Book Review: Listening to Ian Magick


“At my feet, her headless body jerked with spasms.  It seemed to be trying to sit up. The legs shook and the arms flailed as blood spurted from the neck. The red liquid splashed onto my hands and my feet. then the body gave out a tremendous shudder, and the convulsions stopped.  The corpse was motionless.

I stared down at the knife in my hand. Blood dripped from its blade.

I was now a killer

I had murdered someone, and I had done it for Ian Magick.”

I started reading this book with some considerable bias.  The moment the author, Tamworth Grice, told me that Lisening to Ian Magickwas about a Satanic rock star who was speaking to a teenage girl through his music I had to repress a moan.  But I decided to give it a try anyways since there is always a chance that it could be better than it sounds.  I made my way through the book without too much difficulty.  The story was fast-moving and flowed nicely.  It is easy to follow along and the characters were fairly well-defined even though some of them were rather odd and some of them made little jumps in the way they acted.

One of the biggest issues I had with the book were the clichés.  The story takes place in a town called Horrify, the helper at the pharmacy is rumored to be a zombie, the class clown’s parents are werewolves, etc., etc., etc.  Perhaps the author is setting this up as a location she will use for another book so she is setting the scene for what may come ahead, but it  felt a little over the top to me. 

The story is about Chelsea, a teen on the verge of adulthood who moves once again once her mother re-marries.  As the new kid at school she must deal with all of the usual awkwardness, but things  really take a strange turn when the local sports hero takes an interest in her and she draws the attention of his psychotic girlfriend in return. As things get harder to deal with she begins to have violent nightmares and her waking thoughts become even more so.  She hears the words of her favorite singer, Ian Magick and is comforted by them until they begin to urge her to do more and more violent things, ultimately calling for the death of one of her classmates. 

Ultimately I felt like the book fell a little short of its potential.  There are a lot of supporting characters worth exploring in the story, but all we are given is half the picture, which leaves the characters looking like they have been plucked from a catalog of stereotypes and some minor details added to make them at least a little different.  I would have preferred that the author spent more time directly developing the supporting characters so that they could highlight the main character better.

With all of that being said, it is well worth the $0.99 price through Amazon.

If you would like more information about the author please visit her blog: Griceland and look for her book in Kindle format through Amazon.com.

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