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A Mage's Guide to Human Familiars  By  cover art

A Mage's Guide to Human Familiars

By: AJ Sherwood
Narrated by: Tim Paige,Michael Ferraiuolo,Greg Boudreaux
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Publisher's Summary

One mage: Bel Adams–part demon, gun shy about being rejected by one again, needs a familiar.

One familiar: Nico di Rossi–Army Ranger, needs a change of pace and a new purpose in life, is a golden retriever in human form (though not literally).

Plus one familiar: Garen Dallarosa–Secret Service, part gargoyle, needs his ex-lover Nico back.

One second chance–all for the taking.

©2022 AJ Sherwood (P)2022 Podium Audio

What listeners say about A Mage's Guide to Human Familiars

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

What a delightfully entertaining story.

📖 Story comment: Good pace, likeable characters, interesting premise - I was looking for some light, fun fluff and got exactly what I wanted.
I enjoyed the story as a whole, the characters are charming and well written and I enjoyed watching Bel, Nico and Garon figure out how to come together as a unit (although I would have preferred Bel be older than 19). I enjoyed the concept of the overall world, and look forward to more from this series.

🎧 Narration comment: lets face it ... audiobooks are all about the narration and personally I'm not a fan of multi narrator books in the M/M genre - There are so many brilliantly talented voice actors working in M/M that (personally, I feel) the additional narrators are unnecessary.

I will admit I was concerned going into this one. 3 main characters. 3 different narrators each performing a chapter in the POV of their character has the potential disaster of 9 different voices. I'm pleased to say this one is pretty good. There must have been some good communication between all parties involved, because the "feel and personality" of each character was similar and consistent across each of the narrators, and (for me) were insignificant enough to not disrupt the flow of the story with each new chapter and POV change (I still would have preferred one narrator though!).

Nico's character brings so much fun to this story, even though he's human, the "golden retriever vibe" comes through in Nico's personality (lol!) ... "Stop the car - I need to hug you - it won't take long" - I could almost see the puppy grin and wagging tail in the narration 😂 - I have a new appreciation of Tim Page's skill as a narrator.

Greg Boudreaux narrates Bel's chapters, Tim Page voices Nico's chapters and Michael Ferraiuolo narrates Garon's chapters. These narrators are all at the top of their game - five stars for each narrator all round!

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📌 Where does it fall on my personal scale? 8 - really looking forward to the next one.
• 1 not my thing • 2 didn't like the narration • 3 didn't keep my attention • 4 was good, but once was enough • 5 enjoyed it • 6 will listen again if i'm in the mood for the narrator [4⭐] • 7 goes on the "re-listen" list [4⭐] • 8 kept me up past bed-time [4.5⭐] • 9 recommended to family/friends [4.75⭐] • 10 own it in all formats [5⭐] • 11 keep a copy with me at all times [5⭐]
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6 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Finally good queer poly rep!

I find it ironic that some people are upset this book has a poly triad, because that's part of what I loved. Often books with queer and poly charchters become over sexualized or toxic pools of jealousy. I loved the affection between charchters, the way each worked through various emotions or problems, and how heavy communication was often the solution to many problems. It was refreshing and meant alot to see a healthy developing triad romance inside a story , with actually good plot, world building, and good charchters. Of course the performance added so much even if who I thought would play each character was different than expected.

5 people found this helpful

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Poly… guess I should’ve known…

This was really well written and I thought it was gonna be one of my favorite recent reads, but then I realized it was a poly relationship, and more than that, no one is ever jealous even a little… it makes no sense. I was just barely getting to know the first pair and starting to love them when a third jumped in, not as a catalyst or obstacle, but another included entity and no one feels left out, ganged up on or really anything but good about it after the initial miscommunications. I felt cheated out of actual human emotion and it really disappointed me.

3 people found this helpful

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Fluff and Air

I was drawn to this by the panel of excellent narrators but I should have heeded another reviewer that described the story as sweet and fluffy. If you take out the few intimate scenes, this story seemed more suited for an adolescent audience in terms of "humor" and silliness. However, I believe even adolescents would expect more in terms of world/magic development. The world building was so thin we never really learned the purpose of a Mage's familiar. the Mage-familiar Bond was described as a magical one but the only thing we learned about familiars is that they got bad feelings in their chests when away from the Mage in the early stages of the bonding.

I found no weaknesses in the technical aspects of the writing but the content was not for me. Definitely a fluffy, silly and saccharine sweet read/listen. If that is what you are in the mood for, the performance is excellent and makes this listen a good choice.

1 person found this helpful

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I’m crying ❤️

Literally crying that the second book isn’t out yet. I love this world & these characters so so so much 😭😭 I’m not typically into Poly romance but this was done so perfectly, I’m obsessed with them. & the fact that Michael & Greg narrated it was just the best cherry on top. They are my favourite narrators ! ❤️❤️❤️

1 person found this helpful

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  • pj
  • 11-24-22

wonderfully light-hearted

How to write a plausible descriptive review without any spoilers...?
I love the quirks and the nuanced characters of our three heroes...
I fell right into the world and the system of magics is just off enough to be delightfully different.

