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Broken Homes

(Rivers of London #4)

4.17  ·  Rating details ·  38,640 ratings  ·  2,597 reviews
A mutilated body in Crawley. Another killer on the loose. The prime suspect is one Robert Weil - an associate of the twisted magician known as the Faceless Man? Or just a common garden serial killer?

Before PC Peter Grant can get his head round the case, a town planner going under a tube train and a stolen grimoire are adding to his case-load.

So far so London.

But then Peter
Mass Market Paperback, 324 pages
Published February 4th 2014 by DAW (first published February 4th 2013)
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Jenny OH I agree with Charles - I'm only about a third of the way in but I can't think of any major events or characters so far that DON'T need some backstory …moreI agree with Charles - I'm only about a third of the way in but I can't think of any major events or characters so far that DON'T need some backstory knowledge, down to the main character's dog. I absolutely wouldn't jump into the series with this book. The series so far has been an engaging and therefore relatively quick read, so I'd go for it if you're thinking of starting from the beginning.(less)
Michael Trick Must have been picked up in editing after the hardcover printing since the "dead" is removed from my kindle version as well as the goodreads preview. …moreMust have been picked up in editing after the hardcover printing since the "dead" is removed from my kindle version as well as the goodreads preview. +1 for reader engagement.(less)

Community Reviews

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Average rating 4.17  · 
Rating details
 ·  38,640 ratings  ·  2,597 reviews

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Jan 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: you know, I'd recommend it on a case by case basis.

If you've read any other Broken Homes reviews or checked out the range of ratings, you'll know that opinion on this book runs the gamut. For me, Aaronovich is starting to feel like he is coming into his own. It's mature, developed writing with rich characters and a thoughtfully developed magic and supernatural system. Without doubt, pacing is a little off from a traditional detective story, but I found that for me, it reflected the inconsistent nature of real-life police work; one does not work
"This book is dedicated to all the people who get up and do something about it, whatever “it” is and however small the thing it is they do."
With this perfect dedication, Broken Homes - the fourth entry in Ben Aaronovitch's series about a snarky, geeky and ultimately good London Police Constable Peter Grant, employed in the subdivision of the Metropolitan police focused on magical side of the society - hit the high note from the very beginning and remained very good until the last page.

A few
Em Lost In Books

Things here went from slow to fast lane very quickly. And damn, that betrayal hurts!!

With so much going on in Peter's life, I will be reading the next book sooner than later.
I have returned to the urban fantasy world of PC Peter Grant based at The Folly, and a wonderful police procedural series set in underground magical London. It has a great sense of location in London and makes the most of the buildings and character of the city. We have the policing of the Spring Court, attended by the major river gods with all the attendant festivities and stalls. There are the undercurrents apparent between Peter and Beverly Brook, a slow heating romance in the making. Lesley ...more
Victoria Schwab
I adore this series. Police procedural with supernatural villains and wizard cops.
Jun 05, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: police procedural UF fans
I loves it so much that this may be the reason I join Audible. Or is there another way for me to owns my precious?

Holdbrook-Smith's narration coupled with Aaronovitch's story is an absolutely splendid combination. Peter Grant has a dry, wry bent, and Holdbrook-Smith is allowing the emotion to come through, even allowing himself to become exclamatory in a couple of parts.

Holdbrook-Smith also has an amazing ability to convey a range of types. He must truly be an actor's actor. He does the gentee
3.5ish stars.

In some ways this is the most satisfying yet, in others it's the most frustrating. As is typical for the series, the plot is... meandering. More here than in previous books even, despite it's return to what seems to be the overarching plot line connecting the books. And I feel like that's just true to its police procedural reality- I imagine actual police officers are engaging in various types of business and following multiple leads at any given time- it's just a little manic and i
Feb 11, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A change of pace keeps this series ROLLING!

Aaronovitch’s 2013 entry into his FREAKING AWESOME! contemporary fantasy series set in London and involving paranormal shenanigans has MORE! magic and world building and MORE! FREAKING AWESOME! characters and magic rues.

Up to now I’ve complimented Aaronovitch for his police procedurals that included some MAGIC! and PARANORMAL! elements. This time around, we delve much more deeply into the MAGIC! world building that Aaronovitch has set up for us.

Peter an
This series seems to be only getting better. The characters are getting more fascinating and the developments are definitely keeping me on the edge of my seat.

London police and a sideline of magic has never felt more realistic. Peter gets to show off a bit of his architectural background this time, too, and I think this aspect was probably my very favorite part of the book.

