This series has become my favorite after Dresden It seems to me to have gotten better with each installment There are for my money some good Urban Fantasy reads out there, but few better than these Starting with the first volume Mr Jacka begins establishing his world and his characters We get to know these people as they act and as they interact Alex is a mage, a diviner He can in short look down the possible futures , the possible pathways things might take if certain things are done, saidyou get the idea The farther down the time stream things get the iffy the futures get.
This is not exactly combat magic So far as the mages who have versions of magic that can suck your life away, burn you to ash, freeze you to ice shardsblow you to dust, this would seem to be a rather, modest form of magic.
Still, somehow Alex has managed to survive several read A LOT of attempts on his life Alsoand possibly impressive the ones who have set out to kill Alex, most mages powerful that he is or adepts with some serious deadliness have ended up dead.
Alex is getting.
This book picks up where we left off in the last volume A friend of Alex who has walked away from him because of events in our last outing is in danger you know, because of the stuff that happened in that last book I mentioned And one might say of course she doesn t seem to realize how much danger she s actually in.
We will touch on new details of the world we re learning about, fill in some details about the past we ve been considering and tell an excellent story in the time of it.
Are there any disappointments Sure the same one I have with Jim Butcher s Dresden books These writers can t turn out a novel a weeknot even a month So here I am again with another series of books where I have to wait for the next book next year.
I keep telling you guys, I m past sixtyhow many books can I wait for Sheesh.
Five stars and highly recommended view spoiler There are a couple of things here that will I think remind my fellow readers of the Dresden books I don t for a second think they were copied As I ve said after several thousand years of fiction how many totally new plot points can there be Alex is mistrusted by the overall council of light magesbecause he started out as the apprentice of a dark mage In this book he gets made an offer that will bring him great power and advantage, but change him for the worse.
Those are sort of common threads Don t let it put you off These are excellent reads I really can give them my highest recommendation hide spoiler Oh, the situations Alex gets himself into Hidden starts with normal pace, then it hits the ground running and doesn t stop for a single moment until the last page I loved it and how it made me go from annoyance and anger at some of the characters to something akin pride and satisfaction Luna makes Alex go after Anne and offer their help After what happened in Chosen Anne refuses, of course I was so annoyed how ungrateful she is Alex helped her so much and now she is acting as if she is better than him And don t even get me started on Sonder I wish I could get into the book and beat him over his stupid ungrateful head When he was in danger it was okay for Alex to do whatever he needed I hate self righteousness both in fiction and real life I am angry Sonder came out of this situation looking competent and getting all the credit On the other, Alex got adopted by a magical creature so it s all good Hopefully, Sonder will go back to his old likeable self in future books.
Fortunately for Anne, Alex is as stubborn as his apprentice and she is going to get help whether she wants it or not And the consequences of that decision made this book go from good to awesome.
Anne s past and some other things are revealed and she goes from an annoying whining insert an appropriate insult here to someone who not only needs help, but deserves all the help she can get Hidden is also a turning point in Alex s life regarding his own past The most important decision he makes in this book will have serious consequences in the future.
Posted to The Literary Lawyer.
ca This One is for the Fans 4 Stars If you haven t started this series, I would not suggest that you start with this installment Had I not already become a big fan of Alex Verus and crew, I would have been bored with Hidden This one is for the fans It answers a few lingering questions, introduces some characters we have been wanting to meet and gives us some backstory that was piquing our interest If you enjoy the series, you will not want to miss this one.
Plot summaryAlex is at odds with his friends and has not been successful in bringing them all back together After one such effort, Anne goes missing under mysterious circumstances The hunt is on to find where she is hidden and who is responsible Along the way, Alex makes discoveries about himself and we are provided with some wanted backstory We are also introduced to characters that we have only heard about in stories What at first looks to be a simple rescue operation, turns into something much deadly.
The GoodThis installment lays some interesting groundwork for future story arcs Some new characters are put into play and we are made privy to some previously unknown scheming As I said earlier, this one is really directed to the fans It gives us SOME of what we have been wanting but not all In some ways, it felt like an interlude in the series but ultimately laid groundwork for future installments Jacka seems to have a grasp on which characters the readers like and gives us enough of them to keep our interest while expanding others that will likely play a role in future installments The author show a deft ability at character development and it is on full display in this latest offering Unlike the previous four, Hidden is almost exclusively a character novel While some may lament the reduced action, I think most fans will appreciate the effort Jacka has taken to expand the characters mythology.
