Shadow Magus, by Rob Steiner: A Review

shadow_magusShadow Magus continues the adventures of Remington Blakes, aka Natto Magus, a 21st-century American magus transported to 1st century Rome.  (It’s not necessary to have read the first book to enjoy this one, but I’d recommend it.) Steiner continues to blend good writing, likeable characters, fast action and sense of humour in a well-paced and well-plotted story.

I reviewed the previous book in the series, Citizen Magus, about a year ago, giving the light-hearted and fast-paced fantasy five stars. The sequel continues the mood and quality of the first book.

Another magus, with a type of magic that Natto Magus can’t identify, appears in Rome…and apparently bent on destruction. Caesar Augustus needs Natto’s help to save Rome. From the Circus Maximus to the underworld of Egyptian mythology, Remington pursues the magus in a desperate quest, while not losing his own life to this new power.  Even Remington’s household god Lares gets involved in the crusade.

I don’t want to give away too much of the plot.  But as in the first book, Steiner captures Ancient Rome in all its crowded, smelly reality, without ponderous archaeology weighing the book down.  The magic remains internally consistent and very well described, even the new type of magic the intruder brings, and the historic backstory to the conflict is accurate.  And Natto Magus’s character continues to develop; the next in the series should prove quite interesting!

Five stars to the second installment of a fun series.

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

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