Architecture has always been a bit magical, don't you think? There's been plenty of literature on the idea and enough evide
I would have loved to finally give one of these books a perfect score, because I love the series for its world-building and characters, but, man, this book has pacing problems.

For the first 200 pages or so, it feels like nothing of true interest actually happens in this book. Oh, don’t get me wrong, a lot of stuff does happen, from bloody murders, advancement of the overarching “Faceless Man” plotline, to subtle and sometimes not so subtle character development. And the Festival of the River God
Paul E. Morph

Aaronovitch, you complete sod! You can't do that to me! I did NOT see that ending coming! AT ALL! Amazing...

Man, I'm more emotionally invested in this series than I thought I was...
Lois Bujold
Dec 29, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: readers who share my tastes in authorial voice and mentor figures
Recommended to Lois by: am following the series

Well, this was a delightful part of a story...

Ends on one or more cliffhangers, rather more so than a couple of the prior episodes. Aaronovitch had better be careful in traffic for the next year, just sayin'. And no smoking. Take small bites and chew carefully, etc.

That said, it gave me a lot of the things I wanted, namely, more Peter Grant, more London, and more of the other residents of the Folly. The love of the city fascinates me as a perversion in its in its own right, since personally I th
Emily B
Mar 29, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another great instalment in the Peter Grant series with a good twist. I particularly enjoyed the humour in this one and found myself smiling while listening. Also the narrator of the audiobooks is pretty perfect.
Mar 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Oh YES! Smack - dead in the center! There's nothing wrong with four stars, but this, my friends, is a full hand, all 5 of them: ★★★★★

You know when you pay the extra quid for quality because you know this is the time and place where it matters and makes a difference? Then you get what you bought, hold it in your hands and it feels really good, solid, valuable and all that. To me, that's a wonderful four star. Add a pinch of "Bloody hell!", "WTF?" or "Strike!" and little ol' fifth star comes runni
This series gets better with every new book! I was practically hyperventilating for the last 30 or so pages of this story and it took a good 10 minutes to catch my breath after hitting The End. Ben Aaronovitch doesn't pull his punches. He's become one of my favourite authors with this series.

The pace is quick, the dialogue is entertaining and full of witty banter, the characters are deep complicated people who you can't help but fall in love with, Peter's scientific studies into the nature of ma
Oct 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another wonderful entry in the Rivers of London series, it’s so easily to slip into this world.
Aaronovitch’s descriptive writing is a joy, I love the way he describes things including the supermarket in Brighton being the size of a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier.
I know this Asda well, so it made me chuckle!

Both the characters and the locations are perfect, you really feel as if your in these places with Peter Grant and the team.

This entry really pushes the story along, the final few chapters w
Algernon (Darth Anyan)
Aug 14, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013

I don't read much contemporary urban supernatural fiction, I prefer classic fantasy and big epics set on secondary worlds. But over the last four books I've grown quite fond of Police Constable Peter Grant (I think that's what PC stands for, other than personal computer). The supporting staff is all right (Lesley, Nightingale, Molly, the dog, the doctor, etc) but a good series that wants to go the distance of 10 books or more needs a strong, interesting protagonist, somebody the reader can ident
Apr 11, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This series just keeps getting better and better! I am listening to it on audio and the reader is really, really good. His range of accents is perfect right through from our London copper to upper class Nightingale, Oberon, a Russian witch and many more. Broken Homes is definitely a middle book in a series and one which should be read in the correct order as the author provides very little back story to help a new reader. Each book leads into the next one and this one does it in such style that ...more
NAT.orious reads ☾
This book is for you if… you haven’t had the problems I always had with this series.

Ever since I started this series, one curious thing keeps happening to me: I pick up the next book in line and after about 30 pages or so I'm always wondering why it took me so long to continue Rivers of London. And it happened again.

I think I'll put this series on hold for a while (which is probably what I thought after the first three books as well). I love Ben's writing, the many witty lines and
Attention authors: do not try this at home. The "plot" in this book is a trainwreck. Not in the sense that the villain's scheme is bad or uninteresting, it's pretty cool actually. But the way the story is sliced up and presented to the reader is not, imnsho, great. But you gave it 4 stars! I hear you saying. Yeah, well, that's becauze Aaronovitch does everything else so good in this one he can get away with it. You are not that good. Don't try me. I will dnf your ass so fast the friction burns w ...more
Mar 19, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle, fantasy
This is getting to be my favorite series.
B Schrodinger
Sep 28, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: humour, mystery, fantasy
So it seems that the Peter Grant series is suffering from what I am calling "Reverse-Star-Trek-Movie-itis" or that the truly good books in this series are the odd numbered. I know there is only four, but I'm calling it. So while I look forward to book 5 coming soon, not so much book 6.

