I have had Stacia Kane's Downside Ghosts series on my wish list for ages now but for some reason I'd never actually got around to picking up a copy of the first book Unholy Ghosts. So when I saw this prequel novella available on Netgalley I jumped at the chance to review it. As someone who is completely new to the series I was a little worried that there might be things in the novella that didn't make much sense to me - I've had that happen a lot where a story that is supposed to be a prequel is actually better when read after at least the first couple of books. Luckily that wasn't the case with Finding Magic, yes I was left with questions after I finished reading but it had me so keen to find out more that I immediately ordered the first book!
Chess is 18 years old and has been training to become a Churchwitch for the last three years. From what we've seen of her so far she isn't the typical heroine that you come across in urban fantasy novels. She has had a difficult childhood being passed from one foster home to another and has obviously been left emotionally scarred by the abuse she has suffered. We don't find out the full information about what happened to her so I'm assuming that is something that you discover more of as the series progresses but we see enough to know that she is haunted by the past. She is desperate to make something of her life but at the same time she doesn't feel worthy of any of the good things that happen to her. It was sad to see how she uses alcohol as a crutch to make it through each day but I have a feeling things are going to get worse for her before they get better.
I enjoyed finding out about the world Stacia Kane has created, I want to learn more about Haunted Week and exactly what happened during it and am looking forward to getting to know Chess better as the series continues. Anyone who is curious about the series could easily read this novella as an introduction and if you're anything like me it will leave you wanting more.