The BadOverall, I enjoyed the fact this was a character novel though I have to admit I was taken by surprise The plot was on the thin side and this will be an annoyance for some readers I would have also appreciated some additional reminder material throughout the story I hate when novels assume I remember nothing of previous installments and spend half the book recapping The problem in this novel is that there is very little of this There could have been to reorient myself to the significant number of returning antagonists.
Can this Book Stand AloneNo In this case, you must read the other books to appreciate this one It relies heavily on past encounters, past plots and prexisting relationships A reader who picks up this one before the rest will likely find themselves very disappointed.
Final ThoughtsFans of the series will not want to miss this one I am always excited when nagging questions are answered I am equally pleased that Jacka provides some new questions to fill the void left by the reveals In the past couple of novels, this series has truly come into its own Early on I was making comparisons to my other favorite Urban Fantasy Series Jim Butcher s The Dresden Files and Ben Aaronovitch s Peter Grant series if you were wondering This series has set itself apart with a unique world, unique magic system and great writing and it has squarely placed itself in my Top 3 Favorite UF series Don t look for a clone series here because you will not find it.
Audiobook NotesI listened to this one and I was very happy with the experience Gildart Jackson is spot on with his narration and is very listenable I highly recommend the audio format in this series.
Content AdvisoriesIt is difficult to find commentary on the sex violence language content of book if you are interested I make an effort to give you the information so you can make an informed decision before reading Disclaimer I do not take note or count the occurrences of adult language as I read I am simply giving approximations.
Scale 1 Lowest 5 HighestSex 1.
5There is an instance where a character recommends that another character come on to another character This is the extent of any sexual content The sexual content is safe for all ages.
5Minimal adult language but several uses of the f word Suitable for most readers.
Violence 3There is some magic related fighting A women is attacked and hurt There is reference to a character having their throat cut Some persons have their life ripped out There is other fighting in which a character suffers some gruesome injuries over the whole of their body Overall, the violence is during so called good vs evil fights It is generally mildly graphic I think this is a transitional book in terms of Alex Verus lifestyle so far After the events of this book, he realises he needs to get prepared for the future I can t help admiring Alex s loyalty to his friends Also he gets a lot of hard press from the council and some of his friends because he makes choices that mean he survives when others don t A great UF series set in London.
This is one of those rare series that only seems to get stronger the further you get If I m completely honest with myself, I think it might be a function of my previous investment, but it doesn t feel that way.
So, Verus is still sliding, but the hints of a possibly heroic character change is still on the table, even if he hasn t quite picked it up I don t think it really counts that he s only being heroic for those that he considers his friends, but at least he s doing it even when said friend is being an asshat.
I like Anne I didn t really like her back in book 3, but she s really grown on me through this book It helps to actually know her history, I suppose, and the fact this novel is all really about her and Verus makes it super easy.
These books are a delight to read mainly because they go down as smooth as silk, the magic is fascinating, and the characters equally so Evil is complicated, as is good, but than anything, these novels devote a lot of space to asking some rather hard questions about human nature They re not just forgettable entertainment, any.
So who s hidden Our dark side.
Gotta love it.
Alternate Cover Edition Of ASIN BHPHCSAlex Verus Is A Diviner Who Can See Probable Futures A Talent That S Gotten Him And His Friends Out Of Many A Tough Scrape But What Happens When Someone Doesn T Want Alex S Help Alex S Friend, The Life Mage Anne, Distanced Herself From Him When She Found Out About His Past As A Dark Apprentice Now She S In Serious Trouble, But Wants Nothing To Do With Him Alex Has To Start Wondering If Anne S Problem Is Really With Him Or If There S A Secret She S Trying To HideOn Top Of That, Rumours Are Swirling Around London That Alex S Former Master May Be Back In Town Alex Has No Idea What His Agenda May Be, Or Who It Involves 4.
