A Purpose That Restores Us is the third full-length novel in the Magi Accounts series and these books need to be read in order. As such, there may be mild spoilers for the previous books in this review.
Mads has really settled into his life within the Ono-Nai pride, and has let down many of his walls. Cosmo is everything that Mads wants and needs, but it’s still hard for him to accept that anyone other than Jude can love him. It’s not always easy, but he’s finding his way. After having lived in the pride house for several months, things are evening out for Madeo personally. However, the TDR is still faced with multiple veil tears and taragorian attacks, and the team is constantly put in danger. What’s worse, the Red Cloth, though quiet of late, is a much bigger threat. Evil witches will stop at nothing to steal power. Fighting them is near impossible and it takes a lot out of the magi and shifters.
During a breach at the Great Divide, a new and much more terrible monster emerges from the tear. The attack weakens Mads severely, but even worse, it nearly kills his dyad, Jude. Mads and Jude are irrevocably bonded, as Jude is Mads’ focus. But the magic Mads has can’t save Jude. With the pride gathered, and Logan and Mads working together, it’s a near thing to save Jude’s life.
The pride is also growing, but not for good reasons. The children the pride took in are struggling. Another magi, Ash, ends up staying with the pride to escape more abuse. Cosmo has long been disturbed and disgusted by the treatment of the magi, ever since he learned of the extent of the abuse. With his position on the Shifter World Council, he’s determined to make a difference. It takes a lot more political maneuvering than he’s comfortable with, but Cosmo steps up, knowing it’s the right thing to do. He wants to save the magi, not only because of his mate and his mate’s dyad, but because he values magi as people.
But things go from terrible to horrendous when there is a breach at HQ. Team Gray fights back with everything they have. But when Mads is in danger, it’s a race against time to save him.
This book is long and a rollercoaster of emotion. There are some truly heavy moments of violence, on page torture of an MC, and discussion of abuse. If you’ve been reading along, this book has more of what we’ve seen from the series so far. Though at time it gets even darker. There was even a moment where I was ready to rage quit the book, though in the back of my mind I knew the outcome couldn’t be what I feared the most. To be honest, I also found the pacing off in this book, which had some parts dragging a bit for me.
The focus of this story is much more on Mads’ and Cos’ relationship, and Mads’ relationship with the pride. While there are storylines that deal with the metaplot, including the new and terrifying threat of the Red Cloth, these plot points seemed to take a backseat to the advancement of relationships. In a way, this was nice, as it explored depths with the characters that had yet to be tapped. Mads, especially, is growing and changing the more he comes to rely on Cosmo and the pride. So that was nice to see, as he deserves the care and love he’s not receiving. After a heart-wrenching chapter, it was also a nice break from the higher emotions. But on the other hand, this is where I had the biggest issues with the pacing. I wouldn’t say that it was repetitive, but more that there were a lot of scenes that only moved the plot forward in small bits. I felt that the narrative could have been tighter through some of these sections, especially in the first two-thirds of the book.
The bond between Mads and Cosmo continues to evolve, and we see some interesting effects of that throughout this book. While I appreciated the author’s take on things, and thought it was a clever expansion of the bond, I also had some issues here. Both Mads and Cos are noticing things about themselves throughout most of the book, but neither one mentions or discusses it for quite a while. I know it was done this way so that the big moment near the end would be a bigger surprise. However, I found myself a touch frustrated as it was clear to me what was happening, and consequently, I was not surprised at all with the turn of events. It seemed like a natural extension.
That being said, the parts of this book that worked for me really worked. There were times I was frantically turning pages, needing to see how things would turn out. I really love the found family aspect of this book, and how that continues to grow and evolve. I love that Mads and Jude, as well as Logan and now Ash, have a home where they can be safe and happy. While the sheer plethora of nicknames between all the characters gets a bit much at times, and the time jump at end was a bit confusing, I’m still invested in this world and these characters. I’m looking forward to the shorter novels that will soon be released to expand on some secondary characters, and also to the next longer installment of this series.