Can’t-Wait Wednesday: False Value by Ben Aaronovitch

Can’t-Wait Wednesday is hosted by Tressa at Wishful Endings. This is a weekly meme to spotlight and discuss the books we’re excited about that we have yet to read. The books I choose aren’t released yet and usually won’t be published for at least two or three months. So I have a while to wait!

I love finding out about books which will publish in future months and I like to share my excitement about the books. I also like to find out about new books on other people’s blogs and hope they’ll sometimes find something to look forward to on my blog.

I’m excited to read . . .

False Value by Ben Aaronovitch

Series: Rivers of London #8

Published by DAW

Publishing date: November 19

Genre: Urban Fantasy

Synopsis: Peter Grant is facing fatherhood, and an uncertain future, with equal amounts of panic and enthusiasm. Rather than sit around, he takes a job with émigré Silicon Valley tech genius Terrence Skinner’s brand new London start up—the Serious Cybernetics Company.

Drawn into the orbit of Old Street’s famous ‘silicon roundabout’, Peter must learn how to blend in with people who are both civilians and geekier than he is. Compared to his last job, Peter thinks it should be a doddle. But magic is not finished with Mama Grant’s favourite son.

Because Terrence Skinner has a secret hidden in the bowels of the SCC. A technology that stretches back to Ada Lovelace and Charles Babbage, and forward to the future of artificial intelligence. A secret that is just as magical as it technological—and just as dangerous.

…………………………..

One of my favorite urban fantasy series. This series keeps getting better and better!

Can’t-Wait Wednesday: Lies Sleeping by Ben Aaronovitch

Can’t-Wait Wednesday is hosted by Tressa at Wishful Endings. This is a weekly meme to spotlight and discuss the books we’re excited about that we have yet to read. The books I choose aren’t released yet and usually won’t be published for at least two or three months. So I have a while to wait!

I love finding out about books which will publish in future months and I like to share my excitement about the books. I also like to find out about new books on other people’s blogs and hope they’ll sometimes find something to look forward to on my blog.

I’m excited to read . . .

lies sleeping by ben aaronovitchLies Sleeping by Ben Aaronovitch

Series: Rivers of London #7

Published by DAW Books

Publishing date: November 13

Genre: Urban Fantasy

304 pages

Synopsis: Martin Chorley, aka the Faceless Man, wanted for multiple counts of murder, fraud, and crimes against humanity, has been unmasked and is on the run. Peter Grant, Detective Constable and apprentice wizard, now plays a key role in an unprecedented joint operation to bring Chorley to justice.

But even as the unwieldy might of the Metropolitan Police bears down on its foe, Peter uncovers clues that Chorley, far from being finished, is executing the final stages of a long term plan. A plan that has its roots in London’s two thousand bloody years of history, and could literally bring the city to its knees.

To save his beloved city Peter’s going to need help from his former best friend and colleague–Lesley May–who brutally betrayed him and everything he thought she believed in. And, far worse, he might even have to come to terms with the malevolent supernatural killer and agent of chaos known as Mr Punch….

…………………

I’ve read these books for years and it’s one of my favorite urban fantasy series. It’s been almost two years since the last book came out in the U.S. I also really like the covers of these books.

What books are you excited to read?

Review: Broken Homes by Ben Aaronovitch

I’m participating in the Book Bingo Challenge. This book will go into the New Book square.

broken-homesBroken Homes
by Ben Aaronovitch
Series: Peter Grant, Book 4
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Published by DAW, 2014
E-book, Purchased
324 pages
Grade: A-
Synopsis: My name is Peter Grant, and I am a keeper of the secret flame — whatever that is.

Truth be told, there’s a lot I still don’t know. My superior Nightingale, previously the last of England’s wizardly governmental force, is trying to teach me proper schooling for a magician’s apprentice. But even he doesn’t have all the answers. Mostly I’m just a constable sworn to enforce the Queen’s Peace, with the occasional help from some unusual friends and a well-placed fire blast. With the new year, I have three main objectives, a) pass the detective exam so I can officially become a DC, b) work out what the hell my relationship with Lesley Mai, an old friend from the force and now fellow apprentice, is supposed to be, and most importantly, c) get through the year without destroying a major landmark.

Two out of three isn’t bad, right?

A mutilated body in Crawley means another murderer is on the loose. The prime suspect is one Robert Weil, who may either be a common serial killer or an associate of the twisted magician known as the Faceless Man — a man whose previous encounters I’ve barely survived. I’ve also got a case about a town planner going under a tube train and another about a stolen grimoire.

