Monday, February 23, 2015

Hidden by Benedict Jacka

 I can't say enough good things about the Alex Verus series. It started as a bit of a ripoff of Butcher's Harry Dresden, seemingly, but has acquired an interesting life and story line of its own along the way. Mage Talisid, from the Council of the light mages, is still trying to recruit Alex to help them discover the whereabouts and plans of Richard Drakh, Alex's former master dark mage, but Verus wants nothing to do with this, and refuses to believe the rumors of Drakh's return. Alex's relationship with Anne is still strained due to her feelings about how all of the people who have come after him in the last few years seem to end up dead, and his former friend, Sonder, is also uncomfortable with Alex's trail of bodies.

Luna, however, is still strongly on his side, as (surprisingly) is Variam, Anne's former co-apprentice with the dark mage Sagash. Keeper Caldera is still on the fence as far as Alex is concerned, but she tends to be a bit more pragmatic about these things, having faced the dark mages and other evils for too long in her career. When Anne is kidnapped, though, they must all join forces to try and find her and help her escape from her captors.

One of the interesting things that develops as we go along in this series is that we find out more and more about exactly how Verus uses his powers of divination to discover the answers he needs. I wonder if Jacka had all of this worked out at the very beginning, and used it as the basis for his plot lines, or if it has just come to him in dribbles and drabs, too.

Also, I like the use of the Elsewhere to reveal interesting facets of the non-POV characters history and motivations, and how the beings there have interesting motivations of their own.

I've reached the end of the books already written in this series. Now, I have to wait. I'm not good at that.

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