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Trancehack (Magic Born #1)

3.65  ·  Rating Details  ·  74 Ratings  ·  27 Reviews
It’s 2065. Those born with magic abilities live in government-run zones, without rights or freedoms. Fear of magic created this segregated world and fear keeps it intact.

A high-profile murder brings Detective Nathan Perez to Magic Born Zone 13. He’s had little experience with the Magic Born and isn’t sure what to expect during his first encounter with a witch, but he neve
Kindle Edition, 231 pages
Published October 28th 2013 by Carina Press
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(showing 1-30 of 335)
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Nov 07, 2013 Mara rated it liked it
Shelves: pnr
The best thing about this novel is the amount of potential it has: in its world-building and therefore in its plot. Unfortunately it's mostly potential, rather than the actual story. You get an interesting tale, than never gets gripping. You have a cool magic, that sounds weird and clanky. You have a potential drama, that gets watered down by melodrama.

Both hero and heroine are interesting and I think well rounded (or rounded enough). But I could never really connect with them or the "danger" t
All Things Urban Fantasy
Nov 02, 2013 All Things Urban Fantasy rated it really liked it
Review courtesy of All Things Urban Fantasy.

Intrigued but not entirely sure what to expect from TRANCEHACK, I found myself pleasantly surprised by the end of it. A mixture of genres- urban fantasy, crime drama, romance and with a bit of a dystopian government thrown in- TRANCEHACK is a bit hard to explain, but a very captivating read. While I had some minor issues with the book, it was easy to read, very original, and kept my attention the entire time I was reading it.

TRANCEHACK read to me almos
Mandi Schreiner
Oct 29, 2013 Mandi Schreiner rated it it was ok
Shelves: pnr
This book had potential. Set a bit into the future where those magic born are segregated, not trusted and shunned by the humans. Many times if “normals” have a magic baby, the baby is taken and grows up with no record of who its birth parents are. I like this concept. The heroine is magic born. She is feisty and a witch and can hack into data. I should have been in love. Alas. While the world is set up along with a mysterious death, it’s then not really explored. It’s boring and just kind of fal ...more
Lynn Spencer
Nov 05, 2013 Lynn Spencer rated it really liked it
Trancehack introduces readers to a dark and intriguing paranormal world, and as paranormal romance, it works. However, underneath the paranormal overlay, this book also ends up being something of a police procedural at heart - and it's not half bad at that either.

Set in a future United States, Clark envisions a world in which those with magical powers live under laws which force them to live in urban ghettos and which limit their ability to marry, to move outside their "zones", to hold certain t
Oct 06, 2015 Preethi rated it liked it
3.5 stars
Trancehack is an interesting book. There was a lot of potential. There were some interesting concepts. If a book were to be rated based on only the potential and the world it is set in, this book would surely have got a 5-star from me.

The factor:
=>The setting:
In this Magic Born series, the world is divided into two kinds of people: Normals and Magic Born. Magic Borns are identified at birth itself and are segregated into separate places in each city called The Zones. Magic Borns ar
Larry Kollar
Oct 25, 2013 Larry Kollar rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Women, 18+
Shelves: urban-fantasy
Disclaimer: I received an advance copy after beta-reading the first few chapters.

The book is a little harder to review than it was to read. Ms. Clark has either invented a whole new genre, or managed to weave cyberpunk, urban fantasy, murder mysteries, political thrillers, and romance into a new kind of cloth.

Some people are born with the ability for magic, and the government has kept it a secret for years. The revelation, and the resulting hysteria, has had profound impacts on a nation already
Dec 30, 2013 Mandy rated it it was amazing
Sucked in from the word ‘Go’.
Magic Born are segregated in Zones, Normal’s have the run of the best of the country. A DNA test at birth determines which side of the wire you live on and whether you grow up in a family or in an orphanage.
This book just accentuates what I dislike about the human race and being afraid of what you don’t understand. Personally, I see magic as a great gift, if you have the power and responsibility to wield it. I think that’s one of the reasons I love paranormal books
Tory Michaels
Oct 22, 2013 Tory Michaels rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley
I had so much fun reading this book, I really did. I liked the rather grim view of the future it gave. Yes, I know that seems weird, but sometimes you get tired of seeing either a utopia future (a la Star Trek in some ways) or a dystopia (a la Hunger Games). This was neither. There wasn't a grand class of overlords and the vast majority are impoverished and living a sucky life. Yes, there was definitely an underclass of citizens, but it also wasn't something that had enveloped the entire world. ...more
Apr 17, 2014 Ni_kii rated it it was amazing
Really 4.5 Stars

FTC : I requested this book from NetGalley for a fair and honest review. I have no relationship with the author.

