Due to FTC regulations, any book reviewed on this site was sent for free by the author/publisher to The Pagan & The Pen Book Reviews. We are not paid to give reviews by Author or Publisher. Once review has been made, said books are deleted.

Jul 20, 2010

Magic Season Series by Jacqueline Paige

                       THE PAGAN & THE PEN BOOK REVIEWS

Title: Magic Season (series): Beltane Magic, Solstice Heat
Author: Jacqueline Paige
Buy Links:
Publisher: Amira Press
Genre: Paranormal, Romantic Suspense
Length: 175 pgs.
Other: M/F
Pagan & Pagan Elements: Yes
Reviewed by: Violet Harper

About the Book:
Beltane Magic: A serene woman who calls to the elements with a thought. A man of youthful charm who carries healing in his touch. Both vowed to spend their lives alone and safe, until they-re brought together by the touch of Beltane magic. Can they survive their pasts to be together as they struggle to find a killer before the wheel turns again?

Solstice Heat: A shy innocent woman with the brightest magic. A man of strength with a darker force hidden carefully within. Separated by two different life styles yet their passion and magic ignite sparks hotter than the Solstice heat. Can they work out a way to be together as they try to stop a killer from striking again?

The Review: They read like The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants meets Twilight. There are eight main characters. The author chooses an omniscient viewpoint, which works to make the reader like all of the characters, but it comes at the expense of actually bonding with any of them. Each of the first two books—I’m assuming more are to come—focuses in on one of the couples. They pair off in the first book, Beltane Magic, even though they aren’t all aware of it. 

The writing style is friendly and conversational. When the eight get together, which happens often, almost every movement is described. It gets to be a little much at times.  Most of the verbs are passive tense, which draws attention to the fact that there is very little action, and the same verbs are used often. In one instance, I saw the word ‘struggled’ four times in five sentences. Many of the character ‘smirk’ at one another, which is a jolting thing considering they all like one another. Smirking isn’t a nice way to smile. It’s full of arrogance and malice.

Both novels are punctuated by moments of brilliance when the description draws the reader fully into the Magic Season world. At those moments, the characters are intriguing, interesting, and fully realized. It’s those moments that carry the reader through the novels. 

A serial killer strikes in Beltane Magic. I kept expecting for that mystery to be solved in the first book, but it is not. Solstice Heat is a continuation of the story. The only significant change is that Leena and Owen are a couple, so it focuses mostly on Chris and Kasey. I think both novels would have been so much stronger if the stories were told from Leena and Owen’s points of view in Beltane Magic and from Chris and Kasey’s points of view in Solstice Heat.

The dichotomy of each relationship works. Leena and Owen both have scars from their horrific pasts. They heal one another. Chris and Kasey are polar opposites. He has done some bad things, and she is nothing but energy and light. Together, they strike a perfect balance. Ms. Paige does a phenomenal job of pairing the couples in a way that helps them to grow as people and to find true happiness, and the erotic scenes are both sweet and hot. In that way, this romance is a fulfilling read. As a murder mystery, it’s frustrating that the mystery isn’t solved in either novel, and it leaves the reader wanting a resolution.

If you’re looking to spend a lot of time with a likeable group of people, I recommend this series. If you crave plot closure, I’d wait until the series is finished before reading it.

Pagan Elements: The eight main characters function like a coven. The author does a great job of illustrating the differing beliefs that exists within the Pagan community, and the way those beliefs work to bring diversity and open-mindedness into our daily lives. There are multiple circumstances in which the group performs rituals, from using magic as a way to find a killer to using collective consciousness to soothe souls. Even for those skeptical about the concept of magic, it was a remarkable look at the spiritual side of things. 

Cover (Rated 1-10): 9- I liked both covers. The expression of the woman on the cover of Beltane Magic is mysterious, inviting a closer look. The swirling symbols promise adventure. Solstice Heat has similar things going for it.


Disclaimer: Due to FTC regulations, any book reviewed on this site was sent for free by the author to The Pagan & The Pen. We are not paid to give reviews by Author or Publisher. Once review has been made, said books are deleted.


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