Taken: An Alex Verus Novel (Alex Verus Novels)

Taken - Benedict Jacka I'm going to say right from the beginning that I am huge fanpoodle of Benedict Jacka. It took me longer than I would have liked to get to this book, but when I finally started, I read it from start to finish in one sitting. Be prepared for much fanpoodling.The days of a peaceful life running his store are over for Alex Verus. After what happened with the Fateweaver he is now highly visible and in high demand. When apprentices start to go missing, Alex decides to take a job hunting down the reason. With his apprentice Luna at his side, Alex must face a force which may very well be impossible to stop. If that were not enough Onyx, an old faux has a score he wants to settle.Normally speaking, I don't like books with a lot of action but the interweaving of mystery and the interesting characters were absolutely gripping. Luna has finally gotten a degree of control over her power and though she will never be an equal of a mage, she is dangerous all on her own. I love the growth that we have seen in this character from book one. Though she has a lot to learn, Luna is no longer content to wait to be saved and has become a very active part of Verus' investigations.For the first time in this series, Jacka introduced characters of colour in this novel. Variam is a heat mage and extremely powerful. He has been given a raw deal by mage society and is determined to survive. He is not easily trusting which is understandable given his history but he does in the end learn to trust Alex. He is absolutely devoted to Anne though he does not like her but because his brother died trying to protect her. I had a problem with this until it was revealed that Anne is a descendant of Indian mages who attacked the Jagadev - a non human of Indian descent. Jacka could have fallen into the trap of making Variam and Anne completely dependent on Verus as is often the case when the protagonist is a White male, but at the end of the day, they will have to make their own way in the world. It means something to have a White male protagonist admit that though he has more experience, he is not as powerful as the two characters of colour.Read More