"The body you are wearing used to be mine." So begins the letter Myfanwy Thomas is holding when she awakes in a London park surrounded by bodies all wearing latex gloves. With no recollection of who she is, Myfanwy must follow the instructions her former self left behind to discover her identity and track down the agents who want to destroy her. She soon learns that she is a Rook, a high-ranking member of a secret organization called the Checquy that battles the many supernatural forces at work in Britain.
She also discovers that she possesses a rare and deadly supernatural ability of her own. Filled with characters both fascinating and fantastical, The Rook is a richly inventive, suspenseful fantasy. An astonishing debut from a brilliant new voice.
©2012 David O'Malley (P)2016 Audible, Inc.
I've seen this book described as M15 for wizards but I think it might be more X-Men for bureaucrats. That said, I really loved it and found it highly entertaining. Can't wait for the next book.
This book grips you from the first sentence to the last. The story is non stop, really it is VERY hard to find a spot to turn it off to rest for a min. You just can't stop listening. Likewise the narrator is extremely good, totally believable as the voice of the lead character, and all the other ones as well. I can't recommend this book highly enough.I have often read and listened to books that seemed to start well and then fizzle out,but this one keeps its promise to the very last word, literally! Read it or you will miss a good experience.
The story bought a new approach to both the Supernatural and the Spy genres by amalgamating them into this fantastic book. This was the first book in a while that I immediately started again for a second read!
I can't wait for the second book and hope that Katy will be narrating it.
Katy's narration of the story bought out the protagonist quirky nature in an enjoyable to fun way. There were several times onlookers would have looked at me strangely as I laughed out loud walking down the street listening to the book.
Totally absurd, smartly written, entertaining and unexpected! The narrator was GREAT! I really hope there's a next one and that is just as good as this one, because I felt a mix of sadness and anticipation when I was about to finish this one.
did not know what to expect from this as not my usually choice but have been totally immersed and thoroughly intrigued. The narration is superb and brings to life a book that has really cheered up a miserable cold january week.
"A good tale, but disappointing in places"
Some reviews make out that the underlying concept of this book ventures into previously unknown territory, which is not correct - the most obvious comparison being Ben Aaronovitch's "Rivers of London series". That said, the concept is sufficiently different that there can be no accusations of copycatting.
Overall, I enjoyed listening to this book and will buy the next in the series if there are any (which I hope that there are). The reading was done well.I liked the overall plot concept and the back-story and the device of the heroine's predecessor writing her informative letters worked well.
My major criticisms are thus: First, there several what I thought to be continuity errors, which I found irritating. For example, the heroine works for a super-secret, illuminati-esque organisation that has managed to stay secret for centuries, but one character almost immediately manages to track her down in about 20 minutes. Actually, the whole plotline involving that character had me shouting at the car speakers at one point because it just seemed so unlikely (but don't let that worry you too much, it's still a good story).
Second, some of the super-natural elements of the story are just a bit silly. The main ones work ok, but some of the people or events referred to in passing are just thrown in without any real thought appearing to have been given to whether they contribute towards a believable universe.
One of the secrets of great fantasy is that although the author can invent the rules, there must be rules and the story must stick to them. An attitude of "it's my world so I can do what I like" doesn't really work. This can be a particular problem, as JK Rowling discovered, if the author is hoping to produce a series, where throw-away gimmicks in early books can come back to bite the author on the bottom in the future.
Also, the limits of the heroine's own abilities seem to ebb and flow like an unpredictable tide, which is slightly distracting.
Third, the author makes a little bit too much use of "deus ex machina". If the heroine finds herself imperilled by a giant fire-breathing moth (which she doesn't) then the next minion that comes along would just happen to have the ability to spit asbestos mothballs, etc. Remember the old James Bond films, where you just knew that every gadget given to him by Q was going to be exactly the right tool to get him out of just one sticky situation, just once? A bit like that, but in reverse.
In part, I get the feeling that the author has not quite decided upon his target audience. Some of the little things that bugged me would not really matter if the book is aimed mostly at children (who are less sophisticated or nit-picky, dependent upon your viewpoint, than I am in my 40s) but some of the concepts hinted at are quite adult.
In summary, I enjoyed the book, I will follow the series and recommend it to others - but I hope the author settles down to give a bit more attention to his world-building in the future.
James Bond meets The X men with a splash of Harry Dresden and the wit of Bridget Jones all wrapped up in a whodunit!! All in all this fabulous work of fiction is just wonderful and even more so if you are a fan of the supernatural. If you like Jim Butcher and or you would just like to try something new then I rather suspect you will love this. The narration is everything it should be and the actress should be proud of her performance.
The book is left open, so please, please Mr O'Malley spin some more tales of Rook Thomas!
So this was a shot in the dark decision based on the positive reviews it had already got. Its very good, its long, which I like, its fun and falls into the secret occult government agency category. The narrator is Really good, one of the best female readers I have heard, she played Twist in Spaced the classic sitcom.
To summarise its a well written, well read, slightly gory, supernatural romp around The Uk which is more satisfying than most of its alternate reality counterparts. Well worth a credit.
"Awesome Supernatural Spy Thriller set in the UK"
Great audiobook, I'd just finished the rivers of london audiobooks and was looking for something new, definitely didn't let me down.
It opens at full steam and keeps it's pace, a great supernatural spy thriller which keeps you thinking... It is actually funny too when it wants to be which is a bonus. Well worth a credit, I'm looking forward to more from O'Malley.
"Weird but enjoyable"
This is not usually my type of book so when I started listening I was a bit peeved, However it didn't take long for me to get hooked and to actually really enjoy it. It was funny intriguing and a very good story. Would I read another like this...probably.
Fantastic story with excellent engaging narration. Hope that this will be the first in a long standing series!
"Love the book, but the audio is less convincing"
The Rook's been one of my favourite books of the last five years. Yes, it's silly and yes, the story resolves rather too conveniently, but it hangs together well and is brilliantly sardonic.
The Audible reading simply isn't as good as the book. Too many "funny" voices, and the pacing is rather pedestrian. In truth, if I wasn't already such a fan of the book, I'd have struggled to get all the way through the audio.
It's not terrible, but the book deserves better.
Very high, great story and well narrated. I didnt want it to end! When is the next one?
It was original, conceptually, but had great characters too and a compelling storyline.
She pitched it perfectly, performing the drama really well throughout.
I did, but I was trying to not binge on it so I could enjoy it!
I really enjoyed this book which was very different to the type of book I normally listen to. The storyline was a refreshing departure from run of the mill thrillers which some people might find odd and occasionally I did wonder if the author was being serious or taking the mick but I still enjoyed it very much.
I don't really know how to describe it except perhaps as a tongue in cheek, psychedelic thriller/adventure and if you are prepared to listen to something a bit different then give it a go.
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