Tuesday, 7 June 2011

I finally read the Rivers of London and have already seen one of the ghosts

Rivers of London
I took some books away last week, including one recommended by fellow blogger Nikki-ann.

Well, actually Nikki-ann wrote about the second book in the series but I thought I'd follow her advice and start at the beginning.

'Rivers of London' is by Ben Aaronovitch and a sort of London detective tale, mixed with urban fantasy.

There's parts where the storyline and descriptions are very 21st Century detective and then other parts where it all goes quite wibbly. The main character seems fairly unruffled as he learns about ghosts, mystical rivers and ways to conjure fireballs.

If that stuff is of the heavens, then there's some counterbalance with likably realistic scenes of down-to-earth police processes.

Its also set in the middle of London, with plenty of references to the area around Covent Garden, which should ensure a good number of readers will recognise the venues. Imagine the area between the Punch and Judy pub and the adjacent Actor's church(outside which the jugglers perform for tourists) as the epicentre.

The story clicked into supernatural almost from the start although the expected reactions from the main protagonist were surprisingly restrained considering the alarming and gory events unfolding. Also a revealed plot-line which I then found a tad too predictable - although I guess the point was to speculate how it would be accomplished.

I also found myself studying the dialogue; Aaronovitch writes with a tight style that cracks the pace along nicely. He's written a fair few screenplays and scripts and this shows through in the craft of his writing style.

That created the necessary page turner effect which was very compatible with the beach.

I must admit that when I bought it, the next book was also available as a twoofer so I suspect that the 'Moon over Soho' will be amongst my next reads. Thanks, Nikki-ann, for the suggestion.

And weirdly, when I was in Covent Garden recently, I saw the man in the picture below leaning against the columns, right underneath the Punch and Judy pub and across from St Paul's Church.

Covent Garden


Nikki-ann said...

Hah, love the picture! :D

I did write a review on Rivers of London earlier in the year too. The 3rd book is out in October, I think.

rashbre said...

Nikki-ann: Thanks - I shall also look for your earlier review!

Lois (three-legged-cat) said...

I've just been reading these too, really enjoyed them. Haven't spotted any ghostly characters in London though. Must pay more attention next time we're there :)

rashbre said...

Lois : I've still only read the first one although the second is on the pile to be read. I gather from Nikki-ann that the third one is also imminent.