By J.A. Cipriano
*** Let’s just say, it’s complicated (PLEASE read the full review)
Kill It With Magibc (The Lillim Callina Chronicles) is a YA urban fantasy book by J.A. Cipriano. No matter how hard I tried to truly invest myself in and enjoy the supernatural urban worlds and characters offered in Kill it with Magic I just couldn't seem to tear through the chaos long enough to do so. The discombobulating lineup of characters, creatures, and ideologies did little more than confuse things more, despite the book being well written.
What appears to start out as a turf war between rivals ends up in a war over my sanity. The entire first half of the book I found myself having to take notes just to keep up with who was who and what group was fighting the other (for instance a group of vampires called the Owls versus another group called the Bears, but you don’t know for a while if it’s really owls or bears) with poor Lillim somewhere in the mix. Mr. Cipriano’s imagination is fantastic, but I felt like I needed a manual to follow the line-up of characters and such. I can say though without a shadow of a doubt that once I was able to follow certain parts, the creativity of the developing world of his was spot on.
The dialogue in this supposed good versus evil, heroine versus her own demons story was fantastic. However, it took energy at times to figure out who was really evil; who, despite all appearances, was working for or against poor Lillim. Or was she truly just up against herself? "Isn't odd how your kind classifies things? For instance, dark is seen as bad and corrupt while white is seen as pure and safe. How very odd it is when you consider that darkness is the absence of all things while light is the whore of color. It is though the light could not be satisfied to contain just one color but felt an insatiable need to own them all. So is that how it is? The most pure is the most corrupt?" Not only are the words applicable to the other realms, you can understand their significance in our world as well. The reader can actually see each character when the lines are being spoken.
Although most people might not think of traditional magic as being based in Japanese, Mr. Cipriano totally enveloped most of the magical elements in it. For instance, her weapons each had a name in Japanese. She often did spells in what seemed to be Japanese. The Japanese theme was quite present throughout the book, especially since there were so many battles. I would guess now looking back on the book that there was a battle that lasted numerous chapters when or if the chapter wasn’t one full battle itself. Gosh, it was exhausting. I say that, but I will not deny how very well written Kill It With Magic
In summary I will say that my reason for giving this book three stars is based solely on how well written this book was. I cannot recommend nor advise against this book because I know there is a group of readers who will truly adore this book – perhaps even I would as a YA. However, I did not enjoy the story line nor the constant battles and confusing lineup of characters and places.