Book Reviews of Uncertain Magic

Uncertain Magic
Uncertain Magic
Author: Laura Kinsale
ISBN-13: 9780380751402
ISBN-10: 0380751402
Publication Date: 3/2/1987
Pages: 384
Rating:
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.
 93

3.8 stars, based on 93 ratings
Publisher: Avon
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

16 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed Uncertain Magic on + 145 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 7
2.5 stars. I'm not partial to stories set in Ireland or Wales anyway (for some reason, I find them dull), but I'm not so sure that had this story been removed to another location, I would have disliked it any less. First of all, the mind-reading of the heroine was the author's very lazy way for Roderica to know so much about so many characters without having to do any characterization. The phrases "her gift" and "her talent" were deployed way too often.

Secondly, NOTHING HAPPENS for pages upon pages, apart from some sensuous interaction between Faelan and Roderica ("Roddy" - blech) while she's both aroused and fearful of who he might really be. Then, in the last 50 pages or so, all hell breaks loose with some rebellion and then in the last 10 pages there's an inept reveal about Faelan's past and a highly far-fetched wrap-up by supernatural fairies/avenging pixies who say that Faelan's been set up for all these years and made to believe he's crazy and they take away Roderica's gift in some show of divine fair play and sacrifice. Or something. I don't know - I was long past caring at that point. After 300 pages of nothing and then the last 50 is bam bam bam with stuff, it made for a very poor read. And confusing as well, since the concept of Roderica "losing time" like Faelan does isn't explained, unless she was drugged as well.

I won't be bothering with any more Kinsale novels. The plots for 2 others sound exactly like this one!
reviewed Uncertain Magic on
Helpful Score: 2
This was not a good book. I'm sorry, but somewhere between the overly dramatic female and the man having another pregnant chick on the side just kind of turned me off it. I stopped reading it a little over halfway through. It annoyed me that bad.
reviewed Uncertain Magic on + 60 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
I am having a really hard time verbalizing my response to this book. My first instinct is just to say that the word "What???" can sum it up easily, but that really won't help anyone who hasn't read it and can't empathize with my bewildered rage (yes, there is such a thing).

I bought this book because it was a Laura Kinsale. I've read her Lessons In French, Midsummer Moon, Flowers From the Storm, etc. I liked all those! Some I even loved. I was expecting something along those lines, not this. Now all of her books don't have to be the same, of course, but what was going on with this? It was a mess. I put it down midway through and the only thing that made me pick it back up was the fact that I bought it and felt I should finish it.

We spent the whole book in Roderica's head (or Roddy as she is called) and never once got a glimpse into Faelan's head. Maybe that was to keep the mystery from being spoiled, but I don't know how that could be because the resolution came out of nowhere in the last chapter or so and was quite unbelievable.

Roddy can read minds/intentions/emotions/whatever. But when she meets a man whose mind she can't read she's all about hooking up with him for life. I can see why she would want to. It would be really awkward to know every thought that runs through a man's head in regards to you. Unfortunately, because of her gift/curse she's never had to learn how to read a person's face or voice. She's constantly unsure of Faelan.

One thing that bothered me through the whole book was Faelan's incessant use of the term "little girl" as an endearment. It was really creepy for me. No matter what mood (angry/sad/mad) he used it. A few examples:

pg. 310: She turned on him. "Injured party!" Her mouth curved in vicious humor. "Oh, God, I wish you were injured. I wish you were dead! I'd kill you this moment if I knew a way."
He had been sitting and looking a little aside, out the window at the budding branch that whipped and scraped the glass behind her in the rising wind. At that he lifted his eyes. "Little girl," he said, "I think you know the way all too well."

pg. 335: She was shouting by then. A rough hand caught her shoulder and came across her mouth, stopping the sound. Faelan pulled her back against his chest. "Little girl," he said in her ear. "Must you broadcast our quarrels to the whole country?"

There were many more examples, but those were the first I flipped to. I don't think it would have been so bad if it was just once or twice (even though I still think it's a creepy term of affection) but it was all the time.

I found Faelan to be very reticent and not into sharing about his thoughts. I know he had issues, but come on! So many things in this book could have been avoided if Faelan and Roddy would have just talked together. I hate when a story hinges on big misunderstandings between characters. If a book could fall apart if characters talked it really doesn't have that great of a plot.

