Friday, July 6, 2018

Benedict Jacka Interview - Marked

Photo Content from Benedict Jacka

Benedict Jacka is half Australian, half Armenian, and grew up in London. He’s worked as a teacher, bouncer, and civil servant, and spends his spare time skating and playing tabletop games. He’s the author of the Alex Verus series, including Bound, Burned, Veiled, Hidden, and Chosen. He can be found online at


What was the greatest thing you learned at school?
That life gets a lot better after it.

What was your favorite book as a child and why?
It was a tie between Lord of the Rings and Watership Down. I re-read both of them again and again. I loved the adventure and the magic of an alternate world.

Has reading a book ever changed your life?
All the time! As a child, I spent more time reading than pretty much anything else. There wasn’t one book that changed my life, there were lots and lots of them.

What advice would you give to someone who wanted to have a life in writing?
The problem with trying to make a life in writing is that like music and art, it's a profession that’s both very popular and has a low barrier to entry, which means there’s a lot of competition. You need to be doing it for the love of it rather than for money, because once you divide the amount of money in the business by the number of aspiring authors, there’s not much to go around!

In your newest book, MARKED (ALEX VERUS #9); can you tell my Book Nerd community a little about the novel?
Alex Verus is a diviner who in the past couple of books has been blackmailed into being the aide for a member of the Council. Now that his old boss has been arrested for treason, he has to do the job himself, while dealing with the fact that about half of the other members of the Council hate him and are trying to get him killed. Meanwhile, his aide Anne has her own problems, which are just as bad if not worse than Alex's and which are going to start affecting him.

What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating Alex?
People seem to really love references. I put in a line in the first book referencing another fictional magic-user and I don’t think I’ve read a single review that doesn’t specifically mention it!

Which character have you enjoyed getting to know the most over the course of writing ALEX VERUS Series?
Probably Luna. She started out as Alex’s companion, turned into his apprentice, and eventually graduated to become an independent mage. Along the way she became one of the characters I could most easily get into the head of and the most fun to write.

If you could introduce Anne to any character from another book, who would it be and why?
Min from the Wheel of Time. Anne would like her.

What do you feel is the most significant change since book one?
The series has gone from an episodic model (where each book is a self-contained plot) to an overarching-story model (where each book is more a part of a whole). I think the first three books were pretty much standalones, then book 4, Chosen, marked the point at which things started changing. Book 6, Veiled, is probably the last one where you don’t really need to know anything that’s happened before. From Book 7, Burned, onwards, each book incorporates stuff from previous ones.

Any new and exciting things that you would like to share?
I’m most of the way through Book 10 at the moment, and it resolves a whole lot of things that fans have been asking about for years, including Alex’s power level, his love-life, and what the final showdown is going to look like.

What book are you reading now?
Waterloo by Bernard Cornwell.

Have you ever written a love letter?

What is your favorite restaurant in town and why?
Rodizio Rico. I’m a carnivore.

What do you usually think about right before falling asleep?
Lots of things, but the next scene in the book is a common one.

When you looked in the mirror first thing this morning, what was the first thing you thought?
“I should have gone to bed earlier."

What decade during the last century would you have chosen to be a teenager?
The Nineties was pretty fun.

What's the farthest-away place you've been?
I don’t know if it’s the furthest geographically, but I worked for half a year in Anhui province in China. It felt pretty far away from home.

Mage Alex Verus is hanging on by a thread in the ninth urban fantasy novel from the national bestselling author of Burned.

When Mage Alex Verus ends up with a position on the Light Council, no one is happy, least of all him. But Alex is starting to realize that if he wants to protect his friends, he'll need to become a power player himself. His first order of business is to track down dangerous magical items unleashed into the world by Dark Mages.

But when the Council decides they need his help in negotiating with the perpetrators, Alex will have to use all his cunning and magic to strike a deal--and stop the rising tension between the Council, the Dark Mages, and the adept community from turning into a bloodbath.

Praise for the ALEX VERUS Novels

"Benedict Jacka writes a deft thrill ride of an urban fantasy--a stay-up-all-night read." —#1 New York Times bestselling author Patricia Briggs

"Books this good remind me why I got into the storytelling business in the first place." —#1 New York Times bestselling author Jim Butcher

"Benedict Jacka is a master storyteller." —Fantasy Faction

"Fans of Jim Butcher and Ben Aaronovitch absolutely should not miss this deeply intelligent, morally complex, and action-packed series." —Publishers Weekly

You can purchase Marked (Alex Verus #9) at the following Retailers:

And now, The Giveaways.
Thank you BENEDICT JACKA for making this giveaway possible.
1 Winner will receive a Copy of Marked (Alex Verus #9) by Benedict Jacka. 


  1. The first job I had was a pet sitter. I watched hamsters, guinea pigs, gerbils, cats, and dogs.

  2. The first job I had was babysitting, pretty typical for young girls. For a company, it was for a drive-in dairy giving out free samples of their fruit punch when I was 15.

  3. My first job was a dishwasher.

  4. I sold Electronics for a Retail Store

  5. Catching chickens was the first job I ever had.