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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 4 June 2017
I'm pretty late to this series and came upon it because it was recommended by an author whose work I admire. I absolutely loved it - BA's style is in the mode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer/Thor/Avengers/Firefly/Dr Who/Blake's Seven et al (he's written for some of them too) - it's clever, ironical, irreverent, fast and funny, just the right side of slick and very warm and affectionate. I adored the interweaving of the geography, history and folklore of London into the tale of a (well known when you recognise the clues) spirit of mischief running amok in and around Covent Garden and of the mighty Mama Thames (she's Nigerian, who knew?) and Father Thames (CEO of Travelling Fairs - ditto) locking horns over whether or not he has any right to try to extend his territorial claims below Teddington Lock. I am utterly beguiled by PC Grant, recent skeptical graduate of Hendon Police College, bona fide Londoner (loves his parents, his dad's jazz and his mum's groundnut chicken hot enough to burn the inside of your mouth) and brand new wizard apprentice. Who could fail to like him when he can flatten the likes of the roiling Lady Tyburn with the battle cry 'I'm an officer of the law, a keeper of the flame and a freeman of London .... that trumps a double-first from Oxford every time'! Fabulous stuff. Just bought book two - there are five in all and that is my summer reading pretty much sorted.
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on 18 September 2016
It’s an odd book, this one. Derivative of a great deal of US urban fantasy (the Dresden Files in particular), but with enough local colour to get away with it. It’s eminently readable while in progress, but easy to put down and forget about it until the next time. It occupied no space in my head except when I was reading, at which point it pulled me along nicely. Aaronovitch does a nice line in first person narrator, and while his London never feels real (despite an impressive attention to detail), it is at least colourful. I’ll pick up the next in the series more because this was an easy and enjoyable way to pass time than because I’m compelled to return to the characters, and because a series like this sometimes needs a book to setup its premise and find its feet.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 21 May 2018
I was recommended this by a work colleague of mine as we were both fans of the Harry Dresden series and this, in concept anyway, is a bit similar. Enter Peter Grant, a Police Constable for the London Metropolitan Police. One dreary night while standing guard at a crime scene a witness approaches him to give a testomony on the murder that happened there the night before. Unfortunately for Peter that witness is himself, also dead, a ghost. Not sure if he's going crazy or not until a detective approaches him and asks him to join his divison, a part of the Police the Met know about and do their best to forget exits that look into such things...

The story is great and the characters are all a mixture of the weird and wonderful as Peter slowly finds out about ghosts, wizards and various things he didn't think were real as the case unfolds. Ben Aaronovitch the author used to write for Doctor Who and it shows as not only are many aspects of it very imaginitive but often it's also very funny. The humour is very British, not just in it's style but the many cultural references and satire that would I think be lost on a lot of people who hadn't lived here. That's not say the book is a comedy, just it has great moments and one liners. The actual tone of the plot is pretty dark with some pretty horrible things happening to people during the case. I enjoyed it immensely and went onto read the next five books currently out.

If I had to say anything negative about the book it's that at times the lead character has a bit of a lack of emotional reactions to situations that you would expect. One instance in particular felt really jarring, it doesn't ruin the book but stood out to me because the rest of it is so well done.


+ Great story and characters
+ Genuinely funny in places.
+ Great pacing.

- Some of Grants reactions seem a little detatched at times.
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on 30 May 2018
A very good, witty and readable book.
Unfortunately I bought this thinking it was number 2 in the Peter Grant (Rivers of London) series, it isn't. It is in fact the very same book also published as Rivers of London book one in the Peter Grant series. So, whilst the story rates 5 stars, I WOULD LIKE to give it no stars for conning me out of £5.90.
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on 29 July 2017
You must suspend disbelief to fully enjoy this wonderful book.
The first P.C Peter Grant adventure is a tale like nothing you have ever read before. A clever story of a very special department of the London police that deals with magic, ghosts and time travel.
A police procedural like no other, it is at the same time similar to but very different from the Bryant and May books by Christopher Fowler. A man is murdered by having his head knocked completely off, a ghost appears before a bemused P.C Grant and we are off on an adventure that is original, absorbing and very clever. The book has some memorable one liners and at times I laughed out loud. Be prepared for some late nights as you will find it hard to put the book down. I cannot wait for the next in the series. Very, very highly recommended.
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on 18 June 2017
Hardly worth adding another rave review to all the others here, but I have come late to the Rivers of London and have been delighted to tap into a series that's new to me. I instantly engaged with PC Grant and the straight laced Nightingale. Ben Aaronovitch, mindful of racial stereotypes and the cliches of both the fantasy and the police procedural, has a lot of fun with them and the preconceptions of his readers. Although it includes some dark, if not downright disturbing subject matter, bad language and lots of black humour, the tone is generally light with lots of oblique references to other fantasy fiction and pithy dialogue.

