City of Dark Magic, by "Magnus Flyte"
Once a city of enormous wealth and culture, Prague was home to emperors, alchemists, astronomers, and, as it’s whispered, hell portals. When music student Sarah Weston lands a summer job at Prague Castle cataloging Beethoven’s manuscripts, she has no idea how dangerous her life is about to become. Prague is a threshold, Sarah is warned, and it is steeped in blood.City of Dark Magic, by Magnus Flyte (who is really two female authors), is a really fun book. I read some reviews stating that the reader could not get into the book because it was so unbelievable. True. It is. It is crazy and full of unbelievable characters and events...and I loved it. I loved reading this book because it was all of that! City of Dark Magic is just fun. If I were reading about the same heroine in a book by a literary fiction author, then I would feel the need to analyze her situation and choices...but not so in this book. Just have fun with it, and you won't regret the experience!
Soon after Sarah arrives, strange things begin to happen. She learns that her mentor, who was working at the castle, may not have committed suicide after all. Could his cryptic notes be warnings? As Sarah parses his clues about Beethoven’s “Immortal Beloved,” she manages to get arrested, to have tantric sex in a public fountain, and to discover a time-warping drug. She also catches the attention of a four-hundred-year-old dwarf, the handsome Prince Max, and a powerful U.S. senator with secrets she will do anything to hide.
City of Dark Magic could be called a rom-com paranormal suspense novel—or it could simply be called one of the most entertaining novels of the year.
Basically, the plot revolves around Sarah Weston, a PhD student in music at an American university. In a single day, she receives the news that her dissertation director has died while researching and working in a private collection in Prague and that she is now up for the newly vacated position. She receives her invitation from a cryptic dwarf who arrives at her apartment and leaves strange symbols on her ceiling; in spite of these circumstances (which would probably scare most people from taking the trip), Sarah boards a plane and ends up in Prague. Her adventures there involve a prince, her child prodigy student and her Latino escort, Beethoven's "Immortal Beloved" letters, time travel, a corrupt US senator and her past KGB associations, and alchemy. Not to mention a certain reliance on the Infant of Prague. So, crazy? Yes. Unbelievable? Absolutely. But fun?? OH, YES. Really, give this one a try. It wasn't the best book I have ever read, but I had so much fun reading it.
Overall Rating: 4 out of 5 stars