Book 3 of the Alex Verus series does not disappoint. It starts off deceptively quiet with the detective meeting a stunning beauty, who later acts in the best film noir tradition. We also find out how Luna is doing with her training. And we learn more of the history of the magical world and the differences between the light and dark mages.
The story starts out simply enough, there is to be a competition among the various apprentices, of which Luna is one. But apprentices have been disappearing. Upon further investigation, the disappeared haven’t been just apprentices and have been going on for a much longer time that anyone realized. The questions are who, why and how. Since there are mages involved, you know it is not for anything like a normal reason. I would love to tell you more, but that would cause spoilers.
This book can easily stand on its own, but if you have been lucky enough to read the first 2 books, “Fated” and “Cursed” then you will better understand the character development that Benedict Jacka is managing to pull off in this series. The characters grow, change and learn from their experiences. This is a difficult task for an author to carry off in a realistic way.
Alex Verus’s insights into the future used to be the best-kept secret in London. Now with the aid of his apprentice Luna, his unique investigative talents are all the rage. He just has to be careful about picking his employers, because everyone – even the beautiful woman who practically begs him to run security for a prestigious tournament – has motives that can be hard to predict. And Alex doesn’t do unpredictable.
But his latest job might just be impossible. Apprentices have been vanishing without a trace – and someone on the council of mages might be involved. Alex has no evidence, no witnesses, and no suspects. All he knows is that someone is keeping tabs on him. And after assassins target Luna’s classmate, Alex sees that he doesn’t know the half of it – and that he could be the next to disappear.