April 's Reviews > Magic Mansion

Magic Mansion by Jordan Castillo Price
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's review
May 01, 2012

it was amazing
Read in May, 2012

(Originally posted @ CSI:Librarian.)

This book mostly just makes me want to flail and make incoherant sounds of delight. I loved it for so many reasons though so let me try and articulate a few of them.

The first is that it's just a darn good book with a lot of romance, magic, sweetness, humor, and charm. From opening line to ending sentence, Magic Mansion basically owned my eyes. I literally could not sleep until I finished it, and even then I sort of wanted to forgo sleep in order to read it again.*

Another reason that I am finding it really hard to do anything but gush is that it's such a refreshing change to read a book with gay characters that was just as long and just as romantic as so many of the books out there for straight characters. Don't get me wrong. I am a fan of hot and steamy. I am also ten times more likely to gravitate towards or read a book with a gay character than I am anything else, but the books that stay with me long after I arrive at the last page are books that go the emotional distance. And Magic Mansion is all about deep connections rather than insta-love.

Price's writing was equal parts wonderful, well-done, and engaging. I loved John and Ricardo so much. The way their relationship developed was utter perfection that I could not get enough of. There was such a maturity to both characters, particularly John, that I expected to be there, but was so worried that I wouldn't get. Every moment they spent longing for the other or actually being together made me swoon. Or sigh. Or both. There were also a fantastic and diverse cast of minor characters as well as subplots, and I came to care for just about everyone.

The reality show, which kept John and Ricardo apart while simultaneously bringing them together, was really believable in so many ways, and very well-developed. Although the book is contemporary in terms of its setting and references, there's also a paranormal element. This was provided by some magicians having a gift for True magic, which allows them to do more than simple conjuring tricks or illusions. I loved how it was used, and thought it added another neat dimension to John and Ricardo's story.

Over all, I loved how everything worked and came together. Particularly the ending, which really surprised me in ways that a lot of the eliminations didn't. I was a bit startled at one point when more mention was made of John's deceased lover/partner had only been gone for a year. For some reason I kept thinking it had been longer, but by then I was so emotionally invested and so happy that it just matter or bother me as much as it might have under different circumstances. Besides, my biggest complaint is also my deepest regret. And that is not hearing about this book or paying much attention to its author any sooner than this.

In conclusion, awesome, awesome, awesome! Magic Mansion is one of my favorite books of 2012 so far, and likely to remain that way. It's a book that I am so grateful to have found not to mention overjoyed to have read. It's more than worth $6.99, and I could not recommend it enough.

* I am also have a hard time convincing myself to lend the book to my room mate off of my Nook, which is sort of bizarre since traditionally my Nook sits in a corner collecting dust... But that's neither here nor there.
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Reading Progress

05/01/2012 page 300
87.98% "This is so good! I love both of the main characters and the reality show set-up has been handled really, really well."
05/02/2012 page 814
100% "Stayed up all night reading this book. Totally worth it!"

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