Review: Lyn Gala – Deductions (Aberrant Magic 1)

deductionsAuthor: Lyn Gala
Reviewer: Diane
Publisher: Loose ID
Genre: MM Paranormal/Mystery

Rating: ★★★★½ 

Summary: Darren is proud of his work on the FBI’s magical Talent unit. However, his own lack of magic means he can never be with Supervisory Special Agent and Shaman Kavon Boucher. The shamanic magic poses a real danger to any mundane who gets too close, so Darren tries to hide his attraction and keep a professional relationship at work. That resolve begins to crumble when a new man sets his sights on Kavon and Darren can’t control his resentment.

Now they have a brutal new case of a suspect targeting magical adepts. Darren tries to keep focused on that crime, but when he starts to show signs of his own magic, he hopes that maybe he can not only be a more effective part of the team but also a real partner to Kavon. He might have a second chance at love if only Kavon can learn to trust his new and unpredictable magic that has changed the rules of the magical game.

Review: Darren is the mundane on his FBI Magical Talent unit and has enjoyed working with the team, even if his lack of magic means his boss is off limits to him except as a professional relationship. When it seems he may have some Talent after all, it not only changes the options with his boss, Kavon, it changes the team and how they approach their current case where magical adepts are going missing.

The story is told from both Darren and Kavon’s point of view.

As the first book in a series, there is a lot to cover to get the story going– identifying the characters, their relationships, the plot of the story and in this case, some world building since the setting is FBI team of magical Talent. For the amount of detail involved, I thought the author handled it really well! I think this is listed as a paranormal or fantasy story, but it’s also a crime drama, a mystery, a bit of a thriller as well as a romance – and it all works!

Initially, Darren’s job, as the only non-magical person, or mundane, is playing intermediary with the various departments as well as with other humans related to their cases. Kavon, as a shaman, needs someone known as a magical adept so that when he is on the spirit plane, the adept keeps his connection to this world. The adept in their team is the one person that does not completely fit, mostly due to the jealousy he and Darren have for each other and the time with Kavon! As they are investigating their case, Darren loses his temper with the adept and Darren’s emotions seem to trigger some dormant Talent in him. However, his Talent does not seem to follow any standard rules, which I imagine will fuel future stories in this series as the magical council learn more or suspect more about him!

Kavon is a shaman and head of the Talent Unit and tends to be assumed as someone who is stubborn and believes he has his own set of rules, within the FBI as well as within the magical community. He has tried to keep a professional distance with his team, but that has been misinterpreted – of course! With the shaman magic come spirit guides, which is a different dynamic for stories based in a magical world.

I really enjoyed this story, the dynamic of the characters worked really well and there are several options of secondary plots as the supporting characters are so strong. While the romance between Darren and Kavon was only one element of the story since there is the setting to be created, I thought it worked for the pace and I think it would have taken away from the essence of who their characters were as well as the overall story. I think this story would appeal to MM fiction fans who like crime drama with a fantasy element to it as well as romance. This is the first I’ve read of this author, but I’ll definitely be looking forward to more of this series!

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