The first 3/4ths of the book are slow and nothing really happens. It has a dark, gothic feel to it because of the mystery of her husband. At times I found it soap opera-ish and over the top, but everyone might not feel that way.

After a really slow beginning everything happens at once at the end. I'd say in the last 50 pages or so. It makes for a really jarring transition. ***SPOILERS*** All of a sudden faeries and magic appear. The reasons given for Faelan's blackouts make no sense to me. So, his mom really stalked him all his life and snuck into his home and drugged him and then moved him to a new location so he'd wake up and think he had a blackout? She did all this through his whole life without anyone ever having seen her? Even when he was at school? Right... There were a lot of other things that bothered me but I'll just stop there.
reviewed Uncertain Magic on + 13 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
I have enjoyed other books by Laura Kinsale, but this one was disappointing. It started out well, had an interesting premise, but got bogged down in some odd, vague, distracting "magic". The supernatural parts of this book were clumsy to me, and detracted from the book. It took a turn into a darker area that just wasn't as interesting as the beginning of the book. It wasn't terrible, but it wasn't what I had hoped for.
reviewed Uncertain Magic on + 44 more book reviews
An excellent book by an excellent author. Anything by Laura Kinsale can be depended upon to be very good. This one is about a girl with a special gift of healing animals . She goes on to heal the greatest animal of all, the man that she is in love with.
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A fun book with romance and mind-reading.
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Terrific book, written in Laura Kinsale's usual brilliant style.
reviewed Uncertain Magic on + 64 more book reviews
First time reading Ms. Kinsale. This book was okay. It had a good ending.
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This book is a easy romance of magic
reviewed Uncertain Magic on + 207 more book reviews
c. 1797 Roderica is cursed with the ability to hear the thoughts of others. She is resigned to living without love until she meets Faelan "the devil earl", who can hide his thoughts. A great story!
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I love Laura Kinsale's books. She has unique characters in unique situations. They always surprise me. This was no exception. It's not your typical romance, and I loved the little bit of magical mystery. Recommend this to those who enjoy a bit of paranormal mystery in their romance.
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She is cursed with the ability to hearwhat others are thinking, except for one man. A historical romance set in Ireland.
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She has the gift to hear the thoughts of others-but not of the one who may be the man of her dreams
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Uncertain Magic
FROM THE PUBLISHER

Roderica Delamore has a "gift." Cursed with the unwanted ability to hear the thoughts of others, she is dedicated to raising her family's prize thoroughbreds and resigned to living without love. But one man's mind is inexplicably closed to her: a mysterious Irish rogue who may be the lover she has been dreaming of her entire life.

They call Faelan Savigar "the Devil Earl" a handsome, impoverished lord damned by dark rumor and whispered innuendo. But the secrets Faelan hides within are what stir Roderica's desire and her need to experience the intoxicating ecstasy of his kiss. But be he liar, swindler, or worse, Roderica knows she can have no other and she will trust this enigmatic stranger with her life ... and her heart.
reviewed Uncertain Magic on
(on Back cover)Roderica Delamore has a "gift".Cursed with the unwanted ability to hear the thoughts of others,she is dedicated to raising her family's prize thoroughbreds and resigned to living without love.But one man's mind is inexplicably closed to her:a mysterious Irish rogue who may be the lover she has been dreaming of her entire life.They call Faelan Savigar "the Devil Earl"-a handsome,impoverished lord damned by dark rumor and whispered innuendo.But the secrets of Faelan hides within are what stir Roderica's desire-and her need to experience the intoxicating ecstasy of his kiss.But be he liar,swindler,or worse,Roderica knows she can have no other-abd she will trust this enigmatic stranger with her life.... and her heart.
reviewed Uncertain Magic on + 475 more book reviews
Roderica Delamore has a "gift." Cursed with the unwanted ability to hear the thoughts of others, she is dedicated to raising her family's prize thoroughbreds and resigned to living without love. But one man's mind is inexplicably closed to her: a mysterious Irish rogue who may be the lover she has been dreaming of her entire life.

They call Faelan Savigar "the Devil Earl" -- a handsome, impoverished lord damned by dark rumor and whispered innuendo. But the secrets Faelan hides within are what stir Roderica's desire -- and her need to experience the intoxicating ecstasy of his kiss. But be he liar, swindler, or worse, Roderica knows she can have no other -- and she will trust this enigmatic stranger with her life ... and her heart.