Chloe Nichols is holding her breath. All her life, finding true happiness with a family has seemed as easy as...well, snagging a bubble off the wind—a bubble that her current boyfriend seems dead set on bursting. Yes, every time Chloe mentions her one true desire, Kyle shoots down her hopes. But he hasn’t reckoned with the awesome power of Gypsy magic, or with loyal kith and kin. One way or another, Chloe’s going to get her happily-ever-after. One could sometimes be found after you’d convinced a man he loves you, right? All Fate needs is a little puff in the right direction...
Publisher: Dorchester Publishing
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Single Title/Series: A BREATH OF MAGIC is Book Three in the Magic Series but it can also very easily be read as a stand alone novel.
Cover Thoughts: Enchanting is a word that immediately comes to mind when I look at this cover. Its just so vibrantly colored and really catches the eye. Plus, it hints to the heroine's magical gift which is a total bonus in my opinion when a cover adequately conveys the plot within.
Why I Read It: I was offered a copy for review by the publisher.
Chloe Nichols is a desperate woman. Despite the newly found distant blood relation with her long time best friend, Alice, along with the outpouring of love and acceptance from her newly acquired family, there's still a gaping hole in Chloe's heart that needs filling. It also doesn't help that her magic has yet to make an appearance; if in fact it ever will. Feeling left out on a whole bunch of different and complicated levels, Chloe is opting for action rather than await fate and all the uncertainty that entails. Coercing her cousin Elizabeth to bake a magical cake that'll ease her boyfriend's commitment fears, Chloe plans to propose and get started on her life despite the niggling doubts that constantly assail her. And she's not the only one. With the dire circumstances calling for extreme measures, Chloe's family launch an intervention that puts her on the path to four very different fates but only one can hold the key to all her dreams.
Enter Ben Malone. A drop dead gorgeous hunk of man meat that can heat a woman from head to toe with one glance, Ben ensnares Chloe in his web completely by chance. Never in her entire life has Chloe felt this way for a man and the effect has the ability to throw all her carefully rushed plans with her boyfriend out the window. It's also at this time that Chloe's magic bursts free along with a startling side effect of the dead seeking her out for help. The first ghost to plead her case: A teenage girl and she's some how connected to Ben. What Chloe soon realizes is that this path towards her happiness isn't going to be easy but rather there's a whole boatload of trouble that needs to be sorted out before any Happily Ever After can be attained.
Trouble Number One: Chloe discovers quickly that Ben is her fated mate. Alice, her cousin and best friend paints the future and she has a portrait of Chloe and Ben at the their wedding day. Not only does Chloe marvel at the happiness she views in her own painted face, she also falls directly into the painting feeling emotionally the powerful love that she has for Ben. Grasping onto this fate with wild abandon and a healthy does of desperation, Chloe is soon thoughtlessly trampling a few hearts and toes to get to her final destination.
Trouble Number Two: Ben is Chloe's complete opposite. He's a man of black and white while Chloe's new age spirituality allows her to view the world in a million shades of grey. He's all about numbers which have added up nicely for him in the form of a big beautiful home while Chloe is still clipping coupons and lives in a tiny apartment that can barely be dubbed livable. Finally, Chloe is recently being visited by ghosts and has also has come into her magic while Ben doesn't and can't and won't...
Trouble Number Three: Ben has a lot of emotional baggage. Without Chloe's magical gift to impart her will on others, he may never have even agreed to go out with her. This bit of "urging" on Chloe's part has her "pushing" Ben over and over again - all of which are little things but due to her need for him and their future that is fated, Chloe can't subdue her desperate emotions which consequently drive her magic. Frighteningly enough, there's a crazy ease with which Chloe can use her magic. To will someone to do what you want is a dangerous gift if used without a strong personal will power of one's own. With Chloe's desperation driving her magic, she's not stopping at all to think about the consequences but rather forges ahead while leaving a burning wake behind her. But the blaze catches up with her soon enough.
All of Chloe's troubles lead her to face each one of the four fates that Alice has painted and while only one leads to ultimate happiness, one also reveals the possibility of Chloe losing everything including her new family. If she doesn't control her emotions and the magic with she wields thoughtlessly over the will of others, Chloe will lose everything she holds dear. She must cease her crazed desperation for a happily forever after and learn to appreciate what she has already which is the love of a wonderful family. Chloe must first discover who she is, embrace her findings and live life. Only then will she be able to claim Ben as hers.
A BREATH OF MAGIC was exactly that, a breath of magic - or rather a book of magic. Told in first person, this is Chloe's story through and through about her growth from a terribly uncertain woman to one that fights adversities of her own making to eventually become a woman strong of heart and soul. A better person really.
Initially, I wasn't a fan of Chloe at all. She reeked horribly of desperation and the journey via her POV was often cloying but it soon became apparent that Chloe's character growth was going to be intense and eventually I learned to just hang on for what proved to be one wild ride. While desperate and a bit frantic, Chloe quickly turned endearing with her openness to others, her unfailing love for those that need help as well as her determination to bring light to Ben's darkened existence. In addition, her magic proved to be incredibly layered and really reflected who she was as a person. Her desperation was evident in her power to change another's will. Her tenacious will to help others magically manifested in her ability to help those that were trapped within the inbetween. For me, this is what made this paranormal unique. One's gifts didn't rest solely with the physical but was instead completely character and emotionally driven.
A BREATH OF MAGIC is a quirky and fun romance, one that conjures laughter and tears leaving you a true fan of the author. Be prepared to simultaneously wish to both strangle and hug Chloe while she makes many mistakes as well as good decisions. All in all this is a story about a woman for women and it can't get much better then that.
Oh yeah, the hero is totally hot and a magic all unto himself. Enjoy!
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