I also enjoyed learning more about Paige. She is a well-written heroine. While she knows how to stick up for herself, and often defies authority (like many female heroines in fantasy novels) she wasn’t annoying about it. She never really listens to directions, but she wasn’t bitchy and she does occasionally take advice from friends, and her boyfriend Lucas. I was able to connect with her and enjoyed seeing the novel from her point of view. We also got to learn more about Cabals, which we didn’t  get too much information about in the previous book. Elena, Clayton, and Jeremy (from the first two Women of the Otherworld books) also made appearances, and I discovered I liked Elena better when I wasn’t in her head. The new character, Jaime Vegas, was also great. She first appears like your typical tv-star-rich-blonde, but turns out to have a much deeper character and becomes more important to the story than you originally think. The plot moved quickly, but was easy to follow and made sense.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book and I am looking forward to reading more about Paige and Lucas in the next installments.

Happy reading,

-Branwen

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