Unholy Magic (Downside Ghosts #2) By Stacia Kane

For Chess Putnam, finding herself near-fatally poisoned by a con psychic and then stopping a murderous ghost is just another day on the job. As an agent of the Church of Real Truth, Chess must expose those looking to profit from the world’s unpleasant little poltergeist problem—humans filing false claims of hauntings—all while staving off any undead who really are looking for a kill. But Chess has been extra busy these days, coping with a new “celebrity” assignment while trying on her own time to help some desperate prostitutes.

Someone’s taking out the hookers of Downside in the most gruesome way, and Chess is sure the rumors that it’s the work of a ghost are way off base. But proving herself right means walking in the path of a maniac, not to mention standing between the two men in her life just as they—along with their ruthless employers—are moving closer to a catastrophic showdown. Someone is dealing in murder, sex, and the supernatural, and once again Chess finds herself right in the crossfire.

Okay.  *Deep Breaths*  I will not gush.  I will write a decent review of this book.  *Deep Breaths*

Unholy Magic picks up a few months after its predecessor.  We find that Chess is still pretty much just existing in a pill-induced haze, while still sleeping with Lex and being “friends” with Terrible.  She gets roped into to working for two different cases, one for the Church and one for Bump, her drug dealer.  The Church sends her to a TV celebrity’s house to invcestigate a haunting, while Bump wants her to investigate a string to dead hookers.   In typical Chess fashion, both cases get her in serious trouble.   Her lifestyle habits become a serious issue, she is caught in a very dangerous love triangle, and she continues to make bad choices. I don’t really want to say more about the plot because there are lots of twists and turns and I am trying to avoid spoilers. 

What I can say, is this is hands down the best book I have read so far this year.  Sometimes, overly dark and gritty books bother me, but these characters are just so fascinating, I cannot wait to learn more about them.  Honestly, if I met Chess, Terrible or Lex in real life I would walk the other way.  All 3 of them are essentially criminals, living in the bowels of society and yet, you just want something good to happen to them so badly it hurts.  I found myself cheering on Terrible as he beat some money-owing druggie senseless: “Go Terrible, you break his leg! …did I just think that??”  At one point, Chess is without her pills and I was all “Oh God! Someone get Chess her pills!! …wait what?”  There were times I wanted to strangle Chess, but then I wanted to give her a big hug and tell her it would be okay.  And Terrible! Oh, Terrible.  We learn so much more about him in Unholy Magic, and if I didn’t think I would confuse the hell out of people, I would proudly sport a custom made “Team Terrible” shirt.   I love him that much!  But oh did he break my heart in this one.  I want to quote him so badly but it would give it all away.  He made me cry not once, but twice!  Actually, the entire book was extremely emotional, I had a hard time sleeping when I finished.  So…seriously…guys, girls, trannies, whatever, you NEED to read this series.   It’s very dark (so much so that I don’t recommend eating while reading at some points), but so different, intriguing, gut-wrenching, thought-provking…okay I will stop.   Just know that the 3rd book, City of Ghosts, comes out July 27th.  Longest. Two Weeks. Ever.

Rating:  10


11 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Jen D.
    Jul 14, 2010 @ 10:35:58

    I need to get with the program and jump on the Stacia Kane wagon. I’ve heard nothing but great things about this series. Maybe I’ll just wait until the 3rd book drops so I can pick them all up in one shot.

    I kinda just skimmed this review since I haven’t read book 1 yet but, I’m sure it was great.


  2. KC
    Jul 14, 2010 @ 11:19:04

    Everyone is gushing about this series and now I feel left out because I haven’t read it 😦 So, due to peer book pressure and wanting to be part of the in-crowd I’m buying book #1 tonight. Woohoo!!!


    • Tomy
      Feb 08, 2012 @ 17:44:46

      I've heard great tinhgs about this series and will have to pick them up as soon as my TBR load lightens a little. Great review!


  3. Kindlelicious
    Jul 14, 2010 @ 11:50:59

    Jen–Waiting until the 27th to buy all 3 is a great idea. I am in misery waiting until then!

    KC–Peer pressure is why I bought the first! Heehee, I can’t wait to see what you think! Some parts are tough to stomach no doubt, but it’s so worth it!


  4. Mandi
    Jul 14, 2010 @ 15:53:05

    AHHHHHHHH!!!! I finished this one last night. OMG..I couldn’t sleep for an hour.

    At one point, Chess is without her pills and I was all “Oh God! Someone get Chess her pills!! …wait what?”

    Gah..yes..I rooted for Chess to get high again, I had tears, I didn’t breathe for minutes. Seriously best book so far this year. I can’t stop talking about it. I can’t stop thinking about it. I NEED CITY OF GHOSTS!!!!

    *cough* M’kay..will try to act dignified. Amazing book/series.


    • Kindlelicious
      Jul 14, 2010 @ 17:38:11

      I so agree! I have been replaying the rooftop/graveyard/slap scenes in my head all day!! Sadly, I was eating when things got really bad for Chess and her sickness…that kinda sucked. LOL


    • Luciana
      Feb 08, 2012 @ 20:28:04

      I agree! She’s loevly, AND an amazing writer. Everyone should read her new series. It’s dark, compelling and totally unique.


  5. Fiction Vixen
    Jul 15, 2010 @ 12:53:28

    “rooftop/graveyard/slap scenes” OMG. This book KILLED ME, hear me girl? KILLED ME!! <—that me loud'n up. Great review. 🙂


  6. Fiction Vixen
    Jul 15, 2010 @ 12:53:51

    damn typo…grumbles.


  7. Kindlelicious
    Jul 15, 2010 @ 13:11:11

    It killed me too! And now I have already read a review on City of Ghosts and it doesn’t look like we will get the closure we are all hoping for! Gotta get away from these series! 🙂


  8. Trackback: Review Unholy Ghosts by Stacia Kane | Review Unholy Magic by Stacia Kane |

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