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Black Kat #1

Unlucky Charm

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Alternate cover edition for B01M4G83ZG
Being a Super isn't all it's cracked up to be...
Trouble follows Officer Katherine Carter wherever she goes, and her latest antics are drawing attention from the media, the Chicago Police Review Board, and a gorgeous glowing man with abilities as strange as her own. Her unique physical talents get her into hot water at work as things get steamy with Officer Antonio Valdez, who might just have a few new career options for her, among other things.

Meanwhile, illusionist Hugh Harrison is attracting his own firestorm of unwanted attention. Poisoned by a jealous woman and hexed by another, he faces the trial of the century for making his brother disappear--permanently. No prison can hold him for long, but his health condition slows him down as he tries to find out what really happened and protect an underground community of people who share his extraordinary powers.

Unlucky Charm is the prequel to Black Kat, a dark romantic comedy series with superheroes.

167 pages, Kindle Edition

First published October 9, 2016

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About the author

Kimberly Gordon

26 books24 followers
Kimberly Gordon is an author, veteran, IT professional and mother of five boys. She lives in a hundred-year-old farmhouse in rural Illinois, where she enjoys coming up with outrageous stories to tell to anyone who will listen, including her chickens, who sometimes come up with ideas for their own.

When she's not busy taking dictation for the Supers, she's also troubleshooting networks, writing, or chasing kids and farm animals. She also enjoys digital art, gardening, music and poetry.

Find out what she's up to next on her website and sign up for her newsletter at http://www.kimberlymgordon.com, on http://www.blackkatseries.com, and follow her on Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/kimbe...

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5 stars
298 (39%)
4 stars
227 (29%)
3 stars
164 (21%)
2 stars
49 (6%)
1 star
22 (2%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 76 reviews
Profile Image for Shawna Finnigan.
436 reviews276 followers
September 25, 2021

I have a habit of downloading as many free books as I can off of the iBooks store and I found this one recently. I thought I’d give it a shot because the synopsis sounded interesting, but unfortunately it fell a bit flat for me. The author's writing style and the pacing of the story was really good, but there was some negative parts about the book that I just couldn’t overlook.

If I hadn’t read the author’s bio on Goodreads before reading this book, I would’ve thought this book was written by a man based on the portrayal of women in this book and trust me when I say that that isn’t a good thing. Kat, as well as any of the other minor female characters, were overly sexualized for no reason. Kat lacked personality and was constantly hit on by every man she met, including her coworkers. This bland type of female character is unoriginal and wasn’t very empowering. The only scenes that were supposed to be “empowering” where when she was fighting but even then, she was putting up with sexual assault and sexualizing herself in order to win the fight. It’s really disgusting and I wish more time would’ve been put into developing a well-crafted female main character. Oh, and it’s worth noting that one character is described as “a fire shifter with severe PMS problems.” I wish I was joking with that quote because that’s ridiculous and PMS should never be a defining trait about a woman.

There were several phrases used in this book that seemed as if the author was trying for diversity but somewhat having racist stereotypes slide in. The two major characters of color were both described as “exotic.” Exotic is a massive no-no when describing people of color. It never sits right with me. Then the term Oriental is used. It’s one that’s been widely debated whether it’s racist or not, but seeing that word after the word exotic being used to describe a person of color didn’t sit right with me. Then going into detail about people in Chinatown eating cats and how cops took those people down. This is not the epic crime bust that it was supposed to be because given the previous words used in the book, this comes across as a racist stereotype. People also unnecessarily bring up Chinese people eating cats and dogs as a way to be racist, so since this whole cat scandal didn’t impact the plot of the story at all, that was a major red flag to me. I am in no way accusing the author of being racist, but these things rubbed me the wrong way and they should’ve been edited out before the book was published.

The court element of the book irritated me to no end. I’ve been following some missing persons’ cases recently, which isn’t great for my mental health, but I’ve learned a decent amount about innocent until proven guilty and it made me realize how unrealistic the court element of this book was. I don’t want to spoil the book for people, but there was enough inconsistencies in evidence and simply a lack of evidence that would’ve made it so that the character who was imprisoned wouldn’t have been kept in jail. There were also arguments being brought up in court that had nothing to do with the case, which wouldn’t have happened in real life. I’m not a huge fan of big court scenes in books, but if a book is going to have them, it better make them at least realistic enough that someone who lightly pays attention to the news could see how a case like that could actually happen.

