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Shrill Dusk

(City of Magic #1)

3.91  ·  Rating details ·  565 ratings  ·  85 reviews
Charley is a cleaner by day and a professional gambler by night. She might be haunted by her tragic past but she's never thought of herself as anything or anyone special. Until, that is, things start to go terribly wrong all across the city of Manchester. Between plagues of rats, firestorms and the gleaming blue eyes of a sexy Scottish werewolf, she might just have landed ...more
Kindle Edition, 254 pages
Published January 4th 2019
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3.91  · 
Rating details
 ·  565 ratings  ·  85 reviews

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Dec 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
Charley was your average human until an unusual encounter in the ladies’ room that will transform her life forever. Charley finds herself magically enhanced and her home in Manchester has become a magically infused post-apocalyptic town that is cut off from the rest of the world.

Choosing to stay in Manchester, Charley finds herself teaming up with a reluctant werewolf, an actress vampire and some everyday humans who have decided to stay in “their city”.

Fun, fast and intriguing, Harper world buil
Janet Newport
Thank you NetGalley and Helen Harper for this arc.

I thought this was a short and easy read... the pace was fast without being breathtaking. A good book for the young adult reader (even though it isn't being marketed as such... a couple of kisses only, reasonably clean language). Ambitious world building with some interesting paranormal elements. I thought the characters were the weakest part of the book. By the end of it, I was so irritated with Charley's naivety I was ready to slap some sense i
Elley Murray
Jan 09, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2019jantbr
I don't know why, but the first half of this book reads like Charley is the side character and there's some other book going on where the main characters are fighting to stop the apocalypse, and then here's this side character going on about her side character/NPC business while the main characters do their apocalypse-stopping main character thing. Is there another series that runs parallel to this? Like there are some weird crossover episodes when the TV shows Buffy and Angel were running concu ...more
This was my first book by Ms. Helen Harper and while I didn't exactly love it I didn't hate it either. It simply didn't wow me. It had a very interesting beginning, a messy, very messy middle and an ok ending. That messy middle kept losing my interest and I had to force myself to keep reading it instead of the book pulling me in. If the book was a little longer I'd probably give up and not finish it. There were also so many secondary characters popping up and deciding to live in Charley’s house ...more
Suzanne (Under the Covers Book blog)
I am DNFing this book at 36%. This is NOT because I hated it, it was...okay. However, I made a resolution that for 2019 I would stop reading "just okay" books. I know if I had continued to read I would have given this 3 stars but I am after 3.5 star reads and above only this year, unfortunately tat may mean I give a lot of DNFs along the way.

However, I do recommend you try Harper's A Lazy Girl's Guide to Magic series, I read it last year and adored it.

Mon avis en Français

My English review

I had had a good time with another of the author’s novels and I was really curious to discover something else about her. I must say that the synopsis and the cover really made me want to discover it!

Charley is haunted by a tragic event of her youth, but today she is a housekeeper and poker addict, and she lives a little on the margins of society. Yet a magical apocalypse will change all that and she will find herself dealing with things she thought were im
Tiera McMillian
Jan 23, 2019 rated it liked it
*I received a copy of this through NetGalley and the author Helen Harper in exchange for an honest review.*

This is one of those books where I really just didn't know how to rate it. I almost want to really break everything down and rate everything individually because there were some aspects of this book that were really enjoyable for me, and at the same time I had major issues with the story line which I will explain a little more in depth in a minute. Let me start with the authors note at the
Lyndi W.
Jan 23, 2019 marked it as d-n-f
I can't believe I'm DNFing at 61% but here we are. This girl is outrageously self-sacrificing to the point that she's downright fucking stupid. Offensively stupid! She's like one of those people that rescues dozens of stray cats and lets them live in their house and buys them all kinds of cat towers and toys and shit while she has a horrible cat allergy.

Oh, and the hero is a douchebag.

I find Helen Harper's writing works very well for me, I can really slip into her books and time flies by. And I
Danielle Annett
Jan 15, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A fun take on the Urban Fantasy genre.
Our heroine is a character well loved in previous books who is finally taking center stage. While a bit chaotic at times, the book reads fast paced and takes you one one hell of a ride.
Helen creates a truly unique world and relatable characters for the reader to connect with.
Fans of Darynda Jones or Linsey Hall would enjoy Shrill Dusk. It checks all the boxes for a kick butt heroine taking on the baddies.
One one negative would be that the middle gets a bit h
I received this book as an ARC from the author, but this review is all my own. I thoroughly enjoyed this book, which follows the aftermath of the events at the end of Skulk of Foxes (The Fractured Faery #3), but with a different protagonist this time in the form of Charley.

