Hello, hello friends! I’m so excited to be back for another blog tour hosted by @The Write Reads for third place BBNYA 2021 finalist Accused (KC Warlock Weekly #1) by M.N. Jolley. Don’t forget to check out all the other bloggers participating in this tour: here or click on the banner below! 😍
*Find out more about the BBNYA competition at the end of my post!*
Special thanks to the author for providing a copy in exchange for an honest review.
Goodreads: Accused (The KC Warlock Weekly #1)
Publish Date: 03 November 2020
Genre: Paranormal Fantasy Mystery
My name is Levi. I’m a journalist, I’m autistic, I’m bad at magic, and I swear I didn’t kill her.
Research for the paper usually falls into a few basic patterns. Someone in the city says there’s a troll under Buck O’Neil Bridge, or they’ll call just so a friendly ear will listen to them complain about a pixie infestation.
That sort of content carries me through slow news weeks. It’s rare that I uncover a murder.
Being framed for murder, though? That’s a first.
With the Wizard’s Council hunting me for a crime I didn’t commit, I’ve got no choice but to solve the murder and clear my name. If I don’t unravel this case, nobody will, and I’ll go down for it so hard I might never see the light of day again
M N Jolley is a creative professional born and raised in Kansas City, where he still lives. Working with a background in film and cinematography, he began writing seriously in 2016 and has recently completed “The Stone Warrior”, the first book in “The Sacrosanct Records”.
TL;DR: The first book in the KC Warlock Weekly series was action-packed and full of magic! Told in a non-linear fashion with flashbacks catching up to the present-day situation, the mystery was engaging and I just had to know what was happening! Levi was an interesting MC and it was ultimately easy to root for his success. That said, if certain aspects of the world-building and characters had been better developed, this would’ve had a higher rating for me. This read was a step out of my usual reads but I’m glad I picked it up cos I had fun with it!
I’d had my eye on this book ever since I first heard about it through the BBNYA Awards Finalists announcement. The cover and premise piqued my interest so when I jumped at the chance to be part of the blog tour for it! This was a fast-paced murder mystery set in a version of reality where magic and supernatural creatures (such as vampires!) co-exist in secret amongst humans.
What I liked:
- The story is told in a non-linear fashion with flashbacks to the present day as told from Levi’s pov. Although events on the timeline were occasionally a little confusing, I still really enjoyed the way the story was told! It kept me engaged as I wanted to know what exactly happens to get to where Levi is recounting the events of the previous day under interrogation by council agents who’re holding him behind a magical illusion in a kid’s park. 😂
- Levi was an interesting MC! I wouldn’t say that he’s the most likeable character nor the one who made the best decisions, but I liked that he was just this regular guy without any special powers or magical abilities—he’s not the “have it all” MC with powers, smarts and resources—Levi has a whole lot of luck on his side! I loved his passion for establishing the KC Warlock Weekly and providing the community with information they need to know, despite them. not wanting to commit to his venture. I also appreciated that he was autistic without that being his whole personality (and this wasn’t a story about his autism, it was just something about him).
- The mystery was fast-paced as Levi bounces from one magical person to another in his chase to clear his name and learn the truth behind the community member’s death. Along the way, we meet a few supernatural creatures including a fae and vampire and it was fun how they’re portrayed as regular humans doing regular human things, like being a mechanic and paralegal. I loved the little twists and turns in the story where Levi would mention “this is what really happened” cos I was convinced the whole way through about everything that I thought happened! 😂
What I was on the fence about:
- The world-building felt rushed. Though this is technically set in the real world, I wanted more of an explanation of how magic functioned and about the magical elements that are brought up like wells, ley lines, power sources etc. The details were brushed over and it was a little confusing. I would’ve liked to know how Levi knew what he did, being someone that’s not overly familiar with magic and isn’t licensed to use it.
- The characters were not as well developed as I would’ve liked. The focus is on Levi but it would’ve been great to learn more about Ben, Levi’s “LI”, as he actually plays a big role throughout the whole story. I liked him, although I was wary about how trustworthy he was initially, but I felt that his involvement and the way he’d just know about or how to do magical things were very convenient! The “bad guys”, who were a surprise to me as I wouldn’t have guessed, also felt flat and I never really understood their motive in the end. The speed at which they become villainous towards Levi at the end kind of surprised me because it felt extreme.
- Admittedly, the reveal about the mystery felt a little underwhelming and maybe it’s because I didn’t fully understand the world-building and the implications the reveal would have for the community, but it honestly felt a little anticlimactic.
Despite there still being some loose ends that I would definitely like to know the answers to, I think the story does wrap up pretty neatly and in a way could stand on its own as the answer to the murder mystery does get solved. I’m curious to know more about this magical community though and while this didn’t end up being a favourite read, I still want to see what happens next, especially as Levi finds success in the end (yay for him cos he definitely deserved it).
BBNYA is a yearly competition where Book Bloggers from all over the world read and score books written by indie authors. If you are an author and wish to learn more about the BBNYA competition, you can visit the official website www.bbnya.com or Twitter @bbnya_official.
The sign-ups will soon be open for the 2022 BBNYA competition, be it for authors to enter their books, or for bloggers wanting to be part of the new panel, so keep your eyes peeled!!
Have you read Accused: The KC Warlock Weekly or is it on your TBR?