This book was a complete mess, but based on the author’s writing style, I think Kimberly Gordon has a potential to create some great books in the future. It may take some practice and work, but I do see potential for this author.
Profile Image for Kimberly Gordon.
Author 26 books24 followers
October 24, 2016
I'm the author, so I can't really review it. I just hope everyone enjoys it as much as I enjoyed writing it. I'm currently working on the next one, Kat & Mouse. There are 13 books in the series. I plan on releasing two more next year, and getting very rough drafts of the rest written by the end of 2017. It's a fun world to play in!
Profile Image for Filip.
842 reviews36 followers
February 17, 2022
Ok, so this is a prequel to a series I haven't read, but I'll be reviewing it as a standalone story. And unfortunately, as a standalone it really doesn't work that well. We have two plotlines, that are interesting in their own right, but that don't intersekt until the very end - and by "very end" I mean "the final two pages of the book." This makes the plotlines feel compeltely disconnected and one of them feels irrelevant, as it's just the protagonist catching random bad guys until she gets the order to catch the protagonist of the second plotline (which, I guess, sets up the first volume of the series).

The characters, or at least the ones that have been fleshed out, especially the two protagonists, are really well-written, rounded and interesting. I am not impressed with the series so far, but if I were to pick up the next volume, it would be because of those characters. Unfortunately, without knowing what happens further in the series, the ending seems completely chaotic and barely comprehensible.

I was thinking about giving the book 2 stars (preferably 2.5) but I've recently read a truly atrocious book that I gave this rating and "Unlucky Charm" is a bit better than that. I wasn't praying for it to be over, at least. Plus, it has interesting characters and cats! So three stars it is, but unless I get the first volume through Bookbub or something, I won't be continuing with this series.
Profile Image for Cristiana Marques.
Author 1 book37 followers
July 2, 2021
'Unlucky Charm': Introduction to the Black Kat series: 3 ⭐

I really enjoyed reading this book. It was interesting and the mystery surrounding it made it the more appealing. The concept of Black Kat as it is explained in this book is so unique and different and I can see how amazing the potential for a great story is!
I really liked meeting Hugh and Kat and I do hope they meet in the future! The writing of this book is very easy to understand and simple, but it catches your eye! Great for lovers of Chicago P.D. (with a supernatural twist).
Profile Image for Donna.
703 reviews
November 30, 2020
Unlucky Charm is Book 1 (updated) in the Black Kat series by Kimberly Gordon. This is a thought provoking and humorous read with interesting characters with some unique super powers. Officer Katherine Carter is after Illusionist Hugh Harrison, both are relatable and you can't help but love both of them. This is a fast paced, action packed suspense filled thrill ride adventure with plenty of twists/turns that keeps you reading to the last page and leaves you wanting more. I highly recommend this book. It leaves you satisfied on so many levels. Received an ARC and this is my voluntary and honest review.
Profile Image for Sheryl.
1,562 reviews27 followers
August 31, 2021
Not sure how I feel about this one. I have mixed feelings. Maybe later I will be able to articulate specifically what I liked and didn’t like about it. I already have the second book so I may read it to see if I enjoy it more. I’ll decide later.
279 reviews4 followers
October 13, 2021
Quite good,

Not my usual genre, superhumans hiding in plain sight but it all goes pear shaped when one of them is put on trial for supposedly murdering his brother. Cut to the start a female cop is forced to resign when her superiors wont listen to the reason she does what she does and what she has seen Worth a read be interesting to see where the next book goes, Baz. I am
Profile Image for William Vegvari.
283 reviews2 followers
November 10, 2020
Thoroughly enjoyed this book. Fast paced a great character and can't wait for more
For those loving action, this ones for you
Highly recommended
Profile Image for Eriss.
76 reviews
May 30, 2021
DNF @ 65%

Some good potential in here completely overshadowed by slow pacing and an overpowered female lead.

I like the idea that and how it isn’t blatantly revealed — only subtly suggested. It was the most fascinating element. And while the trial of Hugh being framed for his brother’s murder was also interesting, it dragged for too long. The pacing was so slow, I would feel bored and read only 2 chapters at a time.

The thing that really killed my enjoyment of this book was Kat. Whenever the POV switched to her, I’d often find myself rolling my eyes out of my skull by the end of her chapters. She was so insufferable, annoying, and overpowered like crazy. She knows all the martial arts, can handle 20 guys in a street fight with heels, and is very beautiful. She’s also sassy and hotheaded, as is customary with most contemporary female protagonists these days. I get that this is a superhero book, so suspension of disbelief is necessary, but this is really trying my patience. It’s quite unbelievable to me. And early on, they hint at Kat having powers, but we’re lead to believe that they haven’t awakened yet because she’s a “Sleeper,” which is explained as having dormant abilities. Maybe she’s , and that’s why she’s so strong, but man do I hate her attitude. She’s so full of herself, and it grates on my nerves. I don’t mind confidence, but she definitely exudes arrogance.

