ARC Review: Iron and Magic (The Iron Covenant #1) by Ilona Andrews


Iron and Magic by Ilona Andrews
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Summary from Goodreads

No day is ordinary in a world where Technology and Magic compete for supremacy…But no matter which force is winning, in the apocalypse, a sword will always work. 

Hugh d’Ambray, Preceptor of the Iron Dogs, Warlord of the Builder of Towers, served only one man. Now his immortal, nearly omnipotent master has cast him aside. Hugh is a shadow of the warrior he was, but when he learns that the Iron Dogs, soldiers who would follow him anywhere, are being hunted down and murdered, he must make a choice: to fade away or to be the leader he was born to be. Hugh knows he must carve a new place for himself and his people, but they have no money, no shelter, and no food, and the necromancers are coming. Fast. 

Elara Harper is a creature who should not exist. Her enemies call her Abomination; her people call her White Lady. Tasked with their protection, she's trapped between the magical heavyweights about to collide and plunge the state of Kentucky into a war that humans have no power to stop. Desperate to shield her people and their simple way of life, she would accept help from the devil himself—and Hugh d’Ambray might qualify. 

Hugh needs a base, Elara needs soldiers. Both are infamous for betraying their allies, so how can they create a believable alliance to meet the challenge of their enemies? 

As the prophet says: “It is better to marry than to burn.” 

Hugh and Elara may do both.




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REVIEW


I received an e-ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. 


This was my first time reviewing an ERC from my favorite duo of writers! And boy, not only did I loved everything about this book, but also I devoured it within almost two days! The authors mentioned trigger warnings, so that's great and I have to warn you that the book is bloody, gory but still amazing! (I'm fearing for myself right now!)

The story takes place after Hugh's fall from Roland's grace and moved between Kate Daniels and her story. Hugh and his close allies must find a place to settle and hide from Nez, the leader of the Vampire Golden Legion, who want Hugh dead. And lo and behold there's this small coven-settlement of people who are led by Elara, a mysterious witch(?), who also are in desperate need of protection.

What happens, evolves into a marriage of convenience, which leads into lots and lots and lots of banter between Elara and Hugh, while a new danger arises on the horizon. And it's not just Nez.

First, there is a secondary character who uses ASL and some of Hugh's troops can do it too; yes Stoyan I know you like her! We have many supporting characters who are a close-knit family around Elara who despite her nature and her fears, becomes a shield to them and tries to protect everyone she loves. She is very admirable as a leader and deadly.

Hugh, on the other hand, has a rocky road to cross as he comes to terms with his mortality, his loss of Roland's magic and every decision he took in between. Despite being the bad guy in the previous novels I liked reading his thoughts and slowly becoming an anti-hero.

And the best part? The relationship between Elara and Hugh grows slowly; you don't see a rushed romance, but both take their time to get to know each other, which of course will surely span the rest of the books. There were also some really enjoyable cameo appearances, which I will not spoil!

In the end, if you enjoy the world of Kate Daniels and want more before the final book, just read this damn bloody amazing spin-off!





About the authors:

Ilona Andrews is the pseudonym for a husband-and-wife writing team. Ilona is a native-born Russian and Gordon is a former communications sergeant in the U.S. Army. Contrary to popular belief, Gordon was never an intelligence officer with a license to kill, and Ilona was never the mysterious Russian spy who seduced him. They met in college, in English Composition 101, where Ilona got a better grade. (Gordon is still sore about that.)

Gordon and Ilona currently reside in Oregon with their two children, three dogs and a cat. They have co-authored two series, the bestselling urban fantasy of Kate Daniels and romantic urban fantasy of The Edge