But then I get word of something very odd happening in Elephant and Castle, on a housing estate designed by a nutter, built by charlatans, and inhabited by the truly desperate. If there’s a connection to the Crawley case, I’ll be entering some tricky waters of juristiction with the local river spirits. We have a prickly history, to say the least.

Just the typical day for a magician constable.

We’d considered wearing uniforms but Lesley said, what with her mask and everything, she’d look like a plastic cop monster from Doctor Who. I managed to restrain myself from telling her their real name.

and

“You know,” said Zach, “until you came along I used to be the local loose cannon. Now people have started warning me about the dangers of associating with you.”

What works for me:

  • I like the mysteries and police work in these stories.
  • I like the way magical spells build on one another. That seems logical! Peter and Lesley have to learn them in order.
  • The characters are many and varied–Peter, Lesley and Nightingale; Zach and the many characters we see at the spring Court of the God and Goddess of the Thames.
  • I like the buildings which play a big part in this book even if they aren’t real buildings in London.
  • Nightingale, Peter and Lesley are still searching for the “Faceless Man.” I like this overall plot arc.
  • A big surprise at the end of the book.

What doesn’t work:

  • The book ended in a kind of cliffhanger. I want the next book now!

My thoughts:

For me this series gets better and better. The characters and mysteries are interesting. I like the London setting. I’m really looking forward to the next book. I hope this time it is published in the U.S. at the same time as in England.

Are you reading this series? How do you like it?

 

Review: Whispers Under Ground by Ben Aaronovitch

I’m participating in the TBR Pile Challenge hosted at the Bookish blog and also in the Book Bingo Challenge. This book fits both of these challenges.

Whispers undergroundWhispers Under Ground
by Ben Aaronovitch
Series: Peter Grant, Book 3
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Published by Del Rey, 2012
E-book, Purchased
418 pages
Grade: B+
Synopsis: 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.

Not being invited in is one of the boxes on the “suspicious behavior” bingo form that every copper carries around in their head along with “stupidly overpowerful dog” and being too quick to supply an alibi. Fill all the boxes and you too could win an all-­expenses-paid visit to your local police station.

and

My mum translated this in her head to “witchfinder,” which was good because like most West Africans, she considered witchfinding a more respectable profession than policeman.

What worked for me:

  • A fairly gritty urban fantasy, but with an irreverence which leavens the story–keeping the book from getting too dark.
  • The setting is London–a nice change from the United States.
  • Peter Grant is a likable character. His superiors in the police force feel he may help with supernatural cases, but also think he’s a loose cannon and a not-very-good constable.
  • Peter’s interactions with Lesley are interesting.  Unlike Peter she’s considered one of the best young constables around. They’re good friends and Lesley is also learning to use magic, but things which happened in the last book are still affecting both of them in this book.
  • In this book Peter has to work for not only his own superior officer (and wizard) Inspector Nightingale, but also with Detective Inspector Stephanopoulos  and Detective Chief Inspector Seawoll. They don’t appreciate either his humor or his penchant for creating chaos.
  • Race is present in this series, but I get a different vibe in this series about race than from many books set in the U.S. Peter is very matter-of-fact about who he is. It’s part of his identity, but not more important than another part of his identity.
  • I like the way this book has moved the overall story forward. Peter and Lesley learn more about magic and how to use it and about the people around them.
  • Much of the book happens in the tube stations, underground tunnels and sewers under London.
  • The way magic, mythology, history and terrain around London are used by Ben Aaronovitch is so interesting. For example, the rivers of London and the false houses. (I was very excited when the false houses were also used by Sherlock in one of the latest Sherlock episodes on Masterpiece Theater!)

What didn’t work:

  • It’s important to start with the first two books in this series. Lots happens prior to this book. This didn’t bother me since I read those books. Some police procedurals (which this is a cousin of perhaps) can be picked up wherever in the series. Because of the world building and what happens to characters in previous books it helps to know what is going on by starting at the beginning!

My thoughts:

I like this series a lot. This was a solid book for the series moving the story along with a good mystery. The fourth book–Broken Homes–was published in the United States on February 4, 2014 and I’ve bought it so I can read it soon!

If you click on the link below this map you will find a Google map Ben Aaronovitch created which shows the places in London Peter and other characters went during this book (and other books). Great fun!