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(The World of A Charm of Magpies)

4.24  ·  Rating details ·  3,023 ratings  ·  516 reviews
If you stop running, you fall.

Jonah Pastern is a magician, a liar, a windwalker, a professional thief…and for six months, he was the love of police constable Ben Spenser’s life. Until his betrayal left Ben jailed, ruined, alone, and looking for revenge.

Ben is determined to make Jonah pay. But he can’t seem to forget what they once shared, and Jonah refuses to let him. Soon
Kindle Edition, 239 pages
Published February 17th 2015 by Samhain Publishing, Ltd. (first published February 13th 2015)
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K.J. Charles
Aug 14, 2014 added it  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
Here's what happened.

I wrote Flight of Magpies, book 3 of Stephen and Crane's story, and in it, a young villain named Jonah Pastern emerged as a key player. Jonah does some pretty reprehensible things in Flight. He's reckless, amoral, self-serving. I don't know if you'll like him much. Stephen certainly doesn't. But.

You see, I don't believe that anyone's a villain in their own head. I think you can tell any story from the other side. And I never write a bad guy without ten minutes' thinking tim
Cristina Monica
DNF'd at 51%


I really didn’t want to DNF this one. Having loved The Magpie Lord by the same author, I was eager to start this read, when I received a copy of it via NetGalley. However, even though it started out relatively well and interestingly, it did not continue on that track.

The beginning was enjoyable but a little confusing. I mean, we were introduced to Ben, our hero, with good context but also to some secondary ones that weren’t that greatly described, which made them feel quite one-dim
~✡~Dαni(ela) ♥ ♂♂ love & semi-colons~✡~
A thief, a windwalker, an imp: Jonah has been used and shattered. He is the man holding Crane's picture at the end of Flight of Magpies.

He is the one who rips it and runs.

Jonah always runs. It's what he does best.

He leaves his lover, Constable Ben Spenser, to deal with the fallout. Ben loses everything: his job, his family, his respect.

Ben is serious and broody, the earth to Jonah's air. He's bitter and resentful, understandably so.

But Jonah had reasons, and he'll tell Ben if only Ben will l
Heather K (dentist in my spare time)
Warning: Though this is billed as a standalone, it really is an offshoot of The Magpie Lord series. It works best if you read it after reading Flight of Magpies because, honestly, many plot points of that book are spoiled in Jackdaw. Read with caution if you aren't caught up on your Lord Crane/Stephen hotness!

I'm not a huge fan of established couple stories but I really enjoyed this one. Maybe I'm being a little misleading: Jonah and Ben aren't an established couple, not exactly, but rather a c
Okay, I need to explain something first. Bear with me.

I LOVE reunited lovers story – most especially when the lovers are not parting amicably and there's still anger, hurt, and pain but they still love each other. Then when the ex-lovers meet, the feelings are still there and there's strong tension ... oh, for me that is just so delicious.

Now, when it comes to reunited story, Adrien/Jake from Adrien English series is the best and my most favorite. Especially in book 4 (Death of a Pirate King) w
Written February 19, 2015

4 1/2 Stars - Heartbreaking, amusing, spellbinding, funny, lovely romantic....OMG I LOVE this one

Woot! - A new adventure from a favorite M/M writer!!
 photo 90452c2d-c479-4aae-a1de-29707fdbe0d6_zpsy76bwuxh.jpg

“If you stop running, you fall.”


“I’ve stopped running.”
“You fell?”
“I landed.” Jonah’s smile was springtime,...’

Big hopes and high expectations...
And they are all pleased and fulfilled. I L.O.V.E this story, I admire this author and the character has a place in my heart between the rest of the gang from this 'w
***5 Stars***

I just knew it!!! A certain windwalker brought me into full-on mommabear-mode...

For me, Jonah Pastern is one of the most intriguing secondary characters ever who got his own book and KJ Charles brought him to life in such a vibrant fashion that the joy he feels when he walks the wind radiated from the pages and not only infected Ben...
"No hesitating. If you stop, you fall."

Jonah made him fly. Jonah danced with the wind. Jo
Ms. Smartarse
Ben Spenser has an obsession: capture his ex, the wind walker Jonah Pastern, and make his life as miserable as possible. He will do damn near everything to accomplish just that, even if it means lying his way into the offices of the Justiciary. Still, when confronted with his "prey", Ben realizes that he's not quite over the guy after all. And then Jonah has the audacity to even save him prince-charming-style. Dunno 'bout you, but Ben's fate is certainly sealed.


