Ever love a series so very much that whenever a new book is released you want to re-read it from the beginning to relive why the series is so great? The World of Kate Daniels is a series that does not disappoint. Between Kate – the no-nonsense, feral grin merc who stabs first and diplomats later (maybe) and her cadre of cohorts, enemies and allies there is never a moment when things are “easy”.
But who needs easy when you can have a paranoid psychopath ready to swoop in to rescue you…while you yell at him for doing just that?
With Book 9, MAGIC BINDS, due out September 20th I wanted to give y’all a taste…with as few spoilers as I can manage since I really do want all of you to read this series. If at any time you want to read the official synopsis/information on the world from the authors themselves head on over to the wiki page for that..
The World: Set in Post-Shift Atlanta, we’re several decades into a future where Magic has decided enough was enough and constantly fights with Tech to assert its dominance. Its kind of like watching the rabbits and squirrels in my yard every spring, with less bloodshed.
While the books, and short stories related thereof, are mainly set in Atlanta (with trips to other parts of Georgia occasionally) Kate does get to go traveling later in the series. She’s less than happy by this. Especially since it doesn’t involve stabbing people as much as she would like. Kate really likes stabbing bad guys. This does mean we get very little first hand knowledge of how other areas of the world handle things Post-Shift. The occasional reference here or there, but nothing as concrete as the “world” of Atlanta.
- Humans – basically anyone who doesn’t go furry (or scaly) on a regular basis. This includes magical practitioners such as witches, shamans, etc
- The Pack – the “Free People of the Code” aka shapeshifters that want to play nice so they’re not slaughtered, who have to swear loyalty to the Beast Lord and the laws he sets forth. Nothing matters more than the Pack’s well-being…unless you’re Curran and you realize what a bunch of narrow-minded assholes they can be.
- The People – (human) necromancers who pilot the Undead aka vampires and run the gaudiest Casino known to mankind. They have a keen interest in the Undead and do research into the state of Undeath. They also like money and making observations about whether or not you’re worth piloting in your death.
- Everything else – occasionally stuff of myths and legends creep into the world during Magic Shifts. They’re almost never benign and tend to want to kill Kate more often than not.
Law & Order:
In Kate’s World there’s three (mostly) official avenues to call if you have a supernatural problem:
- The Order (of Merciful Aid) – think modern day Templars, but trade the religious fanaticism for Humans Are the Best fanaticism. Very reliable, very powerful, very likely to kill your sweet old grandma if she turns out to be a harpy.
- MSDU (Military Supernatural Defense Unit) – a special branch of the Army who basically can do anything the military would do when there’s a clear and present danger of a non-human nature.
- PAD (Paranormal Activity Division) – basically the police and about as overworked as the real world cops so you’ll be lucky if they even show up.
Now if you happen to have money or want something done quickly (and often with more mess) there’s also the unofficial avenues:
- The [Mercenaries] Guild – sadly not run by Felicia Day, this is where all the badass mofos who like wielding weapons and bashing things in the head go to make some quick cash. Some real powerful folk in the Guild…as well as idiots with swords longer than their IQ.
- Cutting Edge Investigations – later in the series Kate opens this Private Detective Agency. For reasons.
Places of Interests:
- Avoid Unicorn Lane (full of wild magic that likes turning people inside out and then giving them extra limbs…if you’re lucky), the Warren (feral children doing feral children things), and the Honeycomb Gap (not as bad as Unicorn Lane, but pretty damn close)
- The Casino – the People’s HQ. Gaudy, bright, and the basement is filled with barely contained blood suckers. Plus old people.
- The Pack’s Keep – the monstrosity known as the Keep is the fortress built by Curran and his people to live in, protect and jealously guard.
- Centennial Park – the Witches basically have taken this over and woe be on any who think they should venture here.
- Champion Heights – where Saimon lives. Also worth avoiding only because Saimon lives here and he’s the very definition of “shady character”.
Things to Know:
- While less outwardly dystopian than most post-apocalyptic series, the World is less convenient then the real world, but no where NEAR as inconvenient as say Panem.
- It is very much a world of “make what you can of it”. Might very often means “right” with law enforcement allowing a lot of disagreements to work themselves out if not directly contacted. And even then, they’ll sometimes let things work themselves out if it doesn’t look like the city is in danger.
- in MAGIC BURNS, Book 1, Kate comes off a little…brash. A tad unlikeable. More than a tad. As this is told from her POV, and she’s lived her entire life basically adhering to the rule “Relationships make you weak”, its kind of understandable. Kate is who she is and it takes a lot of getting beat up and patched together for that to change.
- The side stories, novellas and in Andrea’s case entire novel are not strictly necessary to read in order to get enjoyment out of the plot. I suggest you do however since Kate will make mention 9 times out of 10 about events seen in those books, big events for side characters happen that aren’t strictly related to Kate and they very often establish what life is like when Kate isn’t calling in favors for help.
- Derek is mine. Or alternately, Julie’s. Mostly mine though. I will fight anyone to the death for this.
So basics are basic!