The Wellcome exhibition lays bare the way that women have been just as involved in the industry of magic over the past hundred years but in a different way — as part of the spiritualist movement, a different but arguably related tradition. Whereas mediumship is a much more ethereal activity. The stereotypical medium is female although there were male mediums, too. During his search, many people came to him. And he never found one who he thought was genuine.
His magical ability, so he thought, meant he could see through the spiritualists. It was ruled that she was a fraud and Houdini published a pamphlet describing how she had achieved effects that included a bell ringing on its own. Walter was the one spirit channelled by Margery Crandon. He was her dead brother. McGee thinks that the lack of women is partly due to the fact that such a tiny number of magicians have the talent and tenacity to make it at all. There will be a woman who will come out of the woodwork suddenly but it takes time, charisma and a lot of experience.
One of the names being tipped as the next big deal in magic is Laura London. That's why our new email newsletter will deliver a mobile-friendly snapshot of inews. This will feature the stories you need to know, as well as a curated selection of the best reads from across the site. Of course, you can easily opt out at any time, but we're confident that you won't. News Britain's most trusted digital news brand.
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More filters. Sort order. Jul 14, Brownbetty rated it liked it. This was a good book, and I didn't like it. I'm trying to figure out why.
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But really, who remembers Quincey Morris? Like the back copy says "Quincey Morris and his "consultant", white witch Libby Chastain, are hired to free a family from a deadly curse that appears to date back to the Salem witch trials. I think in part because the book presupposes a world view I don't share.
I am uncomfortable with the very title of the book: Black Magic Woman? It seems to suggest a sort of exotic 'she', the unknowable and mysterious feminine. Although Van Dreenan and Fenton don't know this, the children are being murdered by a South African woman, in order to extract various organs to make fetishes. Not the sexy kind.
When you have a white South African as the agent of justice, law, and righteousness, and a Black woman as the agent of superstition, perversion, and evil, I'd like at least an acknowledgement from the book that this is sort of problematic. And then there are the Salem witch trials, which in this book condemned at least one guilty woman, and it seems to hint, perhaps more.
In urban fantasy, it makes sense that at least some historical instances of suspected witchcraft would be actual witchcraft, and yet this didn't sit well with me. So, basically, I seem to be saying I didn't like this book because it failed to conform to my worldview, which seems very petty of me, but there you go. View 1 comment. I don't write reviews. I find the reading of books to be intensely personal and unless pressed I keep the experience close to my chest.
However, the ratings for this book are so surprising I felt it deserved something more from me for all it gave to me. I nearly skipped reading it, and as I am actually on the cusp of giving it 5 stars, I can't just leave a rating without an explanation.
The story is compelling and intense, and the storytelling was masterful. Perhaps others had different expectati I don't write reviews. Perhaps others had different expectations for it based on where it was shelved or the blurb, and thus were disappointed, but I went in blind I don't presume to know why others have been so disappointed.
I only know that I am unabashedly a fan. So much so that I purchased the next book in the series before I completed the first. I can't wait to continue on what is doubtless going to be a meticulously plotted journey of Morris and Chastain, and hopefully also van Dreenan.
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Make no mistake, this tale is not for the easily distracted. The POV is fluid, which allows for the perspective of good and evil alike. The story winds a little throughout time as well as location. It doesn't fit any particular genre to me, but because I spend time in thrillers, mysteries, UF, Paranormal, horror, true crime, etc, it pleased me on a variety of levels. I can't wait to be kept up past my bedtime by book 2! View all 4 comments. Feb 22, Felicia rated it it was ok Shelves: urban-paranormal. Er I dunno.
It started out well. I can't put my finger on WHY I didn't get hooked in. I think it was the character work, we never went very deep with the two lead characters in a way that felt a bit shallow to me. It was as if he was deliberately trying to avoid anything intimate between the two of them. I understand trying to avoid all the sex and stuff that's normally in books like this, but no tension at all? And if not between them, maybe between them and OT Er I dunno. A little humanity goes a long way.
I think since there was no conflict between them, and really anything personal at all they were grappling with, that is why I ended up not really caring about them at all. The procedural story was good, the mechanics were interesting. But honestly, everything is driven by character for me, and these two characters felt very hollow.
I already bought the next book though, so I'll give it another try. The plotting was excellent, but that doesn't do it for me Nov 30, David Townsend rated it it was ok. I was given this book to check out. It only got finished as I was short of reading material and it ended up in the bag on a couple of train journeys. I wanted to see what happened in the end which is probably the best thing I can say about the book. Meandors from start to finish, with probably the biggest anti-climatic finish of any book I've ever read. You read the climatic chapter and think "ah there'll be a twist Simplistic writing, plot and cliche ridden.
Dig out an old Buffy episode you'll have more fun. May 11, Missy Ann rated it did not like it Shelves: life-is-too-short , fantasy , library-borrowed. Gave up on it around page 70 or so. People in Texas do not talk like that. Exposition much? Show me, don't tell me. See 1. Jan 13, John rated it it was ok. Two loosely connected adventures that confront a single evildoer; it's quickly paced and violent with extremely gruesome deeds that could well be a trigger children murdered by vivisection to harvest living organs for black magic fetishes; however, the details are only described after the fact and secondhand.
