Series: The Magick Trilogy #1
Genres: Historical Romance, Paranormal Romance
Published by Carina Press on March 11, 2013
Source: Author, NetGalley
Book Links: Goodreads
Tudor England, 1556
A religious war is brewing. The Catholic Church relies on the ruthless reputation of Lord Beltran Nemesto, who tirelessly hunts down those who don't believe or who practice dark arts.
Half mortal, half Fae princess, Rhiannon le Fay is a healer trying to broker peace between the Faerie and mortal worlds. The Convergence is approaching, an occurrence every thousand years where the Veil that separates the two realms temporarily dissolves. Without her help, war between the two is inevitable.
After meeting Rhiannon, Beltran knows he must bring her to justice, but he's instantly attracted to the ethereal beauty. She forces him to confront his beliefs and introduces him to the Faerie world, and in the process he discovers a haunting truth about himself.
As the Convergence nears, Rhiannon and Beltran must decide where their loyalties lie as they fight to prevent a war that could destroy both of their worlds forever.
I read the synopsis for Magick by Moonrise by Laura Navarre and jumped at the chance to read this story. I love books that heavily feature faerie lore, so I was especially excited to see someone else’s take on the faerie realm. The fact that it was a historical paranormal romance was a welcomed bonus.
We’re introduced to Rhiannon le Fey, a half mortal, half faerie tasked with delivering an important treaty to the Tudor Queen Mary. This treaty is essential in preventing a cataclysmic event known as the Convergence: in where the invisible line between the faerie realm and the mortal realm dissolves, bringing about chaos and war between the two groups. Time is of the essence, but Rhiannon’s road to the queen is beset by many obstacles; the biggest one might just be in the form of the mysterious Lord Beltran Nemesto. The man who has awakened feelings she’s never had before. The same man who wants to see her burned at the stake.
I thought Magick by Moonrise was a promising start to what looks to be an intriguing series. It had just about all the ingredients needed for an entertaining read. The hero and heroine were easy to like and the supporting characters were interesting. Plus there was plenty of mystery, romance, danger, political intrigue, good vs. evil, etc., to keep readers enthralled until the very last page. Navarre effortlessly crafted a story brimming with elements of Arthurian legend, Faerie lore, Tudor history and fallen angels.
I didn’t grow to love the characters of Beltran and Rhiannon, but they were likeable enough to keep me invested in them as characters. Rhiannon is what authors typically write their heroines to be: brave, kind-hearted, determined, etc. She was all these things and yet the character still felt very clichéd and one-dimensional. I liked Beltran a little better, as he was a more complex character. I found his struggle with his beliefs and his feelings for Rhiannon, who was the opposite of everything he stood for, very compelling. This is the first book in what is to be a trilogy, so there’s the potential for more character growth and development for the two leads, as well as the supporting characters.
The push and pull nature of their romance was easily the most entertaining element of their relationship. Other than that, I felt as though Rhiannon and Beltran fell in love extremely fast over a very short period of time. I think the characters’ romantic relationship would have felt more authentic if the romance had been allowed to simmer over the course of the trilogy, as opposed to the instant love version of the romance readers were given.
All in all, Magick by Moonrise was engaging enough to leave me wanting more. I look forward to delving into Navarre’s world of faeries, mortals, and angels in future books. If you enjoy reading historical paranormal romances, then this book might be right up your alley.