Dark Heart of Magic by Jennifer Estep

Rating: 3.5 stars

Series: Black Blade #2

Parts of this were really good, and other parts were a little boring. I really have mixed feelings about it. I didn’t like it as much as Cold Burn of Magic. The Sinclairs were trying to figure out what evil plans Victor Draconi had. That part of the story was interesting.

There was an annual tournament where teenagers from all of the different families showed off their skills. This was the setting for interaction amongst the families. The tournament did serve a purpose, but it dragged in some parts. I just wasn’t that interested in reading about the battles in the tournament. It was obvious who was the best from the start, so nothing of interest was gleaned from those scenes. It would have been better if some of that time was devoted to the troll murders, which it seemed like everyone forgot about most of the time.

Lila went in search of more information on Victor. The way she went about obtaining information wasn’t the best. She was lucky she didn’t get killed as a result. What she discovered was not what she expected. Many secrets from the past were coming to the forefront, and they had a big impact on Lila. The family secrets were my favorite part of the story.

The YA part of this was really prevalent. I hadn’t remembered the characters being so immature in the last book. Most of them bickered and made snarky remarks. Teenagers can be quite nasty, but they are capable of being nice too. Devon and Deah stood out because they refrained from acting this way. The jealousy amongst some characters was irritating too. All of this was the perfect example of why I usually don’t read YA.

Middle book syndrome was definitely an issue with this story. I really like the overarching plot and the direction that the story is headed, so I definitely want to read the next one.

I received this from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

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