Review: Armed and Magical by Lisa Shearin ★★★★

Armed and Magical by Lisa Shearin
Genre: Fantasy
Series: Book two of the Raine Benares series
Publication Date: April 29, 2008
ISBN: 0441015875
Page Count: 304
My Rating: ★★★★

Summary

My name is Raine Benares. Until last week I was a seeker—a finder of things lost and people missing. Now I’m psychic roommates with the Saghred, an ancient stone with cataclysmic powers. Just me, the stone, and all the souls it’s ingested over the centuries. Crowded doesn’t even begin to describe it…

All Raine wants is her life back—which means getting rid of the stone and the power it possesses. To sort things out, she heads for the Isle of Mid, home to the most prestigious sorcery school, as well as the Conclave, the governing body for all magic users. It’s also home to power-grubbing mages who want Raine dead and goblins who see her as a thief. As if that’s not enough, Mid’s best student spellsingers are disappearing left and right, and Raine’s expected to find them.

Lives are at stake, goblins are threatening to sue, mages are getting greedier, and the stone’s power is getting stronger by the hour. This could get ugly.

REVIEW

I really enjoyed this. The story was a lot more gripping than in the first book, and you got to see a lot more of Raine's character and personality come out as she interacted with people in her new temporary home on the Isle of Mid.

Young magic students and spell singers are going missing, and Raine, as a seeker, is required to find them. Only it's not as simple as that...when is it ever? I'm getting more of a sense of the "world" this series is set in now. The pirate-y, swashbuckling fantasy lands Shearing has created are enchanting me more and more as the series continues.

I really like Mycheal, Phaelen and Piarus' characters. I do like Tam, but his background and connections to the Mal' Salin Royal family worry me. So if it's a choice between Tam or Mycheal, I choose the latter.

There are just a couple of things that stop this from being a 5 star book/series for me yet. One: the stupid names which I've mentioned in another review. And two: the author repeats herself and overuses favourite phrases.

Having said that, I can't wait to read the next one. I plan on starting it right away. I'm so glad I gave this series another shot!

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