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Tuesday, September 11, 2012
Book Review and Giveaway: Taken by Benedict Jacka
Author: Benedict Jacka
Series: Alex Verus, book 3
Source: From publisher for review
Buy it here:
For more information visit Benedict Jacka's website
Alex is called on by the light council of mages when apprentices come up missing. All leads seem to point to Fountain Reach, where a tournament for apprentices is being held. Meanwhile Alex meets two apprentices, Anne and Variam. Anne is quick friends with Alex’s apprentice Luna. As it happens Anne is also a magnet for danger.
Taken is the third novel in the Alex Verus series. I read the second one, but not the first. This is a series that could be read out of order, but some of the relationships between the characters might get confusing. Other than the relationships between reoccurring characters, the plot lines have been self-contained. Despite this, and like most Urban Fantasy series I would recommend reading them in order.
In Taken, and as in most of the series so far, Alex is given a mystery to figure out. Though he is not a P.I. or detective, he also holds no alliance to the dark mages or the light mages. He can see the future and has the help of a few friends on most of the cases that fall into his lap. Alex is a fun and easy hero to get behind. He is basically good, though he doesn’t see himself as such, yet he continually goes out of his way to do the right thing. He is never dense, and usually sees the clues as the reader does.
The mystery in Taken is a lot less complex than in the novel before it. The danger, or turns in the plot lacked the tension the series has had in the past. There were a few good moments of close escapes, but none of it as page flipping. Not only is he trying to discover what is happening to the apprentices, but he also ends up saving Anne.
The story takes place half in London and half in Fountain Reach. The house has a neat enchanted feel that is a little spooky. It becomes clear that though no apprentices are going missing in the house itself, it still has its own part to play in what is going on. Like the books before it, the story is only set over a few days.
This is a nice addition to series. It is a quick read that will only take a couple sittings. It does lack some of the tension that tied the second book together, and lacks in character growth. This is a plot centered story that ties up well at the end. The battles and close calls are still exciting even if they lacked tension. There is no romance in these pages, not even a romantic subplot, but it is still one of the better Urban Fantasy series that involve Mysteries.
We are giving away 2 copies of Taken. This is open internationally and winners will be announced on September 15th. Read giveaway policy before entering. Good luck!
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