I found this book, and was excited because I thought it was just a fantasy book. Then after reading about a page, I realized it was a historical fantasy book. Mind = blown.
Jessamin, our heroine, moves to the country of Albion to attend college. She works at a hotel while she struggles to survive and assure her mother that she’s doing just fine on her own. One night, she runs into our hero, Finn, and things only get awesome from there. Finn’s a magician, but can use real magic to transport, heal, and fight against evil. Jessamin’s been marked though by the mysterious and dangerous Lord Downpike, and is in real danger that not even Finn can save her from.
The magic system alone was enough to blow my mind. Instead of super powers that just magically shoot out of his hands, Finn and Lord Downpike memorize spells and store power within different objects (canes, birds, etc). Some of the magicians are more powerful than others, but that doesn’t really slow down the plot. I also really liked how the author explained where all the magic came from (it’s a blood thing, but even they don’t completely understand it).
There are balls and dances, plenty of well researched glimpses into the late 1800’s, and a lot of danger. There’s a romance (it’s YA, so it’s like a rule), but I feel like it’s a sidebar. Yes, it does propel the plot, and is very important, but that’s not the entire focus. There’s so much more to love! 🙂
The book itself was really short, and the ending hit, and it was over. I really think it could have used another few chapters, or at least a few more answers. But still, it was a great fantasy read and I’m looking forward to seeing if anything more will come from this world, or even these characters.
If you’re looking for a good, quick read and want magic, read Illusions of Fate. You won’t regret it. I was very impressed with the world building and magic systems. Historical Fantasy needs to become a thing.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Kiersten White is the New York Times bestselling author of the Paranormalcy trilogy, the Mind Games series, The Chaos of Stars, Illusions of Fate, In the Shadows with artist Jim Di Bartolo, and the upcoming And I Darken. Kiersten lives with her family in San Diego, California. Visit her at http://www.kierstenwhite.com.