Got a book recommendation for you this morning.
Back Cover Blurb
When the Night Foxes boldly break into the Fourth Precinct’s Evidence Building, it causes quite the stir. The break-in is daring enough, but their method shreds the magical wards and protections on the building like confetti paper. To say the police are ‘alarmed’ by this is the understatement of the century.
As a Magical Examiner, Henri Davenforth is of course immediately called in. Quite to his astonishment, Captain Gregson has him work the case like a detective. Even more astounding, he assigns Henri a partner.
The Shinigami Detective.
The woman is famous for killing the most destructive rogue witch of the century, and no one is quite certain where she’s from. Every officer in the precinct is either in awe of her or a little frightened by her. Henri is just baffled. What is he supposed to do with a partner?
Hopefully killing one witch makes Jamie Edwards enough of an expert on magic to be helpful, as the thieves aren’t content to just break into one building. They in fact seem to have an agenda, as with each theft, they take magical objects. It’s all mounting to a dangerously powerful magical construct capable of toppling the wards on any building.
And no one has any idea what the thieves’ true target is.
This is one of those odd books that’s difficult to explain. Technically speaking, there is no twist here. It is exactly what it says it is – Jamie Edwards, an FBI agent, is transported to a world similar to Ankh Morpork on the verge of industrial revolution but without the blistering social commentary. She can’t go home, so she becomes a detective in the local police force and partners with Henri Davenforth, a CSI wizard. We’ve seen stuff like this before. The mystery is well done, although the conclusion needed to be stronger, but again, there is nothing about the plot or setting that makes for an effective elevator pitch.
Yet there is something about this book that made it an instant comfort read for me. Seriously, I couldn’t stop reading the damn thing. The other day I was exhausted and I’m on a diet so no sweets or processed carbs, but I was so mentally wrung out that I needed something. I made a cup of green tea and stole a Madeline cookie from the kitchen. I drank my tea and ate my cookie and it was almost medicinal in its effect. This book is like that.
I think it must be the characters. Both Jamie and Henri are just so likable and so very human.
Jamie’s been dealt a crappy hand and she’s making the best of it in a society where dwarves and werefoxes are common place but women in pants are not. She’s managed to not only survive but succeed, and she does it with a sense of humor and commitment that makes her admirable. You know instantly that if you’re in trouble, Jamie will run through a wall to save you – literally, there is some magic involved – and she would do it without ever asking your name. Just the fact that you are in trouble is enough.
Henri Davenforth is a genius wizard, a gentleman in the traditional sense of the word, and a food fiend. The man knows the menu of every good restaurant int he city off the top of his head. He also possessed an innate sense of fairness.
The interactions between the two are hilarious. At some point Jamie offers to pay for her food, and Henri’s brilliant brain explodes because he can’t compute that a lady would ever purchase her own meal when a gentleman is present. Then she drives him around the city in a car and he nearly has a heart attack, because 35 miles per hour is a ridiculously reckless speed and no sane person could possibly volunteer to go that fast. There is clearly an attraction between the two but it is the slowest slow-burn in history, because Henri is very much a gentleman and he spends a lot of the novel trying to keep Jamie alive. But she stole his chocolate and lived, so there must be something there.
For me, this will likely be something I reread once in a while. As always, your mileage may vary. The book is pricey by self-pub standards, clocking at around $6.99, so I strongly recommend reading the sample before you commit.
Order : Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, Google Play and Apple
Author’s website: http://www.honorraconteur.com/
Leigh Rathbone says
Thank you for the recommendation. Always looking for new books, so will give this a try. 🙂
I love knowing about books that authors I follow enjoy. It’s sort of an insight. Thank you for the recommendation.
There’s a sequel – “Charms and Death and Explosions” – which I also enjoyed. The author is a pretty reliable source for light, entertaining reads, mostly fantasy. Can’t comment as to the pricing, as I’d read many of her works on Kindle Unlimited, but she’s said that she is pulling some or all of her books from there over concerns over payment, so I have no idea which are available through that service currently.
