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Alex Verus #8
Benedict Jacka

Ace Books
April 4, 2017/ ISBN 9781101988527

Reviewed by Jan Fields


Alex Verus' nightmare has come true. He's working for his greatest enemy and former master, Richard Drakh, in order to protect the people he cares about. But will his decision protect them, or thrust them into the worst experiences of their lives? At first, the work doesn't seem so bad, other than clearly making the Light Council even colder towards Alex. But he is sure there is a bigger plan at play and even his diviner nature can't show him the future ahead. This particular installment of the series ramps up both the intrigue and the stakes, and not everyone comes out unscathed, which I appreciate. With the kinds of things these characters deal with, it makes sense that someone is going to end up hurt, and hurt badly. Compared to previous books in the series, this one gives the characters more breathing room and time, but it also shows that even having plenty of time and the skill of divination doesn't make things easy, not with all the political machinations slowly grinding Alex and his friends. Never have they looked so much like pawns, but these aren't people who will play the game according to the rules, so I'm looking forward to where the author goes from here. Things are changing and the future is going to be very interesting indeed.

Reviewed 2017