YMMV / Alex Verus

  • Big-Lipped Alligator Moment: While pathwalking through Morden's mansion, Alex finds a way to overrun the landscape with giant intelligent badgers. This is never elaborated on in any way or even mentioned again afterwards.
  • Complete Monster:
    • Vitus Aubuchon, an old mage and the heir of the Aubuchon family, has survived centuries by using dark magic to harvest the blood of victims to preserve his own life. Vitus has preyed primarily on children, abducting them into his ancestral home and cutting their throats to get to their blood before storing their bones like trophies. In the present, Vitus has realized the magic is no longer working for him as it once did, and instead switches to abducting magic apprentices for their blood with one such disappearance prompting the attention of Alex and his friends. When they make their way into Vitus's home, Vitus promptly attempts to slaughter everyone inside.
    • Vihaela is the true leader of the White Rose organization, a series of mage-run brothels. Vihaela has women and children abducted to serve as prostitutes with many of them having their minds forcibly altered to make them more docile. Others who resemble celebrities are physically altered and then mentally forced to service any fantasy of the client. Vihaela also runs the brothels on a "points" system, with whoever fails a task or displeases a client obtaining a point. At the end of the month, the one with the most points is sent to Vihaela's laboratory and never returns. Upon being discovered, Vihaela promptly betrays her associates and sacrifices an innocent woman made to look like her in order to escape.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: Cinder. While he is definitely ruthless, he's still more sympathetic than most of the council, plays nice with Alex, whether they're fighting together or not and averts the Dumb Muscle cliche he seems to be. He also gives a very fitting pep talk to Alex right before the climax of Cursed.
  • Fridge Brilliance: Rachel's mage name is Deleo, which can be considered as Latin for "I delete", referring either to her disintegration spells or to the fact that she wants to erase her past and all the bad things she's done.
  • Fridge Logic: It is never actually explained why Crystal approached Alex for help with security in the beginning of Taken. Given that she's the one kidnapping the apprentices, having the renowned secret-solver who wants to keep adepts and apprentices safe working security would have been very much detrimental to her plan.
    • This is addressed in Ask Luna #64 on the author's website. Luna answers the question like so: "Think about it. Crystal is (was) a Light mage. So what she knew about Alex at the time is what all the other Light mages ‘knew’ about Alex. First, he was the (willing) ex-apprentice of Richard, second, he didn’t want to join the Council, and third, he’d been involved in the suspicious disappearances of not one but two Light mages, Griff and Belthas. Put that together, and what do you get? You get something between 'shady mercenary type' and 'assassin'. That was who Crystal thought she was hiring."
  • Nightmare Fuel: The entirety of Elsewhere. Almost every time Alex goes there, he finds himself in some kind of horrible danger. The fact that Alex specifically mentions that nobody is sure what exactly it is and how it works makes it even scarier, though no less fascinating for that.
    • Also, The Monkey's Paw. In a series that uses Nothing Is Scarier a lot as it is, the way it is described is more than just chilling. And of course there's the fact that, at the end of Cursed, it inexplicably appears back in Alex' shop.
      • Made simultaneously better and worse with the events of Bound. Better because we find out that It's not some sort of Eldritch Abomination but simply a higher order bound Jinn who really hates humans. Worse because Anne is now bound to something similar and we all know what happened in Cursed.
    • Every. Single. Thing about White Rose. Caldera describes it as a brothel for mages who want things they can't get anywhere else. Some of it is what you'd expect, children and such which is horrible enough, but what is arguably even more horrific is what only they can offer; if a client wants a particular woman, i.e a pop star that they are attracted to, the "Fleshcrafters" at White Rose will use magic to alter a slave into a physical copy of the woman in question, and then the Mind Mages will break her mind and reshape it until she believes that she IS that woman and as a bonus they'll make her completely into that client's particular fetishes.
      • When Alex and Slate enter one room inside White Rose while looking for Vihaela they find themselves in what looks like a little girl's room; pink, filled with stuffed animals and toys, and a nine year old girl in a nightgown with completely dead eyes who asks "Are you my daddy?" Alex notes that her futures are as solid as a construct's; she has had her free will abused out of her and is incapable of doing anything but reacting to what they tell her to do. Slate himself, a battle-hardened Death Mage and Keeper, is so horrified that Alex has to snap him out of staring mutely.
      • Alternatively, the little girl was just in the middle of being re-programmed into someone's personal slave and answering yes to her question would have made her their slave. Pick your poison as to which one is worse.
    • What Zilean and Lightbringer, the Crusaders' black ops men did to Anne in Bound.
    • The dama, servant constructs Richard keeps at his mansion. They look human. Mostly. But not only that, it also raises the question of a) how dama are made and b) what happened to Richard's original group of servants, because they're nowhere to be found.
  • One-Scene Wonder: Richard Drakh, Alex's old Evil Mentor, makes a brief yet chilling appearance in Hidden. Even after he becomes a prominent part of the plot, he rarely appears in the flesh but whenever he does, it still has a huge impact.
  • Paranoia Fuel: Whatever Richard found in the dimension he went to, it allows him to access and leave Shadow Realms at will, which should not be possible. Meaning, he can appear anywhere he pleases, anytime.
  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic: Will Traviss. While his motivation is perfectly justified and his stated goal is very likable, his one-track-mind, hypocrisy, Sore Loser-attitude and absolute unwillingness to acknowledge the fact that leading his friends to their death for his own revenge was his own fault make it very hard to feel sorry for him when Alex kills him.
  • The Untwist: The Foreshadowing for Rachel having Harvested Shireen was just a bit too obvious in Cursed. Readers who already figured it out were a little bored with the "big reveal" in Chosen.
    • Also the reveal of Archon's identity in Bound. It was Richard all along.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/YMMV/AlexVerus