Old ghosts of different kinds come back to haunt Felix, in the fourth gripping Felix Castor novel. Names and faces he thought he'd left behind in Liverpool resurface in London, bringing Castor far more trouble than he'd anticipated. Childhood memories, family traumas, sins old and new, and a council estate that was meant to be a modern utopia until it turned into something like hell...these are just some of the sticks life uses to beat Felix Castor with as things go from bad to worse for London's favourite freelance exorcist.
See, Castor's stepped over the line this time, and he knows he'll have to pay; the only question is, how much? Not the best of times, then, for an unwelcome confrontation with his holier-than-thou brother, Matthew. And just when he thinks things can't possibly get any worse, along comes Father Gwillam and the Anathemata. Oh joy....
©2011 Mike Carey (P)2012 Audible Ltd
Two great passions - dogs and books! Sci-fi/fantasy novels are my go-to favorites, but I love good writing across all genres.
I don't often do reviews for sequels in a series because I think most people have already decided if they want the next book in line (especially when you get to book 4, right?) and don't look at the reviews, but occasionally something inspires a comment. In the case of Thicker than Water that something is the narrator change. First and foremost, I would say I totally agree with most other reviewers that the change is jarring and I don't appreciate the fact that audio production companies do this. In this case, where you have a first person narrative, the narrator is not just reading the book, he assumes and projects the whole personae of that POV character. In reading the first three books, Michael Kramer "became" Felix Castor for audio consumers. It is difficult to transition to Damian Lynch because he has a very different take on the character.
That said, I also want to say that the next two books are worth the effort to make the transition if you don't want or have time to read them. This fourth book in the series is more vulgar in tone (and I mean that in several senses of the word) than the previous 3. I didn't like the cruder language a lot, but it is fitting for the plot that is set primarily in the bleaker levels of society. In addition, Damian Lynch, who uses a lower class English accent than Michael Kramer, may be more appropriate for this Felix Castor who is forced to go back to his Liverpool roots to resolve the crisis at the heart of the plot.
This was not my favorite in the whole Felix Castor series, but this fourth book is a great setup for the fifth (and so far, final) book of the series which is fantastic. It's so unfair to make us switch horses midstream, but for me, the last two books made the effort worthwhile.
It's impossible to explain what makes this book awesome without spoiling it for you, but I can be general.
1) Felix Castor is an entertaining fellow.
2) The universe he lives is interesting and well-developed.
3) There is something very, very, wrong with Mike Carey that causes him to think up stuff like this. I'm just saying. This is a knife-twister.
I feel that Damian Lynch did a superb job.
I actually prefer him to the last narrator.
He sounds a lot like Michael Kramer, but he doesn't make Juliet sound like a... I don't even know how to call that.
I am also a Michael Kramer fan and thoroughly enjoyed his readings of the first 3 Felix Castor books, but I have to say, I prefer Damian Lynch's performance. His involvement with books 4 and 5 make them the best so far.
The Felix Castor books take place in London primarily, and Damian Lynch can do all of the various nuanced English accents. While I love Michael Kramer's readings (especially Way of Kings), I always felt he gave Felix a too upper-crust accent. While Felix did go to Oxford, he's from Liverpool and is slumming it in his current position.
Damian Lynch's reading of Felix is just right, and he adds authenticity to all of the minor characters by giving each of them their own appropriate accent.
Change is hard, but the change of narrators here is a good thing.
We were used to the previous narrator, Michael Kramer. Found it hard to understand and follow the story.
Slower, less reading and more performance as with Michael Kramer
Same great characters and a pretty good ending
Just probably won't listen to this series any more
Audio books make a long run feel way too short and can turn twenty minutes of yard work into an all day project.
I enjoyed the STORY in this book as much as I did the first two. The characters remain true and I like the additional time given to several new characters. I wish I was more familiar with the business of audio books so I could understand why those in charge of the Felix Castor brand chose to change narrators. Every review comments on it for a reason and mine is no exception. If you have read the first two and start with this one as the first in a series to listen to you will enjoy it. If, like me, you grew to like the characters as they were portrayed in the first two versions of the book it will be a bit of a disappointment.
Mike Carey offers the best language of this genre. He has a strong vocabulary and clearly chooses his expressions with care, as well as offering a compelling story.
Felix Castor can be a jerk, but I like his loyaly to his friends and his willingness to take his licks when he has to. Carey has done a great job of moving on to Castor's present challenge and leaving the next one in place.
Damian Lynch would be hard to replace with either a book or a movie. His voice is the voice of Castor. I would be sad to hear it replaced.
I laugh out loud during all of Carey's books, but also appreciate the quiet, intense moments that are offered.
Please keep up the good work.
The story seemed darker not sure how much was the new reader or the story line. None of the Felix books could be called cheerful. Felix just seemed a little too off, a little too depressed in this one. But as usual it was a good story and I'm glad I got it. But be warned be prepared to get The Naming of the Beasts if your going to get this one, Unlike his other books that pretty much wrapped things up this one ends on a cliff hanger.
I am an entertainer...so I spend a lot of time on the road. I take my audio seriously. I appreciate great writing and outstanding narration.
I really enjoyed the first three books in this series.They remind me of Jim Butcher's Dresden novels if they were set in England. I bought books 4 and 5 the instant I saw them.
Perhaps I wasn't in the same place...but I found this one a little harder to get into. It starts with a puzzle and, of course, trouble for Felix. But there's a "who cares?" quality to the opening few chapters that simply didn't work for me.
Eventually Carey pulls you in with wonderful characters and a plot that just steams along. But I have to admit that, while this is certainly listenable, it seemed downright goofy in some places with the characters doing unexpected things and a villain that just gloats endlessly in a manner better suited to comic books than a series with the literary bar set so high.
I enjoyed it. And I was glad to hang out with these fascinating people again. It just felt a little...hollow, I guess when compared to the first three books.
Still -- one of the best uses for a credit on Audible if you're into that whole urban fantasy thing.
Much was said about the new narrator...but he's fine. It's the book that needed a shade more passion.
Great story. Each one is better than the last. This narrator is much more in line with my image of Felix than the previous one, so after I got used to the change I really enjoyed his interpretations of the characters.
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