Arghghgh! Checking to see if I can get it.
There’s a sequel – “Charms and Death and Explosions” – which I also enjoyed.”- Bittergeek
Weird. The sequel is available for free if you have Kindle Unlimited or Amazon Prime.
Cori Shaye says
I had no idea there was a sequel!!! I’ll definitely be reading that tomorrow!
Shannon from Florida says
Thanks for the recommendation! I am going to assume that there is not graphic violence in the book?
It’s PG 13.
I went to download a sample as recommended, then I really paid attention to the author. I love Honor’s books and she is nearly an instant buy for me.
Heather Pedersen says
Me too! I love her characters!
Thanks for the recommendation! Sounds good!
Thanks for the recommendation, I’ll check it out!
…You had me at „Ankh Morpork“…
Just read the first chapter. Seems intriguing. Thanks for the recommendation.
LOLOL, I was going to post the exact same thing! Except I haven’t read any of it yet, so just the first line.
Amy Ann says
Literally after reading “Ankh Morpork” I clicked over to Amazon. Anything in any way similar to STP will immediately go on my reading list!
This book turned me onto the author, Honor Raconteur, and I’m currently working my way through her bibliography. And, because of authors’ blogs like yours, buying them rather than just grabbing them from KU. Lots of great characters, really varied plots- she’s fantastic.
Highly recommend the Artifactor series, featuring one of the crankiest heroines this side of Granny Weatherwax.
Yes! I love Sevana ?
Thank you, Kim!
Just like you, I’ve followed up w/ Ilona’s recommendation and purchased a couple of copies of her books this morning – and (like you) hard copy (not Kindle). These seem like really good books to take to bed at night … very pleasant way to end the day.
I’ll start on the Artifactor series next; seems that she has several series going on, because of your recommendation, I’ll go there next.
Thanks again! – A.
Virginia A Farris says
Likewise. I love Sevana (the Artifactor)! Sorry to see her series end recently. And the Shinagami Detectives books are delightful.
Love this book. Got it when it came out. Waiting for the next one.
The sequel Charms and Death and Explosions (oh my!) is out!
I recently have just read this and its sequel. Your review was spot on and the second book continues the fun. As I am on Prime I could borrow it for free. Give it a try…
Christine Cruz says
Since I am entirely hooked on Kpop serials now, thanks to your What’s Wrong with Secretary Kim recommendation, I am almost afraid to try this for fear I will be lost in the pages when I should be working/studying!
lol! thanks for making me laugh with your comment, needed it just now.
Yea! I am always looking for a new book/author. Also have been trying to stay off of sweets/carbs due to new pre-diabetes dx. I have turned to cinnamon tea. I make it with inexpensive cassia cinnamon stick from our local Indian market. You simmer about 6 in a 2qt pot for about 30 min. and then let it cool. It is good hot or cold and naturally sweet like cinnamon red hots. It satisfies my sweet tooth. It gets stronger as it sits to the point it is like atomic fireballs. Yum.
Cassia cinnamon contains coumarin, which is liver toxic. You need to be careful about the amount of cinnamon you use.
Thanks for the info!
Thanks for the cinnamon, good to know.
Thanks for the info…..too tired to be writing today.
Virginia A Farris says
Herbal teas (technically, tisanes) and flavored tea blends with licorice root in the blend taste sweet without any additions. Depending on the blend, you may not taste licorice per se, for those who dislike it. A couple from Davids Teas, available loose leaf online: Organic Bravissimo (herbal), Carrot Cupcake (roiboos), Organic North African Mint (green tea), Organic Sweet Ginger Heat (green tea), Organic Vanilla Chai (black tea).
This seriously sounds like a fun read. I will definitely try it out. Thanks!
I love this book!! The second one is out already too.
Mysteries and Fantasies – love them both. Put them together with good writing and it’s a winner in my book. I know you’re a tea drinker, but when I’m dieting I usually have New England brand decaf Hazelnut Cream coffee with cream and a little sweetener. Even hot it reminds me of hazelnut ice cream. Always seemed to satisfy my dessert cravings. Thanks for the book recommendation.
