Steven Klotz's Reviews > Fated

Fated by Benedict Jacka
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May 25, 12

bookshelves: fantasy, telepathy
Read from May 12 to 25, 2012

I picked up this book, because I was interested in how a writer might write a first person account of being able to see the future. The author did a great job with that. He sets up a magical system where mages can use a single school of magic. They can end up doing fairly similar things, but there's particularly a distinction between active and passive skills. The book spends a lot of time showing how Alex's (he's the main character) ability to see the future stacks up against the battle mages that manipulate fire, earth or death magic.

Mage society in this book is a combination of imperial British class arrogance and mob family bravado. Inside of that society there are light and dark factions. Alex started out on the dark side of things but his conscious really got in the way. The end result is that he's an outcast from ALL aspects of mage society. He's a mostly likeable character made even more so in comparison to every other mage we encounter. He surrounds himself with a rather motley crew: a young lady cursed with luck, a severely ADD air spirit and an ancient seamstress.

The setting of the final act was a bit jarring after the adequately described London the rest of the book takes place in. In spite of the generic dungeon crawl plenty of action and peril led to a satisfying climax.

I noticed when looking up the author that he's also written a young adult (series?) book about ninjas. This novel had the continuous forward pace that's the hallmark of great YA fiction, with enough information about Alex's school of magic to shelve this as "hard fantasy." The connections between free will, probabilities and knowledge all flesh out Alex's skill. The other schools seemed a bit more "throw a chunk of X energy at what you want dead." I look forward to seeing the other schools fleshed out a bit, but based on the title of the next book "Cursed," I suspect it'll go into more depth about his cursed companion. I'll definitely be checking that out.
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Reading Progress

05/16/2012 page 12
05/17/2012 page 42
14.0% "I picked this up to see how one might write a "probability mage," and I'm quite enjoying it."
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