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2.0 out of 5 starsNot as good as the first two
Reviewed in the United States on November 28, 2019
The first two books in this series were good enough for me to preorder this third one. Sorry I did. It almost reads like it was written by someone other than the original author. Lydia, the main character, is indecisive and inconsistent. She doesn't want to be involved in her Family's business, but still tries to remain loyal to the dishonest, manipulative men who run the Family. She doesn't listen to or trust the people who care about her, like her mother and her boyfriend, DCI Fleet. Her motivation is confused and portrayed as if the author doesn't really understand it, either. Also the editing is poor--e.g. Lydia looks over her wine glass at her boyfriend three times in one paragraph and the exact same line of dialog occurs twice in a page and a half. This book needed another read through before it went to the printers. Not recommended.
Reviewed in the United States on February 16, 2020
Just when it seems like Lydia Crow is settling into her life as a private investigator in London, things get even more complicated. This urban fantasy mystery with romance series has been entertaining, and it remains that way. Lydia is part of the Crow Family which has been peacefully coexisting for years with the Silver, Fox, and Pearl Families. These four families are the only ones in London with magic as far as Lydia knew. (By and large, their magical abilities are not known to the non-magical population.) But someone may want the truce to fail. Lydia is the daughter of a Crow leader, but she was raised apart from the family business. She has been walking a fine line between maintaining her independence and acknowledging her family heritage. Balancing on that line is becoming more difficult. The book find Lydia doing a “favor” for a member of the Fox Family. No good deed goes unpunished here and Lydia finds a dead member of the Fox Family in a disused underground tunnel. The story is intriguing and the puzzle is growing larger for Lydia. This series is one that you should read in order so that you will know the continuing characters and the premise of the series. The only drawback to this story is that there are significant unresolved issues that are left dangling for the next installment. The romance is romantic. There are murders, but no graphic images of gruesome violence. The pace is brisk and the pages turn quickly. It is not truly a five star book, but I keep buying and reading them, so it seems fair.
I like books that begin and end. This one carries on nicely from the previous book in the series, but it doesn't go anywhere. She's a little farther along on her Crow journey than she was before, but there are probably 5 more books in the series - and they aren't really novels; they're just chapters.
So thanks, Sarah Painter, but I'm out. I love a good trilogy, but these books aren't that.
The first two books in the series were excellent - full of intrigue and sharp dialogue.
This one was mediocre and completely not in line with the style of the first two. Lydia, the main heroine in our tale, is reckless and downright foolish in her decision-making. The story goes in different directions and never fully explores any one angle. It's basically a disjointed mess.
I personally like the premise of the books and the background development. I will continue to have high hopes for the next one. If the fourth book is written like this, I may have to pass on any further reading of this series.
London is described so wonderfully in this book, and Lydia's latest case is a doozy. I really enjoyed this book. Lydia Crow is now more comfortable back in London and the ending of this tale really opens up the series beautifully. I love her relationship with Fleet - not easy but easy, and with her parents and wider 'family'/families. The investigative side kept me entertained and I read the entire book in two batches (finished at midnight last night). I would recommend reading the series in order...while the author does give some background in "The Fox's Curse" the first two books are fantastic so it is worth it. It may be weird, but this book felt like a marvellous mix of Galbraith's London and "Alias" grit (tv series) to me.
5.0 out of 5 starsThe world of Lydia Crow is becoming much more complicated...
Reviewed in the United States on August 20, 2020
The Plot Thickens... The world of Lydia Crow is becoming much more complicated...
In this third installment of Crow Investigations, we're able to explore the ghostly side of London - and I hope we get to learn more! Indeed, much of the book appears to be setting up for more closure in the fourth book, as while this book involves the investigation of a single case, as we follow along the rest of the world Sarah Painter has built tries to elbow its way in. While the first two books had tighter, more isolated plot threads, I hope that the side stories in this book will to blossom in the next (or the next few). Love the series, love the characters, and devour the novels as quickly as possible. Having learned a bit more about the Crows, and having had a helping of Silver and Fox, I'm hoping to learn more about the Pearl family soon... as well as the origins of Mr. Fleet
Reviewed in the United States on December 22, 2019
Series either get better or wither, this one is getting better. A really combination of mystery and urban fantasy, characters, and plots are both well done. Author Sarah Painter does an especially good job with her main characters including Lydia Crowe and former boyfriend Paul Fox and DCI Fleet, Lydia's current boyfriend. Even Uncle Charlie Crowe, head of the family is a fully realized character. While less UF than most of this type, it's very well-paced and written and comes with a rare recommended read from me.
