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Blood and Magic: Coven Enforcers Book One

Ann Gimpel

Dream Shadow Press

63K words

Release Date: 7/18/16

Genre: Historical paranormal romance with a steampunk edge

Coven Enforcers = Dark, Dangerous, Magical Men

 Coven Witches bow to no one—least of all Enforcers.

 Sparks ignite. Tempers run high. Passion explodes. Hot. Sweet. Impossible to ignore….

Magic didn’t just find Luke Caulfield. It chased him down, bludgeoned him, and has been dogging him ever since. Some lessons are harder than others, but Luke embraces danger, upping the ante to give it one better. An enforcer for the Coven, a large, established group of witches, his latest assignment is playing bodyguard to the daughter of Coven leaders.

Abigail Ruskin is chaperoning a spoiled twelve-year-old from New York to her parents’ home in Utah Territory when Luke gets on their stagecoach in Colorado. A powerful witch herself, Abigail senses Luke’s magic, but has no idea what he’s doing on her stagecoach. Stuck between the petulant child and Luke’s raw sexual energy, Abigail can’t wait for the trip to end.

Unpleasant truths surface about the child. While Abigail’s struggling with those, wraiths, wolves, and dark mages launch an attack. Luke’s so attracted to Abigail, she’s almost all he can think about, but he’s leery too. The child is just plain evil. Is Abigail in league with her? It might explain the odd attack that took out their driver and one of their horses. In over his head, he summons enforcer backup.

Will they help him save the woman he’s falling in love with, or demand her immediate execution?

***Disclaimer: I received a free copy in exchange for a review.***

What’s Good: lots of action, good pacing and some steamy, if oddly phrased, sex.  One moment it’s all cock & pussy, the next it’s vague references to places down there, etc.

The mystery surrounding Carolyn- how she arrived at her present state- was intriguing.  Did she do this to herself or were her parents involved?  And if so, was it only one of them or both?  Unfortunately, it’s tipped almost right after you start wondering.

What’s Bad: a distinct lack of context.  The story opens with Luke and his tragic backstory, and suddenly we’re thrust decades into the future to get the plot moving.  No reference for Abigail, Carolyn, her parents, their coven, anything- it’s all infodumped at you to move things along.  It was kind of funny to see Abigail practically clenching her thighs together right after meeting Luke- apparently with all the talk about Christianity, etc, casual sex sort of gets lost in the shuffle.  Nitpicking, yeah- but this kind of thing always sticks out to me.  And there’s no steampunk edge; it’s simply a western with New Age witchcraft added to the mix.

What’s Left: a typical Ann Gimpel romp.  Easy to dive into, quick to get up to speed, lots of magic & sexy times and a HEA for all.

3.5/5 stars.

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