Rivers of London by Ben Aaronovitch


– You put a spell on the dog, I said as we left the house.
– Just a small one, said Nightingale
– So magic is real, I said. Which makes you a … what?
– A wizard.
– Like Harry Potter?
– Nightingale sighed. No, he said, not like Harry Potter.
– In what way?
– I’m not a fictional character, said Nightingale.

After stumbling upon a ghost witness to a beheading in Covent Garden, Probationary Constable Peter Grant becomes the Watson to Detective Chief Inspector Thomas Nightingale’s supernatural Sherlock: investigating crimes involving magic or the uncanny.

Highly recommended for fans of crime, mystery novels, fantasy, British humour, and London.

I’m a bit late in the game to this one. Fairly popular series. Think Terry Prattchet meets Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Although it was recommended by a friend whose taste is diametrically opposed to my own, I didn’t hate it. It has all the elements that my friend looks for in a book: hard and fast with the humour, juvenile but enjoyable. It’ll get a pass from me purely based on the fun factor.

Complaints: the as aforementioned juvenility and brief instances of misogyny. Most women are sexualised quite a bit in the novel. But I can’t nitpick too much – I enjoyed the opportunity to partake in a little harmless nostalgia for London. Overall, a fun, guilty pleasure of a read. That also confirms how fucked up Punch and Judy is.

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