The Thinking Woman’s Guide to Real Magic by Emily Croy Barker, was a huge 500+ page book. Like the other readers have mentioned, it would have been good to have a sequel alert on this book.
It starts with Nora-a literature graduate whose life is in a bit of a mess- getting lost in the woods and stumbling into the Fairyland. The fairyland reads like an episode of “Once upon a time”. It has all the requisite characters; an evil fairy queen, beautiful but cruel prince, maybe somewhat nicer Fae and all the crazy magic. Nora is magicked into marrying the cruel prince so that the Fae can have heir. Somehow she realizes that not everything is hunky dory in her fairyland and gets rescued by a powerful magician Aruendiel. This magician brings her to his castle where she sweeps, cooks and does general housekeeping while Aruendiel continues to be rude and dismissive towards her. Eventually she starts to learn magic from him and follows him around on his missions. So obviously in between all that she falls for this rude, obnoxious, sexist, egotistic magician. She even makes him read “Pride and Prejudice”- she somehow finds her copy of the book in the magical world. In her defense, I guess she couldn’t help falling for her savior.
To make a 500+ pages long story short, Nora learns enough magic that she saves Aruendiel when he’s in trouble and figures out that he likes her as well.
My thoughts: this was a strictly ok read. It is a cliche of a naive girl falling for an experienced, rude 100 yr old man! Though how she falls for a guy who murders his pregnant wife for adultery is beyond me. Yes, it is written well, but needed some major edits. Especially the part where Aruendiel is talking about his past…wayyyy to long! I skipped over those parts, it was completely irrelevant to the story. But then the author has just skimmed over the parts when Nora starts learning magic. It’s like all of sudden she can do levitation spells and water spells and crazy algebra (she’s an English Lit grad!) If you want to read about magic, I am sure there are better books out there. I am not going to bother with the sequel