The character I was most interested in, Jacob, has barely showed up so far, despite having a dramatic debut in the first few chapters. What a bummer.

Overall, I think this book would suit teens. I can’t get into this book, mainly because of Kat.
Profile Image for Katheyer.
1,565 reviews16 followers
October 22, 2020
“Unlucky Charm” marks the start to the ‘Black Kat Series” by Kimberly Gordon, a part UF, part paranormal romance, part supernatural dark comedy, combined into a wholly entertaining story.

Katherine Carter is an officer of the law, whose rare abilities, make her the target of choice for both the tabloids and the Chicago Police Review Board. On the other side we have Hugh Harrison, which own abilities are bringing him more attention as he desires, and not even his career as illusionist can help to shield him this time. Framed for murder and waiting for what promises to the be trial of the century, escaping from prison appears to be his only option to unearth the plot that has put him in that situation.

This is a good series start that combines, elements of UF, procedural, paranormal romance and a fresh version of superheroes into a very entertaining tale, with credible and relatable characters, an enjoyable lecture from cover to back.
Profile Image for Anomaly.
465 reviews
Shelved as 'did-not-finish'
March 4, 2022
DNF @ 23%
Now with 99% less sleepiness-induced typos.

CW: - all discussed, some with excerpts from the book provided for explanatory purposes

File this book under "now I know why this is free." I gave it an honest chance because the blurb caught my interest, but it quickly became an exercise in 'hate reading' - continuing just for the odd catharsis of being scandalized by all the problematic elements in the narrative. I'd have read the whole thing that way, because despite being mediocre and annoying it was quick. Then some strange and ridiculous court drama (legal court, not royal) came up and it was too boring to hold my interest even during a 'hate read.'

In just the first near-quarter of this book, I encountered lowkey racism and misogyny, body shaming, slut shaming, at least two instances of sexual harassment, one attempted gang rape, vague homophobia (via iffy wording), coworker-initiated sexual harassment, and the 'that skimpy outfit is bait for being assaulted' mentality. And probably some other stuff I don't care enough to remember.

Sorry, but no. I don't want to deal with this nonsense anymore, now that there isn't any entertainment value in riding the rollercoaster of outrage. It's just far too much... especially after reading other reviews which mention some far more blatant racism than I'd encountered (more than one review mentioned an Asian restaurant caught serving cat meat).

As for what I personally encountered? Here's a selection of descriptions and quotes to illustrate:

01. "Her skin had an olive tone to it, making her look exotic. He wasn’t sure of her heritage. Asian? Hispanic? Native American? Something else? Something … Beautiful, he thought to himself."

02. "His attention shifted to a large man beside her, who had also stopped to watch the television. The guy had a clogged heart chakra, and his meridians were a mess. He was going to have a heart attack soon if he didn’t stop eating all that fast food."

03. A man with superpowers loses control and melts some electronics because he's so obsessed with how "breathtaking" and beautiful a woman he doesn't know is. It's referred to as being hormonal, as if it's totally okay and normal.

04. The horndog man mentioned above takes a moment to question what kind of woman would go into an "adult superstore" as if it's some kind of horrible thing.

05. The main female character goes into an "adult superstore" but only for a last-minute Halloween costume. (I guess she's never heard of Party City? And is too stupid to guess an erotically themed store won't sell conservative-minded costumes?) She criticizes every costume option then tops it off with deciding that no woman would ever shop there unless they were single and/or desperate and surely only men shopped there to buy things for the women in their lives to wear. (Body-confident, kinky, and/or queer women? Never heard of such things!)

06. Despite picking a costume that covered most of her skin - a tight Catwoman sort of bodysuit with thigh-high boots and a cat ear headband - she and everyone around her act as if this costume is the sluttiest, most whore-worthy thing ever. (More on that later, it's bad enough to get its own point.)

07. "She turned a corner and ran headlong into a group of large, loud men, decked out in the latest pimptacular fashions. Baggy pants, hoodies, fancy shoes and gold chains everywhere. [...] They stopped what they were doing and stared at her, their eyes bulging at her racy costume." She's in a "bad area" of Chicago. The racist undertones are strong.

08. Twenty men surround the MC and sexually harass (and make it clear they plan to gang rape) her, and it's all because they can't stop ogling the costume she's wearing.

