What happens when a practical Ives gentleman encounters a “gifted” Malcolm woman? The sparks and the magic seem to fly off the printed page! This happy event has occurred before, in the first two books of Patricia Rice’s Magic series. The Trouble With Magic continues the enchantment, with the story of Felicity Malcolm Childe and Ewen Ives.
The Malcolm gift that Felicity has received is no simple parlor amusement. A stronger, darker power, it has made her life one of seclusion and has crushed her dreams for a home and family. Determined not to retreat and accept her fate, Felicity sets out to locate a missing journal. This journal may contain the means to remove her unusual abilities, allowing her the opportunity to experience life to its fullest. She and her sister Christina set off to Edinburgh, where the journal was last seen.
Destiny is playing a rather mean-spirited joke on Ewen Ives. On his way to Edinburgh to woo a rich heiress, Ewen is dismayed to encounter his sisters-in-law, traveling unescorted. Not only does honor demand that he offer his assistance, but he is forced to endure their eccentricities. He has more important things to do than chaperone the high-spirited young women. His fortunes have taken a turn for the worse and he is one step ahead of financial disaster.
When Ewen sees the aftermath of Felicity’s power, he is compelled to try and help the young women with their search. As they encounter Ewen’s business partners, Felicity is convinced that all is not as it seems to be, and wants to assist Ewen in his financial investigation. The fact that Ewen is the most handsome of the Ives men is another incentive, but his boyish enthusiasm and penchant for fixing things are the basis of her attraction to him.
I enjoyed reading this book for a number of reasons. There is plenty of humor and wit, with the typical bluster of a man who knows what is best, and the woman who ignores him. The paranormal aspects are interesting, and I wonder how those gifts would be endured in modern times. The pace is quick but not hurried, and the true villain unrevealed until the last. A strong story that does not depend on its predecessors, it has enticed me to look for the earlier books, for some more “magical” reading.