Publication Year: 2012/2014
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Series: Peter Grant/Rivers of London #3 and 4
Awards: SHOULD BE ALL THE AWARDS but NA
Narrator: Kobna Holdbrook-Smith
WHY?: This series is super duper awesome and just keeps getting better.
SYNOPSES: First of all while each book has its own plot it is a series that pretty heavily builds on itself so if you haven't read books 1 and 2 It's probably a good idea to do so before diving into these gems. Whispers Underground - An American student artist mysteriously dies in a London Underground station. Peter, the newly recruited Leslie and Nightingale team up with the subway police and a young FBI agent to catch a very bizarre killer. Broken Homes - A couple of grisly murders which on the surface seem unconnected, have Peter, Leslie and Nightingale suspecting the involvement of The Faceless Man.
WARNING: SPOILERS AHOY! Definitely for books 1 and 2 and I may partially spoil some things for book 4. I'll try not to get too specific, but if you like to go into a book completely cold you'll want to beware. Just know that I adore this series and both these books. Highly recommend!
In one way I am mad at myself for not putting down my thoughts about Whispers Underground right after reading it so that I could have given each of these books their due attention. However, it does actually makes sense to talk about the two books together because they represent a very interesting character arc for Leslie, Peter's partner. She returns, in book three, to join the spook squad as Peter's partner even though her face, which was horribly maimed in book one, is still so disfigured she chooses to wear a mask in public.
As I alluded to, part of the reason why I don't get too bothered by any confusions about plot details is that I'm too busy loving on the characters and their relationships. Peter Grant has to be one of my favorite characters of recent years. I love the mix he has of street-wise Londoner and science/data nerd. He is also, absolutely hilarious which makes it a complete delight that, as the reader, we live inside his head. He'd definitely go on any list of book crushes.
I love the secondary characters very much too. I especially liked spending more time with the other law enforcement characters in Whispers Underground - Stephanopolous, Seawoll, the subway policeman whose name I can't remember - they are all great characters that add color. I'm also fascinated by Molly, the otherworldly housekeeper at The Folly. My one complaint about the characters/relationships is Nightingale, who I really like but don't think we get enough of. He remains rather mysterious and there seem to be a lot of unplumbed depths there.
Another really fantastic part of this series is how incredibly evocative the setting is. London is practically another character. Aaronovitch imbues it with so much life and it is fun to explore it through Peter's affectionate gaze.
Finally, I have to once again gush about the narrator, Kobna Holdbrook-Smith. He gets Peter's unique voice and character spot on and is the absolute perfect narrator for this series.
FINAL VERDICT: This is a delightfully funny and unique urban fantasy series with particularly strong characters. I adore it and think it continues to get better and better. 4.45 stars out of 5.