Thursday, May 11, 2017

ARC Review: The Best Kind of Magic by Crystal Cestari

The Best Kind of Magic
Author: Crystal Cestari
Series: Windy City Magic (Book 1)
Publication: Disney-Hyperion (May 16, 2017)

Description: Amber Sand is not a witch. The Sand family Wicca gene somehow leapfrogged over her. But she did get one highly specific magical talent: she can see true love. As a matchmaker, Amber's pretty far down the sorcery food chain (even birthday party magicians rank higher), but after five seconds of eye contact, she can envision anyone's soul mate.

Amber works at her mother's magic shop--Windy City Magic--in downtown Chicago, and she's confident she's seen every kind of happy ending there is: except for one--her own. (The Fates are tricky jerks that way.) So when Charlie Blitzman, the mayor's son and most-desired boy in school, comes to her for help finding his father's missing girlfriend, she's distressed to find herself falling for him. Because while she can't see her own match, she can see his--and it's not Amber. How can she, an honest peddler of true love, pursue a boy she knows full well isn't her match?

The Best Kind of Magic is set in urban Chicago and will appeal to readers who long for magic in the real world. With a sharp-witted and sassy heroine, a quirky cast of mystical beings, and a heady dose of adventure, this novel will have you laughing out loud and questioning your belief in happy endings.

My Thoughts: Amber Sand comes from a long line of witches. Unfortunately, she's not a witch. She does have one magical power, though. She can see true love which makes her a matchmaker. She works at her mother's magic shop - Windy City Magic - on Navy Pier in downtown Chicago. Despite being able to see a person's true love when looking in their eyes, she is unable to see her own true love. Her best friend Amani is a precog who has visions of the future but they have made a pledge not to tell each other what they see.

Beyond the magic, Amber is an ordinary teen. She's good at school. She and her best friend are slackers in Phy. Ed. And she has conflicts with Ivy who is a siren and who seems to delight in making Amber look bad. Her dream is to become a pastry chef but she hasn't submitted her application to the Chicago Culinary Institute for fear of not being accepted. I love her quirky personality and way of looking at things around her.

When Charlie Blitzman, son of the mayor and crush magnet at her school, comes to her for help, she tries to discourage him. He wants to find her father's fiance who is missing because his father wants her back. After seeing a picture, she knows that she isn't the mayor's true love. During their investigation she and Charlie explore different parts of Chicago's supernatural scene and fall in love. Amber tries to discourage this and protect her heart because she has seen his true love -- and it's not her.

When she runs into Amani's true love during the investigation, she introduces Amani to him. Only, she hates him. This makes Amber question her gift. Are all the matches she sees really true love? Or are there exceptions? And, if there are exceptions, might she and Charlie be a match after all?

This was a fun story. I liked the magic and the romance.

Favorite Quote:
"You know what, Ivy? I shouldn't have to justify myself to you, but this is about more than just me. Wanting to find love does not make someone weak; it's not a character flaw. Life is hard, and grueling, and having someone root for you and travel beside you is a gift that anyone in this world would be lucky to have. I'm not saying that people can't be happy or fulfilled on their own; of course they can. But being open to the possibility of love doesn't make you weak; it actually makes you strong."
I received this one for review from NetGalley. You can buy your copy here.

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