Listen free for 30 days

Dark Heart of Magic

Black Blade, Book 2
Narrated by: Brittany Pressley
Series: Black Blade, Book 2
Length: 9 hrs and 56 mins
Categories: Young Adults, Ages 13 & Up
4.5 out of 5 stars (29 ratings)

£7.99/month after 30 days. Cancel anytime

Summary

As a thief, I stick to the shadows as much as possible. But when the head of the Sinclair Family picks me to compete in the Tournament of Blades, there's no escaping the spotlight - or the danger. Even though he's my competition, Devon Sinclair thinks I have the best shot at winning what's supposed to be a friendly contest. But when the competitors start having mysterious "accidents", it looks like someone will do anything to win - no matter who they hurt. As if I didn't have enough to worry about, mobster Victor Draconi is plotting against Devon and the rest of my friends, and someone's going around Cloudburst Falls murdering monsters. One thing's for sure. Sometimes humans can be more monstrous than anything else....

©2015 Jennifer Estep (P)2015 Audible, Inc.

What members say

Average customer ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    15
  • 4 Stars
    10
  • 3 Stars
    4
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0

Performance

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    18
  • 4 Stars
    9
  • 3 Stars
    1
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0

Story

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    16
  • 4 Stars
    7
  • 3 Stars
    4
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

No Reviews are Available
Sort by:
  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Hilary - San Francisco
  • Hilary - San Francisco
  • 25-01-16

Slow and predictable

Any additional comments?

As I recognise that authors are people and that book preferences are by nature subjective, I will start with the good.

Set in a town dominated by magic and magic monsters, the first two books in the series follow Lila, a former thief and hard luck kid with a mysterious past. Lila makes her way back into the magical society her mother left and starts to uncover her past. Teaming up with the good guys from her adopted clan (her new "besties") she fights the bad guys and is generally a tough chick with the skills and magic to beat anyone and anything. I love a fighting, tough-girl heroine with a sword and as such, the story line (despite being an old tried one) had some promise.

However, in my opinion the promise is let down by the extremely slow pace of the book (I ended up skipping huge chunks cause I just could not be bothered), the predicable plot twists and an dominating, annoying, internal teenage monologue.

The incepted romance in particular is a killer for me. The romantic male lead is such a one dimensional "good guy" he could not be more boring. I could not find it in me to care either way if they got together or not. Added to the general ho-hum of the chemistry between the protagonists, Lila's constant, repeated "I must resist this pull between us, because am afraid to get my heart broken again" monologues caused me to hit the fast forward button more times than I could count.

Like the romantic lead, the baddies and the goodies were in general, so one dimensional I could not find it in me to care one way or another what happened to them.

I got this book (book two in the series) as I am stuck in bed with an injury and I could not be bothered searching for something new, but having soldiered through to the end, I wish I hadn't wasted a credit on it. I listened to the first few books in Elemental Assassin some years ago, and I remember them being better reads (listens).

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Amazon Customer
  • Amazon Customer
  • 13-03-19

Can’t Do It

I loved the first book, but can’t get through this one. I find it so BORING!!!!!! From the narrators voice, to the tone/pace of the book, the story line, etc... I keep putting the book down, trying to pick it back up again, and putting it back down. I have no interest to finish the rest of the book; I’m done.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Chris Atkins
  • Chris Atkins
  • 31-03-16

A rehash of book 1.

Would you try another book from Jennifer Estep and/or Brittany Pressley?

Yes, I really enjoy Brittany Pressley's narration. I hope this book isn't indicative of Jennifer's other books.

What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

The ending was obvious and expected. It was too close to book 1's ending.

What does Brittany Pressley bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Her voices are fantastic. She adds depth to the characters that are only available in audio book format.

Could you see Dark Heart of Magic being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

No.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Jeff
  • Jeff
  • 31-03-16

Excellent

Jennifer Estep did it again excellent story great narration I can't say enough about this particular series

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for T. L. Jacob
  • T. L. Jacob
  • 29-03-16

Great YA read.

I liked the story overall. Good character development as well. I purchased this book for the author not realizing it was YA. I was still quite entertained. I think many YA readers would love this series.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Randall R Spear
  • Randall R Spear
  • 16-03-16

I want More

Would you listen to Dark Heart of Magic again? Why?

If for no other reason than to capture all the nuances you miss the first time around.

What did you like best about this story?

Its mix of humor and action.

Have you listened to any of Brittany Pressley’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

Not sure I have, but will search what she has done for more.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes, and fortunately I usually can.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for roxann r henderson
  • roxann r henderson
  • 15-03-16

Estes is the best

Like all of Estep's books! Strong women who can admit she needs other. Both Lila and Gin can kick ass while using their brains!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Sally Larsen
  • Sally Larsen
  • 27-02-16

I really enjoyed this story

I really enjoyed this story. Listened to it in one sitting. It, to me, was even better than the first book.
Some of the other reviews were not so in favor of it, but I have been looking for a good series that keeps me wanting to listen and this one did.
And the auditor was excellent with her voices. I could tell who was speaking just with her voice change.
Excellent read and listen!

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Holly C. Drum
  • Holly C. Drum
  • 18-02-16

Meh

After the 1st book, I thought the story had potential. This 2nd book was way too predictable, while parts of the story were okay. The overall plot is disappointing.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for mlsimmons
  • mlsimmons
  • 18-11-15

Perfect Second Book to a Fun YA Series.

Dark Heart of Magic centers mostly around the Tournament of Blades. It is part of a festival in Cloudburst Falls where the families and compete against each other in a so called friendly way and provide a tourist attraction. Deah was the champion last year. And her family puts a lot of pressure for her to keep the trophy in the Draconi family.

There are some twists and turns in this book. Lila is thrown for a loop when she learns that she will be competing in the Tournament of Blades for the Sinclair family. She will not be able to hide in the shadows for long. She is going to have to try even harder to keep her real identity a secret before Victor Draconi decides to come after her.

I loved seeing more of Deah. While she might be the “princess” of the Draconi family on the outside. This book shows that life is not as glamorous for her on the inside. She has it much tougher than her brother, Blake. She also has much more of a conscience than the two of them put together, but she has her reasons for not standing up to them. I think she will be critical in the final battle with Victor.

The story is a little bit slow building as the families deal with murdered tree trolls which is driving the tree trolls into town and causing a nuisance. We don’t have all the worldbuilding that takes place in the first book, but there is plenty of storytelling and more character development. I can’t wait to see where the final book in this trilogy will take Lila, Devon, Mo and the gang.

Narration
Once again, I thought that Brittany Pressley really nailed the narration of this series. I loved how she did each of the different voices. I was clearly able to tell each of the characters apart. Her pace and tone were perfect. There was one particular character in this book that has clearly lost marbles and she did a great job portraying that with her narration.

**Audiobook was provided to me by the author. This review is my opinion and was not requested or provoked in anyway by the author.