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Dark Arts and a Daiquiri

The Guild Codex: Spellbound Series, Book 2
Narrated by: Cris Dukehart
Length: 7 hrs and 39 mins
5 out of 5 stars (100 ratings)

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Summary

When I found myself facing down the scariest black-magic felon in the city, practically daring him to abduct me, I had to wonder exactly how I ended up here. 

It all started when I accidentally landed a job as a bartender - but not at a bar. At a guild, populated by mages, sorcerers, alchemists, witches, and psychics. Good thing this lame-o human is adaptable, right? 

Then my favorite guild members - three sexy, powerful, and intermittently charming mages - asked for my help. Did they want access to my encyclopedic knowledge of cocktails? Oh no. They wanted to wrap me up in a pretty ribbon and plunk me in the crosshairs of a murderous rogue to lure him out of hiding. 

So that's what we did. And that's why I'm here. About to be kidnapped. Oh, and our grand plan for safely capturing said murderous rogue? Yeah, that completely fell apart about two minutes ago. Why did I agree to this again? 

Make sure to check out the companion series, The Guild Codex: Demonized, available now, and The Guild Codex: Warped, coauthored by Rob Jacobsen.

©2018 Annette Marie (P)2018 Tantor

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Another Gripping Urban Fantasy Adventure.

Annette Marie is still a relatively new-to-me author, this is only the second book of hers I've read. I was a bit weary starting this urban fantasy series, as she is a well respected YA author and I usually avoid YA like the plague, but I've quickly become engrossed into this world of Mythics, danger and secrecy.

I like Annette's writing style and I found this story as easy to read as the previous one. The prose and pace used was good; the tale never felt rushed or overly convoluted and thankfully came without any information dumps or slumps.

Once again, I downloaded the ebook for free using my Kindle Unlimited subscription and added the narration. This series has been my introduction to Cris Dukehart and again I was impressed with her performance; loving the pace at which she read the story and her slight tonal adjustments for the dialogue. I think Cris has definitely captured Tori's character and the feel of the story brilliantly in her narration.

Dark Arts and a Daiquiri had all the aspects that I look for in a great story: intelligent writing style that’s easy to read, main characters with depth of personality that feels real, a wealth of quality in the supporting cast, believable background story and setting (despite the fantasy genre) and a good balance between different scenes meaning that I got to experience lots of different emotions while reading this story. I also loved the fact that the mystery and conflict was satisfactorily concluded by the end of the book while still leaving me keen to find out what Tori would get caught up with next.

I would recommend this book to fans of mystery stories who enjoy adventure within an urban fantasy setting and don’t mind a bit of bloody action and a sprinkling of romance thrown in.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Great fun

Some stories get a good balance between drama, humour, and other elements that make a good story. This one did and the narrator conveys this well.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Very entertaining

Tori is a human that works in a bar full of magical people and she puts them in their place when they step out of line.

Apartment hunting, getting taken by a ghost while searching for a kidnapped teenager and fighting an even bigger evil. All is not as it seems though - can't say much more otherwise I will spoil the story.

Although there is plenty of snark and humor, more of Tori's vulnerabilities are revealed.

Narration was great - I really like this narrator (good narration always makes a great story much better).

One little spoiler I will make is - D******!!!!! Haha did you think I would spoil it? Listen to it and find out lol

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I am hooked

The first book in the series was OK. I got the 2nd thinking it would be OK like the first. Bar, magicians, guild....

But this one threw a whole new twist into the story line.

I am looking forward to the next one.

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Really enjoyed it. Narrator is brilliant

I enjoyed this so much ive bought the next one. Easy to follow, with rich characters and decent storyline. The narrator is perfect, injects the right amount of personality into the authors creation.

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Dark Arts and a Daiquiri

This is another great book in the series, light hearted with kid nap and intrigue.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Fun story

I enjoy this genre when it doesn't take itself too seriously and this series is amusing but also addresses some serious issues such as the damage child abuse does to the psyche and its lingering effects whatever your origin.
I enjoyed the narration as Chris Rinehart is very good. The book is written in the first person and it just sounded right throughout.

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  • Demetra Toula Iliopoulos
  • 01-12-18

Love this audio story

This is the second book in the series. Once I saw that it was out after book 1 I had to get it . Finished it in a day .
This story involves Tori again with her best friends, the 3 mages . They are hunting a dark entity for a bounty award . They call it the ghost because nobody has seen the face or where it comes from or how it leaves . Tori gets a chance to go away with the ghost . Her friends , the mages can’t pick anything up on the ghost , even with their special powers . Once Tori goes with the ghost she finds all sort of information on him. But more important is Tori finds she can’t escape to go back home. There is sooo much to this story . I know you will devour it .

Cris Dukehart was amazing. Cris pulls you right in amd it seems your right in the story . She has a memorizing voice. Looking forward to book 3

15 people found this helpful

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  • NekodeGomen
  • 21-12-18

I was disappointed

I thoroughly enjoyed the first book, Three Mages and a Margarita. it was fun, witty, and a unique premise, a non-magic human surrounded by magic users! I had high expectations for this one. It starts out fun, but goes downhill quickly. I could've gotten behind the fact that Tori faced in head first over her head because she saw herself in the missing girl, but the rest was hard to get through. Tori's infatuation with the Shadow Mage was cringeworthy. She spends more time drooling over him than anything else. A lot of the situations she finds herself in with him don't feel natural. All this after a knee-weakening make out session with Aaron. The plot twist was good. But the final show down relied too heavily on the Shadow Mage. Three powerful mages and this guy is stronger than all of them? I felt let down by this book. I've been reading Red Winter and Dark Tempest by this author and am in love with them! This one just isn't a strong sequel.

