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Shadow Magic

Darkling Mage, Book 1
Narrated by: Luke Daniels
Length: 7 hrs and 35 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (6 ratings)
Regular price: £18.29
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Summary

The gods are dying. But for one man, death is only the beginning. 

Murdered as a ritual sacrifice, amateur thief and professional charmer Dustin Graves mysteriously survives, finding himself gifted with strange, dark magic. Then more dead bodies turn up. Some are human, but one is a god of the old world, slain at his own doorstep. 

Mortal or divine, the bloodshed must end, and Dust is the mage for the job. But first he must contend with a succubus, a talking sword, a spider queen, a goddess of magic, and eldritch abominations from beyond the stars. No big deal...right? 

If you like snarky heroes, snappy dialogue, and a bit of grit and gore, you'll love the first standalone audiobook in Nazri Noor's series of urban fantasy novels. Explore the Darkling Mage universe and discover a taste of Shadow Magic today.

©2018 Nazri Noor (P)2019 Nazri Noor

What members say

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

New series starts strongly

I had previously read the ebook version and enjoyed it in that format, but it meant I was not going into this version blind. Luckily, this book is one that stands up to rereading/listening with a well-realised world and magical system, filled with an array of interesting characters.

Dustin, the main character, is a Hound for a shadowy organisation, which means he steals potentially dangerous magical items from those who do not understand what they have, he is a likeable mix of competency and idiocy with a healthy dose of snark to round things off.

Anyone who has listened to a lot of audiobooks will probably be very familiar with the prolific Luke Daniels who delivers another quality performance with his narration, bringing the characters to life as always and my only slight quibble is that some of the voices he used in this one sound just like some from another series I am listening to at the moment, but luckily they work well in both places.

Overall, an enjoyable book becomes an even better audiobook and I will eagerly look out for the other books in the series to follow this one onto the format.

[Note - I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.]

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Tyler Mitchell
  • 03-03-19

A new fantasy world and series to fall into

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

With that done, this is a great book. The narrator hits it out of the park with the voices, enough variance in tone and cadence with the characters to make them a great listen. The story, while treading in familiar water, swims in a different way. A touch of battle magic, a hint of spying, a dash of awkward main character and amusing side characters makes a great book. If you're looking for something new, in the fantasy/hidden magic world sort of setting this will scratch that itch.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Myztikal
  • 21-03-19

Amost 3 Stars

Almost 3 Stars
Language (mostly F bombs); seems over gratuitous, as it comes and disappears

Snafu in my copy @ 7m26sec into the audio.

There’s something to be said about snarky main characters. Well, a few things. One, they can all start to sound alike. Or like teenagers. Two, they talk to the reader/in their head way too much or over explain or over simplify. Three, the author gets ahead of the game while breaking the wall and the details don’t mesh.

In this case, the snark is just enough to keep him front and center; it also keeps him from melding into all the other snark out there.

But he does talk/think too much. Annoying. I have no qualms with people who talk too much, but daaaaamn. Shut it already. This brings new heights and definition to telling, not showing.

And the third point is spot on. Supposedly, Dust has only been in this new realm/afterlife for a couple weeks. Well, he tells us he’s only been dead a couple weeks, when he learns about this plane that exists with us Normal human beings. So did he have osmosis that in a couple weeks he’s learned so much about everything in this new reality? I find it incredibly hard to believe, in turn hard to swallow.
Shadow stepping, in his cockiness when we meet Dust is a piece of cake. When we get to Magical Transportation explanations in Chapter 6, it turns out he misspoke. Like grossly misspoke because he’s a novice, by admission, and it was dark and spooky or not recommended.

The world building, as hinted earlier, is more solid than to be expected, but makes one wonder how he knew so much in so little time. If the delivery wasn’t in first person POV, it would have exceeded 99% of the books out there.

I did like the characters, overall. But had I opened a fortune cookie that hinted the above, I would have passed.

Being in Dust’s head or crosshairs aside, the writing, itself, was above average.

The climax, ‘twists, turns’ is predictable and common.

Yay for no apparent love triangle.

Luke Daniels was amazing. I don’t think I’ve ever described another narrator like that. Hands down, he’s the reason I gobbled this up so quickly.

Would I follow the series? Maybe. IF I happen to come across the others. And IF my Listening Library isn’t overflowing with To Be Listened. And IF Luke narrated the others. But most likely not.

It’s a more solid and entertaining book than a lot of Urban Fantasy out there. But it’s not a must-have. I wasted a credit on this.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • DSI
  • 14-03-19

Excellent Start for a New Series

I had no expectations going into this book. I had not herd of it before, and had not read any reviews. I also did not read the prequel, Penumbra. The tone and pacing of the story are both well done. The magic system is different. The plot is interesting, and the story was great. The narrator, Luke Daniels, did an excellent job with the voices, tone, and pacing. Overall it was a great experience and I look forward to the rest of the series.

Disclaimer: I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Cleocutie
  • 14-03-19

Good story

Good start to a new series. The plot is interesting and the magic system is different.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • N. Nitzel
  • 05-03-19

Great story, great characters, interesting world.

I don't know if my expectations were just low going in but man what a great book this was. Story starts off at a fast pace. Love the main guy (though a bit frustrating how dim witted he can be at times). And of course Luke Daniels kills it without fail. You can't beat him.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Randy Murphy
  • 03-03-19

Very well done

Great start to a new series. Hesitated when I first saw it but was very much proved wrong. The MC is very well done and proves to be someone capable of carrying the story forward. Luke Daniels does a fantastic job of bringing this world to life. I received a free copy of this audio in exchange for an unbiased review.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Juan M.
  • 03-03-19

Wow...So GOOD!

Loved the story and the narration. Luke Daniels did a great job once again. Great urban fantasy packed with believable characters and magic.

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Cyphers Fallen
  • 28-02-19

Good Start To A Series

I really liked the main character Dustin. He has a sense of humor and quick wit to back it up. The story has a fresh take on magical powers and the supernatural. The ending was extremely enjoyable and had a grand battle to boot. The Narration is spot on for conveying the tone of the story. I am looking forward to listening to the rest of the series.

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Ryan
  • 26-03-19

Great narration. Story fell short for me.

I have listened to Luke Daniels before and like him as a narrator. His performance in this book was also well done. Good enunciation and emotion given to the voices of characters. Different characters sounded different and I could easily tell who was who. These are the important points for me and he hit them all splendidly.

The story in this book is very confusing at first when you are dropped in to the middle of a scene with no introduction and the situation is slowly explained over the course of the book. The main character was not very likable for me as I have never really been a fan of weak-willed characters with false bravado. The different situations in the book never felt real or dangerous for the main character either. Everybody, friend or foe, was nice to the main character and it really made everything feel fake. The abilities in the book seemed interesting but were never really used much or given good descriptions. I think this story could have been good but the execution fell short.

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

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  • TU
  • 26-03-19

Awesome new series!

I was given this free review copy audio book at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

This was a great urban fantasy series start. I really liked the characters and thought the author did a pretty good job of world/character building. The narration is fantastic by Luke Daniels. Definitely a series I will follow.