Third in this terrific supernatural series set in London. Lydia Crow is a PI with mild supernatural ability and a member of one of the oldest and powerful supernatural families in London. A bit like rival gangs, there's an uneasy peace between the families since their powers are all waning. As a PI Lydia solves 'problems' for the families that regular police may not have the ability to understand. When a member of one of the families is found murdered in an underground tunnel, Lydia is 'blackmailed' into taking the case. With a wonderful cast of characters (including a ghost dressed like a member of Wham!) and sub plots, plus strong plots, this is a great series light supernatural series.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 29, 2019
Another enjoyable installment of Lydia Crow, an unusual private eye with unusual family connections set in London. If you've read the first two, you'll know what to expect. If you haven't, I suggest you do. The series is clearly set to continue for a fourth book, so don't expect a tidy ending.
My only negative comment is that there is a bit of obvious pinching of material from the RIvers of London series. No book is written in a vacuum, and having an urban fantasy set in London is bound to overlap a bit, but having a main character who is a policeman with a mother from Sierra Leone seems particularly cheeky. It also invites direct comparison with Aaronovich's books, against which I'm afraid Crow Investigations comes a distinct second in terms of imaginative breadth and quality of writing.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 4, 2020
I really don’t know why this series is so good!
The female lead (Lydia) is super annoying, her powers are useless, she relies on her coin too much, the crimes in each book are sooooo predictable, One moment she is useless in a fight the next she’s awesome, the books aren’t very long, the books are always going on about her ex and how she always goes weak at the knees around the Fox’s, she won’t commit to her fantastic cop boyfriend (who’s the most patient man alive) it’s a really infuriating series!
But.... for some reason whenever I read a book in the series it’s over in one sitting! I can’t put them down.
The idea of the 4 families is really clever and Charlie is scary/caring/awesome. I can’t put my finger on it - I love this series and can’t wait for more to come out (but I don’t know why) Jason is a mystery, Angel is funny, Fleet is a great strong male lead and The Fork is a really original idea for a office.
The biggest compliment I can think of for this series is if you loved Stephanie Plum you’ll love these.
4.0 out of 5 starsTemptation for a good series but so far that is all it is - temptation.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 20, 2020
Not quite 5 stars - yet. This 3rd book in the series is like the previous two, in so far the tale trots along quite pedestrianly until half way then as before it kicks up a gear and promises to take you where you hope to go. However it never quite gets there, at the very end you are left on the edge of edge of the cliff teetering nearly falling over but no you have to wait for the next instalment. The series shows so much promise on the world of the old talented families and their rivalry. Hopefully book 4 will provide some overdue answers as to where the story is going along with the history of families gifts - so much more to come please please let book 4 provide the way to the questions! Given the right treatment the series could be a corker, my fears is that as a series it may just fizzle along.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on December 23, 2019
First, I really like this series. A likeable protagonist, a fine supporting cast, an intriguing premise with a backstory / history being gradually revealed. But. I am beginning to slightly sympathise with those readers who criticise the books as more chapters than self contained, related stories. This latest instalment did not really take us anywhere new and there are only so many times that can happen... I hate to compare, but the Rivers of London series is an object lesson in getting this aspect right.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on December 1, 2019
I'd recommend this series to anyone who loves Benedict Jacka, Benjamin Aaronovitch, Genevieve Cogman, Paul Cornell etc. Its a bit tougher and more "edgy" than the Rivers of London series (in my opinion) but it has the same great creation of a complex, contemporary fantasy world behind everyday normality, a protagonist with a sense of humour and a great developing plot that continues throughout each story. I really like the variety of characters, and the fact that I really can't predict where it's going to go next. My one problem with the Crow books? I read them too darn fast............