ARC Review: Cursed by Benedict Jacka

Posted June 15, 2012 by Suzanne in Reviews / 3 Comments

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review.
This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
ARC Review: Cursed by Benedict Jacka
by Benedict Jacka

4.5 Stars


Released: May 29, 2012
Series: Alex Verus #2
Published by Ace
Pages: 293
Format: ARC



Alex Verus quiet life as a magic shop owner seems to well and truely come to an end. His name is back on the radar for both light and dark mages, something he has spent years avoiding. But although trying to avoid trouble he isn’t always sucessful as quite literally trouble comes crashing through his shop window. But what does drained magical creatures, a beautiful enchantress and a monkey paw have to do with Alex? After multiple attempts on his life Alex decides to find out.

Although I mainly read romance of which this book and series so far has none I am really getting into this series. I really enjoyed the first book and the second book was just as good if not better. It wasn’t burdened as much with world building giving more page time to the plot and the characters.

If you like an action packed, magic fueled story then this is the series for you. It has a fast paced story which captivated me from start till finish and had a complex mystery that you could really get in to, which as much as I do love my romances, sometime is rather lacking in a book I would typically read. I also really like Alex Verus, the main character and from who’s point of view we read from, he is resourceful and clever and some how always manages to wiggle out of trouble with a mixture of cunning, intelligence, luck and a little help from his friends.

In conclusion this was a really good installment in the series and I can’t wait to read the next one.

*ARC provided by publisher

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About Benedict Jacka

One overcast day in November I sat down at a study cubicle in my school library. I was 18 years old and in my final year at City of London School, and the library was on the third floor, looking out over the River Thames. I was supposed to be working but instead I stared out of the window across the water, and when I finally picked up my pen what I began to write in the back of my exercise book wasn’t schoolwork but the notes for a story.

To this day I can’t tell you why I started that story that afternoon. I’d written stories before, but no more than any other bookish kid – usually they were done for a school assignment or quickly abandoned. But for some reason this one stayed in my head and sometime over that winter I opened up a Word file on my computer and started writing. I didn’t really have a plan, I just wanted to see what would happen.

I kept writing, and then kept writing some more. Winter turned into spring, spring turned into summer, and by the time I finished at the end of that year what I had wasn’t a story but a 100,000 word novel. Somewhere along the line I’d had it suggested that it might be publishable, so I sent it to some agencies to see if they were interested. They weren’t, but by the time that had been established I’d finished a second novel and was ready to send that out instead.

I kept writing through my time at Cambridge University, leaving three years later with a BA in Philosophy and a very good agent, Sophie Hicks from Ed Victor Ltd. My first three novels had been children’s fantasy, but the one that finally got published was children’s non-fantasy, a book called To Be A Ninja (later reprinted as Ninja: The Beginning).

It took me a little under 7 years to go from that day in the library to being published for the first time, and it’s been just short of another 7 years from that first publication to today. As I write this it’s the first days of 2012, I’m 31 years old, and once again I’m home in London – I’ve lived in different cities and countries, but London’s the place I always come back to. Along the way I’ve worked for a year in the Civil Service, taught English to kids of various nationalities in England and Romania before doing it full-time for six months in China, spent an interesting period working in North London as a bouncer, and most recently went back to college for a GDL/LPC in order to become a solicitor. I’ve also studied a few martial arts (boxing, Krav Maga, and ninjutsu), gone in for competitive ballroom dancing (yes, seriously), spent an enormous amount of time reading (especially Agatha Christie, Tolkien, Jack Vance, Jim Butcher, and Robert Jordan), and skated across most of London at one time or another (still my favourite way to get around. Don’t laugh, it’s more fun than a car or bus and with London traffic it’s about as fast.) I also love gaming, both on computers (Final Fantasy, Suikoden, Fire Emblem, Halo, EVE) and tabletop RPGs (Star Wars, WoD, and especially D&D – I play once or twice a week and GM too).

And that brings us up to date. I’ve needed a new website for a while and with the upcoming launch of the Alex Verus series in March 2012 I decided to sort out a proper webpage. I’m very happy with the Alex Verus books and his world – it’s the best work I’ve done and I’m looking forward to writing more. I hope you enjoy reading them as much as I did writing them!

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Blogger/Reviewer at Under the Covers Book Blog
Gosh, we all seem to be admitting our ages…and I hate that I am at the point in life when admitting my age is a “thing”…whodda thunk it? I was kind of hoping I would remain 21 forever. However, I have moved out of that New Adult stage of my life and am now strictly in the Contemporary Romance age zone of 28. I would prefer to be in an Urban Fantasy arena, but I don’t think I own enough black leather. However, I could probably squeeze into some PNR, I am fully prepared to give a horn job to my favourite demon, or suck on my sexy vamps…fangs and I am definitely up for some heavy petting with some fine looking shifters. Than again their’s always Sci Fi…I am fully prepared to do the right thing and help some poor alien race with more 6 packs than a supermarket repopulate their planet. Not that I am loose woman or anything.

Annnnnd I will stop myself there, before I start waxing lyrical about my love of historical romance and fantasy as well; no one needs to know about my elf fantasies. As you can tell, I adore and day dream about most romance genres, and my three big loves are 1) reading about romance 2) writing about romance and 3) talking about romance with my gals. Which, is why I love Under the Covers so much, I get all my bookish needs satisfied and don’t get judged when I talk about my favourite characters like they are real people. Which they are right?
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thanks for a great review! Grrrr. I need to get my booty in gear and read Fated 🙂

Lisa Richards/alterlisa
Lisa Richards/alterlisa

Wow! Love the sound of this. New author for me but I love a good mystery!


Thanks for the review. This series sounds good.