In all good romance literature the author has a choice: give the reader their easy happily ever after or make them work a little for it. The characters can make sacrifices that seem so horribly wrong, but in the end are so very necessary and right. T.J. Klune stepped up in his latest installment from the Tales from Verania and blew the lid off an already incredible series. The Consumption of Magic is sharper, funnier, crazier, and darker than the others and it is also a day of real reckoning. Sam must make some decisions that will leave him and his wild band of miscreant followers gasping and hurting, but Sam will move forward nonetheless and it is not going to be down a primrose path by any stretch of the imagination.
As our intrepid Sam of Wilds gathers yet more dragons to him—this time a pair of gorgeously feathered badass females–he has yet to face the one that told him that he was not yet ready. When he does Sam will be faced with a choice and therein will lie what will turn out to be a devastating consequence that no one could ever foresee. Sam was warned time and again there would be a loss; not everyone will make to the end of this novel and that is incredibly sad. But as in all things with this author, it is the journey, that magical journey that makes you laugh so hard and gnash your teeth in frustration and, yes, quietly weep on occasion.
I wish I could tell you more about this story. I wish I could relate the many times I burst out laughing at the impossible discourse between Kevin the dragon and Gary the unicorn. I wish I could hint at how incredibly wonderful it was to watch Sam and Ryan grow even closer even after Sam finally revealed all the secrets he had been keeping from his cornerstone. I so wish I could tell you that the latest pair of dragons is perhaps the funniest yet and the little twists that Klune gives their personalities is just the best thing ever. I wish I could show you just a little of how Randall finally comes to an understanding with Sam and the two of them have a few moments that are just so heartfelt and lovely even while the snark that is always present between them stays healthy and alive. I wish I could show you how Sam finally understands and forgives Morgan and while it’s still a bit shaky for the two of them, the love Morgan has for his Sam is so very vibrant and healing as only a mentor’s regard for his student could be. But most of all, I truly wish I could tell you that the grievous loss at the end of this novel doesn’t really happen and it doesn’t force Sam to open his eyes to a reality he never really wanted, but one he steps up to embrace nonetheless.
If you have not been following this merry band led by Sam and Ryan with Tiggy and Gary, Kevin, Prince Justin, and so many others in tow then none of this review will make much sense to you. If you have indulged in what I believe is the absolute pinnacle of paranormal m/m literature ever to grace the written page, then you understand why this review is so cryptic and non-informative. In the end, I cannot say much about this novel without giving so much of it away, but I can say this: The Consumption of Magic is the best chapter yet in this amazing saga. T.J. Klune has elevated the paranormal genre—the fantasy genre—the m/m genre to heights I could not even believe possible. This story is clever, poignant, action-packed, and filled with magical, romantic, and hilarious moments that all roll together to produce an outstanding novel.
The Consumption of Magic will make you laugh and cry and laugh and cry again—and it is the absolute best ride I have ever taken! I cannot recommend this book highly enough. I cannot laud this author’s work fully enough. I can only say that you must read this novel—it is simply outstanding.
A review copy of this book was provided by Dreamspinner Press.