Lord Thornby has been trapped on his father’s isolated Yorkshire estate for a year. There are no bars or chains; he simply can’t leave. His sanity is starting to fray.
When industrial magician John Blake arrives to investigate a case of witchcraft, he finds the peculiar, arrogant Thornby as alarming as he is attractive. John soon finds himself caught up in a dark fairytale, where all the rules of magic—and love—are changed.
To set Thornby free, both men must face life-changing truths—and John must accept that the brave, witty man who’s winning his heart may also be about to break it. Can they escape a web of magic that’s as perilous as love?
PRAISE FOR Salt Magic, Skin Magic
“Magic, folklore, dark deeds, and hot romance combine in this wildly enjoyable, inventive story set in a lovely alt-Victorian Gothic world. More please!” —KJ Charles, RITA™-nominated author of THE MAGPIE LORD and SPECTRED ISLE
“Salt Magic, Skin Magic by Lee Welch is the sort of book you want to read again the moment you reach the end. Beautifully written, with a romance that is by turns sweet and scorching, it belongs on the keeper shelf of any lover of paranormal historical.” —Jordan L. Hawk, author of the WHYBORNE AND GRIFFIN and HEXWORLD series
Historical romance meets magic and fairies in Salt Magic Skin Magic, easily is one of my favorite reads of the year.
There are so many things I loved about this book. Most notable is the amazing world-building. I went into the story expecting historical with a bit of a twist and got so, so much more than that. Lee Welch put so much work into the creation of the magic and paranormal aspects of this story. The sheer amount of detail that went into everything from the salt John uses to work magic to the entire configuration of the magical world had me in awe. For a story that takes place only (for the vast majority of the story) on a single estate, I felt immersed in a complete world in the English countryside.
The storytelling is superb – the writing is beautiful, the plot building was done so well, leaving me on the edge of my seat all the way up until the end. This is definitely one of those books that you just can’t put down out of curiosity about what will happen next. The main mystery of the story – why Soren can’t leave his father’s estate – was complexly written. I kept coming up with theories that just kept getting smashed over and over, and the conclusion caught me completely by surprise.
And the characters are amazing. When I read historical romance, I like the upper-class meets working-class pairings, and we have that here but with unexpected power dynamics. Soren is high-born, next in line as Marquess of Dalton, whereas John is a materials magician (considered the “common” magician), who was born to a poor family. However, there’s no power imbalance. Soren is trapped, helpless at his father’s estate. John is there on his free will and has the power and ability to help Soren. Then the script would be flipped again and Soren is saving John. They are complete equals, despite their births. I loved that.
This is my first book by Lee Welch, but I’ll definitely be on the lookout for more books by this author. I was pleasantly surprised by this book and highly recommend it!
An advance copy of this book was received for review on OMGReads.
Lord Soren Thornby is dragged to the Raskelf estate by his father. Told he won’t be able to leave until he gets married. Desperate to leave he just isn’t able to. Something holds him within its boundaries. Slowly wearing him down.
Into his life comes John Blake. There because he believes that Soren is causing harm to his step mother. What he discovers shakes his beliefs and changes his magic. He is an extraordinary magician with inanimate objects. They talk to him, telling him secrets from the past. He uses them to delve into the secrets of Soren’s life.
Together they discover an amazing secret and uncover an old evil. Now they just have to trust that the magic won’t let them down.
A very different book than what I usually read. In the beginning it was a little slow and I wasn’t sure I liked it, but the further I got into the story the more it intrigued me. The magical element gave it an unusual appeal. I liked how John infused everyday items with magical energy.
Their relationship was well done also. John, expecting an aloof aristocrat, instead gets a man who works his way into his heart. Soren not exactly sure why John is there, finds the man utterly irresistible. I enjoyed it.
Review Copy requested and reviewed on behalf of OMGReads.
Lee Welch wrote her first book aged seven (a pastiche of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe) and first had an idea for an m/m romance aged twelve. She loves books and comics, and when she’s not writing, she’ll probably be reading. Her favourite authors include Ursula Le Guin, Graham Greene, Linda Medley, Dylan Horrocks and KJ Charles. By day, Lee works as an editor and business communications adviser, mainly persuading people not to say ‘utilise’ when they mean ‘use’. Her job has led her to work in areas as diverse as mental health, nursing, accident prevention and the criminal justice sector.
Lee loves to hear from readers. You can find her at:
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