Looking for a less sexist, more British Harry Dresden? Or a less police officer-y Peter Grant? Tahdah, basically. Except with the interesting note that the protagonist of Fated is a seer: at any given moment, he can sort through all the possible futures and figure out what he needs to do to select the future he wants. I was wondering how well that could be pulled off in narration, but actually, Jacka handles it pretty well, and it never gets confusing or tedious.
Oh, and if you’re wondering why Jim Butcher’s Harry Dresden leapt to mind, it’s because there’s a sly reference to him in an early chapter; just enough to make you smile, if you’re aware of the context, or ignore if not.
In a way, I guess it’s fairly standard urban fantasy: a dark past, good and bad wizards opposing each other (and sometimes being morally a few shades of grey), a magical object to obtain, etc. Some things seemed very obvious to me, for example when a particular character’s behaviour changed, it seemed obvious why. I mean, I think you’re meant to get that something is off, but I think I got there a bit faster than the narrative really intended.
There are some cool powers and characters that could get very interesting with more development. Personally, I’d like to see more of Arachne. Which is odd, because normally things with too many legs freak me out…
Some of the supporting characters, like Helikaon, just seemed… superfluous. They added little except a broader view of the magical world, and didn’t really do much emotionally. But maybe there’ll be more about that in future books, which I think I will pick up — if only from the library, which seems to have the lot (so far).