Tuesday, April 11, 2017

#Tuesday Review - Magic for Nothing by Seanan McGuire (Urban Fantasy) @dawbooks

Series: InCryptid # 6
Format: Paperback, 342 pages
Release Date: March 7, 2017
Publisher: DAW Books
Source: Publisher
Genre: Urban Fantasy

Improbable, adjective:
1. Not very likely to happen; not probable.
2. Probably not a very good idea anyway.
3. See also “bad plan.”
As the youngest of the three Price children, Antimony is used to people not expecting much from her. She’s been happy playing roller derby and hanging out with her cousins, leaving the globe-trotting to her older siblings while she stays at home and tries to decide what she wants to do with her life. She always knew that one day, things would have to change. She didn’t think they’d change so fast.
Annie’s expectations keep getting shattered. She didn’t expect Verity to declare war on the Covenant of St. George on live television. She didn’t expect the Covenant to take her sister’s threat seriously. And she definitely didn’t expect to be packed off to London to infiltrate the Covenant from the inside…but as the only Price in her generation without a strong resemblance to the rest of the family, she’s the perfect choice to play spy. They need to know what’s coming. Their lives may depend on it.
But Annie has some secrets of her own, like the fact that she’s started setting things on fire when she touches them, and has no idea how to control it. Now she’s headed halfway around the world, into the den of the enemy, where blowing her cover could get her killed. She’s pretty sure things can’t get much worse.  Antimony Price is about to learn just how wrong it’s possible for one cryptozoologist to be.

Magic for Nothing is the sixth installment in author Seanan McGuire's InCryptid series. Magic for Nothing piggybacks off the events that happened in Verity's last book, Chaos in ChoreographyMagic for Nothing features the youngest of the Price clan, 22-year old Antimony Timpani Price. Unlike Verity and her brother Alex (whose books I skipped over to get to Chaos), Annie has magical abilities which she has been keeping a secret from her family.  

But, she also has a chip on her shoulder a mile wide, and long, and an attitude that quickly grates on the readers nerves. Annie paints her older siblings in a harsh light and it drags on for awhile. Yes, Verity perhaps did make some mistakes in Chaos by pretty much declaring war on the Covenant, but to blame her for every issue, to call her Cryptozoologist Barbie, and to curiously believe that she is a spare, is absolutely ridonkulous. I was curious as to whether or not Verity would make an appearance in this book, and she does. Briefly. But, the cold shoulder that Annie gives her could be felt in Anchorage, Alaska.

Annie is a free wheeling spirit who loves to dig traps for her siblings, and is a member of a rolling skating team (Derby girl). She doesn't look like any of the Price's which makes her the ideal candidate to enter into the den of the beast aka Covenant of St. George. One could say that she was bamboozled into the mission, but who else was going to do it? Mary Dunlavy, the family ghost babysitter? Yeah, no. Annie may have her issues, but she's not a Mary Sue character who will run away at the first sign of trouble.

Imagine going into the den of the beast without any weapons except for your training, your courage, and your determination to survive against all odds. That is who Annie ends up being to me. Oh, and let's not forget about Mindy, her Aeslin mouse who goes along to document Annie's adventure, or Mork, another Aeslin mouse who Annie finds in the most unlikely of places. The Covenant's own hollowed halls. If you have no clue who Mork & Mindy were, please Google it. The most curious part of this story was, in fact, Annie's time spent with the Covenant and getting a first hand look at the way her family is looked at.

As Annie finds herself among the Covenant, and later sent on a mission to infiltrate a carnival where she has to make decisions. Annie's family has stood up for the Cryptid's while the Covenant wants them all removed from society. But, for those Cryptid's who step out of line, there is no saving them from the Price-Healy family. Annie's adventure takes her into unfamiliar territory when she grows close to a Spider Monkey named Sam, and then puts herself up against several characters readers met in Midnight Blue-Light Special.  

Truth be told, I wasn't a huge fan of Antimony's until she was sent on her own mission and was forced to make a similar stand like Verity did in Midnight Blue-Light Special. Unlike Verity though, Annie couldn't pick up the phone and throw ideas off her family, or ask for help. She's on a solo mission without any sort of backup until she is either successful, or ends up end. Annie journey ended in a way that has left me a bit melancholy. So, yes, I will be reading Annie's next book called Tricks for Free. I will do so knowing that McGuire has no where to go but to up her game even further in order to resolve the Annie storyline. 

1 comment:

  1. I felt the same way about Annie! Her attitude in the beginning was annoying. Looking forward to reading the rest of her story. However, you should really read Alex's stories too; I found that he is my favorite Price sibling! You may enjoy.