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4.4 out of 5 stars
The Glass God (Magicals Anonymous)
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 8 August 2013
The Glass God is the second novel from Griffin in her Magicals Anonymous series. I'm torn between giving this book 3 or 4 stars. In essence I love the storyline and characters Griffin has going here but this book didn't quite reach my expectations.

Just when Sharon Li was settling into her new job as Community Support Worker and Shaman, She finds herself landed with a new and unexpected job role when the Midnight Mayor goes missing. If that wasn't enough, once again it seems the fate of the City rests with Sharon and her motley crew from Magicals Anonymous. This time round the City is under threat from a rather unhappy and un-`fed' Old Man Bone and a disgraced wizard seeking power. Oh and did I mention she has to find the Midnight Mayor before it's too late, and before Old Man Bone has her own shoes?

Again, Griffin has developed an interesting storyline but somehow it doesn't contain the level of detail I expected. Compared to Stray Souls this book lacked action and complexity. I found the plot rather straight forward and almost uneventful. It wasn't until the final third that things started picking up for me, but even then it felt predictable. Obviously the storyline has potential. Griffin seems to have a knack for conjuring original and detailed fantasy worlds and plots. However, it feels as though she hasn't quite given herself the time needed to expand this one to its full capacity.

I was also disappointed not to read more of the self help group for magical misfits. This was a great source of humour during the first book, so I was looking forward to delving into the minds of the magical community again but it wasn't to be. Griffin barely touches upon the group meetings despite having ample opportunity to do so within their weekly/monthly get-togethers. I was also a little disappointed to find that Griffin hadn't expanded her bunch of magical anomalies. Don't get me wrong, I love Kevin the germ-phobic Vampire, Sally the modern art enthusiast Banshee, Mr Roding the decaying necromancer with odour problems, Gretel the gourmet food loving Troll, Rhys the hyper-allergic Druid and Sammy the Shaman Goblin with an attitude problem, but it would have been nice to add some new characters, especially as Griffin seems to have a way with developing in-depth, well thought-out personalities. Having said that the Aldermen were a new addition for me and although they were fairly understated, they did provide something extra.

The chapters in this book were less staccato than in Stray Souls which I thought I'd like. However, I found myself missing the short autobiographical chapters of each characters and realised that perhaps Griffin's writing style is more suited to the punchy short chapters. I have to admit I struggled with Griffin's writing this time around. Her sentences were frequently far too long and rambling. I found myself getting bored and lost within some of her elaborate constructs. For instance, I counted 120 words in one sentence alone. Unfortunately for me this made the book hard-reading. Her quirky writing style from Stray Souls seems to have disappeared and in its wake is a desperate attempt at humour and world building, leaving me wishing Griffin would just get on with it.

When starting this series I was originally worried at having never read the Swift novels, which honestly wasn't a problem in Stray Souls. However I couldn't help but feel like I was missing too much from The Glass God and wonder if perhaps knowledge of the Swift novels would have been beneficial. This is disappointing as I really thought it had potential to remain as a standalone series.

I would still recommend reading The Glass God bearing in mind it's not quite at the same standard as Stray Souls (Magicals Anonymous). Hopefully Griffin can save the day and come back with an awesome third novel to top them both. Watch this space...
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 22 July 2014
This is the second (and currently last) book in the Magicals Anonymous series. Please, please write some more, Kate Griffin!
Sharon Li is a Shaman. She is also the community officer for the magical community in the city of London. She organises singles nights for those who can only come out after dark, bingo nights and a regular self-help group. She assisted by her IT technician and minion Rhys - the Druid with allergy problems. Sharon is busy sorting out the personal problems of the magical community when the Midnight Mayor goes missing leaving her as his deputy - much to her surprise. What follows is an investigation into the disappearance of the Midnight Mayor, why Old Man Bone wants what he is owed and why there are shoes thrown over overhead wires.
This book is a very worthy sequel to the "Stray Souls" where we first meet Sharon. The characters that we met there are back with further details of their unique personalities which are well constructed and amusing. Why shouldn't a vampire have OCD? Why shouldn't a seven foot troll be a chef? Sharon's fantastic positivity and knack with words is quite wonderful and leaves the reader as well as the characters amazed. There is a touch of romance along the way as well.
I really enjoyed this book and am unimpressed that currently there are only two books in the series! I just didn't want to put this book down and was totally engrossed. Unfortunately I was totally engrossed in the same room as my husband was watching the world cup & my chortles of amusement were not always appreciated!
In my opinion this series stands alongside books written by such great fantasy authors as Ben Aaronovich, Jasper Fforde, Jim Butcher and Terry Pratchett. They are well constructed, easy to read and fun.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 23 September 2013
I love Kate Griffin's writing and her conception of magic, but this book might have been my least favourite so far. It was fun and the characters were likeable, but I battled to get really immersed in the story. On the one hand, it's refreshing to have realistic dialogue - as a 20-something, I felt like everyone, you know, spoke like me, yeah? But on the other hand, I felt that a lot of the characters didn't have distinct voices. I really want to love Sharon, and I do like her, but after two books I still feel like I'm trying to make sense of her as a character. I'll definitely keep reading the series, but so far I much prefer the original Matthew Swift books.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Whilst many seem to love being taken to a foreign country for their Urban Fantasy, I love being transported to our own capital for a magical mystery tour where the normal becomes the unusual, and the mundane becomes weird. As with Kate's other titles in the series this title takes you on a wonderful journey as the principle character within, Sharon Li, has a huge quest ahead of her, to find the Midnight Mayor alongside averting the current crisis that the city faces.

