Review: Breath of Magic
Now, I’m not normally a fan of time travel romance, but Breath of Magic by Teresa Medeiros might have changed my mind. Just a tiny bit. I loved her Charming the Prince, a medieval romance take on Cinderella, and I’m glad I was willing to give this story the benefit of the doubt based on past experience.
Arian Whitewood is the daughter of a French courtesan, plagued by rumours of witchcraft and devil-worship in the small Massachusetts town where she and her Puritan step-father live. Though the details are exaggerated, the townspeople’s fears are true – Arian can work magic, with the help of a magical amulet than once belonged to her mother. The amulet saves Arian’s life when she is tried for witchcraft and ‘ducked’ into the pond to drown, and instead of breathing water, she finds herself flying through the air in New York City, three hundred years into the future. After her broomstick has an unfortunate run-in with a chimney and catches fire, Arian finds herself crash-landing into the arms of billionaire bad-boy Tristan Lennox.
Tristan is a renowned skeptic, and not the least bit amused when his well-publicised “magic contest” – one million dollars to anyone who can prove that magic exists – is interrupted by a lovely slip of a girl on a flying broomstick, of all things. Though it’s clearly a hoax, it will take time for Tristan’s scientists to find the trick and prove it; until then, he finds himself reluctantly enjoying the company of the strange young woman he thinks a charlatan and a fraud. And Arian finds that perhaps there’s something more important than getting home to be killed for witchcraft…
There’s no complicated plot or arching character development, but that only meant the story was straightforward. The characters and plot weren’t particularly believable – this is a time-travel romance, after all, and suspension of disbelief is de rigueur.
Tristan started off the story gruff and quite unpleasant. It was nice to see his cold shell slowly thawing as Arian wormed her way inside his defences, and the struggle to align what his heart feels with what his head thinks. IT was interesting, if sometimes cringe-inducing, to follow Arian’s attempts to adapt to the twentieth century and all the ways society and technology has changed since her time in Puritan Massachusetts.
While not a stunning literary masterpiece, this story is a light and enjoyable piece of fluff that was perfect for lightening the dreary chill of a late autumn afternoon. Recommended.