“If what I do, no matter how horrible or bloody it is, will save a family like the one I lost, then it’s worth it. I will walk that road. That’s what life has handed me, shitty as it is, and I will step up until the day I die.”-Deacon Chalk.
Welcome to the hell that is Deacon Chalk’s life in Blood and Magick by James R. Tuck. Each book in this series is incredible, with all the action, emotions, details, characters, humor etc., but this one…this one will knock you on your ass and have you wondering what just happened. It’s exciting, its gut wrenching… it’s bloody brilliant.
Taking out hellish creatures—not a problem. Armed with blessed silver hollow-points and the ability to manipulate magick, he’s ready for anything—except betrayal he never saw coming…
Deacon Chalk knows the biggest danger in fighting monsters is becoming one. Just another day at the office for your friendly neighborhood occult bounty hunter. If keeping three helpless were-dog children safe means battling a malevolent trio of witches by any means necessary, so be it. If that means partnering with a ruthless government agent to stay one step ahead of the allies and friends he must now suspect, he’s not going to cry about it. The only way Deacon can save humans and shape-shifters alike is to embrace a power beyond his imagining, putting his team at stake—and his soul on the line…
One thing to remember when reading a Tuck novel is that no one is entirely safe. No one. Everyone Chalk holds dear gets hurt left and right in each book. In fact, his wife and children are murdered way before this series takes place. Yeah. I’ve known this from the beginning and yet I was NOT expecting what happened in Blood and Magick. People, who I’ve grown to love, get hurt badly this go round. It’s so much worse than anything we’ve seen before. I was wiping away tears as I read.
On top of being emotional over these characters and what they endure, I was itching with energy trying to read as fast as I possibly could. Throughout Blood and Magick, you are constantly on high alert, being shot at and dodging blades and bad guys with sharp teeth and dangerous claws, all with dangerous spells all around you. There is very little downtime, but it doesn’t feel rushed or pushed. It’s a ride, I tell you. You have a group of witches wreaking havoc on innocent people without a smidgen of remorse. They are hell-bent on performing a spell, well I can’t tell you what because, as usual, if I do it’ll ruin EVERYTHING. Let’s just say, wicked cool and scary as hell. There are demon possessions, crazy mythical creatures and evil magick. Normally, I’m not a fan of demons, I can handle them in little doses, but this was just enough of the creepiness for me. And speaking of magic, since I have researched the pagan religion, I tend to like witches to be shown accurately, not evil, but I wasn’t disappointed by the ‘hollywood magic’ view this go round. I don’t know if this is because I love Mr. Tuck’s writing or the fact that there are no rules in his world and that this take on them fits so perfectly in his story, that it didn’t bother me. All I do know is, those witches were scary and I LOVED them, even though they weren’t true witches.
Blood and Magic kicked me in the gut, ripped my arms off and beat me black and blue with them. It was everything I’ve come to love about Mr. Tuck’s writing and this series. I’m once again itching for the next installment. It CANNOT get here fast enough.
Read order for Deacon Chalk: Occult Bounty Hunter:
That Thing At the Zoo (novella)
Blood and Bullets
Spider’s Lullaby (novella)
Blood and Silver
Circus of Blood (novella)
Blood and Magick (Mar 4, 2013)