Book Review – Deadly Curiosities by Gail Z. Martin

Deadly Curiosities #1
Publisher: Solaris
Pages: 371
Characters: Cassidy, Sorren, Teag/Anthony
POV: 1st
Sub-Genre: Urban Fantasy, Series

Cassidy Kincaide owns Trifles & Folly, an antique/curio store and high-end pawn shop in Charleston, South Carolina that is more than what it seems. Dangerous magical and supernatural items sometimes find their way into mortal hands or onto the market, and Cassidy is part of a shadowy Alliance of mortals and mages whose job it is to take those deadly curiosities out of circulation.

Welcome to Trifles & Folly, an antique and curio shop with a dark secret. Proprietor Cassidy Kincaide continues a family tradition begun in 1670—acquiring and neutralizing dangerous supernatural items. It’s the perfect job for Cassidy, whose psychic gift lets her touch an object and know its history. Together with her business partner Sorren, a 500 year-old vampire and former jewel thief, Cassidy makes it her business to get infernal objects off the market. When mundane antiques suddenly become magically malicious, it’s time for Cassidy and Sorren to get rid of these Deadly Curiosities before the bodies start piling up.

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When I got hooked on Morgan Brice’s books about a couple of months ago I was excited to discover that she was also writing as Gail Z. Martin, and that these characters belong to the same universe. In fact Cassidy, one of the MCs of this series is Simon’s—from Badlands cousin.

I’ve long been a fan of urban fantasy and this series reads as though the author found a checklist of all the things I love in the genre and ticked all the boxes. The characters are fabulous, and well drawn, and I love the friendship between Cassidy, Teag, and Sorren, and the way their abilities work so well together. The side characters are interesting and fleshed out as well, and I hope to see more of Lucinda, Chuck, and Anthony in future books. As an aside I love Teag and Anthony as a couple.

The story had me turning pages, and on the edge of my seat and I sat up late finishing the last couple of chapters. The author writes wonderfully tense action scenes, and a plot that kept me reading to see how it unfolded.

I’ve already ordered a copy of the first anthology book in this series, and will be reading my way through her backlist, of not just this series, but of I suspect everything she’s written. I love finding new favourite authors.

I’d highly recommend Deadly Curiosities to readers who enjoy action-packed urban fantasy with interesting characters, a healthy dollop of magic/psi abilities, and a 500-year-old vampire. 5 out of 5 stars.

About Anne Barwell

Anne Barwell lives in Wellington, New Zealand. She shares her home with a cat with “tortitude” who is convinced that the house is run to suit her; this is an ongoing “discussion,” and to date, it appears as though Kaylee may be winning. In 2008, Anne completed her conjoint BA in English Literature and Music/Bachelor of Teaching. She has worked as a music teacher, a primary school teacher, and now works in a library. She is a member of the Upper Hutt Science Fiction Club and plays violin for Hutt Valley Orchestra. She is an avid reader across a wide range of genres and a watcher of far too many TV series and movies, although it can be argued that there is no such thing as “too many.” These, of course, are best enjoyed with a decent cup of tea and further the continuing argument that the concept of “spare time” is really just a myth. She also hosts and reviews for other authors, and writes monthly blog posts for Love Bytes. She is the co-founder of the New Zealand Rainbow Romance writers, and a member of RWNZ. Anne’s books have received honorable mentions five times, reached the finals four times—one of which was for best gay book—and been a runner up in the Rainbow Awards. She has also been nominated twice in the Goodreads M/M Romance Reader’s Choice Awards—once for Best Fantasy and once for Best Historical. Anne can be found at
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