After reading the Mojo Queen a few years ago, I knew I liked Sonya Clark’s writing. After seeing this one was published by Carina I decided that this was a book I needed to read. The premise is so intriguing, so different to anything that I have read before that I was excited. I wasn’t disappointed and devoured this as fast as I could.

The premise of the book is simple;
Feb 23, 2014 Aixa rated it liked it
I received this ARC in exchange for a honest review.

If you have an inner geek like me then you will love this story. If you like the supernatural, then you will love this story. If you like science fiction of the technology kind you will love this story.

The first thing that caught my attention was the cover, very bright and eye catching then I decided to read the blurb and see that it was about. Now I am really intrigued. And the final straw was the excerpt that was attached. I was immediately
The world building and lore in this book really blew me away. It was like entering an alternate universe where so much was different, yet so much was still sort of the same. Magic users exist, and most of the Normals are afraid of them. So they have been rounded up into what is basically several ghettos. They are only allowed to leave for so long and their ability to live like the rest of the world is extremely limited.

Calla grew up in Zone 13. She's fairly happy there and was content to live he
Icy Sedgwick
May 07, 2014 Icy Sedgwick rated it really liked it
I've been a fan of Sonya Clark for a while now - I think I read Mojo Queen and Red House in a couple of days. So it was hardly surprising that I'd pick up Trancehack as well - it might have taken me a few months to get to it, but I'm glad I did!

The book follows a cool idea, where those with magical abilities (the Magic Born) are segregated away from society and treated like dirt, until a murder among the upper echelons of the "Normals" forces cop Nate to conduct his investigation among the Magic
Jan 17, 2016 Chris rated it liked it
I like the magic system in this. The segregation between magic users and non is interesting.

It's somewhat graphic in the love scenes, just an fyi.

I found myself skimming a lot; too much background info in some cases. However, I really liked the main character. 3 stars because around the middle it started to get 'meh' for me and I really skimmed ahead and didn't feel like I missed anything. I'd guessed the ending around then, and I kinda hate it when that happens.

However, I'm pretty sure there
Apr 03, 2014 Nakeesha rated it liked it
Shelves: arcs
I thought the world building done here was vivid and spirit crushing! Imagine a holocaust, a dehumanizing not based on pigment or religion, but on your blood containing DNA with magic strands. That's the world Sonya Clark presents in "Trancehack," an urban fantasy, mystery, romance.

It was a slow start for me -not with the hero, but with the heroine. Calla slowly revealed herself to me. It took me awhile to empathize with her. But once she cast her first spell and hacked into the internet on sto
Nov 21, 2013 Stacy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I started out not too sure how I felt about the characters or the world that TRANCEHACK took place in only to end the book hoping that book 2 was close on the horizon.

In the world that Sonya Clark has created the Magic Born are second class citizens and treated like dirt. They are forced to live in government-run zones with no rights or freedoms. They test babies and if they are found to be Magic Born their parents abandon them or they are taken away to be raised in these zones. TRANCEHACK foll
Jeannie Zelos
Oct 25, 2013 Jeannie Zelos rated it it was amazing
Trancehack. Sonya Clark
I loved Sonya's Mojo Queen and Red House so looked forward to reading this. I was a bit concerned over the world setting. Its reminded me a bit of the way the Psy-net works in Nalini Singh novels, and though I love and count her Angels works among my favourites I struggle with the Psy ones. I needn't have worried though, the Net part of things here is an essential part but doesn't dominate the novel. And even as a real Tech Nerd I could follow how things worked and what Ca
Oct 11, 2013 Sarah rated it liked it
(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Carina and Netgalley.)
Nate is a detective investigating the death of a prominent figure, when a DNA test on some evidence comes back as belonging to an unregistered ‘magic-born’, which by the law should be impossible.
Nate asks Calla – a witch, for some help tracking down information based on a list of magical ingredients found in the victim’s pocket.
When people who knew about the odd DNA test start turn
Review originally posted here:

As I was reading this month’s Dear Reader letter in the front of every Carina Press book, I came across Angela James’ description for this book and was immediately hooked. The different world that sounded so unique was enough to pull me in and send me to NetGalley, looking for this book.

