Tag Archives: Soul-complements

Monk, Devon: Magic Without Mercy (Allie Beckstrom) (2012)

Cover art by Larry Rostant

I think this is my favorite Allie Beckstrom cover thus far. There is something about the atmosphere in it.

Devon Monk keeps on writing well. As a reader, following Allie’s journey from lonerhood to a leadership position among her friends has been a fun ride. Monk has managed to keep her characters alive without slowing down the pace of the novels.

Things are really moving along now. The Authority has officially decided to go for Allie. All of her friends and near-friends have to make a choice as to who to follow. Because they are rebels, we know what the choice will be. But their fight to overcome the opposition while at the same time figuring out how to battle the magic plague is going to challenge all of their abilities.

Allie is affected by the magic plague. Whenever she pulls it in she gets sick and ghosts turn up. Ghost magnet is what she is. She and her father have come to an arrangement – that sounds really weird considering their co-habitation. Anyways. Zayvion still loves her and Shame is her best friend. Shame and Terric still haven’t come to terms with what they are, or rather Shame hasn’t quite. He would go down fighting.

Jingo-Jingo is his same old creepy self. Mwah, hah, hah. A regular old Dracula is what he is. Eli is/was a bad guy – or maybe we could say a guy with very special interests. But he is important to the game, so Shame and Zayvion are stuck with him.

I look forward to reading the conclusion. As long as Devon Monk keeps the quality of her work at the level that it has been, then I have something to look forward to.


My reviews for books 1 (Magic to the Bone), 2 (Magic in the Blood), 3 (Magic in the Shadows), 4 (Magic on the Storm), 5 (Magic at the Gate), 6 (Magic on the Hunt) and 7 (Magic on the Line)

Monk, Devon: Magic on the Hunt (Allie Beckstrom) (2011)

Cover art by Larry Rostant

I think these covers by Larry Rostant are beginning to grow on me. Part of it is the swirling lights of magic. The other part probably has to do with how Allie is portrayed. She is all about business and I like that in a cover.

As the series about Allie Beckstrom has continued so to has Devon Monk’s writing grown. I expect that in a writer but do not always see it. Kudos to you Devon for growing as an author.

Zayvion and Allie’s relationship has changed. Their strength, closeness and abilities is making the Authority wary of them. Fortunately, the couple does have friends within the Authority. Two of their closest are Shame and Terric (who are also soul complements).

Given her unique relationship with her father, Allie is doing an excellent job of coming to terms with the situation. Monk has given the term father/daughter relationship a new dimension.

The division within the Authority is widening. Allie and her friends are discovering unpleasant truths about the regulation of magic and the leadership of the regulators. We begin to see the contours of decision-making that might not have the well-being of everyone as its goal after all.

As the Allie series grows in complexity, so do the characters. They are filling out quite well and the world we get a look at is both strange and familiar in the art that is Devon’s writing.

My reviews for books 1 (Magic to the Bone), 2 (Magic in the Blood), 3 (Magic in the Shadows), 4 (Magic on the Storm) and 5 (Magic at the Gate).

Monk, Devon: Magic at the Gate (Allie Beckstrom) (2010)

Cover by Larry Rostant

Magic on the Storm left us hanging there – a real cliff-hanger ending. And that is fine. Not that I have a say in the matter. I might have wanted to knock Devon Monk on the head with hammer for a moment, but that is my problem. Authors can be sooooooo ??

To say that The Authority is in trouble at this point would be an understatement. It became clear during Magic on the Storm that there were two factions (at least) within The Authority. Obviously Allie belongs to the “good guys” (and Jingo-Jingo to the bad).

Sadly, Zayvion is not there to aid her through most of Magic at the Gate. For obvious reasons he is out cold and Allie is not at all certain he will wake up back to his old form. Fortunately Allie is strong enough to handle that. I think she would probably be a good role-model for girls today. She just does what she has to do realising that life doesn’t play favorites.

Her dad’s old games with forcing magic to do his will is coming to bite them all in the behind. Allie tries to clean his mess up but has to fight trust-issues when it comes to good ol’ dad who just happens to be co-habitating with her. Annoying geezer and stubborn daughter.

Shame and Terric are at odds. Just because other people believe them to be soul-complements does not mean that they have to accept that. I mean, come on, we are talking about Shaymus Flynn – the king of stubbornness. I think he even tops Allie in this area.

The entertainment value of the Allie Beckstrom series is high. Devon has managed to create characters that grow and has a storyline that draws toward some kind of inevitable conclusion. While I as a reader might not know where Monk is going with the series, it is clear that she does. I am definitely going to be along for the ride.

Reviews for books 1 (Magic to the Bone), 2 (Magic in the Blood), 3 (Magic in the Shadows) and 4 (Magic on the Storm).

Monk, Devon: Magic in the Shadows (Allie Beckstrom) (2009)

Cover art by Larry Rostant

There is especially one character in Magic in the Shadows that I want to point out. In Magic in the Blood Allie managed to bring alive a gargoyle. Stone, the gargoyle, is a wonderful “pet”/”friend” for Allie. Our block-building dude. I love him.

Another one is Shame (Shamus Flynn), our self-destructive but ever so loyal friend. I don’t know why, but characters that get into “trouble” are incredibly fun. Shame is the prankster of our trio/quartet.

Zayvion has a larger part than the other two – naturally. He is Allie’s second half (so to speak). A lot of the Allie Beckstrom series describes the growth that these two characters go through (well the rest of them as well). Monk manages to give us characters that grow and she explores human nature in all its glory and horror.

Allie’s problems are not over. The voice in her head is not helping her at all. As the series is told in 1st person, we get to view all of Allie’s incredibly dense moments, but also those moments when she gets to show what she is good for.

The Authority is very interested in getting Allie to deal with the voice in her head. They feel threatened by it. But it comes in useful when Allie has to fight with a magically created “demon”. Allie’s ability to store magic in her bones is a phenomenon no-one quite understands. Her lack of ability in controlling her magic makes it necessary for her to get help – through the Authority.