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Arcana: A Novel by Jessica Leake
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Arcana: A Novel

by Jessica Leake

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** spoiler alert ** A fun and unique story. Another world’s magic and historical England collide. A new twist on the nature of what the villain covets, and a broody, handsome, and unique hero. I really liked Katherine’s relationship with her immediate family (her grandmother, not so much). The journal from her long since passed mother was a nice touch. ( )
  waclements7 | Jun 6, 2018 |
Absolutely fantastic. Highly recommend. ( )
  MelissaLenhardt | Mar 11, 2018 |
I'm trying to think of any historical fiction I've read that have a strong fantasy element to it, and I can't. At least not at this moment. What I love about Arcana is the historical elements. Jessica Leake, the author gracefully interlaced a historical setting, namely London with a fantasy component that may just win you over from traditional historical fiction. Not to mention the heavy emphasis on the protagonist's romantic developments.

Arcana is a fairly easy read that doesn't require too much reflection, but entertaining enough with the lyrical, yet comedic bantering between Katherine and the Earl. The magical segment of the story is the story, but it tends to be very predictable, including the villain, with no surprises. In some areas, I almost lost sight that this is a fantasy novel with magical elements. With that said, I still find myself drawn to the characters and the plot, even if it's predictable. This novel reads as it's own novel, but I see so much potential for further series development, that I hope there might be more. In all, if you need a fun read that's historical in nature, but with an unexpected twist (magical element), check this out. Spend a lovely afternoon with this and fight with Katherine, brood with the Earl of Thornwood and imagine strolling through London in the early 1900s.

NOTE: I received a complimentary copy of this book through Singing Librarian Tours for an honest review.

http://justcommonly.blogspot.com/2016/02/arcana-giveaway.html ( )
  justcommonly | Feb 2, 2016 |
Enjoyed this - the romance was predictable (although, honestly, I kind of think they all are) but it was fun getting there. Made me think of Mary Robinette Kowal. The author isn't as good a writer,but for a debut novel it was very good. ( )
  4hounds | Nov 16, 2014 |
Katherine Sinclair has the power of arcana, magic drawn from the power of the sun. Her mother was a Sylvan, passing the power down to her children. Katherine's arcana is particularly powerful, with the ability to heal. However, with power comes responsibility and in the early 1900's, Katherine must be careful to not be accused of being a witch. At the age of debut, Katherine and her younger sister are sent away from their country estate where they have the freedom to roam and ride horses to the stuffy and rule-filled London season with their Grandmother. Katherine must make her debut amid London society and find a suitor that will not betray her and her gift. Luckily, she has her mother's enchanted journal for guidance which warns her of two suitors, each with their own intentions.

I loved the premise of this book, a girl born with magic fueled by the sun who must be careful with how she practices her magic, or be called a witch. Katherine, or Wren, is a great character. She would rather be racing horses with her brother, has an incredibly quick wit and is compassionate and caring. The descriptions of the London debut season were elegant, with the gowns, carriages and dances. The two men that Katherine must choose between are presented early and each of their intentions become obvious rather quickly. The majority of the book is Katherine vying for the attentions of each man, quickly finding out which one means her harm and then regaining the attentions of the other. These parts dragged a bit for me, however, there were some racier romantic parts that piqued my interest. I would have loved to see the magic and paranormal aspects woven into Katherine's story a bit more, the land of Sylvani was intriguing and I would have loved to see what else could be done with the powers of arcana.

This book was received for free in return for an honest review. ( )
  Mishker | Nov 12, 2014 |
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Katherine Sinclair, hunted by members of a secret society for her ability to perform arcana, relies on a family friend, the Earl of Thornewood, to escort her to society events, although she is not sure that she can trust him.

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