Ben Aaronovitch,
Rivers of London No. 4: Broken Homes
(DAW, 2014)

Don't start here. Too much of Ben Aaronovitch's Broken Homes won't make any sense without the background, and there's very little fill-in; it just starts to GO and doesn't stop.

While this comes midway in Aaronovitch's Rivers of London series, it's a set-up for what comes next -- and I think it's one of the tightest of this series. It reminds me of the second book in most trilogies; the arc of the book itself is somewhat subsumed to the arc of the series as a whole.

I love this series. It's a unique blend of urban fantasy, horror, humor and police procedural. Peter is growing as a character, as are the people around him, all of whom are interesting. Things happen that cannot be ignored or undone and which drive events in future books. It's all written in Peter's voice, so we see things only through his eyes -- and while he's not an unreliable narrator, he's not everywhere and knowing everything, so neither are we. I like that. Everyone has his or her own motivations and struggles, from the minor to the gigantic. We're learning more about the way magic works, and also about the "demi-monde" -- the more magical creatures in the world.

Highly recommended, both as a series and as a novel ... but if you're not up-to-date in the series, catch up before reading this one!

book review by
Amanda Fisher

29 March 2014

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