Title: Secret Mage (The Blood Magic Series Book 1)
Author: Rebecca Jaycox
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Some secrets are too deadly to keep, some bloodlines too powerful to contain …
Reggie Lang might only be seventeen, but she’s had to grow up fast. Losing a father as a baby made things hard enough, but when her mom turned to alcohol for refuge, Reggie had to hold things together. She still does. If only she could escape it all …
When the other kids at school start calling her a freak, things only get tougher. What’s worse, she worries they’re right. Reggie shouldn’t be able to bring dead creatures back to life but somehow she can? If it wasn’t for her ride-or-die best friend, she’d have completely lost it by now.
When a mysterious man invades Reggie’s dreams, is it just another sign that she’s falling apart? He claims he’s her guardian – that he’s from another world. He tells her that her father’s killer is there …
… and that now an evil mage is gunning for her, destroying anything in his way.
Reggie’s always wanted to escape her life, but not like this. Does she really have to run to protect the people she loves? Who will take care of her mom? The man in her dreams says he’ll teach her about magic and protect her. That he’ll send someone he trusts to collect her. That her blood makes her powerful. It’s a hard choice, but ultimately protecting her mom is worth anything.
The magic-saturated world she discovers might be full of wonders, but the horrors are worse than she could have imagined. Can the man sent to guide her really protect her, or is the sign of his slavery an omen of what will happen to her?
Reggie will be pushed to her limits as she attempts her treacherous journey, struggling to adapt to a strange new world and learning to wield her powers. The Dark Mage isn’t easily evaded. He rules this world with a bloody fist. Because it’s blood he’s after—Reggie’s blood. And avoiding capture might just be the toughest thing Reggie has ever faced.
All Reggie Lang wants to do is escape her dreary life. Her father died when she was a baby and in grief, her mother turned to the bottle to dull the pain. She’s had to grow up fast and deal with gangs of school bullies who insist on calling her a freak. Maybe she is, for it can’t be normal to raise dead creatures, can it? But when a strange man invades her dreams claiming to be her guardian from another world, he offers her the escape she craves. She’s having second thoughts, though, as she worries about who will take care of her mum if she goes to this other world. She takes the leap to a new world in order to protect her mum. As she tries to adjust to the new world, she realizes she’s in over her head. Her father’s killer is a dark mage and he’s after her blood. He’s hunting her and Reggie is on the run in a world foreign to her. Can she outrun the dark mage while trying to control her own powers or will she end up like her father… dead?
Secret Mage is an adrenaline-rushing magical fantasy with intriguing characters, plenty of conflicts and nonstop action. The plot moves at a fast pace with heavy doses of emotional arcs. Descriptive narration so realistic adds to the depth of the story. There are quite a few coming of age themes to Secret Mage readers can relate to. The conflict Reggie deals with is intense, especially the bullying. The action scenes are well-written and play out like a movie. I found myself whipping through the pages the more I read. The ending left me breathless. I look forward to reading more in this series. Highly recommend, especially to magical fantasy fans.
My Rating: 5 stars
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Rebecca Jaycox grew up in the tiny town of Berryman, which borders the Mark Twain National Forest and the Courtois River about seventy miles south of St. Louis. The beautiful landscape fed her imagination, and she began writing stories at age ten and never stopped. Always seeking adventure, Rebecca moved to France after she graduated college with a journalism degree to teach English at a French high school. Bitten by the travel bug, she has recently visited Italy, Greece, Austria, Spain, and finally made it to her bucket-list destination of Istanbul last summer. Rebecca now lives in New York City with her husband, Gregory. She enjoys reading and writing fantasy, urban fantasy, steampunk, and science fiction.
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Reviewed by: Mrs. N
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