Reliquary Series by Sarah Fine: Reliquary (Book #1), Splinter (Book #2)

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Reliquary Series by Sarah Fine, 
Reliquary book #1, Kindle Edition, 331 pages, Published June 14th 2016 by 47North; and 
Splinter book #2, Published August 2, 2016 by 47North.

The egalley of Splinter was provided to me by 47North and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. I am not being compensated in any way. The opinions voiced are fully my own. Since Splinter is book two in this series, and I hadn't read Reliquary, I bought Reliquary. So I'm reviewing the two books together somewhat. ~ Judi E. Easley

GoodReads Summary of Reliquary:
Mattie Carver’s engagement party should have marked the start of her own personal fairy tale. But when her fiancé, Ben, is violently abducted the next morning, her desperate quest to find him rips her away from small-town life and reveals a shattering truth: magic is real—and Ben is hooked. It’s not the stuff of storybooks. It’s wildly addictive, capable of producing everything from hellish anguish to sensual ecstasy almost beyond human endurance.

Determined to find out who took Ben and why, Mattie immerses herself in a shadowy underworld and comes face-to-face with the darkly alluring Asa Ward, a rogue magic dealer, infamous hustler…and her missing fiancé’s estranged brother. Asa has the power to sense magic, and he realizes Mattie is a reliquary, someone with the rare ability to carry magic within her own body, undetected. Asa agrees to help find Ben on one condition: Mattie must use her uncommon talent to assist his smuggling operations. Now, from magic-laced Vegas casinos to the netherworld clubs of Bangkok, Mattie is on a rescue mission. With Asa by her side, she’ll face not only the supernatural forces arrayed against her but the all-too-human temptation that she fears she can’t resist.

GoodReads Summary of Splinter:
Mattie Carver has relinquished the world of magic, with all its dark temptations. In six weeks, she’ll marry Ben Ward and claim the safe, small-town life she craves. But Mattie’s talents as a reliquary—someone able to smuggle magic within her body—make her a valuable commodity, even to those she trusts the most. Forced out of retirement by a painful betrayal, she must seek the help of the man she’s tried desperately to stay away from: Ben’s estranged brother, Asa.

Asa, a sensor and magic dealer, may have saved Ben months ago, but he’s complicated Mattie’s life beyond imagining. Trailed by lethal mobsters through Chicago’s seamy magical underbelly and an eerie traveling carnival, Mattie struggles to endure the priceless magic she’s holding and her feelings for Asa. Once, she thought she’d chosen her path. Now the only option may be to succumb to the destiny that’s choosing her, and hope she’s strong enough to survive.

My Review of the series at this point:
These two books are a smooth continuation. There is no break in the story other than a short time blip. Anything I can say for the first book can be said for the second and vis versa.

I absolutely loved Mattie. She was such a caring person and so ready and willing to do almost anything to help anyone in need. She had such a strong compass for right. If she'd committed a crime, she would have turned herself into the police. Ben had been ripped from her life in a horrific way, and she was going to find him and take care of him. His brother, Asa, was the person she needed to help her find him. Even with what she had been told about Asa, and the way he acted, she tried to reach out to him when she thought he needed help or comfort. She trusted people until they proved that they weren't trustworthy. Even then, she tried to see their side of things. In the first book, this got her in all sorts of trouble, in the second book, she was tougher. She had learned a bit more of this magical world. But she still held on to her hopes until the bitter end.

And this magical world is villainous. Everything seems to have a price. It can be bought and sold or bartered. Even people, and especially Mattie. She's quite a prize, and everyone appears to want her. They're not too gentle about taking her, either. Not that what she can do is easy on a girl. She's a reliquary. That means she can carry magical items within her. She has to suck the magic into her body from a conduit, another person. Then, when they want the magic back, she has to spew it out via a conduit. Yes, another person again. It's been known to kill the reliquary or the conduit in the past. It all depends on how strong the magic is. Mattie's pretty strong, but all this is taking its toll even on her. She just wants to get home to Ben and talk out their problems. Doesn't she?

I did get a little impatient with Mattie in Splinter. You can be a little too good. Forgive someone for too much or just not see their faults as faults or errors. No amount of talking and explaining makes what they've done okay. She's a bit blind when it comes to those she loves, and I wanted to sit her down for a good talk a couple of times.

A great series to while away these hot summer days. And then in November, the third book of the series is due out, Mosaic. Sure to be another great read.

Mosaic due out in November 2016