Book Review: Spells and Sensibility – by K.L Noone and K.S Murphy

Reviewed: May 16th, 2023
Released: January 29th, 2022
Genre: Historical MM Fantasy fiction

Theodore Burnett has never been a hero. He prefers comfort to combat-spells, and jam-slathered scones to muddy boots. Fortunately, as the youngest-ever head librarian at the Royal College of Wizardry, Theo can spend his days with books and bibliomancy in place of battle-magic or politics — and in any case Napoleon’s been defeated and the war’s been won.

But now there’s a wounded captain of the Magicians’ Corps in Theo’s library. And he needs Theo’s help. And Theo can never resist a mystery, especially when that mystery’s tall and tempting and handsome.

Captain Henry Tourmaline, formerly of His Majesty’s Army and the Magicians’ Corps, requires assistance. He’s returned to London with scars on his body, soul, and heart — war, after all, will do that to anyone. But one of those scars refuses to heal, a curse that’s slowly draining Henry’s magic and eventually his life. The physicians have no answers, so Henry turns to the College’s books … and the College’s attractive head librarian. But the curse is unpredictable, and the last thing Henry wants is to drag someone else into the line of fire, particularly someone as kind and innocent and brilliant as Theo.

Theo wants to save Henry. Henry wants to keep Theo safe. Together, perhaps they can do both … while uncovering a perilous secret behind a spell, a deadly puzzle in the archives, and their own heart’s desires.

Helen’s thoughts: 5/5

I fell in love with Henry and Theo from the very beginning. Such well drawn and adorable characters, each with their own problems and yet so perfectly suited for each other.

Set in the period of Napoleonic wars, with a magical world overlaying it, Henry barely survives his final mission. Suffering from a draining curse he stumbles into Theo’s library looking for answers, and a possible cure. Theo, inexplicably drawn to him, offers to help.

Loved the magic systems, the sympathetic characters and how they both understand and cater for each others issues and quirks as they seach for a cure to the curse stealing Henry’s magic. Though the price may be higher than either of them expected. Can’t wait to read the next book.

Although the start is a bit stilted, the book does smooth out, and the authors have a lovely turn of phrase, for example, this one stuck with me,‘Twilight folded old buildings and antique stone into dreamy cerulean hues…’. If I was going to nitpick then there was some repeitition, we got the point the first or second time, no neeed for more. But overall the characters drew you in, and their story was enjoyable to read.

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If you enjoy fantasy books then you will love my epic fantasy Sentinal series or the Romantic Fantasy SoulMist series. As a new threat against Remargaren is discovered, only one man can wake the ancient guards who can protect them, only he doesn’t know how. Start the adventure and stay for the journey. Sign up to my newsletter and download a free novella called Sentinals Stirring and get notified when my next books are published.

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