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Review: Finding Magic by Stacia Kane (Downside Ghosts novella)

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Finding Magic by Stacia KaneFinding Magic (Downside Ghosts novella)
Stacia Kane
Published: June 4, 2012 (DelRey)
Purchase at: Amazon

Rating (out of 5): 5 stars

One of the reasons I recommend Stacia Kane’s Downside Ghosts books so often is the remarkable character development. Heroine Chess has hard edges, deep-seated issues and a big problem with seeing herself as valuable. While Kane provided more insight into Chess’ past in Sacrificial Magic, this new prequel novella lets us to see what Chess was like before.

Not before the damage that pushed her to chemical dependency. But before the pills. Before the autonomy of living in Downside. Before love. Eighteen year old Chess is still working hard to prove herself worthy of being a part of the Church of Real Truth. She agrees to do a week of job shadowing with the Black Squad not because she wants to be one of their elitist club, but because she’s frightened saying no will land her ass back in foster care. That she could lose it all.

The pressure of the job and the case she works to help solve — while earning her dirty looks and nasty comments from the Black Squad team — pushes her toward familiar coping mechanisms. Kane manages to help fans of the Downside series understand Chess a bit more by giving us this vulnerable view into her youth.

Also, there are ghosts, bitches getting in her way, reference to old religions and sex magic. Expect a trip or two to the City of Eternity in this one. (And, yes, it still skeeves me out.)

This quick read is great way to get insight into Chess before diving into Chasing Magic on June 26.

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