09. The allegedly well-trained female MC is fighting off her assailants in River Tam level combat... and then gets saved by her creepy admirer from earlier, negating how well she was somehow doing and making her less of a badass heroine and more of a rescued damsel.

10. Immediately after rescuing MC from an attempted gang rape, the creepy guy informs her that he just couldn't stop himself from saving her because she's so beautiful. You read that right.

11. MC is found roughed up and in a Halloween costume on Halloween. Her colleague, another cop who's a man, finds her and doesn't even ask what happened or make the obvious connection that she was assaulted. He jumps right to shaming and taunting her, calling her attractive, and asking if she's working undercover dressed as a prostitute.

12. The male colleague for some reason insists on taking MC downtown for questioning as if she's the bad guy and makes mention of having a female cop strip search her. It's stated that it's clear in his expression that he'd prefer to do the strip searching in private himself. Also, when one of the subdued attackers calls MC "too hot to handle" the cop agrees. Aloud.

13. The cop continues to press how slutty he thinks MC's costume is, to the point he tells her he wants to strip her out of it. Her reaction is to just accept it because that's how men are. Seriously.

14. A victim of police brutality decides to hide the myriad of bruises and marks not from fear but because it wounds his pride to admit he was injured. So he doesn't tell anyone, even though he's convinced they'd be punished if called out, and instead takes satisfaction in feeling superior to them. Because fuck other victims he could help (or prevent from being victimized), I guess.

15. This happens in front of reporters and nothing is said or done about it: The deputy escorting Hugh prodded a police baton into his back and snarled at him. “Make one more smart ass move and I swear I’ll bust your skull in you sissy Brit.”

Fifteen problematic, gross, and/or just plain poorly written things - and that is just the ones bad enough to be noteworthy - in 23 percent. That's possibly a new record! But not the kind of record that means anything positive.

The only reason I'm not putting this one on the "so bad I deleted it" shelf is because I might want to keep it around for when I want to rant with my friends about some of the gross narrative elements we've found in things we've read.
Author 6 books5 followers
October 10, 2016
This is a great introduction to the "Supers" which I hope will evolve into a follow up. These characters are great!
From sexy Kat (on the cover) to "Gentleman" Hugh, this quickly turned into a real fun read. With black humour thrown into the mix along with unique characters with very original superpowers. The storyline had me hooked from the opening pages.
It's fast moving, involving with plenty of action thrown in. I recommend this book to any reader looking for a fun, action packed, adult superhero novel.
Profile Image for Tia.
464 reviews
October 31, 2016

Very interesting characters. The storyline is creative and keeps you invested. This is a good introduction. Kat is a cop. She gets into trouble, a lot. An intriguing event occurs and she finds herself with a better offer. A new bounty hunting job. Meanwhile, supers are trying to stay under the radar. Too bad Huge is on trial for killing his brother.
1,116 reviews9 followers
October 15, 2020
This is a good read by a new to me Author. I enjoyed this super hero story and the amazing characters. This story brings humor as well as a well thought story and a world that drew me in. I found a new genre that I love.
No spoilers here, give it a read. Happy Reading!!!
October 10, 2016
Unlucky Charm is a fantastic kick off for what I hope is a long series.
The authors serve a delightful mix of action, well defined characters, humour and romance in a fast pace story full of the right twists and turns.
Can't wait for more!
Profile Image for India Kells.
Author 43 books455 followers
October 23, 2016
Lots of fun!
Totally new author for me, I fell for this action-packed, superhero story. Loved the character of Kat as a cop, not realizing the powers she holds. What hooked me was the humor and suspense. Can't wait for the next instalment!
Profile Image for Denise Lewis.
1 review4 followers
March 15, 2017
This book is a "super" fun read!! The characters will make you laugh with their hilarious antics, and even pull a little on your heart strings. I love Hugh!!! He is such a great character. I can't wait for the next one!!
Profile Image for Rebecca.
205 reviews
June 17, 2020
Great world build.
Great characters.
Kimberly Gordon draws you in and you forget time.

***I received a free copy in exchange for an honest review.***
Profile Image for RaChelle Holmberg.
1,464 reviews11 followers
October 12, 2020
Found on a free site, this was a very good introduction to the series, which is quite involved and carries a lot of characters.
Profile Image for Tori Straughn.
35 reviews2 followers
January 3, 2022
I was SO close to DNFing this. But it was the first book of the year and there *was* potential in the beginning, so I stuck it out... and I regret it.
I don't even know where to start.
I hated the characters. Like I seriously did not care about them, at *all*. They were so bland and one dimensional.
I really did not like the writing style. It was so broken, had no continuity, and there were several grammar and spelling mistakes.
The story line jumping between several different characters was really jarring. I love a dual perspective book, don't get me wrong, but this was too much. Each perspective was like reading another book, since there wasn't much crossover between the two main characters.

