Title: The Magician: Coal to Diamonds
Author: Augusta Li
Buy link: Amazon.com
Genre: paranormal-horror, M/M/M/M
Length: Short story (35K)
Rating: 4 stars out of 5
Cole, Bobby and Cam had been friends since childhood, living in a rural Pennsylvania town where they practiced magic in their tree house, mostly for fun. Cole’s grandmother was a witch and he had spent a great deal of time
watching her prepare potions with the other witches in her coven. When the three friends grew up they became lovers but Bobby and Cam left town eventually, moving on to brilliant careers – Bobby in law and Cam as a dancer and model. Cole stayed, weathering the storms in the small town where he still lived, struggling to understand what his life had become. 10 years later they meet again because suddenly the cadence of their lives has changed and it seems to have taken a turn for the worse.
Most of the story is told from Cole’s POV as he rehashes his and his friends’ lives. Cole is happy to be reunited with his lovers but he also faces the frightening possibility that he may have inadvertently caused their misfortunes, a change of circumstance that threatens all their lives. He believes that Darius Thorne, the sinister wizard who had welcomed the three friends years ago and became their lover before they parted under difficult circumstances, might be at the bottom of their problems and he’s afraid they may not live to find out the cause. He feels that the only resolution is to sacrifice himself or he will lose Bobby and Cam all over again.
The Magician: Coal to Diamonds is a unique story and I can honestly say I can’t recall reading anything similar recently. At first I wasn’t sure what to make of it but as I got more involved with the characters and the plot they grew on me. The sex in the book was very interesting and hot as the lovers pushed the envelope and taught me some new moves. The plot is dark and menacing and evil and the author, Augusta Li, is very skilled at world building as she put me right in the middle of the natural environment where Cole lives and I could feel and smell the crisp air and see the trees and animals all around him. All the characters in the book are damaged, Cole probably more than the others. He blames himself for the way his friends’ lives lay in ruins and tries to make amends the only way he can. The author drew these three-dimensional characters so skillfully I fully expected them
to walk out the door and into real life and we get a glimpse of the potential destruction of a human being by his own hands.
The Magician: Coal to Diamonds is unusual, violent and the genre is rated as a paranormal-horror, but the love between the three friends shone through and made it romantic as well. I recommend this book to anyone who is looking for something different that is also a very good read.
This story contains scenes of violence and may not be suitable for everyone