An Allie Beckstrom Novel , Book 8
ISBN: 978-0-451-46448-4
April 2012
Paranormal Romance

Portland, Oregon - Present Day

For Allie Beckstrom, the last few months have been one magical battle after another, but this last one has turned her life upside-down.  When she explains to the head of the Portland Authority that magic itself has been tainted and that Veiled (dead magic users) are infecting the city, Allie does not get the response she expected.  Instead, Allie finds out that she's been set up with the police on embezzlement charges, and now she and her friends have broken their ties with the Authority.  Allie and her Soul Complement and lover, Zayvion Jones, along with Shame Flynn; his mother Maeve; her lover, Hayden; Victor; and Terric are still determined to do what they can to save the city, but they need to hide their action—and their magic—from the Authority.  As if she's not dealing with enough, Allie is able to see magic all around her, something she previously could only do by casting a Sight spell, and she also cannot use magic or be close to an active spell without becoming physically ill.

Allie gets the idea to retrieve samples from the magic wells and then test them to see if they can figure out what is going on.  Unfortunately, the only doctor/scientist that she can trust to not turn them in is Eli Collins, once known as Collins the Cutter, and he is only willing to help them for a price.  His crimes resulted in him being Closed (having his memories erased by the Authority) and now he wants them back.  And Collins is not the only one looking to make that deal.  Allie is willing to do whatever it takes to restore magic and save Portland from the “epidemic” that is killing so many citizens—but she has no idea just how high a price that will be.

Very little time passes between the books in the series, so once again, MAGIC WITHOUT MERCY picks up right where MAGIC ON THE LINE ends up—the aftermath of Allie's meeting with Bartholomew Wray, the acting head of the Authority in Portland .  Wray is against using tech to enhance magic, and since this was something that Allie's now deceased father spearheaded, Wray blames Beckstrom Industries and will let Portland fall in order to prove that magic doesn't need the help of tech.  Now that they've broken from the Authority, things will be harder for Allie and her friends, but she's determined to save Portland and magic.  It's been difficult enough battling their enemies, but now even some of their friends will be against them. 

The usual cast of characters still play an important part in the story, and there are a few surprises, as characters we thought we'd seen the last of return.  This is one series where it definitely helps to read the stories in order, because the tale is continuing throughout the connected books.  So, the events in this novel are often a result of what's happened in the earlier stories.  The Allie Beckstrom series, as a whole is a spell-binding tale that will keep you on the edge of your seat, and MAGIC WITHOUT MERCY is an exciting addition.

Jennifer Bishop