Its imaginative, has great twists and really does give you something unique to explore and escape the modern world. Add to the mix some cracking prose and an author who loves to weave a story all round gives the reader a story to thoroughly enjoy although to be honest I would advise people to start at the beginning to get not only the full flavour but to full immerse themselves into the experience. Great stuff.
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VINE VOICEon 26 October 2013
The Glass God is the follow up to Stray Souls , set in the Midnight Mayor universe.

The story, told from a range of perspectives, follows the heroine Sharon Li and her slightly motley crew of assorted magical beings once again on a mission to save the City and, this time, track down it's missing Midnight Mayor.

The writing is strong enough too keep the slightly sillier elements just on the right side of entertaining (rather than annoying), babes. Although I hated the Tribes txt spk conversation...

The story is interesting and the mystery is well plotted. The book is fast-paced and driven by dialogue and it would have been nice to have a bit more reflection on some of the events. Sharon is forced to defend herself and deal out retribution, actions that are quite at odds with the positive personality built up in this book and the previous one that could have done with a bit more exploration.

The characters are fun and engaging, and the connection is helped by getting to see the inner-thoughts of many of them. The Aldermen, Kelly and Miles remain a bit mysterious (I haven't read the original series) but I liked both characters.

Overall it was a fun read that kept me entertained throughout. I'll definitely look for the next book but will be hoping for some character development to move things on.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 26 July 2013
A series of strange disappearances? Ancient Spirits of London running amok? People dying from the Black Death? With the consciousness of London's Midnight Mayor going missing, it's up to Sharon to use her shaman powers and creed of positive thinking to save the city from the forces of darkness. Kate Griffin has written another great book! Really enjoyable and an exciting read.
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on 13 September 2013
But after reading Glass God, I very much fancy Sharon.

The shame is there are only the two books so it feels as though Sharon has at last decided to go off with that wet wheezing druid, which I understand as he seems a likeable chap, but where does that leave me.

The Midnight Mayor having a sticky time of it was so well written you can actually feel the horror of the inability to help or in Sammy's case, almost not giving a stuff, which of course is not true.

Any more on the way? I sincerely hope so.
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on 22 December 2013
New idea and interesting in concept. Characters interesting and well developed at outset. Good plot that romps along - although not sure that even with magical assistance you can get by with that little sleep and poor diet! Think there is milage in the characters but they need to move forward as a result of their experiences and develop further. Also, whilst I have a bias as a Welsh woman but would like the Welsh Druid to be a bit less of a whimp.
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on 28 November 2013
What a thoroughly enjoyable book. Sharon's monologues, Kelly's enthusiasm, Gretel's canapés... It all fits together. The usual slog and exhaustion, although I was delighted that there was sleep slotted into the saving the world schedule, this time. And so much wry humour, human observation, and underpinning it all, a deep affection for every wart, scab and beauty that make up London.
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on 15 April 2014
I love Magical Anonymous and the Midnight Mayor series....the Blue Electric Angels are addictive (come be we,we be free) but here the books take a darker turn.

The old favourites are here, Rhys and his allergies, the second greatest shaman (oy, squishy brains) and The Aldermen.

Absolutely wonderful writing beautifully crafted.
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