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Iron and Magic

Iron Covenant, Book 1
Narrated by: Steve West
Series: Iron Covenant, Book 1
Length: 12 hrs and 51 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (59 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

No day is ordinary in a world where technology and magic compete for supremacy.... But no matter which force is winning, in the apocalypse, a sword will always work.

Hugh d'Ambray, Preceptor of the Iron Dogs, Warlord of the Builder of Towers, served only one man. Now his immortal, nearly omnipotent master has cast him aside. Hugh is a shadow of the warrior he was, but when he learns that the Iron Dogs, soldiers who would follow him anywhere, are being hunted down and murdered, he must make a choice: to fade away or to be the leader he was born to be. Hugh knows he must carve a new place for himself and his people, but they have no money, no shelter, and no food, and the necromancers are coming. Fast.

Elara Harper is a creature who should not exist. Her enemies call her Abomination; her people call her White Lady. Tasked with their protection, she's trapped between the magical heavyweights about to collide and plunge the state of Kentucky into a war that humans have no power to stop. Desperate to shield her people and their simple way of life, she would accept help from the devil himself - and Hugh d'Ambray might qualify.

Hugh needs a base; Elara needs soldiers. Both are infamous for betraying their allies, so how can they create a believable alliance to meet the challenge of their enemies? 

As the prophet says, "It is better to marry than to burn". 

Hugh and Elara may do both. 

©2018 Ilona Andrews, Inc. (P)2018 Ilona Andrews, Inc.

What members say

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Violence porn

I have read and enjoyed Ilona Andrews’ Innkeeper and Edge series, but I detested this book. It was little more than violence porn and sadism porn, with some sexual porn added in. The character arc - for both protagonists - was primarily “I hate you more than than I lust for you”... “No, I lust for you more than I hate you”... “No, I think I might love you but I still hate you.”

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different mix of tech & magic

good story, a little slow to begin but pace picked up as the story lines merged. great central characters. hope there's a sequel

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Yet another great novel in Ilona fantasy world

Another great book by that master weaver Ilona Andrews. This brings together ideas from past books and miles them into a new fantasy. With two powerful people throw together in an uneasy partnership that well read the book and find out. You won't regret. It. The story is great and the narration excellent enjoy

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Loved it!

Yet another great book by Ilona Andrews. They are great at kick arse females and bad arse males.

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Really enjoyable

This is one of those books where you start out disliking the main characters but later learn to love them. Really interesting story with great characters and a great narrator to pull it all together. I can’t wait for the rest of the series to be released 🐨 P.s. I also love the length, so many of these books are only 6.5-7 hours in length which for me just isn’t ideal, this book is close to 13 hours which I much prefer.

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Excellent.

So very good. Tight plot, authentic character development and world building. The narrator was spot on (except for Andrea's accent, which didnt make sense to me). Would love to read the next with Steve narrating.

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Loved the book and mostly enjoyed audio

i am a huge fan of the team of Ilona Andrew book. Their stories are fantastic, indepth, intelligent and tests your moral code as to what really matters.

I was so looking forward Hugh story and i was not disappointed in that. I fell in love with the narrator voice but i was disappointed that he couldn't really do the different characters like Renee Raudman can. I had to really concentrate to figure out which characters were speaking especially later in the book. Some of the voices were hard to recognise. This took away from the pure enjoyment of the book.

Apart from this tiny criticism, the book was amazing. 75% of the Narrator voice was heavenly. well worth it

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Ilona Andrews has done it again!

Full Disclaimer: I LOVE Ilona Andrews books. I own every single one of them. Literally.

That said, I was nervous about this one b/c, well, Hugh. He’s kinda a dick in the Kate Daniels universe... TBH I wasn’t sure even the master storyteller that is Andrews would be able to make me look at him in a positive light.

I will never be an unbeliever again- I swear it!!!

Hugh has this sort of roguish charm & wit that I love- especially because he is still certifiably bad. I also love the way that we literally see him pulling himself out of an existentialist crisis- credibly & with redeeming qualities- while still being certifiably bad.

And then we have Elara. She is another wonderfully strong, flawed, engaging, kick arse female lead who’s prepared to make the hard decisions & sacrifices for her people. She’s also got some juju happening scary enough to have the Iron Dogs giving her a jaundiced eye- but that clearly comes at a personal cost...

Soooo- release date for Book 2 is when, exactly..?

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  • IreneMBBT
  • 27-07-2018

Hugh recreating his life

While theoretically a stand alone, this book is best enjoyed if you’ve read the Kate Daniels series. There’s just too many references.
Andrews does a great job of balancing the evil and good in d’Ambray; both the Iron Dog and the son looking for approval. Elara didn’t come across as evil or bad as I expected. I didn’t think I’d want to read a book about the very bad d’Ambray, but Andrews made this story work.
I enjoyed the love-hate relationship between Hugh and Elara and how they balance it and each other. I’m definitely interested in what the next book will bring. Andrews’ books never disappoint.
West has a great voice for Hugh and this story arc. Just wish he hadn’t given Andrea the foreign accent.
Recommend!