5 StarsThe Alex Verus series keeps rolling along A little different than previous volumes, this was a highly entertaining entry in what s become one of my favorite urban fantasy series After the events of the last book, Alex and his friend Anne aren t on the best of terms But when she gets in trouble, Alex gets pulled in to help I won t say anything about the plot of this one Honestly, the plot itself is fairly straightforward There also isn t quite as much action in this one as in the previous volume Where this book really shines is in the character interactions Benedict Jacka does a great job presenting believable characters Not everyone is going to get along all the time, even friends Each of the main and secondary characters feels distinct, and I m really enjoying seeing added depth to the various characters At times this did feel a bit like a transition book, laying the groundwork for bigger things to come, but I still thoroughly enjoyed If you haven t started this series yet, you re missing out.
The main problem with this book is that its too short Love the dark humour.
It has to be said that I m really enjoying this series I know that I could have figured that out before this fifth book and indeed I had done, but I think that when you are five books into a series and you are getting even excited about what might be coming rather than looking for an ending soon, then you know you are onto a good thing Hidden picks up nine months after the events of the previous novel Alex has fallen into a slightly lonely and troubled existence following the events that had broken up his happy little family in the last book He still has Luna of course but it s not the same and I think that one of the things that worked really well for me in this book was how the author made me realise just how much Alex is hurting without ever actually coming out and saying it out right One of my criticisms of the last book was how unfair some of the other characters treated Alex in regards to some decisions he made when fighting for his life Without going into too much detail they basically turned on him for not just sitting back and letting himself get killed In effect they were basically said that if you are in a situation where it is kill or be killed, you should just let yourself be killed or you are a monster This never sat well with me Obviously we are always going to side with the protagonist, especially a first person protagonist, but even so this really unwarranted reaction to him defending himself turned me off a lot of the characters in the last book It seemed to drive a line straight down the centre of the cast and had me firmly putting characters into an I hate them and I like them categories I was therefore not happy when I saw the synopsis for this book and realised that it would be focused heavily around a character who was sitting firmly in the I hate them category because of how she came down on Alex at the end of the last book I needn t have worried In effect this whole story was an exploration of how she came to her decision at the end of the last book and whilst I still don t agree with her, I am at least sympathetic to her cause now though maybe I still don t like her all that much I really liked that the author has addressed this though as it has not only stopped it getting in the way of the rest of the overarching story but has actually turned it into a driving plot point and a rising theme of this series Basically it is asking the question of what it takes to become a bad person and where do you draw the line between good and evil Speaking of that overarching storyline I am happy to say it is really starting to pick up Obviously the cliffhanger ending of the last book hinted at that along with a lot of the back story of Alex s time with Richard growing up This book picks up that nicely and whilst we are no closer to really understanding what is actually going on, we are certainly aware that something major is going on The tension is racketed up nicely with a lot of throw away comments from the side characters who don t necessarily have a big part in this particular story but have a larger part to play in the series as a whole and they are hinting of big things happening behind the scenes Overall though what I loved about this book was that it reminded me of the Dresden Files I know, everyone says that, right I am not talking about any similarities between the characters and the stories as whilst there are similarities they are not nearly numerous or similar enough to really draw attention to What I am talking about is the feeling I get when I read them This is a series of books where each book is an individual adventure that could stand alone None of them really takes themselves too seriously as there is a good amount of humour and fun Most importantly for me at least there is an over arching story that is building all the time and making me oh so eager for the next book in the series That is one of the things so lacking in a lot of Urban Fantasy series and something that so far I have only ever really found in the Dresden files within Urban Fantasy anyway This overarching story that builds in scope with every novel just makes each novel enjoyable, keeps me hungry to read on and basically stops the series from becoming stale Overall this is an excellent outing for Alex Verus and one which I have thoroughly enjoyed If I have to find a criticism it would be that there isn t quite enough length to the book considering there is a year between novels A lot happens in this book but it was so enjoyable that it was over in mere moments and 320 pages simply wasn t enough to satisfy my craving for this series If my only flaw with a book is that I finish it hungry for then that is a flaw that I think that I am happy to live with So I finish this review with a request to the author, please hurry up Mr Jacka, I m dying to read what happens next.