It begins with a dead body at the far end of Baker Street tube station, all that remains of American exchange student James Gallagher - and the victim's wealthy, politically powerful family is understandably eager to get to the bottom of the gruesome murder. The trouble is, the bottom - if it exists at all - is deeper and more unnatural than anyone suspects...except, that is, for London constable and sorcerer's apprentice Peter Grant. With Inspector Nightingale, the last registered wizard in England, tied up in the hunt for the rogue magician known as "the Faceless Man", it's up to Peter to plumb the haunted depths of the oldest, largest, and - as of now - deadliest subway system in the world.
At least he won't be alone. No, the FBI has sent over a crack agent to help. She's young, ambitious, beautiful...and a born-again Christian apt to view any magic as the work of the devil. Oh yeah - that's going to go well.
©2012 Ben Aaronvitch (P)2012 Tantor
This is not only a terrific and creative series of stories: I can't be sure I'd like the books so much, were they not narrated by Kobna Holbrook-Smith. It's as though the author (Ben Aaronovitch) was channeling the narrator. His fit to the main character/narrator is uncanny. And of course, brilliant.
Brilliant story as well, of course!
When listening to the book you forget it is a book. The narrator is so believable as the main character that you begin to think he is the main character telling you what has and is happening.
Sometimes I want a book that puts me with the characters, instead of in my car listening about the characters. This book puts me in London with the characters.
Ben Aaronovitch has not lost his touch and did a wonderful job with Whispers Under Ground. I finished this book and promptly listened to it a second time. I didn't think I could could do justice to my review, and let's be honest, I just wanted to listen to it a second time. Kobno Holdbrook-Smith, if you have already listened to the first two of the series, you know is an amazing narrator. He does remarkably with the characters, both with being able to do the accents but also with picking up on the personality, humor, and sarcasm Aaronovitch gave them. I wish every book and narrator were so well matched.
In Whispers under ground Peter, Leslie, and Nightengale are searching for the Little Crocodiles (ethically challenged magical practitioners that are rogue and not keeping the Queens Peace - Peter takes objection to Nightengale calling them black wizards.) They also are working with the murder squad to determine who murdered a young man with a bit of magically imbued pottery in the underground. This opens our team up to investigating the London Underground and sewers. Oh, how I want to now take a trip to London and take a tour of the underground! Leslie is back, and you get to experience Peter and Leslie develop their friendship after the tragic deformation of her face. Peter is far more sensitive than we would have believed in the past and its great to see these two characters grow, especially since Leslie is a perfect counter to Peter.
It does have profanity, but its situation appropriate. There isn't sex in this book unlike the last in the series. In my opinion, it wouldn't be an issue for a teenage crowd to read as long as you are comfortable with some profanity.
The book is delightful. I honestly don't know if it is the best written book, I really wasn't paying attention because I was so drawn into the book, but its one of my favorites. It's humorous, it has the necessary one liners of a police detective novel, and the brash characters needed with Sewall and Stefanopolis. It's delicious.
Yes. I have recommended this audiobook to everyone I can think of who reads fantasy fiction. The writing and story are great, and Kobna Holdbrook-Smith's reading is so good, I hear his voice narrating in my head when I'm reading the print books. As far as I'm concerned, Peter Grant sounds exactly like Kobna Holdbrook-Smith.
I have all of the Peter grant books as audio books, and, based on his excellent performances of this series, I plan to buy other books that Kobna Holdbrook-Smith has narrated.
I think the books are good, but the narrator makes it come to life. I find myself agreeing with a fictional character. I don't think anyone can go wrong with these books.
Loved the performance from the narrator - he's very good at doing different accents to create the seperate characters. His American is not his best (FBI agent sound a little airheaded) but I cant do any accent to save my life so....
Peter of course!
The editing on this book is lacking. There were two or three spaces where a sentence was repeated because of bad editing. There was also two spots late in the book where it was almost like a page was missing. One sentence Peter is drinking a cup of coffee and then suddenly hes somewhere else in the middle of a conversation. It was confusing and left me feeling like I should go buy the book to look up the missing dialog.
Literature professor and lover of mystery books!
The Cuckoos Calling, The Absent Ones,
Yes, in other books in this series.
Laughed out loud many times.
Absolutely love this book and the narrator. It is funny, interesting, full of twists, cheeky, and endlessly entertaining. It is also complex enough for multiple listens. This is my favorite in the series, but I love them all. The narrator is awesome and keeps getting better.
As far as performance goes you can't really beat this series. I really feel as though the narrator is Peter Grant, perfectly done.
The coming together of things in preparation for more books to come.
His performance of this series is perfect.
Not really a moving story, quite funny though in parts.
The use of London English is great!
I loved this entire series. I love how fun and over the top the writing is. I loved all the characters. Finally a fantasy that portrays men and women as real 3 dimensional people, even when they are completely crazy. The narrator is simply one the best I have heard on Audible. I put him in the same category as Stephen Fry. The different voices he has for the different characters is fabulous. The author's affection for London is apparent and really makes London another character in the book, which I loved. Just can't recommend highly enough. So much fun. I just can't wait until book 4.
I'm a bibliophile since early childhood. Love speculative fiction, odd premises, mystery novels that teach about different places and times.
I was charmed by the first two books. This one is better still. A bit stronger plot. And it's lovely to have Lesley back. Lot's of very witty charm here.
My one issue is that they've used the same music in all three books. That is tiresome.
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