31 of 32 people found this review helpful

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  • Cathline
  • 25-07-2018

Is it just me or did he just give Andrea an accent?

There’s a lot of issues with the voice actor with me. One of the main issues was that he says Hughs last name many different ways, and never correctly. The main characters own last name..... Secondly, he mispronounced a lot of other names throughout. Another issue, early in the book there was little difference between the two POV and was hard to follow. It wasn’t till pretty far into the book he figured out just how he wanted to voice Elara. I had to keep going back a few times to catch the switch.

The story is absolutely brilliant and I can’t wait for the next in this series, as well as the next Kate Daniels. I just wish they’re was some consistency with pronunciations through the two series audiobooks.

74 of 80 people found this review helpful

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  • AMP5
  • 22-07-2018

Despite my expectations: I LOVED it!

Of all the characters from the world of Kate and Curran (Kate Daniels series), I did not expect a new storyline offshoot featuring Hugh D’Ambray.
But I loved it. Nice smooth, rollout of new characters and interesting relationships. To get over my Kate Daniels’ inspired distaste for Hugh, it didn’t hurt to have interesting Iron Dog team and such an attractive, strong masculine voice, courtesy of the narrator. But the best was the unfolding relationship with Elara.
It might be a prerequisite to know the Kate Daniels story first. However, what we saw and hated of Hugh there comes with him to be examined and understood in this story. There is a is depth to his struggles and growth now.
I am excited for more of the Hugh/Elara relationship game. It has been and could be so delicious. Also, love the new cast of support characters that Ilona Andrews always does such a fine job of giving their readers. Nice to add some new elements beyond shapeshifters and undead.

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

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  • roverman
  • 25-07-2018

New story, new narrator

I like how an April Fools summary turned into, possibly, a 3 book series. The story is great. I do miss Renee Raudman doing the narration because I'm already used to her voice and pronouncement of words/names. So yes, I (and other listeners) are spoiled. Steve does a pretty good job (for a guy). Most of his female voices sound the same, yet they are not the high pitched voice some guys do. His male voices vary some. HOWEVER, not all US people have deep south accents. It seems like every male on Elara's side has the same southern accent. No northern, no central, no Texan (Andrea, who sounds just plain, ugh), just southern. It seems like most of the women voices have a generic US accent, which is fine. And if he's going to go with the southern accent, he needs to do away with the european way of pronouncement of certain words. I saw him is not I sar him... need I say more. This would be understandable if it were only Hugh who is from across the pond. All in all, he does a pretty good job and I'll still get the next story if he's reading it. He's a better reader than Jeffrey Kafer who reads Magic Stars who trails off after every sentence.

26 of 31 people found this review helpful

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  • virginia d
  • 22-07-2018

Looking forward to the next installment

I really enjoyed this book. I trusted that the Ilona Andrews team would somehow redeem Hugh and they did. The genius is that they left the core Hugh intact. He's still a badass but has regained qualities that Roland suppressed ( to make Hugh a more useful tool to him ) such as honor and a conscious. And Elara is a perfect match for him. Lots of likeable new characters and a few make an appearance from the Kate Daniels series.
The narrater, Steve West, was very good overall with only one minor flaw. After all the years reading and listening to the Kate Daniels books narrated very well by Renee Raudman, my brain had trouble processing the different accents and speech patterns of the characters from that series, Andrea and Ascanio being the most jarring. And the pronunciation of Hugh last name was so different but again overall the narration was very good and I will continue to both read and listen to this series. Really looking forward to the next installment.

8 of 9 people found this review helpful

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  • Julie
  • 21-07-2018

FANTASTIC!! Steve West was a great listen!

This book was, by far everything I knew it would be and more. I could not stop reading! Tears, tears, I have tears. I always knew Hugh was a great character. Every time he came into a scene it was the greatest anticipation and excitement. Through-out the Kate Daniels series, when Hugh was there it ended up being my favorite moments to read, besides Kate and Curran's interactions. I can't wait to see what comes next.

I have the Kindle version, but with work and life getting in the way, I could not devote myself and when the audio was released I jumped on it. Now when, new narrator, to me Steve West started this, I was floored how how well he did. Yes there was some minor things adjusted like how to pronounce Hugh's name and such. It was easy to get over. What completely stopped me in my tracks was characters who are well known, in this world, having a strong accent that does not belong to them. I will not hold it against him, nor will I about the lack of pausing for chapters and switching character. That is the editors job. I would recommend anyone getting into narration do the homework if you are picking up a series that is well established. Hell, even narrators that have done 8 books of a series, make crazy mistakes, and no one else seems to care. Other then that Steve West did a fantastic job and was the characters. Can not wait to listen to things from him in the future.

