Chasing Magic –> Book #5 in the Downside Ghosts series
*slight spoiler alert* For those of you who haven’t yet read the series yet, check out my “series review” —> I have Terrible Fever – My Review of the Downside Ghosts Series by Stacia Kane. Do not read further below, as there may be *slight* spoilers as I backtrack bit, and the fun in the series is the ongoing emotional drama and not knowing how it’s going to end up. I highly recommend reading the series, in order, to fully appreciate this book.
*end of spoiler alert*
Loved it… but mostly because of “Terrible”. OMG can this author make him any more swoon-worthy? I was absolutely enthralled with him after the first three books (when this series was first released). I read them all in a row and had Terrible Fever for months. I couldn’t get enough of him. His bad-ass, angry yet controlled tough guy self, with the very unpretty face, and even “unprettier” mouth. But him. All of him combined as a whole (his unbeatable scary role as the gang enforcer, his tattoos, his hulking stance, his scars, even his bowling shirts) and especially his heart made him magnificent in every way. To have such a towering, scary persona absolutely hand over his heart the way he does. Scars, broken nose, and weird “look” aside … he is simply BEAUTIFUL.
But it took what? A year? A year and a half, before book #4 & 5 (this one) were released, and I wondered… will I still see “Terrible” as I once did? Will I still consider him one of my #1 heroes of all time? Will I still catch my breath when he says that one sigh-worthy thing (even in his own slangy, Downspeak way, or maybe especially because of it)?
Will I have read so many other “bad boy” book heroes that he will become a faded blur amongst my list of favorites? And my biggest question… will the author still write him the way she did in the first three, absolutely enthralling books?
I am here to confirm YES. OMG YES!!!! Book #4 rocked my “Terrible Fever” world when the angst-y troubles began brewing again in Chess’s mind and she started rocking the boat again. But this book… just WOW!! It was so much HIM. Them.
Maryse’s Book Blog: I just started reading the latest in Stacia Kane’s Downside Ghosts and my friend Terttu just had a panic attack in the middle of it… Oh oh! (and YAY! ’cause I have a feeling I know why she’s freaking, and I LOVE Stacia’s brand of angst).
Kelly: Let me tell you, I’ve read every one. I am in LUST with Terrible and my husband says if I say “right up” or “aye” again he’s going to smack me.
Melanie: LOVED Chasing Magic and I agree that it is definitely has panic moments where you are yelling no Chess don’t do it. I loved every page and cannot get enough Terrible. My next pet is going to be named Chessiebomb.
Jennifer: Love this book so far…but I think I just got to the angst part, and I had to put it down…I have to give myself a break or maybe a glass of wine instead of a cept, lol!!!
Alicia: I put down EIT to get my Terrible fix and and the first part of it left feeling “meh”…but then I wanted to throw my Ken Doll against the wall! Chessie knows how to eff things up a bit!! SHEESH!!!
Terttu: I loved Chasing Magic and i had my panic attack/temper tantrum when i was about **% in,felt like my insides was about to rip apart, i got over it, luckily.Love how Stacia writes and in this one Terrible was SOOO adorable in his own way. Just loved it. I don’t think i’ll ever get bored of these books 🙂 Maryse,have you read that ‘tantrum’ bit already? Any thoughts?
Maryse’s Book Blog: All I’ve got To say is “Chasing Magic” chapter **…. OMG!!! My heart is pounding! *whew* *whewwwwwww* WOW! The book’s been good but a bit slower paced, but that chapter? Stacia Kane was on a roll, with that one.
Sabrina: I know!!!
Sherry: Is it anything like Chapter 32 ??
Maryse’s Book Blog: Haha Sherry! Umm… no. But It’s a BIG and very pivotal moment in the book… and the series.
Now, I’m not saying he was rocking the boat (’cause we all know Chess is the master at self-doubt, at disparaging herself, and by doing so, unconsciously (or consciously) sabotaging everything she loves, and especially anyone that loves her.
“Hey, Lex.” As always, a confusing mix of emotions tumbled through her head, through her chest. Happiness to see her friend, the desire for him to leave before Terrible got there, annoyance at the way he always just showed up and assumed he’d be welcome – what if Terrible had been with her? Just because he didn’t forbid Chess from seeing Lex didn’t mean he approved or liked the fact that she did.