Look I know I am being critical here, this is still a fun novel to read, but it's no 'Rivers of London' or 'Whispers Underground' in that there is no one overarching chain of events from initial mystery to wonderfu
Just pre-ordered the next book (Foxglove Summer), 3 months in advance. No book series has ever motivated me to do that before.

First off, that revelation at the end just as everything was falling to pieces, that was perfect timing. So perfect it left me a little winded tbqh. Well done, Mr. Aaronovitch. You've successfully made me jump out of my seat while waiting at the DMV. That's no easy feat because it was the DMV, the whole place was packed, and I was standing.

This isn’t a review so much as j
Michelle F
Another fun entry in a series that has been consistently entertaining, though not uniformly satisfying.

Broken Homes is the fourth volume in the Rivers of London story arc, and it does turn its focus solidly onto the overlaying “big picture,” which concerns the personified bodies of water and the dastardly Faceless Man. While I highly enjoyed it, I wasn't quite as drawn in as I was in Whispers Underground. The plot felt a bit meandering at times, maybe?

Aaronovitch seems to have refined his use o
I adored how Peter told the story about London life, it was an amusing read. Mr. Aaronovitch used a great way to attract attention to the world of London, so magical, fantastic and realistic at the same time. Also I loved the idea of magic mixing with architecture. I’m not an architecture expert but the architectural details were very believable and impressive mixed up with the magic stuff. At last I got some fun stuff to read about the bad-ass-witcher aka Nightingale.

His wild meeting with the
Jul 07, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Peter Grant and the Nightingale are still chasing the faceless man.

In this volume the story evolves around a social housing estate, we meet a dryad and Peter tries to figure out the motives of the estate's architect.

In the very end Peter and the reader face quite an ugly surprise, which makes us wonder how this particular stoy line will continue.

This is a series which I find really worthwile reading. Looking forward to the next volume.
Jul 30, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, crime, fantasy
I think I need a support group to talk about this book. Or at least, the end of this book. If you like your books to kick you in the teeth real hard, go ahead and read this one.

At this point, I've stopped comparing these books to the Dresden Files because apparently I care a lot more about them and the characters involved than I ever did about Harry Dresden and crew. I'm still a bit disappointed there aren't more major female characters, but I'm very definitely emotionally invested.

This would've
Back for more Peter Grant & the gang at the Folly!

Oh dear......... 2.5 stars & the 1/2pt is only cause I’ve really enjoyed the series too date.

Well what went wrong here then...... it jus lacked the humour & action (In bucket fulls) of the previous reads in the series, I found myself nodding off as it was mostly Jus Peter Grant & well, council housing of Greater London...... what! Bored for the most part. It lacked the characters that we've grown to love & at 200+ pages had gone absolutely nowhe
I loved this. More details later.
Jan 28, 2021 rated it really liked it
Shelves: owned
This was the first book I read in 2021 and the events of that first week more or less took the pleasure out of reading it, but before more time passes I feel I should rate it and say something about it. I'm giving it four stars because in normal circumstances I'm sure I would really have enjoyed reading it.

It's typical of the Rivers of London series in that it reads mainly like a good police procedural with a few extra touches. The first-person narrator is Peter Grant, a London police constable,
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Play Book Tag: Broken Homes - Ben Aaronovitch - 4 stars 1 16 Jul 09, 2019 05:40PM  
The Folly Irregulars: Broken Homes--just starting 24 29 Jan 14, 2019 03:22AM  
The Folly Irregulars: Broken Homes--finished? 50 36 Oct 14, 2018 04:23AM  
Goodreads Librari...: Incorrect page count 8 25 Apr 04, 2018 11:55AM  

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See similar books…
Ben Aaronovitch's career started with a bang writing for Doctor Who, subsided in the middle and then, as is traditional, a third act resurgence with the bestselling Rivers of London series.

Born and raised in London he says that he'll leave his home when they prise his city out of his cold dead fingers.

Other books in the series

Rivers of London (8 books)
  • Rivers of London (Rivers of London, #1)
  • Moon Over Soho (Rivers of London, #2)
  • Whispers Under Ground (Rivers of London, #3)
  • Foxglove Summer (Rivers of London, #5)
  • The Hanging Tree (Rivers of London, #6)
  • Lies Sleeping (Rivers of London, #7)
  • False Value (Rivers of London, #8)

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