13 of 16 people found this review helpful

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  • J. N. Abbott
  • 09-04-2019

Steve West, my voice boyfriend

I adore Steve West. He is a spectacular narrator. I have often searched audiobooks just for him because I miss listening to him. Couldn't have been a better pick for Iron and Magic! A fun book too, of course. Ilona Andrews never disappoints!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • ERICK
  • 24-12-2018

Slow burn of a book that is worth it in the payoff

They really took their time developing the relationship of Hugh and Elara, but understandably so. Sure, you may get a little, 'oh come on! Get together already.' But when you respect the amount of character growth Hugh needs to get there, it makes total sense that it takes a long long time. Overall, I really liked the story and the development of Hugh from professional killer to what he becomes. And by the end you really appreciate and enjoy the results.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • The Neighbor Lady
  • 02-12-2018

Hugh Rocks!

Well, the Andrews team said they were going to take the series in a new direction and that they did.

It's written from Hugh's point of view in the time after Roland banished him. I like reading some of the series characters back stories just to see what makes them tick. This book does it. 😊 In a way that it is more than just cold facts about the person. It was fun, fast, and flexible as to the who, what, when, where & hows were directed into the story.

I'm looking 🧐 forward to the next novel and I hope that Hugh, Ilara, and their people will be in there as frequently recurring characters.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 30-11-2018

Superb Narration by Steve West

I was uneasy about buying this book due to the uncomplimentary reviews of the narration. However, I like Ilona Andrews as an author and took the plunge. I found Mr. West's narration exemplary. I felt the discrepancies from Ms. Raudman;s pronunciation barely noticeable as they were inundated by Mr. West's superb narrative style. Please do not sacrifice a great listening experience by not buying this book.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Book addict
  • 26-07-2018

Great book - listen to Kate Daniels series first

I was so excited when I found out Ilona Andrews had released a new book. Downloaded it immediately, listened to it nearly non-stop, and loved it! It comes after the Kate Daniels series in terms of chronology, so I’d suggest listening to that first (great series so I’d recommend that one regardless). Different narrator, and although I miss Renee Raudman, Steve West was great too. Now just need to wait forever for the next Ilona Andrews book to be released..

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Tony D.
  • 25-10-2019

Great story but problems with the narration

Most importantly this is a great book which i have thoroughly enjoyed, it blends well into the Kate Daniels world stories, it works as a stand alone and has enough hooks to make you look forward to the next installment without making you feel like the book is unfinished.
There is a few minor niggles with the narration and one major one. All of which could have been solved with a little research by Steve West, with 10 other audio books containing the same characters there is no reason for them to suddenly develop overly done Italian accents they didn't have before, but my major gripe with the narration is the mispronunciation of the Main Characters surname.

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  • Nicola
  • 02-06-2019

fantastically read by the charming Steve West

ilona Andrews are the beat author lords. they made us love Hugh in this book. To find out how you'll have to buy this to find out but let me assure you, this audio book is worth every penny.

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  • Beelane
  • 04-02-2019

The narrator was the best I have ever heard!

Book was amazing and I hope the narrator dose more of her books because he was brilliant!

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  • Tarnblade
  • 12-01-2019

Another great read from Ilona Andrews

What's not to love. I don't think I've ever read a bad book by this author and this was no different. Character driven story, with lots of fighting, magic and an interesting alternative world.

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  • Cristina
  • 31-12-2018

Struggled at the beginning but was worth it

I like fast-paced books and struggled to get into it at the beginning. Narrators did a really good job and i am really glad I did.

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  • Blithe Spark
  • 30-12-2018

A joy

Loved everything about this - the narration, the writing, the plot... love love love. I need more!

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  • Visenja
  • 19-12-2018

Ilona Andrews as always great

I have read/ heard all of this author (s) there is to find here at Audible..

Kate Daniel's series is my favorite... And this is going to be at close running... And is set in the same univers with overlap of characters...


Narretor Steve West is doing a beautiful job with this book..

Can't wait for next book in series coming out in 2019..

If you are into this genre... Absolut recommended as your next book..

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  • Rosie
  • 10-10-2018

refreshing

Loves this narration and book. Fresh take on power struggles within a magical world.
One th8ng I enjoyed was the magic vs tech it melded well together.

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  • kaaasiak
  • 24-07-2018

Loved it!!

Spoiler free review: The cover didn't appeal to me. Neither did the book description. I thought to myself that I liked every other book by Ilona Andrews so I gave this book a go and I am so glad I did. The story was amazing, I loved Elara, Hugh was all right as well. All the side kicks did their job well as always in the Andrew's books. The only downside is that I will probably have to wait months, if not a year, for the next instalment. No cliffhanger at the end.
Almost forgot to mention the narrator. I am used to listening to Rene Raudman narrating Andrew's books so was surprised this one was narrated by a guy. He did however do an amazing job and since most characters were male he was better suited for the book



Spoiler review: you're reading this at your own risk.
Hugh is looking for a place where he and his Dogs can plant some roots. Elara needs muscle to protect her people and she has a castle so she and Hugh strike a deal. One bloody wedding later and the couple, who hate each other's guts, need to find a way to work together against common enemy, without killing each other. they keep stabbing at each other and fight a lot and the sparks are flying. There is a night of passion and a slowly growing fondness, maybe even a feeling, but by the end of the book they still don't fully trust each other. Can't wait for the next book to see their relationship growing stronger