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Taken (Alex Verus #3)

4.10  ·  Rating Details  ·  7,114 Ratings  ·  311 Reviews
Mage apprentices have been vanishing without a trace—and someone on the council might be involved. Alex Verus has no evidence, no witnesses, and no suspects. All he knows is that someone is keeping tabs on him. And after assassins target his own apprentice’s classmate, Alex sees that he doesn’t know the half of it—and that he could be the next to disappear...
Paperback, 313 pages
Published August 28th 2012 by Ace
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Storm Front by Jim ButcherHounded by Kevin HearneChanges by Jim ButcherSummer Knight by Jim ButcherDead Beat by Jim Butcher
Urban Fantasy With Male Lead Characters
82nd out of 620 books — 1,109 voters
City of Bones by Cassandra ClareMoon Called by Patricia BriggsHarry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. RowlingVampire Academy by Richelle MeadMagic Bites by Ilona Andrews
The Best Urban Fantasy
463rd out of 2,863 books — 10,105 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Tim The Enchanter
Top Shelf Urban Fantasy - 5 Stars

Benedict Jacka raises his game in the third installment of the Alex Verus series. After a shaky start to the series, he has produced a book I can gladly display next to my favorite Urban Fantasy novels by Jim Butcher, Ben Aaronovitch and Larry Corriea. I have a soft spot for the wizard/mage who honestly attempts to solve a mystery. As in the early Dresden novels, the mystery and the investigation that takes centre stage. Taken first and foremost tells a great
Mike (the Paladin)
May 26, 2013 Mike (the Paladin) rated it it was amazing
I've had this on my currently reading list for a while, thought I ought to get around to reviewing it.

These are joining my favorites list. I think the first Urban Fantasy I ever read was Harry Dresden. I burned through the ones that were already published then and have snapped up each as it's been released since. It also set me off on trying to find other UF books or another UF series that I'd like as well. Mostly I've been disappointed. I find that a huge percentage of what gets labeled urban f
Oct 30, 2015 Brad rated it really liked it
Solid read that's building on the precognition premise, this time revolving around missing mage apprentices from both the light and dark camps. All are taken without a trace.

What can go wrong?

Well, for starters, Alex can pick up a few stragglers who might just want to go just as independent as he, for one. And we can do it all in the middle of a mage tournament he would never have considered attending, if he hadn't been forced to do it for the investigation.

Oh, and Luna is getting beast. Gotta
⊱ Irena ⊰
I could probably find a couple of nitpicks if I tried really, really hard. But I won't. I had so much fun reading this book that I don't even care if there are any.

The main premise is simple enough: mage apprentices have been vanishing and Alex is asked to find more about it. As this is the third book in the series, it's not surprising that nothing is that simple when Alex Verus gets involved. There isn't a single boring or even slower moment here.

The best part? There are so many surprises
May 23, 2013 Felicia rated it really liked it
Shelves: urban-paranormal
Continue to love this series, I just LOVE IT. Urban Fantasy at its best, so great to see that by book three I'm still dying to know more about the main character, the world, and everything. I guess the relationship between Alex and Anne is a BIT odd, like someone gave the author a note about what direction it should be, but other than that, love this series!
Aug 26, 2015 Scott rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, mystery
I feel one of the best compliments I can give an author is that their work continuously gets better, and that is definitely true of Jacka. He writes a wonderfully tight story, with great pacing, and lots of interesting characters.

This is most certainly becoming a favorite, and after the end of this book, I can't wait to see where it goes from here!
Jan 11, 2013 Slategrey rated it really liked it
This was probably my favorite of the Verus books so far - the writing seems to be developing a sparseness that appeals to me, and the world-building aspects were definitely kicked up a notch this time. I'm also finding the characters more sympathetic and relatable with each book, which is slowly making this one of my favorite series.

Unfortunately, the ending was rather spoiled for me since the final setting, villain, and several scenes were extremely similar to those of the manga "Ghost Hunt", p
Feb 24, 2014 Mark rated it really liked it
These just keep getting better, just the right amount of tension and ending on a high.

