12 Tropes of 2020 – Some Kind of Magic by R. Cooper

Soul Mates from
12 Tropes of 2020

Soulmates are people who are fated to be together, usually romantically, sometimes through multiple lives and/or into the afterlife.

Taken from Fanlore

A person ideally suited to another as a close friend or romantic partner.

Taken from Lexico

Some Kind of Magic
by R. Cooper

Los Cerros is Detective Ray Branigan’s town, his to protect in a way that satisfies his werewolf instincts, even though most humans are afraid of him. Los Cerros is famous for its fairy village and its supposedly welcoming attitude toward magical beings like Ray, but Ray is one of only two beings on the police force. While dealing with human prejudice, Ray and his partner have to solve crimes relating to magic, and are forced to rely on the department’s part-time magical consultants, something Ray tries to avoid—and not only because werewolves are uncomfortable around magic.

Enter Cal Parker, the son of the department’s most admired detective. Cal is brilliant, contemptuous of the police, and half-fairy. He’s also Ray’s mate, a fact that Ray has kept secret despite his every instinct screaming for him to claim and worship, because weres mate for life, and fairies… don’t. Everyone knows that. Fairies are beautiful, flighty, and fickle.

But perhaps it’s not only the humans who have prejudice about beings. Cal isn’t shy about his desire for Ray—not that fairies ever are—and Ray’s resistance is crumbling. But the situation is growing more dangerous as they get closer to the killer, and by the time Ray accepts the truth of a fairy’s heart, it might be too late.

A Being(s) in Love Story

Magical creatures known as beings emerged from hiding amid the destruction of the First World War. Since then they’ve lived on the margins of the human world as misunderstood objects of fear and desire. Some are beautiful, others fearsome and powerful. Yet for all their magic and strength, they are as vulnerable as anyone when it comes to matters of the heart.

Blurb taken from book blurb

My thoughts

Okay, so if you haven’t realised I am a massive R. Cooper fan then you haven’t been paying attention for the last year. I have previously read a few books from R. Cooper’s Being(s) in Love series that was previously published under Dreamspinner Press, however this is the first some I have read Some Kind of Magic and is was amazing.

Ray Branigan is a werewolf who works as a detective in the Los Cerros police department, his position is a hard won one and he often finds himself on the outlines of the department, always aware that he is other, not human. Enter Cal Parker, a half fairy half human, son of a much esteemed retired police detective. Cal picks up work as a consultant to the police, called in to help with cases that potentially have magical aspects.

Let me paint you the picture of the pairs relationship: Ray knows that Cal is his mate (see werewolf) but does not believe that Cal or any fairy is capable of being in a committed relationship. See Cal who has been crushing on Ray since before they met.

So yes, there is a bucket load of emotional angst between these two. Ray fights against his instincts to be with his mate because he knows he can’t have Cal for only a short amount of time. Cal on the other hand doesn’t understand Ray or why he keeps sending him hot and cold messages.

Despite the fact that Ray is quite discriminatory towards Cal in relation to his fairy nature, the pair work well together. Ray does acknowledges how unfair he was to Cal for assuming things about his nature, and in the end it was lovely seeing the pair work things out. I absolutely loved every scene they were in together and really enjoyed the way the characters worked towards being together.

I really enjoyed this first book of the Being(s) in Love series and cannot wait to read the second, A Boy and His Dragon.

The Trope

The Soul Mates trope can be a bit of a mixed bag. There are a lot of books out there about paranormal shifters who use the trope to deliver an action packed, insta-love experience. While these books are great, the trope can be so much better than an insta-love excuse.

There is something about the trope that can make it such a powerful device. When done right, the reveal of information or realisation about a ‘soul mate / mate’ can be quite moving. I always enjoy books where the trope is used quite early on and then the rest of the book follows as one character woos the other.

The thing that I like most about the trope is the devotion that often follows. It’s quite lovely to know that someone will always be truth and that they worship the ground upon which you walk. Say what you want about the trope though, it is a staple of many romance genres.

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