Series: ALEX VERUS
Plot Type: UF
Ratings: V4; S2; H2
Publisher and Titles: Ace
As is always the case, the reader tags along with Alex as he gathers clues but, frustratingly, doesn't always fully explain them to us right away. Almost as soon as Alex begins his investigation, he has to rescue Anne, one of Luna's apprentice friends, from three gunmen who nearly kill her. Anne and another apprentice, Variam, have been under the protection of a rakshasa—a darkly mysterious shape shifter with roots in India who generally takes the form of a tiger. As the plot plays out, Alex, Luna, Anne, and Variam head for the tournament at Fountain Reach because that's where all the clues seem to point. Once there, Alex gradually figures out the identity of the villain—almost too late to save his own life and that of his allies. Just to make things even more interesting, Onyx, a viciously evil force mage, is also at Fountain Reach searching for the kidnapper, and he plans to punish Alex—fatally—for defeating him in their previous encounter back in book 1.
By the time the climactic showdown scene rolls around, Alex has solved the case but, as usual, has also made some new enemies and endangered himself and his allies time and time again. This is another great addition to a terrific series, filled with action, suspense, and plenty of quirky characters. It's a series that must be read from the beginning, though, so don't start with this book.