Review: Fated by Benedict Jacka

The Particulars:  Urban Fantasy, Ace (US)/ Orbit (UK), available in Print and e-book

The Source: Purchased at Sf bokhandeln ( Swedish edition)

The Grade: B-

The Blurb:
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…

The Review:

I have wanted to read this ever since I saw it on the swedish publishers webpage. I know I could have bought the book in English, but I wanted to support the Swedish publisher for translating Urban Fantasy.

The World that Alex Verus lived in felt refreshing and belivable. The fact that nothing was black and white felt refreshing. The tension between light mages and dark mages felt realistic.  What I liked was that the conflict was based on so many things, from history to different ethics. As a result of this, everyone in the book had their own agendas. And I loved it.

I liked the fact that we got glimpses of Alex past in the book. But what I loved the most was the fact that he was a seer. It felt refreshing, yet totally logical in the way he used his gifts. I also loved the fact that he mostly of all wanted to live a quiet life.
Luna.. .I loved Luna. She was human, but with a twist.   I felt for her as she was pulled into the search for the fateweaver. Said search led them to some fascinating characters. I shuddered when they met Arachne. She might be friendly but I am glad I don’t live in Alex Verus version of London.

The plot was delightfully twisty.  Alex was in a“ damned if you do, damned if you don’t situation” from the start, and I loved it. It fascinating to follow how he was dragged into opening the fateweaver’s vault.  Alex slowly pieced the clues together, and the more he found out the deeper into trouble he got.   Despite all this, what I missed in the book was a sense of the stakes raising. No matter how much the bad guys threatened Alex, I never felt he was in danger. But it might have been something that was lost in the translation.