Review: Magic Gone Wild by Judi Fennell

Posted August 15, 2012 by Jen in 4 stars, Paranormal Romance, Rating A Tags: , , ,

Magic Gone Wild
Author: Judi Fennell 
Release Date: Aug. 1, 2012
Publisher: Sourcebooks
Bottled Magic #3
ISBN: #978-1402241918
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Format(s): Paperback (384 pgs), e-book
Book Source: Publisher
About the book:
Every time she uses magic, something goes terribly wrong…
Vana wishes she hadn’t dropped out of genie training. Now she’s determined to get a grip on both her genie magic and her life. But the harder she tries to fix things for her intriguing new master, the more she drives him crazy.
Except there’s nothing ever wrong about him…
Pro-football player Zane Harrison finally has control of the family estate and is determined to put to rest his grandfather’s eccentric reputation. Until he discovers that behind all the rumors is a real, live genie who stirs feelings in him he’s never known before. The more Zane tries to help Vana harness her powers, the more her madcap magic entangles his heart.
What Im talking about:
I just adore Judi Fennell’s stories! They are fun, entertaining, and romantic, and Magic Gone Wild is no exception. The third book in Ms. Fennell’s Bottled Magic series is another delightful read, filled with a light-heartedness that wasn’t as prominent in the first two stories. And although this is the third book in the series, it can be enjoyed as a stand alone work, with minimal ties to the previous stories.
Right from the get go, Magic Gone Wild has a different feel than the first two books. Genie Nirvana (aka Vana) has been trapped in her bottle for over a hundred years after the death of her former master, Peter. We learn right away that Vana has a huge heart, but just can’t seem to get her magic working correctly. She makes simple mistakes, such as vanishing the stairs when she intended to varnish the stairs. These mistakes give Vana an endearing quality that Peter’s great-grandson, Zane, can’t overlook. The pair feel an instant, yet almost innocent attraction that leads them to jump into bed (or in this case, the bottle) almost immediately.
Ms. Fennell shocked me by having the hero and heroine fall for each other so quickly and hop into bed at the beginning of the book. Not because it didn’t fit the story (it did!), but because it is so different from her other stories. But all is not as it appears, and the love story doesn’t progress so easily. It is a sexy, enjoyable twist that kept me wondering how all would come together in the end.
Both Vana and Zane are genuinely good people, which makes the pair such a lovable duo. You want to see the two lonely, kind hearts find happiness together. And as I stated, they have an incredible attraction. And holy crow — the heat coming off Zane is amazing. I think I had steam coming out of my Kindle at times. He wants Vana so much and I love it.
Other than the primary couple, there is a conflict with Gary, a jealous high school mate of Zane, who wants Vana and magic for selfish reasons. He adds just enough conflict to the story to create an exciting tension, but not overrun the plot. Also, we have Merlin, the talking Phoenix, who functions as a way to get information to the pair (knowledge of the Genie world to Zane, knowledge of Gary’s nefarious activities to the pair, etc.) He also provides some humor and at times acts as Vana’s conscious.
In addition, there are a number of inanimate objects that are really people who have been magicked into these items – think Beauty and the Beast (Disney). The characters, while not saying a thing, add to the story by helping Zane realize 1) magic is real, but more importantly 2) what is truly important in life.
One thing that was new in this story was the concept of the Fates. Vana messes with the three Fates by changing time not once but twice. And in the end, when Vana wants to come clean and open up to Zane (because she realizes she loves him), the Fates interfere. I was left wondering why the Fates are so interested in Vana, especially since we haven’t seen them interfere with other genies in the previous books. Whether or not it happened in earlier books doesn’t impact this story, and I enjoyed how Vana handles herself when threatened by these women.
Overall, I adored Magic Gone Wild and it’s charming characters – probably the most of the three Bottled Magic books. It had a different tone than the other two and can most certainly be read as a stand alone. I wasn’t a hundred percent on board with why Vana’s magic is so messed up, but in the end it doesn’t matter since when a Genie says “I love you,” she gives up her magic. The book doesn’t spend a lot of time in the world of the Genies and focuses more on the love story between Vana and Zane. We witness the pair spend time getting to know each other as they make their own magic. Magic Gone Wild is a romantic love story with a generous dose of laughs that warmed my heart.
My Rating:
Enjoyed – strongly recommend (A-)

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