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Book Review: Magic’s Poison By Gillian Bradshaw

I’m a big fan of Gillian Bradshaw’s historical novels (her Island of Ghosts: A Novel of Roman Britain  is one of my all-time favorite books), so when I saw that she had a fantasy series available, self-published in Kindle format, I was intrigued.

I just finished reading the first volume, Magic’s Poison, and enjoyed it very much.

Bradshaw has created a fascinating world, a strong (but, refreshingly, not superhuman) and sympathetic heroine, and a wonderful conflict centering around the semi-reptilian Ophidians and their legacy of magic-enhancing venom. The story itself moves along at a fairly fast pace, with lots of escalating jeopardies as the sorceress Marin’s initial peril uncovers a bigger and more dangerous plot.

If there was a weak element, it was that I didn’t feel the romance between Marin and the Duke was very well-developed. I could understand why she was attracted to him, and he to her, but I felt that the actual development of a relationship between them was short-changed in the course of the novel. For a while, I actually thought that the duke’s secretary was going to be her romantic interest–the development of their friendship and mutual respect after their initial rough introduction worked well.

However, that was just a minor quibble in an otherwise well-written and engaging novel. I’m looking forward to reading the other volumes in this series.

Buy Magic’s Poison from Amazon!


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