Release date: September 1, 2014
Everyone in the small town of Bridge Haven, Missouri, knows that the not-so-dearly-departed Edna Bixley was a witch. Except her niece, Phoebe Cabot, who has never paid the gossips any mind. Since she was just let go from her job (“fired” sounds so harsh), Phoebe has agreed to get Edna’s house ready to put on the market.
When a sweet, little stray dog shows up, Phoebe has no idea that it’s actually a demon. Or that she’s the one who inadvertently caused its appearance.
But Noah Rossi knows, and he’s determined to stop Phoebe’s meddling in matters she doesn’t understand. The trouble is, Phoebe can’t seem to stop summoning demons. What can one extremely sexy but slightly in-over-his-head wizard do to keep her from accidentally destroying the universe?
by Jessica Starre
Jessica Starre, the author of Catch a Falling Star and A Certain Kind of Magic, has spent her whole life imagining things that couldn’t possibly happen, and has been pleasantly surprised when some of them have.
An excerpt from Lessons in Magic:
Noah Rossi snapped his head up. The tingling at the base of his skull, the hint of threat he’d been feeling for the last ten minutes, slammed into a full-blown migraine. He dropped his lunch menu onto the basket of naan and clutched his temples. If someone had taken a sledgehammer to his skull it would conceivably have hurt less.
His dining companion, Joseph Musgrave, jumped to his feet. Musgrave was older, more experienced, and no doubt drunk enough that the sensations didn’t overwhelm him quite as much.
“Who?” Noah managed to gasp out. The pain was blinding. No way could he form a complete sentence. “What?” The smell of the curry, so appetizing a minute ago, was now making his stomach rebel. He forced down a wave of nausea.
Musgrave, instantly sober in the way of a wizard with the right magical incantation at hand, threw money on the table and lifted Noah by the arm out of his chair. Without speaking, he tugged Noah towards the front door. Noah stumbled after him, his stomach roiling, his head pounding. With his free hand, Musgrave grabbed his topcoat from the coat rack and his walking stick from the corner where he’d propped it, and then they were out the door almost before Noah realized they were leaving The Curry Kitchen.
On Eighth, Musgrave flagged a cab and bundled him in without even tutting about how much cheaper it would be to take the train. Musgrave ducked in beside him and gave the cabbie Noah’s address in Chelsea. The driver grunted and pulled into traffic.
Noah didn’t utter a word; it was all he could do not to utter a sound. It felt like Athena was trying to burst out of his skull, full-grown. He gripped his head tightly and tried to ride it out, to rise above it, but the pain wanted his full attention; it grabbed him and shook him.
“Steady, now,” Musgrave was saying softly, patting his shoulder, which was weirdly more comforting than he would have thought possible. “Just a few minutes. Almost there.”
He was pathetically grateful for the comfort. Another wave of pain crashed over him, bringing with it the most intense nausea he had ever felt. His stomach heaved and he almost vomited all over his mentor’s shoes. Musgrave visibly flinched, then muttered a brief incantation. The pain eased a little and the nausea abated. That was almost certainly the placebo effect, but Noah didn’t care. He gulped in a breath and tried not to heave again.