For a fee, Quincey Morris takes care of paranormal sources of harm, sometimes teaming up, as he does here, with Libby Chastain, a white witch who has a wide range of delightful spells. Hi Two loosely connected adventures that confront a single evildoer; it's quickly paced and violent with extremely gruesome deeds that could well be a trigger children murdered by vivisection to harvest living organs for black magic fetishes; however, the details are only described after the fact and secondhand.
Hired by the LaRue family to eliminate life-threatening, poltergeist-like attacks, they soon find that something truly evil is targeting the family. As the blurb says, they track the evil back to Salem, Massachusetts, and connect it with the witch trials there; a modern black witch with formidable magic powers is taking revenge on her ancestor's accuser's descendants. I hope that's clear so far.
Detective Sergeant Garth van Dreenan of the Occult Crimes Unit of the South African police arrives in New York as a consultant with Special Agent Dale Fenton of the FBI's Behavioral Science Unit to work on the above-mentioned child murders, which are being perpetrated not a mystery to the reader by a powerful Zulu sorceress and her nasty but dim-witted American accomplice on a kind of contract with that black witch in Salem.
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She has two irons in the fire, you see. In the only contact between these two investigative teams, van Dreenan consults with Libby one day and receives a magical tool to help them track the sorceress. Otherwise, the book offers 1 an adventure full of good and evil spells and vicious attacks on Quincey and Libby and 2 a separate police procedural that gradually crosses into the paranormal. The narration switches back and forth between 1 and 2 and leads to two distinct climaxes, both of which make good suspenseful reading. Quincey and Libby's adventure drags quite a bit on its way to the climax, and anyone wanting to read about romance will be very disappointed; they're professionals who know and respect each other and, of course, will save each others' lives, but no hanky panky at all!
Sex enters the story only as a weapon wielded by evildoers. Fenton and van Dreenan are equally professional, and their developing friendship hits a big bump but seems to survive; their story is much more tightly written. Even though the rapidly changing viewpoints of the narration take us into the thoughts of all the principal players, both good and evil, I never felt I got a good sense of them as people; you might say they kept me, too, at a professional distance.
Not quite two-dimensional, because the description of past traumas deepened several of the characters for me, and the revenge motive was often intense. Still, for a rather enjoyable paranormal action tale, it was oddly disjointed. Jul 01, Shelley rated it liked it Shelves: release , demons , dark-fantasy. Morris is an occult investigator and private contractor who, when we first meet his character, takes on a colony of vampires in Lindell, Texas at the behest of another vampire hunter named Jack.
He played a vampire hunter, who like this Jack, has found himself in a pond full of crocodiles with no way out. Morris calls himself an interventionist and consultant of the supernatural. Morris is approached by the LaRue family asking for his help in saving his family from what he believes to be Poltergeists. Morris, upon visiting the house, immediately calls on Chastian to help him with the case and rules out ghosts entirely.
No, it's much worse and alot more dangerous. Chastian is a white witch who also debunks fake claims of spiritualists for the Society of the Advancement of Rational Thought. She ends up revealing the outrageous lies behind a fake preacher and his overbearing wife in front of an audience that is not only shocked, but appalled at his deception. Chastian and Morris have worked other cases before, but this case may be their most challenging yet. Chastian realizes that the LaRue family has been targeted by a black witch, and after further investigation, it is learned that they are the descendants of an accuser during the Salem Witch Trials.
Gustainis takes the reader on a brief sojourn to Salem, Massachusetts and the Salem witch trials. The place where the conflict started between the two families after one accused the other of practicing black magic. We are then introduced to one of the more interesting characters of this book named Detective Sergeant Garth Van Dreenan. He is a hunter and a specialist of the occult. Van Dreenan, it seems, has been chasing the witch who is responsible for the children's murders. He also has a personal vendentta against her as well. This book contains some dark moments, and probably should be considered a dark fantasy novel.
There are children being gutted for their body parts. Morris later has to find a way to deal with his phobia of poisonous snakes before ending up bitten, while Chastian fights for her life after the black witch makes it her mission in life to kill them both. There are vampires, werewolves, zombies, demons, a voodoo queen, white and dark witches, as well as a behind the scenes power grab by an unknown power broker who is looking forward to the Great Cleansing.
Black Magic Woman
I guess we will need to read the next book in the series to find out more about Walter Grobius. They do cross, however briefly, and it ends up with Van Dreenan exacting some revenge on a witch named Mbwato who killed his only daughter. He can't let it go either which truly annoyed the hell out of me. Gustainis also does a sort of shout out to occult classics like the Amityville Horror, and the Exorcist when introducing Quincy Morris and the cases he has worked in the past.
I will have to see how this series plays out when I pick up the next book Evil Ways, but I truly want to see more of the Chastian next time around. Black Magic Woman 2.
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Evil Ways 3. Sympathy for the Devil I gave it a 3, but it's a weak 3. It was just really weird, because it's really two almost entirely unrelated books, making each part feel incomplete. First you have the parts with Quincey and Libby and their paranormal investigation. Aracus EP by qrauer. The experimentation of two musicians striking a balance between individual expression and seamless collaboration.
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