I love when you do this. An honest review and assessment….but also putting an idea in the heads of your readers of why they might consider the book. Its advocating for other writers in a very honest way.
Stacy Harper Watson says
YEp. This is terrific book. As is the sequel.
Here’s the scribd link for anyone with a subscription.
The second book of the series -nice read as well – is published as Kindle Unlimited.
Rorie L Solberg says
Sample downloaded. The last recommendation I caught–the Forthright book–was great and so I am looking forward to the sample. Thanks for the heads up.
I have to agree with who have read her books before they are excellent. Deep woods series is my favorite.
Read this one and the next one . They were comfort reads with a piece of dark chocolate and a cup of tea.
I’ve been waffling back and forth on this one for awhile now. Actually, I think a BDH member recommended it in the comments, I looked it up, was intrigued but the price has held me back. Since you liked it, I liked the sample (have read it a few times) and have been hoarding gift card money, I think I will finally pick this one up.
Milissa Hartzenberg says
I love Honor Raconteur ‘s books. I got hooked with The Human Familiar and have chomped my way through all of her other series. The Kingslayer is also a particular favourite. Enjoy!
Bought it. Looking forward to it. Sounds a little like Lord Darcy.
jasmine scott says
Love her books! Got because hooked because of her advent mage series. There is just something about to grown adults having a lint war. That I find highly amusing.
Emily Edwards says
hahah yes!! I was highly amused at that scene as well.
Emily Edwards says
I am so glad you recommended her book!! I love all of Honor’s books. Her books are comforting to read. They are not the types of books that have drama and huge suspenseful climax scenes, but you are still instantly sucked into the books. I think it is because you fall in love with the characters. I want to be friends with all of her characters! lol And you really get to know the characters in the books. Thanks Ilona and I hope you enjoy Honor’s other series too!
+1 Total agreement, Honor just writes people so well!
As soon as I started reading the sample, I immediately started smiling. I haven’t even met the other main character yet, but I like being in this character’s head.
I’m just a short way in, but it reminds me of the Lord Darcy books by Randall Garrett. Magical CSI, with a Nero Wolfe tribute in “Too Many Magicians.”
Richard Cartwright says
Thanks for the recommendation. The overall premise sounds very similar to the Bloodhound Files series by DD Barnet. I suspect she went wide on the first book and does not want to go through the major hassle of making the first book Kindle only and thus eligible for Kindle Unlimited. Downloaded the sample.
Tiger Lily says
Yes, I knew it sounded like another series I read. I really liked the Bloodhound Files
Richard Cartwright says
I went ahead and bought the book. It was different enough to not sound derivative.
I did enjoy The Bloodhound Files by DD Barant. My problem with his books (he also writes a ghost animal mystery series under the name Dixie Lyle) is he never finishes a series! So anyone who picks up his books, please know that he doesn’t have a single series that is finished. Great books, but not for those who get frustrated about unfinished business.
Richard Cartwright says
Alas, his publisher did not elect to continue the series. I wish he would go inde with it if he could get the rights
Ah, is that what it was? I know he said he would finish the series at a later date, so I assumed the muse had fled instead of publishers.
This is a really interesting author. Her story lines often feel like they need a better editor to tighten then up but she consistently develops characters that you want to keep reading about. You feel a real loss when a series ends. She has quite a few series. I believe there is another book planned for the Shinigami Detective.
Oooooo new author to try! Description sounds right in my lane! Happy happy happy!?
Oh I loved this book! I follow the author and auto-buyed it when it came out. Personally, I think it is one of her better works. I re-read it about every 6 months or so. The second one was good too!
Scott Drummond says
It’s a great series! I love the little chapter heading scribbles!
I love Henri and Jamie. I’d like to see more in this series too. I don’t have KU so am slowly working through her back list. Love when I find a new author with an extensive list.