keeps me looking forward to the other books to come.
Nov 19, 2014 Mandapanda rated it really liked it
Shelves: urban-fantasy
Persistence is paying off with this series. Alex is very slowly becoming more appealing as a hero and the growing cast of secondary characters are interesting. From the beginning I've enjoyed the myth-building behind this series. It makes sense and is different enough from everything else to make it feel unique.
Red Wolf
Feb 20, 2016 Red Wolf rated it it was amazing
I have trouble praising books, I much prefer to criticize them cause it's easier. So that is what I will do. I have seen many reviews about books that say, " I couldn't put it down", "I read all night", etc. That is my complaint with this book. I have typically 5-8 books on my currently reading list. Some are very good others are ok. I have books on my phone, tablet, computer, and actual books in the bathrooms. The book I have in the second bathroom gets the least attention. The last time I read ...more
Leontii  Elijah Cristea
Taken is the third Alex Verus book—and so far it’s been my favourite. I began Taken with a pinch of salt: I’d not enjoyed Cursed very much at all and I was afraid that, for me, the series was slowly heading the way of the dodo. Thankfully, that didn’t happen and I’m going to stick around for more news of subsequent Alex Verus books. Handy, really, since Benedict Jacka commented on his blog earlier today about just this.

Cursed was a boring, predictable flop for me, especially having had a few mon
When Talisid approaches Alex for a case -- mages have noticed apprentices vanished without a trace (or proofs) -- it takes Alex and his apprentice Luna to Fountain Reach, where magic tournament called White Stone is held. On top of the missing apprentices, one of Luna's classmates, Anne, seems to be having a death target on her back...


With magic tournament and secrets inside a wall, I can't help thinking about Harry Potter in this one :). I keep wondering whether the winner of the to
Jan 07, 2016 Aya rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: urban-fantasy
Alex Verus: 3
This book seemed less put together than the previous. There's a lot of things going on, a huge cast of characters, and several plot threads running all over the place. The author manages to tie most of the threads together by the end, but still leaves a few hanging. On the plus side, Luna wasn't acting like a spoiled brat in this book. A good read, but not on par as the previous two.
Dec 17, 2014 Nicole rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
In full disclosure I won this book in a Goodreads giveaway.
Taken is set several months after book two, Alex Verus’s fame is growing which is both good and bad, Luna is now his fully fledged apprentice and training with the light mages.
Alex is approached by a mind-mage Crystal wants Alex to work for her to help keep an upcoming Light tournament that she is hosting safe, something doesn’t feel right so Alex declines.
Alex visits Luna while she is in class and meets some of her friends (and enemies)
Ranting Dragon
Dec 28, 2012 Ranting Dragon rated it really liked it
Shelves: garrett

Taken is the third installment in British author Benedict Jacka’s urban fantasy series centering around a wizard named Alex Verus. Having run-ins with experienced battlemages and coming out victorious seems to boost one’s reputation. Such is Alex Verus discovering. Where a few months ago he was a relative unknown in the supernatural circles, Alex is now drawing the attention of some powerful players. As a very competent diviner—a mage who can see into the
Mar 04, 2013 Otherwyrld rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, paranormal
Another entertaining, if quick, read from Benedict Jacka. In this, the third Alex Verus story, he is asked to investigate the disappearance of several apprentices. He soon finds that there is far more than he expected, and is soon in danger, along with his own apprentice and two newcomers.

The author continues to expand his world in this book, giving us more insights into the world of the light mages and the complex world they live in. Much more about the levels of the mage world is given here, t
Sep 07, 2012 Pctrollbreath rated it it was amazing
Shelves: urban-fantasy
This book continues a series that impresses with it's quality.

In this book, Alex continues to grow as character and starts to become a lot more confident in himself and more focused in his motivations, becoming a much more rounded protagonist. We meet some old friends and enemies as well as a few new ones, which look to be ongoing members of the Verus cast. The characters are three dimensional because the author has taken care to make sure that everyone has there own motivations and interests. T
Sep 19, 2012 Candace rated it really liked it
This is the third book in this series and I loved it just as much as I loved the first two. This is a book sort of along the lines of Harry Dresden and is kind of a 'boy' book in the urban fantasy genre. I tend to like the 'boy' books as they have less sex, a male main character, and there's plenty of action. And Alex is one of my most favorite characters because he feels so real. He's afraid at times and he says so, he knows he can't win every fight and tries to avoid them, but when he can't he ...more
Oct 05, 2012 Ruth rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: spec-fic
c2012: FWFTB: invitation, apprentices, tournament, threat, elusive. As I dig out the words from the FWFTB it struck me that they could equally describe some of the Harry Potter books. Thank Heavens that you can rest assured that they are nothing alike. The third volume in the Alex Verus stories is definitely a great addition with Verus' character becoming a little more kick-ass. I was getting a bit concerned at his whining that he was much weaker than any of his adversaries but in this book he s ...more
Oct 26, 2015 Jennifer rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
I'm still enjoying this series as mind candy. Benedict Jacka is pretty good at coming up with believable ways to make magic, both the protagonists' and the opponents' not overpowered. We're introduced to yet more appealing characters, and I'm interested to see which characters will appear when in future books, and how their paths intersect to create new plots.
Oct 02, 2012 JPerceval rated it it was amazing
In this third installment of Benedict Jacka's excellent series about diviner mage Alex Verus, readers are taken into the world of Light apprenticeship – and learn, once again, that the lines of good and bad do not necessarily run parallel with the division between Light and Dark mages.

