Three Kinds of Lucky by Kim Harrison: Complex Worldbuilding

Petra Grady has known since adolescence that she has no talent for magic—and that’s never going to change. But as a sweeper first-class, she’s parlayed her rare ability to handle dross—the damaging, magical waste generated by her more talented kin’s spellwork—into a decent life working at the mages’ university.

Except Grady’s relatively predictable life is about to be upended. When the oblivious, sexy, and oh-so-out-of-reach Benedict Strom needs someone with her abilities for a research project studying dross and how to render it harmless, she’s stuck working on his team—whether she wants to or not.

Only Benedict doesn’t understand the characteristics of dross like Grady does. After an unthinkable accident, she and Benedict are forced to go on the run to seek out the one person who might be able to help: an outcast exiled ten years ago for the crime of using dross to cast spells. Now Grady must decide whether to stick with the magical status quo or embrace her own hidden talents . . . and risk shattering their entire world.

In her new book, Three Kinds of Lucky, Kim Harrison has created a compelling new series The Shadow Age with complex worldbuilding and intriguing new characters. As I read the book, I liked the premise and the way the magic is described and the unfolding of how magic works in this new work. 

One of the things I especially like is her main character Petra and her abilities. I like how she grows the character and the dynamics of Petra’s powers, including how she slowly discovers that her magic isn’t quite what she thought it was. I also like Benedict, his willingness to be a friend and how their relationship evolves over the course of the book.

While there are some things that could use some clarity at the beginning, the complex worldbuilding helps the book shine. There are some heartbreaking moments, made more so because you fall for Petra and those she cares for. If you like urban fantasy, this is a unique and new world that will make readers fall in love.

Rating: 5 out of 5 dross

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