Speaking of backlists I’ve just finished the Miss Fortune audio books by Jana DeLeon. These had me chortling away to myself like a mad person at work, on the tube and walking down the street with a ridiculous grin on my face for 2 weeks. The narrator is a genius and I found it difficult to stop listening outside of my normal listening patterns i.e. at work and commuting. Now I’ve finished them I just want to start all over again.
I read this previously, and the first book as well, and thought they were great. Well worth the price. One of those self-published books that does not feel “self-published”; I actually didn’t realize it was until you said something.
Sherri Campbell says
Love Henri and Jaime. Really enjoy The Human Familiar books, too.
Sherri Campbell says
Another author I enjoy is T. Lee Harris – “The Eloquent Scribe” a mystery in Ancient Egypt. “The Case of the Moche Rolex” – involves Archaeology, cats and espionage. She also has a vampire detective series….
Oh, I love comfort rereads. My current one is Between Floors by W. R. Gingell. I’ve found that a rereadable book is good for a diet because I get so absorbed in the book I forget to nibble on food…which is what I normally do if I’m working. ?
I wasn’t able to get into the Shinagami Detective when it first came out, but maybe I’ll give it another try.
The Lord Darcy books by Randall Garrett and Michael Kurland have forensic magic in them and are really good.
Carolyn R says
Honor is one of my automatic purchase authors. Her DeepWoods series is another go-to comfort read, all the characters are interesting and the relationships grow through the series.
By the book, read the book in one evening, love the book. Highly recommended. I’m going to read more books by this author and see if they’re the same great quality this book was. I may have to blame Ilona Andrews forget me hooked on another author. Great job!
Charlene L Amsden says
First I read the excerpt, then I bought the two book series. You have a lot to answer for. I still have a month of school left and much paperwork to do!
I’ve read both books in the series. I really like her books. She has another series…the Advent Mage that is really good too.
The Shinigami Detective is the first one I picked up of hers a while back. I ended up reading most of the books she had on Kindle Unlimited (Including the Advent Mage Cycle and the Artifactor books) and now have them on my “Must buy when I have extra cash” collection (along with Will Wight’s books). I love most of the books she’s written. 🙂
Maria R. says
I do believe I’ll place this book in top 50 on my “will use eye drops to keep reading, darn it!” list.
Thank you for the recommendation.
Just bought it based on your recommendation. I love your books so anything similar is a buy.
Thanks for the rec, am always looking for new reading material! I’m especially excited to discover someone with a big back catalogue.
Yay thanks for another rec ❤️
I always enjoy your recs, and even if some of them aren’t the type I’d usually pick up on my own, I’m always glad that I read them
Thank you for recommendation. I read sample and I’m hooked! Bought first book. ?
+1. This was a cute fast read. I really enjoyed the characters, they were very likeable. I thought the world building was reasonable and the plot a better than usual example of a cozy mystery. I went ahead and bought the second and quickly plowed through it as well. I do hope more with these characters is in the pipeline.
I love Honor Raconteur! My favorite series from her is the Artifactor series. It made me laugh out loud, and I love that I can let my 10 year old read her books too.
I feel the same way about this book. Couldn’t put it down – it really pulled me in. I enjoyed the second entry in this series as well.
I read another series by Honor Raconteur and didn’t enjoy it as much – although I purchased and read all 5 books so obviously there were some things I liked. I even started a third series and then stopped. There’s something about this series that’s really fun. I think I just really like Jamie and Henri. The other characters are also fun and keep me smiling. Great characterization is key for me – and these characters click and spark.
Interestingly, on amazon the first book is $6.99 but the SECOND is a kindle unlimited freebie. Isn’t it usually the other way around?
Erin Moore says
I loved it! I liked it so much that I bought the next book in the series.
Yep, me too: loved it, instantly bought the sequel.
Knitifacts Laura says
Thanks for the rec. I bought it and started reading last night. So far so good. It reminds me a bit in feel of the Dr Greta Helsing series by Vivian Shaw, which I also found quite enjoyable.
Thank you for the recommendation, I am going to check it out. Also P C Hogdel’s new book and Patricia Briggs new Mercy book were released today.
A comfort short story for me is “Tales from the Shack, Hollywood’s Story”.
