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London Falling [Hardcover]

Paul Cornell
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (144 customer reviews)

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Book Description

16 April 2013

The dark is rising . . . Detective Inspector James Quill is about to complete the drugs bust of his career. Then his prize suspect Rob Toshack is murdered in custody. Furious, Quill pursues the investigation, co-opting intelligence analyst Lisa Ross and undercover cops Costain and Sefton. But nothing about Toshack’s murder is normal.

Toshack had struck a bargain with a vindictive entity, whose occult powers kept Toshack one step ahead of the law – until his luck ran out. Now, the team must find a 'suspect' who can bend space and time and alter memory itself. And they will kill again.

As the group starts to see London’s sinister magic for themselves, they have two choices: panic or use their new abilities. Then they must hunt a terrifying supernatural force the only way they know how: using police methods, equipment and tactics. But they must all learn the rules of this new game - and quickly. More than their lives will depend on it.

‘He's gone and written a novel too! I suspect it will be just as good as everything else he's written, and that's not fair at all’ George R R Martin

--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Product details

  • Hardcover: 402 pages
  • Publisher: Tor Books (16 April 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 076533027X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0765330277
  • Product Dimensions: 24.2 x 16.3 x 3.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (144 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 667,989 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

I'm a writer of Science Fiction and Fantasy in prose, comics and television, one of only two people to be Hugo Award-nominated in all three media. I've written Doctor Who for the BBC, Wolverine for Marvel Comics and Batman and Robin for DC. I've won the BSFA Award for my short fiction, an Eagle Award for my comics, and share in a Writer's Guild Award for my television scripts. My urban fantasy novels for Tor are London Falling and The Severed Streets.

Product Description


'London Falling is pacy, smart and revels in London mythology. It's especially clever in that our heroes don't stop being coppers just because they now realise there are more things in heaven and earth (and elsewhere) than dreamt of in our philosophies. London Falling might not be on the Booker longlist, but crikey it's good fun.' --Scotland on Sunday --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

About the Author

Paul Cornell has written some of Doctor Who's best-loved episodes for the BBC. He has also written on a number of comic book series for Marvel and DC, including X-men and Batman and Robin. He has been Hugo Award-nominated for his work in TV, comics and prose, and won the BSFA award for his short fiction. LONDON FALLING is his first urban fantasy novel. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What Urban Fantasy should be 10 Mar 2013
Format:Kindle Edition
London Falling begins as a big drug bust is about to take place. It's an operation that's been years in the planning and involves two undercover officers. The bust is happening now more because they're running out of money than because the timing's just right, nevertheless they manage to arrest a local gang boss and several of his "soldiers". Unfortunately this coup is short-lived as he's killed whilst in police custody. In fact whilst he's being interviewed and in full view of CCTV. Nevertheless it's not clear who, what or how the murder took place.

Shortly after this a small unit is formed to investigate this. It turns out to have been a supernatural killing and after visiting a related crime scene the team acquire `The Sight' which is the ability to see... well what exactly it is they can see is explored in the rest of the novel, but for now I'll just say that it adds an extra dimension to things.

I loved this book. However I do have to say that it took me a while to get into it. The first two or three chapters have almost no supernatural element at all and I suppose since that's why I had picked up the book I was waiting for that to appear. Once it did however we were off to the races. In the past I've scored books highly because they had a page-turning quality but they haven't always stayed with me once I've finished them. London Falling was not like that. It was page-turning because I really wanted to know what happened but when I found out what happened I was usually more intrigued and more concerned about the characters.
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26 of 28 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars London horror 9 Nov 2012
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This was an enjoyable read. What begins as a story of undercover policing among London's organised criminals (tensions in the team, possible betrayal, budget pressures) suddenly takes another - and darker twist - as the chief suspect is killed in a particularly gruesome way (not a spoiler - this is all over the book's blurb). The key officers from Operation Goodfellow (the name itself I think a clue to what's going on) are left investigating the darkness behind the crime, with nothing to help them but their "copper instinct" and the systematic procedures of modern policing.

Cornell then adroitly slides this group of bickering, disparate police officers (and one analyst - who has secrets of her own) into a parallel London, inhabited by wonders and horrors that only they can see (but which they are still defenceless against). As in a number of similar recent books by authors such as China Mieville and Ben Aaronovitch, London comes to the fore, almost turning into a character itself. The story gathers pace, with the original criminal gang almost (but not quite) left behind in the pursuit of a truly horrible villain (yet one we're forced, to a degree, to sympathise with). On the way the reader encounters an extremely polite, though infuriating, talking cat, phantom ships and the most haunted shop in London (which, actually, isn't). All great fun, and as a few mysteries are clearly left unexplained, this book is obviously destined to be the start of a series.

I'm looking forward to more.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars THE SWEENEY take on hell 24 Dec 2012
By I Read, Therefore I Blog VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
DI Quill arrests Rob Toshack (the head of a crime organisation with an uncanny ability to stay ahead of the police and absorb its competitors without turf wars) on the same night when Toshack's been behaving strangely - taking his crew on a house to house search for someone unknown. With the help of Sefton and Costain - two undercover officers who've infiltrated Toshack's organisation - he brings Toshack in, only for Toshack to brutally and mysteriously die in the middle of his interview.

Concerned that there's a mole within the police, Quill puts together a special team with Costain, Quill and analyst Lisa Ross who has special knowledge of the Toshack organisation. What they finds goes beyond their wildest imagination and when they're gifted with the Sight, they see a world beneath London filled with dark sights and darker doings. Soon they're on the trail of a murderous entity with a peculiar connection to West Ham football club and a fondness for human sacrifice and Quill's determined to bring it to justice whatever the cost ...

Paul Cornell's novel, the first in a new dark fantasy series, is THE SWEENEY takes on hell. I found it very slow to get started and quite bitty in terms of how the pieces fit together, although there are some great ideas underpinning it and it has potential to be an interesting series.

Part of the problem is that the narration is split between the members of Quill's team, which made it difficult for me to connect with any of them as they broadly boil down to the morally ambiguous one, the gay one, the dogged one and the one with a dodgy past.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars worth a read
looking forward to next installment
Published 13 days ago by ken downey
4.0 out of 5 stars Old Bill and witches
This is a very good tale indeed it has the same change of gear as Salems Lot. It starts as a story of under cover cops before morphing into a battle between modern police and... Read more
Published 19 days ago by Dwjs
5.0 out of 5 stars If you like the the PC Grant series by Ben Aaronovitch and ...
If you like the the PC Grant series by Ben Aaronovitch and like X-filian supernatural type things then this is likely to also interest you. Read more
Published 24 days ago by J D Taylor
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
BRILLIANT novel! Just started the sequel recently. Really brilliant.
Published 27 days ago by Felicity Smith
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Really good story, on the edge of my seat at times, but really enjoyable
Published 1 month ago by Mrs P Rose
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent storyline! Couldent put it down
Excellent storyline ! Couldent put it down.
Published 1 month ago by Mr smith
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
A very good read, a very grown up Harry potter doesn't even come close
Published 1 month ago by Mr. B. W. Pow
4.0 out of 5 stars You with the tentacles... You're nicked!
3.5 stars.

"You with the tentacles, you're nicked."

An unusual and dark read complete with ghost buses, phantom ships, and a talking cat. Read more
Published 1 month ago by I Heart Books
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Loved the book. Strange at first but hooked by the end. Can't wait to start the next one.
Published 2 months ago by Catherine Ann Howard
4.0 out of 5 stars I loved the links to the
As I am a West Ham fan, I loved the links to the team
Published 2 months ago by Lyn
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