I was going to stop my K.J. Charle


Sweet anticipation, what else?

Kaje Harper
Aug 16, 2014 rated it really liked it
Anything K.J. Charles cares to write, I'll read. This story is definitely best when read after A Charm of Magpies series. Events in book 3 of that wonderful, exciting, sexy (go read it now!!) series are important for understanding this book, and will be spoilered if you read this story first. **This review may also contain spoilers for that series.**

In Jackdaw , we see Jonah, after he has fled the scene of his crimes at the end of Flight of Magpies. Jonah is a practitioner, a windwalker,
Vanessa North
I'm a huge fan of KJ Charles, and I think this was a well-written book full of her typical charm and wit.

PLOT spoilers under the spoiler tag, along with my reasons I think this book should be read and thoroughly discussed. Also, big fat trigger warning for everything under the spoiler tag.

(view spoiler)

Jonah our fallen hero and Ben slightly fallen as well, both dealing with bad choices, sad, angry, hurt and lonely and so, so sure that they should be together.
I doubted how a good outcome could come about. Charles proved me wrong of course. Delightfully wrong. I loved the story of these two plebeian fellows and happy to know (view spoiler)

Cornwall – cliffs
Seeing old friends through the eyes of new friends, I like that, even t
Won't be waffling on about this one too much. Yes, my mind has been completely blown by Jonah Pastern, Ben Spenser and their romantic tryst in Cornwall. Even up to halfway in this story, I was encouraging Ben to give the little s**t up to the Justiciary...and I think Ben was going to, but then things changed [in Reading actually], and I was rooting for the two guys instead of hating one of them. This is a true love story, and yes, the lovely Lucien and his little sidekick Stephen make an app ...more
Richard Derus
Aug 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: quiltbag
Real Rating: 4.75* of five

Truly a journey with a crew of startling intensity. More later.
Aug 13, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: romance-pn
Moral compass, everybody needs one.

And for Jonah that's Ben. This is a slippery story that really evokes a lot of anger at one of the MCs. We first met Jonah in relation to Crane and Day in a magpie story. Here Jonah's story is spun out to give us how he came to be involved and explain his scurrilous decisions. They reunite and unexpected events happen, for all involved. Their changes while they're on the lam is how I got from Ben, you're a patsy to Ben, you're a generous soul.

Overall, either y
Tara♥ {MindforBooks}
1st read - 15 July to 16 July 2015
2nd read - 19 April to 20 April 2020

Caution: I may have veered off topic. Sorry about that.

When I was very, very young I was introduced to a genius. That introduction is probably one of the most special that I have ever had. The reason it is special and will always be so is because that introduction was given by my dad and the genius in question was Oscar Wilde.

Some of my earliest memories are of my dad reading to me. I remember sitting on his lap while he rea
Feb 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing
18/8/19 Re-read/listen on Audible
Story ⭐️4.5⭐️
Narration ⭐️5⭐️
I enjoyed this more than I did the main series! I read it in one sitting. Loved!
Aug 13, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

“Really, is there not another man in all England you could have loved?”
“I don’t think so. There was never anyone else. And he made me laugh.”

Jackdaw has a more serious tone than the Magpies books. Yes, Lucien and Stephen went through a lot but not once did I doubt they’d overcome the challenges they faced. I got this confidence both from the joined power Stephen and Lucien had and Lucien’s character, and wealth.

Here, we have Ben who is just an ordinary man and Jonah - an untrained practition
Erin *Proud Book Hoarder*

“Of course I’ve got a conscience. He’s sitting right here next to me.”

3.5 stars

I'll try any m/m fiction K.J. Charles puts out - not only is she my favorite romance writer, but she actually puts forth a good plot combined with the love stuff, a trait that isn't as common as it should be.

I knew I'd like it at least a little - see statement above - but it did lose some stars for personal preference alone. I dislike reading stories about fugitives,brushes with the law, and misunderstandings. This ha
Karen Wellsbury
Nov 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing
If this book was published this year it would go straight onto my top 5 reads.
For me it is the best she's written.

