Kate Daniels: My Favorite Urban Fantasy Series

There was a time when I used to think that the only kind of fantasy that I enjoy reading is epic fantasy. I believed that urban fantasy wasn’t for me. That changed when I was introduced to the Kate Daniels series, written by power couple Ilona and Gordon. I still remember my reading experience – I was interested enough in the first two books, Magic Bites and Magic Burns, but it was Magic Strikes that made me fall in love with the series. There was no looking back after that. There’s so much to love about the series – kickass characters, the worldbuilding including the different types of mythology in each of the novels, the swoon-worthy romances. When my friend Kim Bartolome was working on the design for my current header, I described Kate and Curran as one of my favorite fictional couples and he used that as the basis for his artwork. The huge lion and the lady warrior can represent them, except that the latter is in medieval attire (to also stand for some of the other fictional characters I love).

If you haven’t read the series and you feel like we have similar tastes in books, then you must check it out. Here’s the reading order:

Magic BitesMagic BurnsMagic StrikesMagic BleedsMagic SlaysGunmetal Magic

I’ve tried to read other urban fantasy series but aside from the Edge series (also by the same authors), I haven’t found another one to really follow. I started rereading Magic Bites last week because I was hoping to reread all the books that are currently out before the release of the latest one, Magic Rises on the 30th of July. I had a pretty busy weekend so unfortunately, I’m still not done rereading Magic Bites. I’m so excited for the next Kate Daniels novel and I have no idea if I’ll be able to continue with my rereading plans or if I’ll drop everything and just read Magic Rises as soon as it’s available. Let’s just see how it goes. How about the rest of you, what is your favorite urban fantasy series? Are you a fan of Kate Daniels as well? Did you reread the rest of the series in preparation for the next book?

Curran / Lion shirt

I call this my Curran shirt, got it from the Singapore Zoo

22 thoughts on “Kate Daniels: My Favorite Urban Fantasy Series

    • Tin, you haven’t tried reading the Kate Daniels books yet? You should! Let me know what you think when you get to do so. There will be 7 Kate books in the series (Gunmetal Magic is about Andrea, Kate’s best friend) so the next one is second to the last.

      Urban fantasy has a modern setting – it’s set in the present world but with magic elements. I think YA urban fantasy has also been called paranormal YA. Epic fantasy is set in a world different from our own, a make-believe place. But don’t take my word on these definitions, I’m not really 100% sure about them.

      Harry Potter is a bit confusing because I get the feeling that it can fall under both urban and epic fantasy. It has a modern setting but most of it is set in Hogwarts, instead of a city that we’re familiar with. I get confused about Harry Potter’s classification as well so I can’t really answer your question. LOL.

      • I know right? I have so many series unfinished pa kasi. Including Sevenwaters and also there’s still A Conspiracy of Kings, which I can’t bring myself to acquire because, on one hand, I am eager to know what happens next, but on the other, it’s the last book in the series and finishing it will mean the end! Nothing to look forward to. Haha! It’s messed up, I know. Once I’ve had my remaining unread series cleaned-up, I think this one will be a good new series for me to start.

        Lol! It’s okay. Fantasy really has so many sub genres which is confusing. And they overlap in one book, so it’s sometimes hard to classify them. 😀

      • You’ve reminded me that I haven’t read the latest Sevenwaters novel yet. Hey, A Conspiracy of Kings isn’t the last in the series ha. She’s planning to write two more from what I’ve heard, although we have no idea when the next book will be published. It usually takes her a couple of years to finish one and I heard that she’s rewriting the current manuscript to change POVs.

        I hope you keep the Kate Daniels series in mind for when you’re in the mood to start a new series. Lucky you, so many of the books are out already. No need to wait for them to be released!

        Yeah, fantasy can be confusing sometimes. It’s hard to pinpoint the classification of certain books.