8 people found this helpful

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  • MaGGot
  • 22-04-19

Tééñ Úrbàñ Phantasy

Everyone is a 💓 throb... A teenie boppers fairy fay fantasy.
Entertaining, cool characters, an awsum epic druid.

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Taylor
  • 29-01-19

perty gud

Sooooooooo... Tori probably isn't a mary sue. probably. but that doesn't stop her from being an author self insert, considering she's constantly surrounded by hot men, and... well, I won't spoil it, but there are some scenes that seem like fantasies from a very hormonal teenaged girl.

still, there's a lot to like in this book, and I'm saying that as a straight man. everything is very well written, despite the copious amounts of manservice, which is more amusing than anything else.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Viddie31
  • 26-11-18

Amazing YA novel with lots of magical hunks

Perfect audible to distract from a long car ride in the Dakotas. Can’t wait until the third book comes out!!

5 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Joanne
  • 02-02-19

I tried, I really tried

I hate it when the supposedly intelligent heroine does something so stupid she puts herself and everyone else in danger. Tory is a hothead and in the first book, she did a few impulsive, stupid acts but in this, the second book, she’s beyond stupid. I couldn’t finish it. The narrator is great and she saves the storyline. And maybe it gets better. And I know it’s a YA book but I enjoy YA UF but did not like this one.

4 people found this helpful

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  • S Lotzer
  • 25-09-19

This book made me want to binge-read the rest...

The first book in this series intrigued me enough to check out the next one, but this second book cemented my desire to devour the whole series.

Now I’m not going to say I don’t have some conflicting feelings towards this book- out of the four books in the Guild Codex: Spellbound series that have been released so far, this is the one that I find most difficult to re-read. I explain this more below, but it helps to know that I am on my third read through so it hasn’t stopped me much- I still love and appreciate this book.

If Three Mages and a Margarita is a book meant to introduce you to this awesome new world, Dark Arts and a Daiquiri is a book to engage you in the characters’ backgrounds and introduce new dynamics to the world. The book starts with Tori apartment hunting and trying to move out on her own, a subplot that almost foreshadows an underlying theme through the rest of the book; moving the reader and Tori’s attention out of the small community of the Crow & Hammer guild and into the larger Mythic world. Tori is still unsure about her position at the C&H, but this is more due to her discomfort at the thought that she could lose everything once the MPD discovers her humanity rather than the situation itself. From the beginning of the book, we get a bit more insight into her past and the reasons behind her mistrust and general demeanour, and by the end of the book, you can see her start to work through these slowly. You are also introduced to a few other colourful and somewhat enigmatic characters that will make you itch to pick up the next book to learn more about them.

My main issue with this book actually has nothing to do with the book itself as much as it does with Tori- or more-so Tori’s stubbornness. I find that she sometimes gets so hung up on her past that she has a hard time seeing what’s happening right in front of her, or lets it colour her opinions a little too strongly. The reason that I don’t hold this against the book though is that it sets her up for some excellent character building that you begin to see at the end of this book and in the next installments. In fact, this book is invaluable to the series when you consider how much it helps continue to world-build and introduce different ideas and characters. It was also the first book in this series that made me actually cry as well as laugh.

Overall, for me, this book was another hit. Even if I get frustrated with it, to me that can be the signature of good writing- the ability to make a character that is so realistically frustrating that you keep finding yourself throwing up your hands in exasperation but then immediately clamouring to keep reading and find out what happens next. I highly recommend anyone who enjoyed Three Mages and a Margarita to pick this book up as well- it is liable to make you fall 100% in love with this world, and it introduces a character that becomes one of many people’s favourites.

For anyone hoping for more character building in Tori- I promise she gets better. Annette Marie is a slow-burn romance author, but I find that her character development is slow-moving as well. To be fair, it's more realistic. A person doesn't just completely get over their past or personality flaws in just a week or even a month. But over the course of the four books that are out so far, you do get to see Tori begin to work through her issues, and I hope that by the end of the series she will be a bit of a better-rounded character for us to be proud of.

1 person found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Tobias Reaper
  • 19-05-19

not sure what the author is doing here 🤨

i REALLY like Tori as a protagonist, but the author has changed her from a self-confident badass who holds her own amongst Mythics, to a little girl who lets the attractiveness of her quarry alter her thought process. if Ezra told her she was poisoned and how to deal with it, she’d go do it. but apparently not so in this book, because the guy’s so hot. that was the final straw, and it occurred WELL before the book was over. talk about character assassination 👎🏾

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • bjorn temple
  • 05-05-19

I thought it sounded interesting

targeted towards female reader. The obsession with men in this book was not for me.

5 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • jane mcneil
  • 23-01-19

Great performance by narrator. Story line thin.

I want to like the idea of a young, strong, take care of herself gal out in the world. So, I listened to both “books”. ( seems like a already short book chopped in two) The main character has no magical training but mysteriously masters spells and use of artifacts by observing others once. Aaaahhh I wanted a lot more character development. That being said this is a good book if you are a 14 year old girl. There definitely is an audience for it. And parts are entertaining but thin. I was extremely kind with my rating of the first book but had to be more critical here.

3 people found this helpful