Lots of people don't get on with fantasy (inconceivable, I know) and arguably the concept is not entirely original but I think this series thoroughly deserves it's popularity.
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on 8 June 2017
Peter is a very average policeman that gets picked for the supernatural division after speaking to a ghost during a murder investigation. What follows is actually quite a dark twisted tale of supposedly random murders and violent acts. It's Peter's and his mentor, Nightingale's job to work out who, or what is perpetrating the acts and stop them.

I quite liked this book, but whether that is because it is set in my home town or not i'm not sure. The book had a good balance of humour and seriousness that I quite like. Peter comes across as a more deadpan Harry dresden to me which really did appeal. But on the other hand, nothing really came across as outstanding and amazing with this book. So where as i'm not champing at the bit to read more of this series, I'm sure I will pick them up at some point.
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on 7 October 2016
Moon Over Soho was a lot like its predecessor Rivers of London with just the right balance of humour and seriousness. I really like Aaronovitch’s writing style and the fact that it’s set in and around London is great – sometimes you’ll get say an American author writing about London or an English author writing about America and it just feels wrong – but Aaronovitch is a Brit and he brings that out in his writing with some trusty British witticisms.

Moon Over Soho brings back much favoured characters from Rivers and the same kind of humour.

Soho follows Peter Grant as he hunts down- wait for it – jazz vampires!! Nightingale is down for the count so Peter takes the reins for this case and the resurgence of the Pale Lady and her vaginis dentata – with some untimely deaths and a few dead musicians.

Peter finds himself in a little bit of a romance with a lady called Simone who – oddly enough – was in a relationship with one of the dead jazz musicians. There was a lot of different side stories that all blended in together in this book which was a good thing. Everything apart from the mystery of the Pale Amy was solved at the end of the book with a nicely closed off ending; I think my biggest pet peeve with “crime” books is when they don’t solve the crime at the end of the book and leave a gaping cliffhanger with no resolution in the next book either.

Although I didn’t like Simone – Lesley fan all the way – I felt a bit sorry for her at the end of the book. She didn’t seem overly trustworthy and had a penchant for sleeping with Peter when he should be working on the case.

The ending was perfect! I loved it and the thing with Lesley? Amazing and I can’t wait to see where it goes in the following stories. Peter has his work cut out for him in the next books. The Masked Man as well is an interesting concept and I sincerely hope we see more effective him and his twisted ways.

The writing was as before filled with internal monologues from Peter whenever he learned anything new; a healthy dose of sarcasm and a nice balance between normal and Paranormal to justify the oddities of the Paranormal world Peter is a part of.
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TOP 100 REVIEWERon 12 January 2017
I enjoyed reading this book, although it didn't grab me as something special. It's pleasant light entertainment, combining the mystery and urban fantasy genres.

The writing is smooth and lively and the characters are interesting, The depiction of London is authentic. It's obvious that the author knows the places he writes about. (Several writers whose London-set novels I've read recently seem to have gained their knowledge of London from Google.)
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 8 June 2017
I'm late to this series but I'm reading voraciously and loving every minute. In this novel the rather wonderful PC Grant, apprentice wizard and potential great copper if only he didn't get distracted, has to soldier on for a while on his own because two of the team are on the sick list. First up, stalling his wizardry practice, there's something nasty going on in the clubbing scene as evidenced by one corpse and one screaming survivor with a wince-inducing tale to tell; on top of that jazz musicians are dropping dead within a short time of playing gigs in/around Soho. Peter would like to keep a low profile after the debacle of Covent Garden but it's not to be. As he investigates things become more jazzy, more magically complex and more sinister and then - he gets distracted by a Patisserie Valerie junkie. Events spiral towards mayhem - there's a frantic skirmish with an ambulance crew, a very important hostage to save by jumping in the River Thames, a thrilling rooftop battle and some truly poignant moments. Things might have gone completely toes up for Peter except that his mum is from Sierra Leone and, of course, can keep her wits about her when confronted by the terrifyingly mystical. The writing is as fast, funny, irreverent, warm and affectionate as book one and the history of London is interwoven intriguingly. Fantastic stuff in every way, now for book 3.
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