The Watchmage of Old New York, by C.A. Sanders, A review

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This book is the story of New York during the Victoria era. It tells the tale of a father and son. The father Nathaniel, is a watchmage and it tasked with keeping all the human wizards and magical creatures in line. The son, Jonas is non magical and a policeman (I resisted calling him a squib). A baby goes missing from a prominent family, at first the son starts to investigate but becomes apparent the magical world is involved and needs the help of his father, who has quite a bit on his plate as it is. I read this a couple of months ago so I’m going from my notes at the time and my memory, I apologies for any inaccuracies.

What I didn’t like;

There wasn’t much to not like but I did have a few minor grumbles;
The sons voice was very similar to the dad’s; this may have been deliberate as they are closely related but once or twice I got a little confuse whose POV we were in.

The boxing sub plot, it didn’t really work for me, particularly the son’s plan (I’m trying not to give too much away). For me it didn’t really ring true both the son and apprentice acted out of character.

I would have liked to have seen a little more verity in some of the magical creatures, some of them were very similar to each other, although I loved the flying dogs.

What I did like;

I very much enjoyed the book but here a few highlights;

The overall plot was very good and well thought out. Apart from the boxing bit, I liked the sub-plots as well. It kept me hooked all the way through.

The dad’s character, apart from being a bit similar to the son it was very good and you really got to understand the frustrations of his job. He came over as a good man working in a not so great system.

The world was very well defined, it’s not a period of history I don’t know a lot about but it felt right. The magical system was also very good and didn’t feel lifted from another book.

Summary

Although I wrote more negative points than positive, don’t get the wrong idea it was an excellent book. It was definitely a page turner, I spent many late nights reading it when I should have been catching up on my sleep. I recommend you buy the book and I will be looking out for others by the author. I give it 4 ½ stars rounded up to five for amazon.
I think I met the author via a blog but I can’t remember which one, if he would like to add it in the comments I’m put a link to his blog.

UK amazon link

Amazon.com link

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6 thoughts on “The Watchmage of Old New York, by C.A. Sanders, A review

  1. Hi Eric. Thank you for reading and reviewing Watchmage. It means a lot to me, and I’m glad that you liked it (and even if you didn’t, I’d still be glad that you read it ;)) There are more on the way, and I’m trying to do a bit more separate the two voices, mostly with using more 1850’s NYC vernacular for Jonas.

    Most of the stuff in the book (except for the obvious) are historically accurate. The only major change that I made was expanding the length of time that NYC had two police departments. In reality, it was for less than a year, in 1857, culminating in the New York Police Riots . I liked the concept so much that I gave it a few more years.

    Anyway, have a great day, and thank you again.

    Liked by 1 person

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