Margaret S. says
I loved this book. Have the second which I haven’t read yet.
Terry Quinn says
Thanks for this suggestion. Thoroughly enjoyed both books.
Thank you so much for this suggestion! I got the book and immediately got sucked in and there’s nothing better than disappearing into the world of a book. I am always surprised and grateful to find more wonderful books that are out there, much appreciated!
Love Honor Raconteur! I tend to reread her over and over!
Bought it, devoured it, and bought the second. Thank you for the recommendation; it’s an amusing diversion in a busy week.
Mooncatx the Bliss Crimson says
I like your taste in books. I bought and read the book practically straight through. The second book is even available through Kindle Unlimited and I just now downloaded it. This is comfort food style writing, nice and steady, very satisfying. While I like Henri, I would have preferred more Jamie point of view. This is not a romance, though there is some slow burn going on. It’s a stranger in a strange land story, and it’s very enjoyable. Jamie Edwards is a delightful character, and I’m a sucker for lost girls characters, from Alice in Wonderland and Dorothy and the Wizard of Oz, and I especially like having a character both practical and adventurous as Jamie, former FBI agent, now detective in a semi-victorian era steam punk style magical world. So, so delightful. And, as a right back atcha recomendation, I’d like to mention A Rag Doll’s Guide to Here and There – also a lost girl story, just out by Richard Roberts who does the Don’t Tell My Parents I’m a Super Villain books. It does start out quite awful, as in horrifying to my tender heart, but then there is a POV switch to our true main character and I’m a weeping mess at the end. No romance at all, but a magical adventure suitable for many ages. Off to read book two of Jamie and Henri’s adventures now.
I got this book yesterday, read it without stopping and completely enjoyed it. The relationships were completely believable. The ending was a bit predictable but I didn’t mind that at all. I appreciated the fact that even the best can still be tripped up by an assumption.
Okay, reading it now. Is anyone else getting a strong Tom Baker-circa-Doctor Who vibe from his physical description?
Thank you. Always looking for a new read. Thoroughly enjoying this book.
Aleea Brewer says
This was a fun and very enjoyable read. The second book, “Charms and Death and Explosions” is also a good read. Truth be told, I love Honor Raconteur’s writing. Her Deepwoods and Kingmaker series were a treat.
you aren’t allowed to recommend any more books. I stayed up way too late reading this
++ The second one came out a month or so ago, and was just as cute.
Thank you for the recommendation. This is a wonderful book and I found a new author I love. If this book-writing thing doesn’t work out you could always run a reviews website. ??
I haven’t read this particular book – yet. But I have purchased and read two other series by Honor Raconteur and I definitely enjoy her books.
Was rereading one yesterday actually!
I love your book recommendations. One of my favorite books o the last couple years was Tsumiko and the Enslaved Fox. I’ve been in a reading slump, so thank you, thank you, thank you!
Erin Valentine says
That was a great book.
Thanks for the suggestion! The setup sounds a lot like DD Barant’s Bloodhound Files, but possibly less bloodthirsty :).
Erin Valentine says
D. D. Barant’s Bloodhound Files had a female cop pulled into an alternate universe to solve a serial killer problem. I liked the first several books in that series. Cool take on golems, as I recall.
Erin Valentine says
Should have read comments before I posted my comment on the series. 🙂
Anne Pond says
What a fun book! I love discovering new series. I do enjoy Jamie and Henri and look forward to book no. 2!
Thank you for recommending this. I loved spending time with these characters and thoroughly enjoyed the book. I look forward to reading the next one.
Thank you for the recommendation.
Tried the sample, read the book, immediately bought the 2nd book, finished it at 2.30am last night. Loved them both!
I miss Terry Pratchett. Thanks for the recommendation.
George Bailey says
Just finished this book – a fun read, and I am looking forward to others in this world.
Thanks for the recommendation !!!!
Cherylanne Farley says
Appreciate all the good informative comments. I saw this the other day but authors name RACONTEUR really??? Gave me pause. Recheck.