A bit of a mix of a police procedural set in modern London, but with magic and ghosts. We have a new London constable who discovers he can see ghostsA bit of a mix of a police procedural set in modern London, but with magic and ghosts. We have a new London constable who discovers he can see ghosts and is immediately recruited by the magical division of the Metropolitan Police. He begins learning how to do magic, while helping to solve a murder in London's theatre district. Peter is mixed race, street-wise, pragmatic, but curious about things, and he has a wry sense of humor. DCI Nightingale is enigmatic, and who knows how old he really is. London itself is a strong element of the story - lots of slang. My main criticism is that I'm not at all sure what the sub-plot of the river gods and goddesses has to do with anything. There were several times in the story that I felt like I had missed something and didn't really know what was going on. He also had a tendency to explain too much about things to his audience. Otherwise, I thought this was a riot (pun intended.) Nice world building, believable, fast-paced, and great understated sense of humor. I look forward to the next book.
Book description: Probationary Constable Peter Grant dreams of being a detective in London’s Metropolitan Police. Too bad his superior plans to assign him to the Case Progression Unit, where the biggest threat he’ll face is a paper cut. But Peter’s prospects change in the aftermath of a puzzling murder, when he gains exclusive information from an eyewitness who happens to be a ghost. Peter’s ability to speak with the lingering dead brings him to the attention of Detective Chief Inspector Thomas Nightingale, who investigates crimes involving magic and other manifestations of the uncanny. Now, as a wave of brutal and bizarre murders engulfs the city, Peter is plunged into a world where gods and goddesses mingle with mortals and a long-dead evil is making a comeback on a rising tide of magic....more
I'll continue to be generous with this series and give it 3 stars, which is still a huge drop from the first book. I didn't dislike it, but it had nonI'll continue to be generous with this series and give it 3 stars, which is still a huge drop from the first book. I didn't dislike it, but it had none of what made the first book such a memorable experience. I suppose for one thing, the world-building has been established, so we don't have the mystery of figuring out what is going on. And while I still find the odd photos intriguing, the story is too much contrived by the photos instead of being an accompaniment to the story. While Jacob seems a little older and wiser in this book, there is not really any character development. The whole love story angle is very flat. I'm not a fan of cliff-hanger endings. It worked in the first book, and despite being a cliffhanger there was a sense of completion. This book just feels like "filler" material to me - enough to make a movie out of, but a pretty shallow plot for a book. Ransom Riggs writes well enough, and the historical setting is good, but I hope he will give more attention to plot and characters in the 3rd installment.
Description: Jacob Portman and his newfound friends journey to London, the peculiar capital of the world. There, they hope to find a cure for their beloved headmistress, Miss Peregrine. But in this war-torn city, hideous surprises lurk around every corner. And before Jacob can deliver the peculiar children to safety, he must make an important decision about his love for Emma Bloom....more
Book description: The year is 1757. On a clear morning in mid-June, Lord John Grey emerges from London’s Beefsteak Club, his mind in turmoil. A noblemaBook description: The year is 1757. On a clear morning in mid-June, Lord John Grey emerges from London’s Beefsteak Club, his mind in turmoil. A nobleman and a high-ranking officer in His Majesty’s army, Grey has just witnessed something shocking. But his efforts to avoid a scandal that might destroy his family are interrupted by something still more urgent: The Crown appoints him to investigate the brutal murder of a comrade-in-arms who may have been a traitor. Obliged to pursue two inquiries at once, Major Grey finds himself ensnared in a web of treachery and betrayal that touches every stratum of English society—and threatens all he holds dear. From the bawdy houses of London’s night world to the stately drawing rooms of the nobility, Lord John pursues the elusive trails of a vanishing footman and a woman in green velvet, who may hold the key to everything—or nothing.
This was delightful! I'm giving it a 4.5. Lord John Grey is a character from the Outlander series. As with that series, the strength of Diana's books is in her characters, not the plot. The mystery is fairly light-weight, but spiced with an almost slapstick kind of humor. Even the "bad" guys are quirky and almost lovable. I will say, that since this started out as a short story that grew into a full-length novel, the plotting and pacing is considerably tighter than the sprawling Outlander books. Those looking for more "Jamie and Claire" will be disappointed. There is one brief and non-explicit scene with a male prostitute. The focus is mystery rather than romance. The author has done her homework into the gay world of 18th-century London, but the reader is not overwhelmed by historical details.
I listened to this book alternately with reading it, and the slapstick humor really comes alive with narrator Jeffrey Woodman. Otherwise, the book is written in a fast-paced but rather dry style, which means a lot of the details get lost. I recommend the dual approach - listen to a chapter to get the overall picture, then read it to pick up on the more subtle details.
Lord John is one of my favorite fictional characters, honorable, dedicated to family, highly intelligent, well-read, and cultured. His homosexuality makes him something of a loner, but it also allows him access to the more marginalized social elements of society. I look forward to reading more of him.
Series info: Lord John series 1. Lord John and the private matter - read 2. Lord John and the brotherhood of the blade - read -. Lord John And The Hand Of Devils (Lord John Grey, #0.5, #1.5, #2.5) - read 3. The Scottish prisoner - read ...more