Charley is just a normal human in the city of Manchester that is now buzzing with magic. However, things change drastically for her when she finds her housemate has changed and two strangers appear on her doorstep to help! Un
The Word Nerd Reviews Blog

I first came across this author with her Blood Destiny series. That was a few years ago, when I came across this title on Netgalley the cover caught my attention first, then I noticed who wrote it. I was more than eager to reacquaint myself with this author.

Shrill Dusk falls into that grey area of not quite YA but not your typical NA either. Or should I just say it’s a cleaner NA than most on the market. Shrill Dusk is on the sweeter side of things than the steamy. No real content or language wa
Dec 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
In the prologue protagonist Charley experiences a profound loss and 11 years later we see her still dealing with the aftermath.

The book starts when strange events are talking place in Manchester, UK, where Charley lives. It looks like the Apocalypse is near and in a short period of time she is confronted with faeries, werewolves, her roommate shifting etc. And she takes it all in stride!

I have read books by this author before (especially liked the Slouch Witch series!) but somehow this did not
Penny Noble
Dec 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I’ve read this author before and really enjoyed her. When I came across an opportunity to read this series starter by her, I jumped at the chance. As I found her other books to be, this one had great writing, interesting characters, and a fun plot. There were some crossover characters from another series, but as someone who hadn’t read the other series, I was in no way confused. In fact, I now want to read the other series to see what lead us to this point. This is the type of book I find to be ...more
Jan 31, 2019 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Well what can say - I am huge fan of Helen's but this book was ...better in expectation than on paper or should I mobi, lol.

There is really nothing wrong with this story, and I really enjoyed the leading lady Charley, who reminded me a bit of Bernadette in Big Bang (a pocket rocket).

But this didn't save the story, it was all just so insta .... everything just worked almost to perfectly ...all filled with love and roses, and just not for me.
Iman. I
Jan 14, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: reviewed
Recieved an ARC for an honest review.

There were so many things wrong with this book I don't even know where to start. The book started of with a sophisticated, almost dark aura which quickly disintegrated into complete amateur middle grade writing.

The protagonist Charley's personality was so choppy I didn't understand why she was doing what she was doing half the time. In one scene she's so cynical and in the next she's the first one to try and comfort a random person. She's one of those compl
Feb 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: uf
I will confess I totally fell in love with the cover of this book. Then a friend mentioned there was a pink elephant in the story and I couldn't resist giving it a try.

This book is weird, fun, and very entertaining.

I will confess I had my doubts when reading the prologue, but once the story actually started I was soon hooked. Strange things are happening in Manchester, and Charley soon finds herself in the middle of weirdness, danger, and magic. As she and her roommate try to stay alive danger k
Hope Walker
Jan 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: net-galley-books
To be noted:

I was given an ARC copy of this book from Net Galley in exchange for an honest review. This book was free, and my review is not biased towards that fact in any way. These are my opinions only, (as everyone is entitled to them) and should only be taken as an idea for whether or not you would like to read the book yourself. In the end, no matter what review I give, props to the author for writing what they love, and actually publishing a book.

Shrill Dusk

3.7 stars rounded up**

After a br
I would have rated the first half of this book 2-3 stars, but the second half was considerably better, more in 4 star territory, so I will leave it at the higher rating. For the first half of the book, I was pretty confused about what was going on and if I hadn't been reading this for review, I might very well have put it down and not picked it up again. It seemed like there was a story going on in the background regarding the potential apocalypse but that story wasn't being told, and instead we ...more
One chapter more
Jan 04, 2019 rated it liked it
I had a wild dream last night after finishing this book. You could say it was a nightmare or just splashes of events. Just exactly as this book (not the nightmare part though)... Someone could ask me what this book was about and I wouldn't be able to answer that question. What was it about? What was its main topic? Survival? Magic apocalypse? Beginning of the end of the world? I really don't know.

It was a fast paced story with many characters in it, various events and a lot of action but... Yes-
Nicki K.
I received an advanced copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Years after a family tragedy, Charley now lives in Manchester working as a cleaning person, while also maintaining a career as a professional gambler. However, after a number of strange happenings occur, Charley, and the people of Manchester, soon find their lives changed forever. To make matters worse, Charley seems to have gained strange powers herself, and now, with the help of her friends and an annoying
Jan 05, 2019 rated it liked it
Mixed feelings - strong beginning, decent ending, but middle chaotic mess

I really like the heroine and felt that she had a very strong beginning.

The middle of the story was a chaotic mess with dozens of secondary characters popping up and deciding to live in Charley’s house.

Most seem interesting but with so many we never get a real chance to learn about them.

The book summary might need some tweaking as well because I was expecting a slightly different type of book. This is on a much smaller sca
Dec 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
What a great story. I first fell in love with Helen Harper's books when I read Gifted Thief, the first book in the Highland Magic series. She has a fantastic mind for creating mystical and magical stories, with characters that you can't help but love. Shrill Dusk is no different.

I first met Charley and Monroe while reading the third book of the Fractured Faery series, Skulk of Foxes. I was so fascinated by that series and meeting these two characters was great. I remember when I wrote my review
Dec 31, 2018 rated it did not like it
Shelves: abandoned, netgalley
Originally posted on Squirtoon's Bookish Blog

I’m afraid I abandoned this about 30% in. I just couldn’t take anything seriously.

The characters were ok, nothing stand out, but they weren’t terrible. The MC was a gambler and cleaned the local police station. I couldn’t quite believe the relationship she had with the police because of it. The whole city is falling apart, but the MC calls for help, and not one, but two, PCs show up? I think they’ve got better things to be doing. She didn’t even reall
Narelle Richards
Dec 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Helen Harper has a knack for creating urban fantasy stories that are entertaining and quite often amusing. Shrill Dusk is the beginning of a new series for her that utilizes characters found in a previous series while introducing her readers to a whole new heroine. This book is a little darker in someways then previous stories but I still found it very readable and didn't put it down until I'd finished every last word.
Charley, a cleaner for the local Manchester police station and a professional
Bobbie Kirkland
Dec 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I received a free copy of SHRILL DUSK (City of Magic, Book 1) by Helen Harper in exchange for an honest review. Charley lives a quiet life and tries to stay under the radar; she works as a maid/cleaner, gets extra money by gambling, and tries to make up for her past by helping people whenever she can. When normal, everyday Manchester ceases to exist as magic flares into existence with plagues, rapid forest growth, and mythical creatures, the British government decides to quarantine the area. Cha ...more
Feb 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
Mercy does not mean meekness.

A great start to a new series. An interesting plot with rampant magic, creatures of legend and a lawlessness. Nice fast paced action but with little light touches thrown in every so often to soften the harshness described. Characters that show the indomitable spirit of human nature and the urge to survive.
After playing poker most of the night, she has just enough time to get to her day job - cleaning the police station. But when she sees the sea of rats outside she
Dec 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
I received this novel from net galley and the publisher. Thank you!
This novel involving the paranormal was a good read for the first novel in a new series by Ms. Harper.
In Manchester, England, strange things are happening. Many believe the world is coming to an end, but supernatural creatures such as the faeries and werewolves are trying to contain the power, in which many are sacrificed. Charley, a cleaner for the police department, a gambler, and one who helps others, all of a sudden has these
Lesya BlackBird
Dec 31, 2018 rated it liked it
I was browsing NetGalley and the cover caught my eye.
The description was interesting enough, with the keyword werewolf, to seal the deal.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It was very easy to get into the story, told in first person from the point of view of Charley. The story set itself up quickly and told us what we needed to know about her past and present situation. And then things just started to happen and kept happening.

This is not 'the best thing I have ever read!' I wont set you up like
Jan 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: dystopian adventure fans
Recommended to Molly by: Booksprout
Man U Football fans are completely off their rockers - I met some once in Munich Germany debating with some men from elsewhere in the UK - at the edge of the FC Bayern stadium. They were, of course, then fully prepared to defend all England honors against any locals, until they decided the sheer number of local soldiers was too large for anything more than an invite to lift a glass. Starkers is the phrase, I think.

In the magical Manchester in the world this book inhabits, there are mad power bro
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“that sort of person – the person with knowledge – has already decided what the limitations of their abilities are. They don’t seek to test them or go beyond them. You see it with children, especially young ones. They don’t yet understand what’s impossible, so they push to achieve whatever they can. That’s how society progresses, by going beyond what we think we know. Because you don’t know anything, you can also go further. The possibilities are endless.” 1 likes
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