When I read Flight of Magpies, and Jonah was portrayed as one of the bad guys, I was a little miffed. As in my mind he clearly had his reasons for being he way he was, and I was curious to know what they were.
Then KJ revealed that she was going to write his story and I was so pleased, she was also worried that Jonah wouldn't be received very well, as he was rather unpleasant to Steph
Lilia Ford

I held off a couple of days writing this review because I truly am not sure what to make of this story. I found the first half seriously depressing--enough that I actually contemplated quitting. In general, the story lacked the humor and what I'll call effervescence that has characterized everything else I've read by KJ Charles. I had expected something more along the lines of a mad-cap caper, and instead I got the world from the POV of a singularly dour, at times suicidal, undoubtedly broken
My body is ready. Yesss.


Nov 12, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

This book is a spin-off from the Magpie series. It is Jonah Pastern's story. It took me a while to get into it, but after about 60%, I was hooked. The ending was delightful, and had me laughing and smiling out loud. Of course, Lord Crane's presence may have been responsible for part of that. So if you haven't read the Magpie series, by all means read that first. But don't leave this one behind, it's definitely worth a look.
Nov 09, 2014 rated it it was amazing
4.75 stars

"I used to dream about killing you and wake up crying because I thought you were dead. I can't not love you. I don't know how."

I loved this second chance romance. Jonah, the charming wind walker, was so wonderfully flawed and Ben, the ex-copper, was oh so solid and dependable.

This may not be a popular opinion, but I'm pretty sure I liked this better than the Stephen and Crane books. It shares the same world Ms. Charles created for the Magpie books, but I could actually enjoy this
☙ nemo ❧
between kj charles and jordan l hawk i'm surprised i'm still alive
Jul 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: uk, mm-romance, historical
****4.5 Soaring Stars****

What an incredible addition to the Charm of Magpies,World! Jonah, the air/wind-walker we met in the previous book was a character that I loved to hate and hated to love when I first met him.

Ben was a man full of bitter bile and hurtful resentment towards Jonah. When he two meet up again, it’s explosive! The feels are sooo powerful, but neither man can communicate. Ben can’t trust Jonah; Jonah feels he deserves Ben’s pain.

Slowly, their story comes out. Slowly, trust build
Richard Derus
Aug 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: quiltbag, kindled
Real Rating: 4.75* of five

Truly a journey with a crew of startling intensity. More later.


I get why these novels are marketed as romances, because the MM romance-reading community is sizable and rabid...I mean passionate! its buying, reading, and reviewing habits. But I suspect quite strongly that a relationship-fiction reader would very much enjoy these books. She would need not to be an eww-ick homophobe, but there are legions of those ladies not aware of how very good Author Ch
K.J. Charles is a genius!

Just a note before the review: I think to really appreciate this book, or even to fully understand what's going on, reading the Charm of Magpies series beforehand is a must. And don't worry, you will not regret it. That series is amazing!

Possible spoilers below.

Jonah Pastern is a practitioner, or magician, who's frequently on the wrong side of the law. One of his brushes with the justiciary, the practitioner police, resulted in the jailing of his lover. Ben Spenser is ne
"Why didn't you tell me what you were?"
"I didn't want to. I didn't want you to know. I wanted you to see me. Not a windwalker or a practioner. Not a thief. Not what I do, or what I can do, just who I am. Just Jonah."

You might be looking at this rating and thinking, 'yo, hj, you loved Crane & Day so much over the course of three books and novellas and never gave them a perfect score, what's the deal here?' and my answer to you is, '[whitenoise]'.

"I'm tired of being the villain in the story. I nev
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KJ is a writer of romance, mostly m/m, historical or fantasy or both. She blogs about writing and editing at

She lives in London, UK, with her husband, two kids, and a cat of absolute night.

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Other books in the series

The World of A Charm of Magpies (5 books)
  • The Magpie Lord (A Charm of Magpies, #1)
  • A Case of Possession (A Charm of Magpies, #2)
  • Flight of Magpies (A Charm of Magpies, #3)
  • Rag and Bone (Rag and Bone, #1)

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“I like it here. I just want to walk the wind, watch you play rugby. Make kites for Agnes and do things, when I can—and come to bed with you at the end of the day. I’ve stopped running.”
“You fell?”
“I landed.”
“Ben looked up, and the foundations of his life began to crumble.” 2 likes
More quotes…