Taken is fantastically fast-paced and well-written. Jacka introduces new characters and nuances in Alex's world flawlessly, giving readers a meaty and exciting plot revolving around a strong central character with
Dec 30, 2012 Martyn rated it liked it
I had been thoroughly enjoying the alex verus series and appreciating Jacka's writing until I reached this particular entry of the series. At first nothing was amiss and I was hooked on the story as much as with the previous books, that was until I started experiencing a distinct sense of deja vu one which became steadily stronger as I continued reading. In the final third/quarter of the book it finally came to me that the basic plot was lifted directly from a show I had watched a few years prev ...more
Ade Couper
Oct 13, 2012 Ade Couper rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Well, 2 Alex Verus novels in a week - was it worth it?

This time Alex is on the trail of missing apprentices - who's been taking them ? What does Lord Jagadev have to do with the disappearances , & what is his connection to Anne & Variam ? & what is the secret of Fountain Reach & the Aubuchon dynasty....?

Again , the atmosphere that Benedict Jacka creates is 1st-class - the writing really gives you the feel of a scene. Most of the characters (with the exception of Lord Jagadev , wh
Sep 11, 2014 Chris rated it liked it
Good addition to the series in which Alex tries to figure out why apprentices are disappearing. The series is growing on me, bit by bit - I mostly kept reading the first one just to be reading something, but each new book is drawing me in more.
Dr susan
Aug 31, 2013 Dr susan rated it it was amazing
Shelves: re-read, read-again
"There was a chorus of screams, one of which might have been mine." A reader has to love a man who admits in a grammatically correct sentence that he girly screamed. And that same reader needs to remember that laughing out loud in public is a hazard of reading the Verus books. I finished Taken and went straight to Jacka's website, with my fingers crossed, to check for news of Verus #4 and found it! The new characters are great; Luna's abilities are growing; the horror is less quiet, and the writ ...more
Mar 10, 2016 Lesley rated it really liked it
Shelves: urban-fantasy
Taken is another strong entry in an already excellent series. The comparison between these books and the Dresden Files is well deserved. I can't wait to read more!
Imran Kashem
Mar 30, 2016 Imran Kashem rated it it was amazing
Another awesone book by Benedict Jacka. Apart from excellent story telling, his books' are full of twists and interesting turn of events and Taken has plenty of these. Among the first three this is the best. Alex Verus is portraited uniquely with all of his abilities to fight, to protect and to find out the truth. I couldn't enjoy Fated and Cursed fully as there were some loose ends but after reading Taken I have a feeling of completion as it doesn't leave any question unanswered. This is the fa ...more
Apr 24, 2016 Artesia rated it liked it
Shelves: part-of-series, mages
Still 3,5 stars, like other novels in the series.

* Likable protagonist. Alex Verus is an underdog, he isn't overpowered, and he doesn't afraid to get his hands dirty. Also he prefers stealth and indirect approach to problems, a man of my own heart.
* Interesting, if not very original, magic system. Protagonist has what basically amounts to save-reload ability, and he's savescumming for the win.
* Descriptive writing style. Author seems to genuinely like London, and he describes it in a viv
Victor Sanchez
Jan 16, 2016 Victor Sanchez rated it it was amazing
For me, this was the last book I will read of the series. Sadly, I read the tv tropes page and I honestly don't like the changes that the series is passing through, just like the Dresden Files who became so convoluted and twisted and over-the-top that I just can't stomach it. In here, the series is at its peak: there is danger, plots, compelling villains if with another that is basically "I'm evil- muahahaha" and it has a happy, well round, not clean cut but hopefully ending.

Then it takes a div
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Other Books in the Series

Alex Verus (8 books)
  • Fated (Alex Verus, #1)
  • Cursed (Alex Verus, #2)
  • Chosen (Alex Verus, #4)
  • Hidden (Alex Verus, #5)
  • Veiled (Alex Verus, #6)
  • Burned (Alex Verus, #7)
  • Bound (Alex Verus, #8)

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