Early Review: Cold Burn of Magic by Jennifer Estep

Title: Cold Burn of Magic
Author: Jennifer Estep
Series: Black Blade #1
Genre: YA Fantasy/Paranormal
Publisher: K-Teen
Publication Date:  April 28th, 2015
Page Count: 368 pages
Format: eARC
Source: From Publisher via Netgalley

There Be Monsters Here. . .

It's not as great as you'd think, living in a tourist town that's known as "the most magical place in America." Same boring high school, just twice as many monsters under the bridges and rival Families killing each other for power. 

I try to keep out of it. I've got my mom's bloodiron sword and my slightly illegal home in the basement of the municipal library. And a couple of Talents I try to keep quiet, including very light fingers and a way with a lock pick. 

But then some nasty characters bring their Family feud into my friend's pawn shop, and I have to make a call--get involved, or watch a cute guy die because I didn't. I guess I made the wrong choice, because now I'm stuck putting everything on the line for Devon Sinclair. My mom was murdered because of the Families, and it looks like I'm going to end up just like her. . . 
*The Reader's Review*
My rating: 3.5/5 stars
Cold Burn of Magic turned out to be a good read. I loved that it's action-packed, full of magic, and has one of the coolest main characters ever.  I was expecting a bit more from it, but still, pretty satisfied with the book.

This book is set in a city called Cloudburst Falls, which is known to be the most magical place in America. It is run by Families who profit from the tourists coming to check out the monsters and all the magic floating around in the streets. However, Cloudburst Falls is not a fairytale setting. It is dangerous because the monsters ARE truly terrifying monsters that lurk in the shadows, waiting for humans to come into their domains and do as they please with them. If that wasn't enough, every Family controlling this city wants to have the most control over power, magic and money  (sort of like mobs), thus a lot of envy runs between them and  a lot of backstabbing happens between them that usually end up fatally.

Now, this book focuses on Lila, who is a total bad-ass. She's smart, knows how to fight, can climb up drain pipes in no time, and she can sneak into buildings unnoticed. Best of all, she's magically talented. It's been a while since I've come across with a character as strong and as amazing as she is, and I even think it's the first time I've met a character that doesn't need to grow in personality because she's already there. I know this might sound like she's an unrealistic character, but believe me, it works. I liked her a lot.

The hardships she faces in this book are not exactly easy. She was avoiding to get tangled in the feuds between the Families of the magical city of Cloudburst Falls, but after helping save one of the members of the Sinclair Family from getting kidnapped, she is forced to take a job inside the Family as Devon Sinclair's bodyguard. She needs to protect him, discover who is after him and why, but most importantly, protect her magical talents that are rare and could make her a target for those who want greater powers.

Cold Burn of Magic is a good start to a new series full of magic, monsters, and lots and lots of action.  It was a fun read and I can see how many will come to love it because the concept of this book is creative, especially where the talents are concerned, but I also thought that a few things could have been developed better. I wished to have had more insight on Devon's character, I didn't really get to know him that well or FEEL for him like I wanted to. He's supposed to be Lila's love interest, but since nothing really happens between them, it was hard for me to root for him. I also thought the ending was a bit weak for my taste. I wanted to be blown away, but it was just... nice. 

Still, I think I will give the sequel a try when it comes out. I truly fell in love with Lila's character and I wish to see what happens to her next. 


  1. Sounds like a book I'd enjoy. Thanks for the review.