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Thicker Than Water (Felix Castor, #4)
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Thicker Than Water (Felix Castor #4)

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4.14 of 5 stars 4.14  ·  rating details  ·  3,259 ratings  ·  171 reviews
Old ghosts of different kinds come back to haunt Fix, in the fourth gripping Felix Castor novel.



Names and faces he thought he'd left behind in Liverpool resurface in London, bringing Castor far more trouble than he'd anticipated. Childhood memories, family traumas, sins old and new, and a council estate that was meant to be a modern utopia until it turned into something l
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Kindle Edition, 512 pages
Published (first published March 2009)
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Carol.
If you are a fan of the urban fantasy detective, I highly recommend you read Thicker Than Water, one of the best Felix Castor books to date. Reading prior books is not required; while they add some character back story and add to the overarching philosophical developments, the plot is largely discrete in each book and Carey does a nice job of providing information without backstory infodumps. Thicker starts off with a teaser, a third person witnessing of Castor's demon-ridden friend Rafi being a ...more
Stephanie
Well, the shit really hits the fan in this one. Felix "Fix" Castor, exorcist-extraordinaire is faced with a massive entity that is causing havoc in the Salisbury Estate in South London. He is also implicated in the mysterious stabbing death of a former childhood nemesis, who happens to have lived in the Salisbury. Fix goes to investigate and runs into Father Gwillam, the Pope's favorite exorcist and his band of soldiers. Then Fix's older brother, Father Matthew, shows up too and Fix is REALLY co ...more
Jamie
This fourth book in the Felix Castor series is my favorite so far. The occult is not my favorite urban fantasy subject, but the exorcist theme works for me in these books. I also love the depiction of modern-day London and the British slang, and that the story has a nice mix of fantasy and the prosaic.

This is richly written and suspenseful. It's very focused on Castor himself, and the other characterizations are admittedly a bit neglected. There seems to have been an off-camera reconciliation be
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Carly
Jul 24, 2013 Carly rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: I want to say "everyone," but I'll settle for "everyone who likes dark, gritty noir."
Recommended to Carly by: the previous books in the series
***WARNING: a main theme of this book is self-harm (specifically cutting) It isn't fetishised or romanticised, but Carey's writing is quite visceral and my review has quotes, so beware of triggers...***

It all starts with a jailbreak.
Felix "Fix" Castor, aided by the succubus Juliet, daringly swipe Fix's demon-possessed friend out from under the noses of the sadistic doctor who wants to take him apart to study him. Fix is just beginning to catch his breath when the police arrive on his doorstep. T
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Kristen
I stayed up until about 4am reading this book, completely and utterly hooked. I have been into the series since first getting The Devil You Know, but there have always been small things I thought could have been done better.

This book was incredible.

I think Carey did his best work with the story and the characters in this installment. He has the trade-mark creepiness and horror and goes to a whole new level with it. The setting was really well-chosen, the use of the characters (especially since
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Brainycat
Brainycat's 5 "B"s:
blood: 4
boobs: 1
bombs: 4
bondage: 1
blasphemy: 4
Bechdel Test: FAIL
Deggan's Rule: FAIL
Gay Bechdel Test: FAIL

It's been a few days since I finished this book. Also, I finished the next (and last) book "The Naming of the Beasts" in the series a few hours after I finished this book. So this review is written after I've recovered from the sadness and shock of finishing what has become one of my most favorite series' ever, and after I've had enough time for the details to fade and blur
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Mel
This was my favourite of the Felix Castor novels so far. The focus was on a council estate in South London, so you knew that it would be bad. What made this story so good was how very personal it was. This wasn't just some random demon troubling London but tied into Castor's past in Liverpool and managed to capture a lot of the fear of growing up poor, bad relationship choices, broken families, that made the story that much more real and frightening. Of all the books so far this one seemed the m ...more
Jayaprakash Satyamurthy
Mike Carey's supernatural noir series keeps getting better. Scouser Felix Castor makes an excellent I-Can't-Believe-It-Isn't-Constantine(tm) and Carey's richly witty and descriptive prose helps, as does the complex plot with distinct overtones of horror. Various long-running plot threads are starting to come together and this book, satisfying on its own, also sets up what promises to be a massive confrontation between Castor and the demon that's been possessing his best friend.
Chris
3.5 stars. Good installment of the series in which Felix finds out altogether more about demons than he really bargained for. Very intense read, this. Definitely reading the fifth and presumably last book (since it was written five years ago) immediately.
Alisi ☆ needs to stop starting new books ☆
I'm so torn over this series. I like it a lot. I like the MC. I like the world he set up. I just hate pretty much every other character in the book. Being a character person, that's a problem for me.