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Great Fun

Loved the world building and characters. This was my first AJ Sherwood book but it won’t be my last. I highly recommend this listen for narrators as well.

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Three Narrators?

I usually hate multiple narrators. There are a few books in my collection with two readers and I find that it is disconcerting when they switch. It pulls me out of the story. But AJ Sherwood is an automatic buy for me. Greg Boudreaux and Michael Farraiuolo are among my favorite performers. And along with Tim Paige, they really made it work. Well done gentlemen.

The story is entertaining. There is enough action and humor to keep it from being saccharine sweet. And a poly relationship that isn't drowning in angst is refreshing.

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Fantastic story/narration!

I LOVE THESE NARRATORS!!! When I saw this fantastic trifecta were narrating a Sherwood story I just HAD to buy it! The story is fun, lighthearted with serious moments, a great premise and interesting plot. The way the ménage becomes a bonafide trio is unique, and the side characters are interesting enough to stand on their own. I’ve not heard of a half-demon mage that uses his eyes to analyze problems and his magic to fix them. Although an MMM story, the book focuses on relationships and plot, not just bedroom scenes. I loved how my much beloved narrators ‘became’ the characters. It was super easy to distinguish between them because of the distinct voices and also because Sherwood did a great job creating their individual personalities. I can’t wait for the next book!!!

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Well done!

I enjoyed this story so much!! The narration was stellar and the story delightful! Excellent!

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  • Mary
  • 06-30-22

Disappointing story and narration.

Well, this book taught me a few things about myself!
First, that I do not like multi-narrator audiobooks. Audio dramas are great - when all performers take part in the same scene, but when one book is split up and a bunch of narrators take alternate chapters, sorry but I just hated it. I know that all of these narrators are talented and well-liked within the genre and I've listened to books they've narrated - but the chopping and changing of narrator for each chapter jarred badly and pulled me out of the story. It made it difficult for me to emotionally invest in the characters and ended up irritating me.
When an audiobook is produced like this, the narrators don't get the 'whole story', they're sent their particular chapters to narrate. Therefore, it sounded like they didn't get the chance to emotionally invest either. Michael Ferraiuolo in particular sounded like he phoned in his chapters. He usually brings so much humour and sass to his narration - but he was given the chapters for a part-gargoyle ex- secret service agent and managed to make him sound bored.

Another thing I learned is that I'm growing VERY tired of M/M authors writing grown-ass men and making them sound like goofy, sentimental, horny kids. Yes, I'm aware this is fiction and fantasy, but please, enough with the unrealistically cutesy male characters. As I listened to the book I realized that all of the Disneyfied 'mage' storyline was window dressing for the author to push the three guys to bone. Take away the 'magic' angle and what you have is a shallow insta-love trope and three guys who, within a few weeks, are 'in love'. It was an oversentimental juvenile fantasy and I couldn't connect with the story. But if all of the above is your thing, go for it!

3 people found this helpful

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  • Jacquie
  • 08-08-22

So much fun

I've never listened to 3 narrators reading the same book before and I loved how it was done. The story itself was a lot of fun but I'm glad I held out for the audio

1 person found this helpful

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 06-29-22

Narrators are ace!

I absolutely loved this story. The developing relationship between the three characters as well as a bit of magic thrown in was the perfect combination. And the narrators are amazing! I tend to grab books narrated by Mr Ferraiuolo and Mr Boudreaux anyway because they are so good. I'm adding Mr Paige to my list of fantastic narrators. Loved it!

1 person found this helpful

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  • jinx
  • 12-04-22

Doesn’t get better than this

Great writing, plenty of drama, fantastic performance. Loved this audiobook, have the sequel, and have listened to both several times. Does not disappoint.

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  • HelenMK69
  • 10-16-22

Well worth a read/listen.


Where do I start? Three men, hot men, One Mage, One excitable human and another part gargoyle. Put them together, and you have a fighting team like no other. Plus, did I say three very hot men?

Great world-building and character depth, and then add to the mix three different narrators who did an outstanding job for me.

Even though it was nearly 11 hours long, I listened to it over a day and a bit and loved every moment. Well worth a credit, in my opinion.


A Mage's Guide to Human Familiars
R'iyah Family Archives, Book 1
By: AJ Sherwood
Narrated by: Tim Paige, Michael Ferraiuolo, Greg Boudreaux
Series: R'iyah Family Archives, Book 1
Length: 10 hrs and 50 mins

❤❤❤❤❤ Overall
🎧🎧🎧🎧🎧 Narration
📚📚📚📚📚 Story
Read at 1.15 speed on Audible

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • kindleaddict
  • 07-02-22

Top audio

This is the first multi narration I’ve listened to. Loved it, just loved it. Aj Sherwoods writing is an auto read/listen for me and this first Bel, Nicky, Garron adventure? AWESOME!

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  • Anonymous User
  • 11-30-22

More than I expected

Loved the book. I had high hopes for the book when I purchased it but it exceeded every expectation I have. I have definitely found a new author to binge on 😊

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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-22-22

love it

good story line, epic narration, very well written, I will definitely be waiting for the next book and listening to this on repeat until it comes out