Calla has unique magical abilities: she can manipulate any kind of technology. It’s the kind of skill that will make her an outcast among her
Nov 17, 2013 Marlene rated it it was amazing
Originally published at Reading Reality

I fell in love with the world created by Sonya Clark in Trancehack to the point where I’m having a difficult time reviewing it because of the sheer number of resonance images it carried for me. Clark’s imagery of the magic users’ ghetto, or FreakTown, borrowed from so many awesome stories and historical settings, even some she didn’t intend, AND added a sweet and white-hot love story like a cherry on top.

Okay, what is this thing, anyway? We have a dystopian
Jody Wallace
Really well balanced, skillfully worldbuilt "science fantasy" romance, which I enjoyed for its uniqueness. It's not strictly SF or strictly PNR but a cross in between, introducing a fascinating world. The romance between the hero and heroine also took place at a believable pace. Recommended!
Amy Burgess
Jan 21, 2014 Amy Burgess rated it it was amazing
I loved Calla and Nate and their romance. They had just the right chemistry to keep me turning the pages. However, the setting of this book - the dystopian world - is what really hooked me. Magicborn people are forced to live in a highly regulated Zone - stripped of their rights as citizens and despised by the Normals. All babies born in America are tested for the Magic gene and if they have it, they are placed in a Zone. This creates an atmosphere ripe for rebellion both from inside the Zone an ...more
Kim Moser
Dec 06, 2015 Kim Moser rated it it was amazing
Interesting and meaningful

I enjoyed the plot and the elements of mystery, suspense, and paranormal that carried the plot to a satisfying and believable resolution.
Stacy McKitrick
Oct 10, 2014 Stacy McKitrick rated it it was amazing
Wow! I won this book and, I’ll be frank, hated the cover. So it sat unread. My mistake. See, I really SHOULDN’T judge a book by its cover, because the book was great. I had a hard time putting it down. It read more like a romantic suspense/thriller than a paranormal romance, which is fine with me. I’d hate to think we’d be so cruel in the future by segregating people again, but it made for an entertaining read. I just wish my e-book wasn’t all funky. The lines were too close together and every t ...more
Feb 07, 2014 Frances rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
1/11:This book has been good, so far. It has been engaging and interesting from the beginning. Both of the main characters, Nate and Calla, are easy to relate to for different reasons. No, the hows and whys of the built-world that Ms. Clark has made up have not been explained. That's not a problem for me, as I don't need a "history" lesson and am not likely to remember it anyway. I look forward to finishing this as soon as I catch up on some other ARCs this weekend!

2/7: nice, somewhat open ended
Nicole Luiken
Oct 29, 2013 Nicole Luiken rated it really liked it
Shelves: sfantasy, romance, ebook
Loved the premise: a futuristic fantasy world where the Magic Born are identified at birth and sent to segregated magic zones. Talk about building in inherent conflict! The main characters, a cop and a witch, are initially at odds but soon involved in a hot romance. Calla is bold and passionate, Nate is strong and steady--very swoon-worthy.
Quibble: It took Calla and Nate ages to figure out one of the plot points.
Fave line: "Trying to make me jealous, calling some other guy a**hole."
Dec 07, 2015 Pancha rated it it was ok
Shelves: romance, paranormal
The more I think about it, the more nit-picky I feel about it. Kind of an interesting set up that I don't think was utilized as well as it could have been. Big reveal was obvious really early, so spent the book just waiting for the story to get around to making it official. In light of current events, the internment camp stuff was awkward.
BookGeek rated it really liked it
Jun 16, 2016
Jennifer S
Jennifer S marked it as to-read
Jun 15, 2016
Clarissa Fray
Clarissa Fray marked it as to-read
Jun 02, 2016
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Sonya Clark discovered she was a writer at the age of thirteen. Ray Bradbury whispered it to her through the pages of his books. The Vampire Lestat encouraged this lunacy in florid fashion, and Pennywise the Clown muttered dire warnings of what would happen should she neglect her calling. It took many years – many, like, a lot, yo – for her to figure out how to actually finish a manuscript. Once s ...more
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Other Books in the Series

Magic Born (3 books)
  • Witchlight (Magic Born, #2)
  • Firewall (Magic Born, #3)

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