Welcome to one of the October 2nd book review stops on the blog tour for Summoned by McKayla Eaton, organized by The AudioBookworm Promotions. Be sure to follow the rest of the tour for more features, reviews, guest posts, and an author interview.
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About the Book
The Demon Summoner Trilogy Book One
Author: McKayla Eaton
Narrator: Becci Martin
Genre: YA Urban Fantasy, Canadian Fiction
Page Count: 270
Audio Length: 6 hrs 17 mins
Add it to your Goodreads TBR!
On an empty baseball diamond in a quiet Toronto suburb, a demon has been summoned. Seventeen-year-old Alton is miles away, just wishing he had a tutor he didn’t outsmart or outmatch. His prayers are answered when Professor Victor Orvius makes an unexpected visit, offering to teach Alton magic without the restrictions.
The only condition is that he follow Orvius’s rules and not ask too many questions. Alton soon discovers he’s not Orvius’s only student.
Reagan is a competitive young witch with a bad attitude and talent for sarcasm. Their personalities clash, causing trouble for both on more than one occasion, until they realize a greater threat than being one-upped. The demon threatens not only their chances at passing their magic finals — it threatens their lives.
If Alton and Reagan can’t learn to get along, they could be facing their deaths…or an eternity together, trapped in another realm.
My Rating: 4 Stars
I was granted access to an audiobook review copy by the author in exchange for an honest review through my participation in a book tour organized by The AudioBookworm Promotions. Thank you to McKayla Eaton and Jess at AudioBookworm for making this happen! My thoughts in this review are my own.
Story: 4 Stars
Audio Performance: 5 Stars
Overall: 4 Stars
This YA Urban Fantasy is set in a world just like our own, except with magic. Or is it exactly our world and since we aren’t magic users, we don’t know it? Our protagonist Alton and his classmates are studying to pass their written and practical final exams in magic use so that they can pursue magical careers. We meet Alton as he’s being taken on by a new tutor, Orvius, who takes him home to Vancouver Island, British Columbia, where things get interesting. Orvius expects his pupils Alton and Reagan to banish a mid-level demon, one technically too advanced for students of their experience because for reasons Orvius is withholding, they cannot get the Council involved.
In the beginning (after the prologue demon summoning,) I was pretty bored with the story, to be honest. It felt like it was shaping up to be The Magicians but set in Canada, and the change of setting alone was not going to be enough to sway my Canadian heart away from my conflicted feelings about that (other) book. Fortunately for this book, it picked up and swept me along with it in directions I wasn’t expecting. As soon as the demon conundrum was presented, my attention was peaked, and the story did not let down from there. Plus, the more I enjoyed the story itself, the more I revelled in the familiar BC setting.
Alton, Reagon, Orvius, and his friend Christian all ended up being well-rounded characters with believable chemistry that I enjoyed. Alton and Reagon grew on me. Orvius and Christian had my heart the moment each appeared!
I wasn’t a huge fan of the random passages from wizarding handbooks scattered throughout.
Since my review copy was the audiobook, I’ll take a moment to comment on the narrator’s performance. Becci’s narration is clear and far from boring, though I do feel the pacing of the narration itself could have been a little faster. I was listening on 1.5x speed the whole way through and didn’t feel like I wasn’t listening to a sped-up version at all. I listened in two sittings, and when it started playing at regular speed the second session before I put it back to 1.5, I felt what I heard was too slow. Other than that, I have no complaints at all. This was an easy and entertaining listen.
Overall I enjoyed this story and I look forward to books two and three in this trilogy. Had the beginning gripped me sooner, this would have been a 5 all around.
Meet the Author
Mckayla Eaton is an author and book-lover living and writing in Halifax, Nova Scotia. She writes fantasy and science fiction and aims to build worlds that push the imagination of readers. She was raised on Indiana Jones and Fairy Tales and strongly believes every story ought to be an adventure story. She likes tragedies and happily-ever-afters and refuses to believe the two are mutually exclusive.
Meet the Narrator
Becci Martin has been voice acting professionally since the early twenty-teens, but she’s been entertaining smaller audiences of family and friends with her spirited storytelling since she was a little kid. Between projects you can find her traveling with her husband and adventure-loving dogs, boldly puzzling newspaper crosswords in pen, or playing bartender for establishment patrons and houseguests alike. She currently calls Kansas City home.
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