***Trigger warning: some sexual issues and mild animal cruelty****
And lastly, the sexual and dark content.
The nasty comments made about all of the female characters got old. Fast. I quicky flipped through the one sex scene, so I can't stay for sure how graphic it was.
And there was stuff like cats being eaten, animal fighting for enjoyment, etc. It wasn't put into morbid detail (definitely wouldn't have been able to stomach that) but it was dark enough to make me feel awful reading it.

Okay so...! It can only go up from here, right...?
I'm going to read something light-hearted now, to combat this soup sucking read.
Profile Image for Markus Matthews.
Author 9 books30 followers
November 26, 2021
An ambitious start to a series.

I’m struggling to write this review. On the one hand, I enjoyed reading about Kat’s character, but every time I started getting into Kat, the chapter would change and be about Hugh and I wasn’t a fan of his story. I wished this book had just been about Kat.

I also had a small issue with the author in the Amazon blurb describing the book as Superhero Urban Fantasy. The author nailed the Superhero part, but I struggled to find what was Urban Fantasy about this book. To me, Urban Fantasy is Werewolves, Vampires, Witches, Wizards, and/or Fae, and none of these elements were in the book.

If you are looking for a Superhero story, this might be what you are looking for.
Profile Image for Angela.
322 reviews5 followers
August 17, 2021
Stick with it!

Some books grab you at the beginning and don’t let you go — this one does and doesn’t all at the same time. I pushed thru a couple of chapters. I considered just labeling it DNF - did not finish, but I am glad I stuck with it.

It did elicit a few feelings but there were no great sobbing tears, no unbridled joy - a bit of distaste at the bad guys and a modicum of interest in the good guys was mostly it. Until I got to the final couple chapters! That revitalized my curiosity, peaked my interest, and made me buy the next book in the series. Give this one a try.
1,105 reviews9 followers
August 16, 2020
An enjoyable read. Good to discover the authors look at supernaturals and the power that they possess. We discover that no one knows where they come from, or what limits their power may have.

The author weaves an interesting tale as the "Supers" try to discover all of their kind which exist. They also try to protect themselves from the bad side of human kind.

Unfortunately the book just ends. The story doesn't end, it apparently continues in the next book of the series. This book just stops.
2,011 reviews5 followers
January 16, 2021
It's okay. The first several chapters are high-energy, but they are scattered across so many different people and scenes that it was hard keeping track of everything. Overall, it really doesn't seem to be a complete story: just a collection of events involving several different groups of people. No resolutions. Just cursory introductions before going further down the rabbit hole.

Action-packed. Entertaining. Great world building. Haunting. Scary. Tragic. Twisted. Unpredictable. Wonderful characters.
218 reviews1 follower
September 2, 2021
I am so excited! I’m so happy I found this series. This book, Unlucky Charm, is my all time favorite type of Fantasy; about a good woman who has powers she doesn’t know she has. Unlucky Charm was exciting, interesting, intriguing, and mysterious. The author did an excellent job letting me get to know the characters and the situation they find themselves in. I bought book 2, but it’s past midnight, so I have to make myself stop reading, even though I don’t want to. I look forward to tomorrow, and reading the next book in the Black Kat series.
Profile Image for Stephanie Barnes.
453 reviews10 followers
October 17, 2021
Unlucky Charm is about Kat, a police officer who has trouble following rules. Since being on the force for 12 years, she has been reprimanded several times, as well as, suspended. This last time was not her fault, but she was made an example and Kat decided she had enough.

Then there were the Supers, each one demonstrating different abilities, illusions, healer, fire, water and much more. Hugh & Dale are brothers & Hugh is on trial for his brothers murder. There is no evidence of a body, where is Dale?

So what is the connection between Kat & the Supers? Read to find out.
26 reviews
April 23, 2021
Awesome "Supers" Urban Fantasy

LOVED this book!!! At first I wasn't sure where the story would go but WOW... So good... I can't wait to read the next book in the series... Great characters, great story and great locations... Interesting plots going on separately yet connected... 5 Stars from me and I would recommend to anyone with an interest in magic and super hero type characters... 😄
Displaying 1 - 30 of 76 reviews

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