Each year, the North American Confederation of Mages assesses every sixteen-year-old novice. Some will be chosen. The rest must undergo a procedure to destroy their magical ability unless they prove themselves in the mysterious and brutal Mages’ Exam.
Disadvantaged by her parents’ low standing, Rocío Lopez has dedicated herself to expanding her considerable talent to earn a place in the Confederation. Their rejection leaves her reeling—and determined to fight to keep her magic.
Long ashamed of his mediocre abilities, Finn Lockwood knows the Confederation accepted him only because of his prominent family. Declaring for the Exam instead means a chance to confirm his true worth.
Thrown into the testing with little preparation, Rocío and Finn find themselves becoming unlikely allies—and possibly more. But the Exam holds secrets more horrifying than either could have imagined. What are the examiners really testing them for? And as the trials become increasingly vicious, how much are they willing to sacrifice to win?
The first in a new series by USA Today bestselling author Megan Crewe, Ruthless Magic combines the magic of Harry Potter with the ferocity of The Hunger Games alongside a poignant romance. Fans of Cassandra Clare and Holly Black, look no further for your next urban fantasy fix!
Although the book description is highly intriguing, overall, Ruthless Magic was just an okay read for me. Not that there’s anything wrong with this book – it’s well-written, has interesting world-building, and likable characters, but nothing really stood out. Note that I’m in the minority on this opinion – the majority of reviews for this novel have been stellar. Maybe I was expecting more since it uses heavyweight comp titles like Harry Potter and The Hunger Games, and mentions Cassandra Clare and Holly Black, both authors with outstanding fantasy series under their belts.
I like the idea of the magical community feeling an obligation to reveal themselves to the ‘dulls’ (non-magic folk) and assist with government safety, but I found it surprising that despite this magic being around for quite some time, even those in charge don’t seem to understand it. The rules regarding the magic are somewhat unclear.
Again, this isn’t a bad book by any means – I’d just hoped for a bit more originality. If The Hunger Games doused with magic whets your appetite, this is probably a book you’d enjoy.
Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for the ARC.