Author: Benedict Jacka
Series: Alex Verus #1
Cover Art: N/A
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Reviewed by: Kristina
Alex Verus is part of a world hidden in plain sight, running a magic shop in London. And while Alex’s own powers aren’t as showy as some mages, he does have the advantage of foreseeing the possible future–allowing him to pull off operations that have a million-to-one-chance of success.
But when Alex is approached by multiple factions to crack open a relic from a long-ago mage war, he knows that whatever’s inside must be beyond powerful. And thanks to his abilities, Alex can predict that by taking the job, his odds of survival are about to go from slim to none…
FATED brings another contender for the top of my favorite male urban fantasy hero list. Reading this book I got a very Dresden Files vibe which I loved as I gladly welcome more grizzled hardcore mages/wizards in my urban fantasy.
Alex Verus is a diviner mage with the ability to foresee the near future which is considered a ‘weak’ ability amongst all of the fire, death, air mages with more active powers like throwing fire balls or flying. Diviner mages are considered pretty rare which is a good thing since I would have questioned the surplus of thickheaded mages not knowing how to fight someone who can see all possible outcomes of a battle (unless there are no good ways to fight a diviner…).
What I like about Alex is that while he doesn’t rely too much on magic aside from some select magical items, he uses his wits and creativity to defeat other mages. I kept on thinking of him as the nerdy kid in class who gets picked on by the bigger, stronger kids but in the end he comes out more successful in life due to his knowledge and ability to think on his feet.
Benedict Jacka gives us a new, gritty hero in FATED which is an excellent start to what looks like a thrilling new urban fantasy series. I can’t wait for the next Alex Verus book, CURSED, coming out June 2012.