Saturday, 31 July 2021

Myths And Music (Black Magick #2) by Whitney Metz

Myths And Music (Black Magick #2) by Whitney Metz
Self published on the 30th September 2020.
Included in my Vegan Bookshop and a Book With a Vegan Character

How I got this book: 
Received a review copy from the author

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

In this second volume of the Black Magick series, Ben Black (formerly Ben Harrison) continues his search for a way to rescue his girlfriend, Carrie, who has become trapped in another world. His stay with the healer, Jacob Weston, has cured him of the illness inflicted by the demon who took Carrie, and helped him to understand his own ability to communicate with the other side, but he is still poorly prepared for the trials before him. 

Ben finally meets the mysterious Camille, who he has been told is the only one who can help him get Carrie back, but soon learns that task is not as simple as he had hoped, and finds himself back on the road. He makes new acquaintances including a trickster god, a great boar, a friendly chicken, and a group of animal rights activists. 

Over the course of his travels, Ben learns more about himself, his past, and his own strength, and begins to consider the possibility that this is the path that was meant for him all along. 

It's been five months since I read the first book in Whitney Metz's Black Magick series, Sigils And Secrets. Myths And Magic takes up from where that novel left off and I soon found myself immersed in its dark fantasy world again, clearly remembering the events that led Carrie and Ben to their present predicaments and enjoying their continuing adventure.

I appreciated how Metz portrays Ben's increasing knowledge of the magick world around him and how he struggles to square this with his previous understanding of reality. On one hand he is physically experiencing the effects of charms, amulets and intense connections with the natural world, but on the rare occasions he has a moment to reflect, it is obvious he cannot quite rationalise what is happening. Ben's growing self-belief and acceptance of his new-found skills provides a convincing story arc throughout Myths And Music and I felt this gave a good depth to his character.

Metz also deftly incorporates animal welfare subplots into her narrative - Henny Penny's changing fate being a perfect example of this. These scenarios worked well along the magickal ideas Ben explores and they often provided real moments of horror to Myths And Music too. Contrasting the darkest of human behaviours with the demonic realm was an inspired touch and I think it gives Metz's writing a memorably unique slant.

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