Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Smoke & Mirrors by Jess Haines (Blackhollow Academy, #1)

Smoke and Mirrors
by Jess Haines

My rating: 5 stars

Series: Blackhollow Academy - Book 1
Publisher: Jess Haines (April 30, 2016)
Publication Date: April 30, 2016
Genre: Fantasy
Print Length: 321 pages
Available from: Amazon | Barnes & Noble
A girl who uses her illusions to fool the world into thinking she's just like all the other magi.

A dragon who sees through her lies.

Together they just might survive a world that wants to control or destroy them both.

Kimberly may wield ultimate cosmic power, but even a mage has to pay the rent. No one will hire her for her magic talents until she's got the credentials, so she’s stuck in a crappy rent controlled apartment with her mother, yearning for treats she can't afford at her part time job in a cafĂ©, counting down the days until she graduates the secret Blackhollow Academy school for magi. Only then will she have the certificate she needs to land her dream job in a coven.

The problem? She needs a familiar to graduate.

As an illusionist, she doesn't have the ability to summon or create a familiar of her own. Her only option is to convince a supernatural creature to let her bind it instead. Since having a powerful Other at her beck and call would guarantee her a place in a coven after she graduates—and legendary treasure hoards are an added bonus—she thinks binding a dragon as her familiar will solve all her problems...

Because sometimes a girl needs a dragon, not a knight....

Smoke & Mirrors by Jess Haines (Blackhollow Academy, #1)
Smoke and Mirrors (Blackhollow Academy, #1)In a world where mages and other magical and paranormal beings reside, the one thing you do not want to be is a sorceress, especially when you are a teen just trying to get through her last days of school unnoticed. Kimberley has a secret, although a diligent student at Blackhallow Academy for mages, she must hide the fact she is a sorceress or waking up dead one morning would not be out of the question. Although she is far more powerful and creative than her classmates, everything she does could be dangerous as all of the sorcerers were long though killed off in the belief they are evil and practice dark magic.

Like every student at the end of the year, there are finals, and Kim is told she will need to find a familiar to bond with, one more powerful than any other, a dragon. It isn’t like she can go to the school supply store and get one, nor can she conjure one, but she has a name, a contact who may just be able to do the impossible and get her a volunteer.

Enter Cormac, handsome, brash and a bit of a rogue, he is also her last hope to find a familiar. But Cormac has a secret, a very BIG secret and only when Kimberley is in danger does he give it up. But instead of being her hero, he discovers the wrath of a woman lied to and let’s just say, I fell in love with Kimberley’s character even more! Few have what it takes to stand up to Cormac, but kudos to Kimberley and kudos to Jess Haines for a fabulous tale that made me smirk, get angry and forget that it is all fantasy!

To say that Smoke and Mirrors is entertaining, filled with tense, tender and quirkily funny moments would be an understatement! Easy to read, easy to follow and completely engrossing, I loved every minute of the banter between Cormac and Kimberley, not to mention the amazing cast of characters that made them look even better! Guess it goes to show that even the big dog on the street is no match for a determined woman who knows her own mind and heart.

I received this copy from Jess Haines in exchange for my honest review.

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