I'm just sick of the crap that everyone gives Fix and him just agreeing and bending over. It's like every character in this story exists only to shit on him, and I hate it. Now that's getting pushed off on Fix for being such a wimp.

Thus far, the book (or any of the characters) have yet to convince me
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Tim Pendry
This is the fourth in the Felix Castor series and the best so far. And why is that?

Well, first of all, he is pulling together all his themes into a very cogent universe with a hint at a big back story to come. A major twist at the end of the book tells us something important about his demon world that shifts our perception and reminds us that this is the graphic novelist who brought us Constantine. I can't tell you more because I am not into spoilers. The surprise is part of the fun.

But, more th
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Adam
Excellent continuation to the series. What an ending! I picked up the next book as soon as I finished this one. I wish there were more than five books. I'll have to read the next one very slowly.
Rebecca
I loved Mike Carey's work on Hellblazer. Apparently he didn't quite get over it. Because Felix Castor is essentially a reskinned John Constantine, tragic family, friend-destroyed-by-a-botched-exorcism, succubus ally and all.

But if he wants to write new Constantine materials free of Constantine's continuity (and rights issues), I'm not going to complain too hard. It's a fun paranormal mystery, if rather dark. I particularly appreciated the fact that Castor doesn't just walk away from a beating--
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Pedro Silva
Thicker than Water represents a form a improvement over it's predecessor in many ways but the opposite in others.

The character voice is more involved and adventurous, and the narrator gets rivers of credit. It sacrifices the gravitas and cynical composure of the previous versions, for irony and subtle but strong emotional voices.

The story plays around with new explanations of old concepts, but they are, for the most part, very self contained, which on it's own gives you a focused, better flown n
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Gareth Otton

Thicker than Water was the first return to form for this series since the brilliant opening novel. The two previous novels have been enjoyable but, for me at least, very flawed and often highly frustrating. However, it was the promise of the series that has kept me reading and getting to this book I have to admit that I am really glad that I did.

A previous complaint about earlier novels was that Castor felt like a very one dimensional character. Other than being the kind of self hating lone her
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Andrew
I read the first three Felix Castor books a while ago, but then (I think) the fourth took a while to appear in the US. So I don't have a whole lot of recollection of the previous plots, but I remember the main characters okay, and this turns out to be good enough.

Castor has a problem -- several problems, but the long-running one is that his best friend is possessed by Asmodeus. He does not have a fix for this (sorry), but he can help a little, for example by cracking his friend out of a psych wa
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Richard
Wow did this series just hit a high point, and I didnt guess for a second the outcome of this story which really hits you like a punch in the ribs. Again Felix castor is on the case, as usual on the wrong side of the law, and just about everyone else he knows for that matter, we get a much deeper insight into Fix's past and upbringing, and some development on his brother too, all in all a very welcome book for the series and definately the high point of it.
Ashley
In the fourth novel of the Felix Castor series, we get to see him reconnect with his roots in Liverpool and the complicated ties that can carry over from childhood when a bully from when he was a kid is brutally attacked. Getting called in to investigate the attack draws Felix into the Salisbury Estate, where people are acting strangely and Felix believes something supernatural is behind it. Overall, I think this was the most depressing story to date, with Felix getting little comfort from solvi ...more
Jo
Felix Castor is back and yet again he's in trouble with the law. This time they suspect him of the murder of a former boyhood acquaintance. As is usually the case with Carey's novels, you don't want to put this down and anything else goes out the window as you accompany Felix Castor on his adventure to root out the truth. Ghosts, demons and exorcisms. What more could you want.
Cilfa
Jan 27, 2014 Cilfa rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of the Noir genre, mystery-buffs and the occasional demon.
3.5/5
Better writing than the previous books. Less strained metaphors. The ones that were there were actually nice. Quality over quantity.
I like the 'twist' (could see that coming from early in the book) and the ending (which was inevitable, but the method surprising).
I don't see (view spoiler)
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Paul
The story this time around felt shallow - more like a short story than the usually more complicated plots that Carey delivers. Besides that, it just flat out wasn't as interesting and fun as the previous three installments. It was, dare I say, boring. The final few pages nearly make it all worth it though! You'll see...
The Elves
We love the Felix Castor series. They are all great and Thicker Than Water is no exception. Thank you, Mike Carey for creating such wonderful novels. Of course, Castor is another version of Constantine, but with less angels involved. This one takes Castor into his past, quite unwillingly, and we learn a bit about his rough but formative childhood. His life is coming together in unexpected ways and he is not entirely fond of it happening. He’d much rather forget. If you’ve read the other Castor b ...more
Robb Bridson
I was worried that the series was tapering off after the disappointing third Castor novel, but this fourth novel is my favorite in the series so far.
It builds up on the connecting story and moves it toward its climax (the third book felt like more of a detour), and if there were any doubts that Asmodeus is Castor's most horrifying nemesis, this book puts those doubts to rest at the beginning, and buries their remains by finish.

This book also captures the noir mystery tone that I felt was lacking
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Paula Mariscal
I was sold on these Felix Castor books when I started reading number three first on accident. However, this one has such an intriguing twist at the end number 4 may now be my favorite.
Bill
Another fun instalment in the Felix Castor series, though the series seems to be going no where good, at least for the main character and London. I couldn't wait to start the next book.
Megan
This book started a bit slow for me, but that was through no fault of its own. It's been years since I read book 3, and it took me a while to remember what had actually happened. I'm still not sure I accurately remember the cases that were referenced, or what happened between Father Gwilliam and Fix in the past. Regardless, it was a good book, with a lot of intrigue and dark secrets. The bits about Fix's past that were revealed were interesting and relevant to the plot, and the mysteries blended ...more
Viccy
Felix Castor gets broadsided by his past. Called to a crime scene, Felix cannot get a read, no ghosts but those from his youth in Liverpool. Kenny Seddon was the biggest bully on the street, but now he is dead, as is his stepson and nobody knows where his common law wife has gone. Now a miasma of despair hangs over the council flats were they all lived. And Felix realizes this despair is more than just the general despair of poverty. When his older brother, Matt, is charged with murder, Felix kn ...more
Soho_black
Mike Carey is not a name I'd come across before, but on hearing he'd written the book that the film ''Constantine'' was based on, I was certainly interested in his work. ''Thicker Than Water'' is the fourth in his series involving Felix Castor and whilst that gave me slight pause about coming in to an already well established series, my desire to check out Carey's work outweighed any concerns I had.

Felix Castor is an exorcist, attempting to fight the demons, werewolves and zombies that inhabit o
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Mary Anne
Sep 05, 2011 Mary Anne rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Mary Anne by: Brandon
Wow, so I knew the twist was coming, and I thought I knew what it was, but 1.) I did not know what it was, and 2.) I'm so, so glad I didn't get it right. This is another excellent Mike Carey book in the Felix Castor series. I will admit to being a bit stunned in the beginning. It seemed as though a lot had changed and some of it was strange and confusing. Occasionally, when I start a Felix Castor book, I'm not entirely on board at the beginning. I just have hope that it will get better. This boo ...more
Jenina
The idea of an exorcist whose main beef is the human establishment and a renegade sect of self-appointed Vatican knights, and only reluctantly taking on the occasional demon or ghost because he has a soft spot for ghosts and demons is pretty comical in itself. But in the hands of the witty Mike Carey you will laugh outright at the pickles of his improbable hero, Felix Castor.

But like his previous three Castor books, this is a horror thriller, and Carey's success lies in the way he balances the c
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name. See this thread for more information.
Mike Carey was born in Liverpool in 1959. He worked as a teacher for fifteen years, before starting to write comics. When he started to receive regular commissions from DC Comics, he gave up the day job.

Since then, he has worked for both DC and Marvel Comics, writing storyli
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More about Mike Carey...

Other Books in the Series

Felix Castor (5 books)
  • The Devil You Know (Felix Castor, #1)
  • Vicious Circle (Felix Castor, #2)
  • Dead Men's Boots (Felix Castor, #3)
  • The Naming of the Beasts (Felix Castor, #5)
Neil Gaiman's Neverwhere The Unwritten, Vol. 1: Tommy Taylor and the Bogus Identity The Devil You Know (Felix Castor, #1) Lucifer, Vol. 1: Devil in the Gateway Ender's Shadow: Command School

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