Oh she’s the queen of that ability. OMG the crazy decisions she makes!! Her deductive reasoning can be absolutely detrimental (especially to herself).
But Terrible? All I can say is he is quite the scene stealer, and he is so realistic it’s scary. Who IS he, Stacia? He is just so tangible that I have to believe you molded his character from someone real, because wow. Just WOW. He is so human, so emotional, makes mistakes, can let his anger get the best of him, can be a bad guy (as easily as being the ultimate good guy) and yet… no matter what, he is always RIGHT THERE with her.
He pulled her closer to him, so close she almost couldn’t breathe, and his stubble made the skin of her cheek and throat itch. She wasn’t about to complain. “Just … damn, baby, don’t ever do that one again, aye? Not ever.”
And we are right there with him.
P.S. That quote just above? That’s not from the big crazy panic attack moment that we all had. Just saying’ 😉 Although… it, too, was quite…. eeeeeeek!!
I love this book, because Terrible was so prevalent in it. Almost every scene, every investigation, private moments (*sigh*), angry moments (ohhhh the angry moments in this one!!!), scared moments… absolutely filled my Terrible needs.
Again, as in the past books in the series, the “investigation part” and the mystery to solve was a tad… wearisome. The magic scenes still… occasionally convoluted, making my mind wander and skim parts, and me, then having to backtrack and re-read parts to get back in the story. And even at times (due to the “Downspeak” slang, or Chess’s errant thought processes) some scenes, and speculations, and mystery/magic problem solving left me in the dust…
Oh right! The “magical mystery dilemma” in this one? What’s the story about?
Downside folks are being sold a bad batch of drugs. So bad that it practically turns them into zombie killers. I mean… even beheaded, they still come at you.
And sure enough, she was most likely the only woman in the world who knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that the beheded corpse of a magic-controlled should would still walk around.
It stumbled around the room for a few seconds, arms outstretched like every stereotypical headless man ever, before a new he’d popped into place. Well, not a new head. It’s ghost’s head, luminescent in the dim room.
It saw her. Looked right at her, it’s translucent features changing as it grinned.
Reminds me of the recent slew of “bath-salt” suspected zombie-like violence sprees, but this book was written well before any of that! But I digress. Chess can feel magic emanating from the drugs, and now she must find out who… and why, and what will happen if she doesn’t solve the problem. Oh and the war between the two gangs (Lex’s and Terrible’s is escalating), so Downside is in an uproar.
Good stuff. But you know what? Did I find some parts somewhat boring simply because I couldn’t wait to get back to the personal side of Terrible and Chess? Hey, I might be biased that way, so who knows. Maybe to those not wholeheartedly obsessed about the two of them could definitely LOVE every moment of the mystery, scary scenes in this series. But I’m telling you, you can’t read this series without absolutely becoming obsessed with the drama that is Chess, Terrible and Lex. You just can’t!
And again, the “less exciting parts (at least for me) don’t perturb so much, because the feel of the book, Chess’s personal dilemmas, and serious SERIOUS mistakes are still completely relatable and in full force. Even if we can’t always relate to her way of dealing with herself via her drug addiction and her destructive side… we can relate to her as a human. So human, despite her magical craft, that the mystery to solve is almost secondary to the main part of the book. Who she is, who she was, and who she is growing to be (even if she tries to fight it tooth and nail) IS the series.
… because some deep part of her still felt alone; would always feel lone. Terrible knew so much about her, knew her so well, but he still didn’t know everything – hell, he’d just reminded her of something else she couldn’t share with him. He never could know everything; she didn’t dare tell him everything. She wouldn’t even know how.
Loneliness because no matter how much she loved him, no matter how much he loved her, she was still just herself, and she could never be more than that.
And Terrible… and even Lex, dealing with the outcome is just icing on the cake. This cake had a WHOLE lot of Terrible icing and it was fantastically rich. 😉 Ya dig?
My rating? 4 stars!! (3.5 stars for the mystery/investigating part of the story, and 4.5 stars (or heck… 5 stars) for the personal part and anything “Terrible”).
Check out the series reading order: https://www.maryse.net/reading-order-guide/stacia-kane-chess-putnam-downside-ghosts-series-reading-order.html