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Fated (Probability Mage Novel) Mass Market Paperback – 28 Feb 2012

4.1 out of 5 stars 164 customer reviews

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Mass Market Paperback, 28 Feb 2012
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Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Ace Books; Original edition (28 Feb. 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9781937007294
  • ISBN-13: 978-1937007294
  • ASIN: 1937007294
  • Product Dimensions: 10.7 x 2.2 x 17.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (164 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 5,346,405 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description


Harry Dresden would like Alex Verus tremendously - and be a little nervous around him. I just added Benedict Jacka to my must-read list. FATED is an excellent novel, a gorgeously realized world with a uniquely powerful, vulnerable protagonist. Books this good remind me why I got into the storytelling business in the first place (Jim Butcher)

Filled with tense and compelling writing (SFX)

Jacka writes a deft thrill-ride of an urban fantasy - a stay-up-all-night read. Alex Verus is a very smart man surviving in a very dangerous world. (Patricia Briggs)

London's hidden wizardly community spell-blast each other entertainingly in this urban fantasy romp. Fated is highly enjoyable (Sun)

Fated is an excellent example of not just great urban fantasy but also of brilliant story-telling. There is a near perfect mix of everything and it has been masterfully crafted with a meticulous eye for those pieces of humanity that make a great protagonist and a fantastic story (FANTASY FACTION)

A novel with a very good plotline, and fascinating characters (BOOKCHICKCITY) --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

Book Description

A compelling new urban fantasy series based in Camden, featuring Alex Verus - a mage with a dark past who can see the future . . . --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By D. Harris TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 28 Sept. 2012
Format: Paperback
I enjoyed this introductory volume to what looks set to be a lengthy series (three volumes out now, September 2012). It's an action packed, none too cerebral, introduction to the Magical World of Alex Verus: shops selling magical paraphernalia, a Curse, elementals, good mages and bad, an ineffectual Council that won't stand up to the villains - and a climax that reads a bit like a Dungeons and Dragons scenario.

Yes, it may all sound a bit like Harry Potter grown up - especially that sub-plot about how the Dark mages are getting a foothold because the authorities prefer to look the other way - but I'm inclined to the view that's simply because both worlds are well grounded in human nature and the realities of politics. It's a good read and a promising start, generally well written, with only one flaw from my perspective - the continual use of "gotten" and "it fit" (rather than "fitted") by a British character. POssibly that reflects a target market in the US, but it still grates.
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Format: Paperback
Alex Verus is a mage, a diviner, who owns a shop; `Arcana Emporium' in Camden, London and when the story starts life is going smoothly for him. He is on reasonably good terms with the Council and occasionally working for them, and the work with his cursed apprentice Luna is proceeding quite nicely as well.
Things are about to change though.
It all starts with the discovery of a death magical creature. Although it is unclear how it was killed, it is a worrying sight.
Although Alex doesn't realise it, things slip further downhill when Martin, a new friend of Luna's visits his shop and walks away with the magic Monkey Paw Alex didn't have out on display because he knows the artefact is cursed.
Next a beautiful woman bursts into his shop followed by an assassin Alex is only barely able to fend off. The woman, Meredith, is an enchantress and although Alex is well aware of her seductive powers he has a hard time thinking straight when he is around her.
Through Meredith Alex meets Belthas, a Council mage, who wants his help in discovering who killed the magical creature and where they are now.
Next thing Alex knows he has fallen out with his apprentice, who now prefers Martin's company after Martin has used the monkey paw to find a way to be close to her without hurting himself. Up against old adversaries and with his friend, Arachne, a giant, intelligent, magical and very friendly spider in mortal danger, Alex finds himself in a fight he and those he cares for may well not survive. Alex may well be able to look into the future, knowing who to trust is much harder.

This is the second Alex Verus story I've read this year and I have to say I'm really enjoying them.
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Format: Paperback
This is a very easy and enjoyable read - it zips past and keeps you turning the pages to see what happens next, throughout. The book is sold by a large quote on the front cover, from Jim Butcher and his The Dresden Files are the most obvious influence.

However, what makes this book distinctive is its grounding in a very real London. Places like Camden Market and the British Museum, make the settings come to life and anybody who has lived or worked in London will recognise all the locations that are mentioned. Having been a frequent visitor to the British Museum, helps enormously in visualising the main action of this first book.

So whereas Harry Dresden is a typical American living in Chicago - Alex Verus, is a Londoner who runs a "magic" shop in Camden. Alex is not a typical "wizard" either and he can only see potential futures - which is of course very helpful, but he relies on others to protect him - like a friendly air elemental, who wants shiny stuff.

Anybody who likes "urban fantasy" will love this book, but I think that Benedict Jacka's writing takes this above the usual run of the mill. His humour, style of writing and attention to detail, combine to make this all much more interesting. I also liked the idea/concept of potential probabilities that runs throughout the book - that what is more important, isn't power as such, but knowing what the potential outcomes of actions/events might be.

I am looking forward to reading more and hope that future instalments will be as entertaining as this first book.
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Format: Kindle Edition
I bought this book on recommendation from a Jim Butcher interview. I was not disappointed, the story is good, the characters interesting and everything flows along really nicely. Those who know of Jim Butchers work will see some similarity with the early chapters of this book and the Dresden Files, there is even a rather nice reference to Harry, but things move away from these quite quickly. Those worried about a rehash should not be as I think while this is in the same vein of The Dresden Files, the story and its characters are distinct and well done.

I was a bit confused by the ending (I can't mention any more without giving away plot which I think would be a shame - though for a disclaimer it was more to do with the technical aspects of what the author defines as Magic within the book rather than any plot holes etc), but that was easily forgiven but the enjoyment of the book as a whole. I hope this author continues to improve upon this delightful series.

Highly Recommended.
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