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Warlock for Hire by Sean Stone is the first book in a series called Arcane Inc. Eddie Lancaster is a warlock for hire and he is a self-professed and unapologetic rude and annoying guy. Unlike most with magical abilities, he sells his skills as a warlock to anyone willing to pay him. He doesn’t ask questions. However, when an attractive woman, Ashley Sheridan, comes to him with a request, he is intrigued. When she comes back, he clearly sees that she’s in trouble and he loves to solve mysteries. And so, despite her insistence that he not get involved, Eddie falls hard into the dangerous mystery and suddenly his, Ashley’s, and other peoples’ lives are at risk. He must figure out how to protect himself, Ashley and the people they love before his actions lead them to destruction.
This is generally a light and ultimately fun urban fantasy story. The characters are flat and Eddie is an immature guy, who is, as he himself professes, annoying and rude. But despite all of his failings, it is easy to root for his success even while rolling eyes at his behavior. Unfortunately, the main female character is generally a damsel in distress, which is frustrating. However, hints about the next books suggest that there will be other strong female characters as the series continues. The story is generally engaging as Eddie stumbles from one situation to the next and is balanced with action and his absurd inner monologue describing the world around him and explaining things through the fourth wall. Everything ties together neatly at the end of the story and leads into the next novel without a cliffhanger.
The narration by Hannibal Hills might well be why this book is so engaging. Without Hills' characterization of Eddie, Eddie may have easily just been too irritating and immature for me, personally. And so, I highly recommend choosing to listen to the audiobook over reading the written text, unless the reader typically enjoys characters like Eddie. The production quality was good. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a light and fast-paced urban fantasy novels.
Audiobook was provided for review by the narrator.
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4 of 4 people found this review helpful
I was given this free review copy audio book at my request and have voluntarily left this review.
Ok, so I REALLY enjoyed this one and will definitely seek out more in this series. The main character is definitely a long-lost brother to Harry Dresden! I liked the British take on Jim Butcher's world of wizards and mayhem. Well worth a listen.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
At first glance this books seems like it is going to be along similar lines to the Dresden Files, but there are a number of ways that it stands out from that series and not all of them are good.
The setting for these books being a modern Britain makes a change both for the location and the avoidance of the more common clichés when using a British setting and the supporting cast are well defined and brought to life by the author and the narrator. This book has clear rules for its system of magic and for the supernatural that are distinctive enough as well.
These are all positive ways in which this book stands out from other urban fantasy, but things are not entirely positive when it comes to the main character, he is interesting enough on the whole. However, there can be a thin line between snarky and merely annoying and in the case of the main character, he ends up on the annoying side of the line rather more often than necessary. This impression of the character is probably not helped by the author's decision to go with 4th wall breaking and have him talk to the listener directly, rather than sticking with a less overt internal monologue, which wouldn't tend to take you out of the moment as much.
The narrator gives a strong performance, both in bringing the main character to life and with helping to provide distinct characters for all of the supporting cast and I would be happy to listen to another book narrated by him in the future.
Overall, I found this to be an enjoyable book and will look forward to any future ones in the same series as the positives easily outweighed the negatives, that were mostly stylistic annoyances rather than fundamental flaws.
[I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.]
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
the end felt a bit rushed, voice actor was good, please try not to change half way through the series.
I've listened to so many of these contemporary real world spooky world titles lately and this holds its own. guys pretty deep for a young whipper snappers though the selfish stupid impulsive stuff is definitely worth exploiting while the characters young. where's the side kicks need more sidekick saving his ass.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful