Charming by Elliott James (Pax Arcana #1)


More like  3.75 stars...  I couldn't quite decide between a 3 or a 4 so I'll just round it up!****

This is such a clever and creative idea for a series! Loved the characters, loved the whole idea of the Pax Arcana and there is a lot of wit in this book that adds an element of fun. The only reason why I was undecided on my rating was because the world building sometimes interfered with my enjoyment of the story. I sometimes felt like I was sitting in Pax Arcana 101 in college or something. Oh, let's hold this action scene for a moment while I fill in the blanks... what?? Don't keep me hanging! It's not horribly bad or anything just wasn't my cup of tea. I think I have a lot of friends who probably wouldn't be bothered by this writing style at all. And, I love the story so I'm definitely compelled to continue with the series.
The Pax Arcana is the magic that keeps humans from knowing about the existence of the paranormal beings around them. So, every time something paranormal happens in the presence of humans the magic is activated and it will appear as something else to the human. So, kind of a shield to protect the paranormal. I liked this idea... very clever and original.
I love the chapter titles... very witty and creative! Some of my favorites were:

A Blonde and a Vampire Walk Into a Bar
Blood, Bath and Beyond
Psychopomp and Circumstance
Mental Reservations for Two
The Norse Whisperer

Anyway... you get the idea. Chapter headings are a great way to tie the reader into a book and these really helped set the tone of the book.
And, lastly... I love the whole sarcastic play on Prince Charming. Who wants a Prince that turns into a frog, or looks for lost little glass slippers when you can have John Charming! He is a great character.
This book does take some reader patience but if you like a little action, a little humor and a creative story that is light on the romance then I would recommend this one. I'm definitely game for book two!

ARC provided by netgalley in exchange for an honest review.


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