      • What?! I did not know that! Ayiee!!!! That makes me happy! You’re right, it might take years but it’s okay. At least, we have two more to look forward to! Nyahaha! 🙂

      • Yep, from what I’ve heard, A Conspiracy of Kings is definitely not the last one. I hope she finishes her current manuscript soon! I don’t mind waiting since I know she writes such amazing novels. :d

  1. I also like Patricia Briggs two urban fantasy series – Mercy Thompson + Alpha & Omega – but truthfully, even more than Kate Daniels who I think is awesome, my most favourite series is Eileen Wilks World of the Lupi. Maybe because while there is lots of action and overarching plot and all, there’s also a good look at what family would really mean if you had this situation happening. The soulmate trope gets taken out, dusted off and really looked at in detail, so does the idea of an alpha male getting together with a woman who has always had agency, too (my favourite couple is the main one, Rule Turner and Lily Yu, but I have a soft spot for the two secondary couples as well).

    This is another series (as are the Briggs ones) that has to be read from the start because of the overarching plot.

    • I read the first three books in the Mercy Thompson series, I liked them well enough but got bumped out of the story with the traumatic event in that third book. I had to take a break after that and then I just didn’t feel the need to continue with the series. I tried the first Alpha and Omega book as well.

      Based on your description, it looks like I would enjoy reading the World of the Lupi series. I looked up the first book on Goodreads and it seems like you’ve recommended it before because it’s already on my wishlist. 🙂

      • I hope so ^^. Li from Bookdaze also enjoys it. There is a traumatic event for the heroine in the second book, but NOT (and so far there are nine books) the traumatic event that was in the third Mercy Thompson book.
        I found it quite refreshing that Wilks manages to give her characters believable strong hang-ups to overcome (even Rule, the main hero) without going to the short cuts. It takes a couple of books for Lily to deal with the aftermath of her own trauma, but I thought that was very believable.

      • Thanks for the heads up about the traumatic event. Wow, there are already 9 books out in the series? I’m going to try just the first one and see if it’s something that I want to continue reading. I like chracters who have believable problems and issues. Will definitely let you know when I get a chance to check it out (or you’ll see it on my Goodreads status).

      • It is traumatic, but it’s not sexually so, which I really appreciated. I would also suggest starting with book 1, because until you know if you like her voice it doesn’t make sense to fully invest.

        On the other hand, if you really enjoy the series, there are lots of books and a few novellas (all of which are available as single ebooks or in their original anthologies) to read – and she also has a freebie story on her website.

      • Yep, I usually start with just the first book (or maybe until book two or three) before I decide if I want to continue with the rest of the series. There was a time when I would buy a whole set before reading a series but sometimes it doesn’t work out for me and I give up on reading the latter books.

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  3. Like you I wanted to reread the Kate Daniels books before Magic Rises came out, but I didn’t even get started. Magic Rises landed on my doorstep and there was no way I was gonna wait to dive right in.

    Also, love the shirt! I was trying to come up with some clever shirt idea to wear to the signing but it just didn’t happen. That one would have been perfect 🙂

    • I was SO tempted to start reading Magic Rises as soon as it came out but then I knew that I wouldn’t reread the earlier novels if I did that. And I thought it would be a good idea for the whole story arc to be fresh in my mind when I finally dove into Magic Rises.

      Yep, would definitely wear my lion shirt if I ever get to attend one of their signings. How was the event? 🙂 It must have been so much fun for you.

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  5. You KNOW how I feel about this series — you contributed to it! 🙂 This series and Mercy Thompson are 1A and 1B. I think the latter Mercy books do a great job of handling what happens to her in Book 3, which was DEVASTATING. I think they are worth reading and I love the side characters like Warren as much as Derek (from Kate). I can’t believe I’ve read and reread the Kate Daniels series already in a span of about 4 months.

    • I was a little surprised that you reread all the Kate Daniels books before Magic Rises came out because I knew that you just finished reading the whole thing a few months ago. I’m thrilled that I can share my love of Kate and Curran with you – it always makes me happy when I can talk to blog friends about my favorite books. Sigh, maybe I’ll give Mercy Thompson a try again later on.

    • I was hesitant about urban fantasy before as well but I’m so glad I gave this series a try. I’ve been more open about the genre after discover Kate Daniels but I still haven’t found another series to follow.

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