Definitely do not make the mistake I did and lose track of this book in your library. It is a fine piece of modern literature. Now if you are not a Brit, you may not relate entirely to the story and its humor, but you can be forgiven that weakness and still find it a very entertaining time spent.
Kobna Holdbrook-Smythe is a talented young British actor who has brought his skill to narrating Aaronovitch's books in a big way.
So take an extremely well written piece of fiction and put it in the hands of an extremely talented artist, and you have a guaranteed 10 hours of entertainment.
Buy it and love it and expect it to addict you to the pair and be happy there are half a dozen books by the same pair.
I am brutally honest. Popular, love everything they read, reviewers are scared to go neg. and risk their ranking. It's your money!!!
DO NOT PASS GO, COLLECT 200 QUID
Yes, this is very British and I am sure I missed some of the funnies, due to not being British, but do not let that stop you. This was very easy to understand, was funny to very funny and I did not feel ABUSED, SPAT ON AND VOMITED ON.
CHIEF INSPECTORS DON'T RUN, THAT'S WHAT THEY HAVE CONSTABLES FOR.
The magic in this book is more analytic then those in most books. It does not come naturally to the novice. He might have to be born with the ability to learn, but he must practice hard to learn the skill. As the apprentice learns the magic, we the listener learn about this world of magic. This approach keeps the listener from getting lost. This is listed as a detective novel and rightly so. There is almost as much in the novel about police work in London as there is about Ghost Vampires, River Gods and magic.
A FACE THAT LOOKED LIKE IT HAD BEEN HIT WITH THE FLAT END OF THE SHOVEL.
What I liked most about the book was the main character. He is pretty much an average young black man living in London. He likes to read, but in class his attention is liable to wonder. He is an average man trying to make something of himself.
WE'RE THE PEOPLE WHO BELIEVE THE PEOPLE THAT OTHER PEOPLE DON'T BELIEVE.
I only gave the book three stars. I did not feel the writing maintain the quality it started with. I did listen to the whole thing, but I was ready for it to end. I believe BA has a bright future, but he is not there yet. I do think the book is worth the credit and I am sure many will and do love the book.
KEEP BREATHING IT'S A HABIT YOU DON'T WANT TO BREAK.
The narrator is very good and I believe he made the book better. He does do a lot of heavy breathing, taking in deep inhalations before starting many sentences. I did not notice it till toward the end of the book, but then it did get a little distracting.
I wish I could give this 3 1/2 stars, because it's better than 3 stars, not quite compelling enough for the 4 stars---I reserve the 4 stars for books that i just HAVE to get back to. Somewhat cooky and off beat, it's a fresh approach to supernatural. Our hero is a bit distracted, but that's by design and his asides make me guffaw from time to time. Overall, worth the listen. If you enjoy bedtime stories and fanciful tales of ghosts, and other ethereal beings, you'll enjoy this.
The story is a little weak. The book is short so setting up the setting and world is rushed. This rushed feeling is continuous throughout the book. Dr. Who fans will enjoy this book.
I picked this up on kind of randomly and was pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed it. The premise of the wizard police officer could be hard to pull off but the author does so with a light touch and humor. The detailed descriptions of London make it almost another character to enjoy. The narrator is a real find, with a great main character voice. He handles both women and an impressively wide range of accents well. He is so good I have now listened to the whole series. There are not many narrators that can hold my attention that long and it is always an unexpected delight to find one. I look forward to more from the author and the narrator.
I highly recommend this book to lovers of urban fantasy - if you loved the early Dresden Files - you'll love this! It's witty and a fun read. It is wonderful to have a POC as a main character.
The narration is delightful
I bought this book when it went on sale, and I am so happy that I did! It was so much better than I was expecting it to be. The characters are amazingly well done, each one is well thought out and unique. I couldn't pick a favorite character if you asked me to, they are all so great. The writing is so funny at times and delightfully creepy at others. The plot is great, good and twisty and convincingly constructed. It's the first book in the series and I'll definitely be getting more of them. I've been recommending this book to all my friends.
As an urban fantasy, it seems to follow a trend I've noticed in other British urban fantasy books that I've noticed. There's a conflict which carries the plot through the book, but there are plenty of other large and small issues which sometimes affect the plot and sometimes just illustrate either the background (like the vampire incident) or sometimes just illuminate the characters themselves. It reminds me a bit of watching a TV show over a season, where sometimes the episodes are more or less stand alone and sometimes they build toward the season finale conflict. I personally really enjoy this method of story-telling. Other similar books I've enjoyed with this writing style are Daniel O'Malley's "The Rook" (another really excellent book), Jodi Taylor's "Just One Damn Thing After another" (hilarious and excellent) or Claire North's "The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August" (you guessed it: excellent!).
I had to dock the narrator one star because of his sometimes very breathy performance. He is so great and delivers all the lines with exactly the right inflections and panache that I can't hold it too much against him, but if you're inclined to be bothered by noisy breathing at times, then this might get to you a bit.
A very fun and fast paced listen! If you like paranormal police dramas in the vein of Dresden or the good English Midsomer Murders/Agatha Christie/Sherlock Holmes, then this book is for you. The narrator is the BEST I've heard yet with all British dialects as well as believable women's voices. A very unique story line using the Rivers of London as a base. I highly recommend this series!