Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Book Review: "The Masquerading Magician" by Gigi Pandian

"The Masquerading Magician" by Gigi Pandian is the second book I've read in this series. I loved the first mystery (The Accidental Alchemist) so I'm thrilled to be reviewing the second installment that will be published January 8, 2016.

Once again, Gigi Pandian has hit it out of the park. I just loved this continuation of the story started in "The Accidental Alchemist". If you can suspend your disbelief I can guarantee you'll love reading this cozy mystery.

Zoe Faust is an alchemist. She works most successfully with plants to make healing teas, tinctures and salves, she has a real talent for making things grow and bringing out the healing properties of plants. In the first book we learn that after many, many years of traveling the world, Zoe wants to put down some roots in Portland, Oregon so she buys an old house. Her life is made much more complicated when a living gargoyle named Dorian is found hiding in the crates she's had shipped from Paris. In "The Masquerading Magician", Zoe is trying to decipher an ancient alchemy text so she can hopefully cure Dorian from turning back into stone and trapping him forever.

When Zoe takes a rare night off she attends an old fashioned magic show, the magicians remind her of people she knew in the past and she suspects there may be another alchemist in her midst. When a murder happens at the same theatre the next day, Zoe decides to find out if there may be a mystery afoot. She's hoping to find another alchemist to help her decipher the complicate and dangerous alchemy book. The temporary cures she's making for Dorian are sapping her life force from her, making her sicker every time she performs the backward alchemy to make the curative tea. If Zoe can't get help she may be unable to continue and Dorian will die.

What can I say, I just LOVED this book. It is a solid five out of five. It is so fun when you find an unbelievable book that you just want to believe in. I find it so enjoyable to wish there could be a Dorian the Gargoyle out there somewhere. I also really liked the background food theme. The character of Zoe, because of her alchemist background, finds plants to be the most healing of foods. She is therefore a Vegan and I was intrigued learning about the delicious sounding recipes that are being created in her kitchen. Although food is a small part of this book, I found it's inclusion made for even more interesting background for the character.

Gigi Pandian has started a very successful series with Zoe and Dorian and there is definitely room for several more books about the pair. As the reader, I was interested in the magical qualities of Alchemy and found myself wishing that it were somehow true. If you're a dreamer like I am then you'll love this series. It will make you wish for magical truths and unique creatures. Who wouldn't love a little more mystery and uniqueness in our lives, isn't that why we read books?


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