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Moon Over Soho

(Rivers of London #2)

4.09  ·  Rating details ·  56,709 ratings  ·  3,880 reviews
The song.

That’s what apprentice wizard and London Metropolitan Police Constable Peter Grant first notices when summoned to the local morgue to view the corpse of Cyrus Wilkinson, part-time jazz drummer and full-time accountant, who dropped dead of a heart attack while playing a gig at Soho’s 606 Club. He, along with Scottish pathologist Dr. Abdul Haqq Walid, hears the dis
Paperback, Del Rey, 289 pages
Published March 1st 2011 by Random House Ballantine
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Emma I agree with what has been said before: starting in 2 you have a spoiler for 1, not the backstory that makes everything ring just a tad more deeply. Y…moreI agree with what has been said before: starting in 2 you have a spoiler for 1, not the backstory that makes everything ring just a tad more deeply. You miss out on what a lot.

And, this is my feedback, number one has a better and more crisp 'voice' than this second volume, so it's a more shiny, awe inspiring, experience. Start at the top.(less)

Community Reviews

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Average rating 4.09  · 
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Start your review of Moon Over Soho (Rivers of London #2)
Dear Peter Grant, you are about to knock Harry Dresden off his pedestal. And that's not an easy thing to say for me, a devout Dresdenite. But this book was just that much fun.

Should I call myself a Grantite now? How about a hug then? Oh wait...
"For a terrifying moment I thought he was going to hug me, but fortunately we both remembered we were English just in time. Still, it was a close call."
How can a true nerd like me NOT love this book and its protagonist? Peter Grant, a wisecracking apprenti
Men have died for this music.
You can't get more serious than that... Dizzy Gillespie

So... this is not my general genre of book. But in a range of dark books this is very welcome out of the box & fun book! I had to get used to Peter Grant of Ben Aaronovitch, convinced by my goodreads friend Caro M. to give it a go. Peter Grant is a junior magician. Fun! Sounds like Harry Potter? Well it isn't ;-). It's a bit more raw and pretty d*mn funny. Love the scenes of London, one of my favorite cities, col
May 09, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: urban fantasy lovers, detective fans
Moon Over Soho is an enjoyable, satisfying sophomore entry into the Peter Grant series about a London constable who is now working in magical law enforcement.

Peter calls on Leslie after the brutal ending of the first book. As he leaves, he's called to the morgue where Dr. Walid wants Peter to note the definite vestigia about a dead man. Peter gets a clear sound of jazz sax, the kind of clue that only comes with strong magic. The team is still trying to protect Nightingale, recovering from a gun
My review of Moon of Soho.

Holdbrook-Smith continues to shine as a narrator. His vocal talent brings both Peter and the many people he interacts with to live in a way one doesn't quite get while reading. First time he voices Leslie using her iPad text-to-speech function was brilliant. However, when he voiced Leslie speaking on the phone, I found it partly unintelligible but still good. When Leslie later spoke in person with Peter, voicing was back to brilliant. I have to say, I loved his voicing
Virginia Ronan ♥ Herondale ♥
If I had to describe this series in a few words it probably would be the following:

Dark, magical, creepy, humorous, intriguing and unique.

I love the fact that Ben Aaronovitch just took the usual fantasy wizard tropes and placed them in the setting of present-day London. He mixed them up with vampires, history, creepy immortals, Jazz and a more than just good portion of very British humour.

”The space is crisscrossed at random intervals by escalators, presumably because the architects felt that d
Jan 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: urban-fantasy-pr
Yes, now we're talking!

I could not give 4* to the first book in the series although I wanted to. I became an instant fan of the writing, the world, the humor and felt in total sink with the author' s love for London, which can be observed in every page. My problem was with the plot which was all over the place. I am happy to say that this is no longer the case (most of the time) in Moon over Soho and the novel gets from me the praise it deserves.

Peter Grant is a great character and I cannot wai
Re-read 8/28/21

As good as I remember and for all the same reasons. :)

Original Review:

Must love jazz.

Well, not really, but I could almost taste the love for jazz throughout this novel. Peter's dad was once a jazz legend, after all, and so it's not so hard to have his son pick up a bit of the love, if not the talent. This aspect of the novel was pretty nigh awesome. :) Flitting around the London Jazz scene, hunting down Jazz vampires... you know, those pesky varmints that nest in the musician's ea
Emily B
Mar 23, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I listened to the audiobook which was great. It has a good narrator and was nice and easy to follow.
Definitely easy feel good listening
Sam Quixote
Vampiric witches are preying on London’s most gifted jazz musicians – Peter Grant, the Fuzz’s newest (and only) apprentice magic cop, is on the case!

Moon Over Soho is a bit of a disappointing follow-up to Ben Aaronovitch’s spectacular Rivers of London and I think I know why. Rivers of London had two barnstorming storylines running parallel throughout – the Mr Punch murders and the River Gods’ gang warfare – as well as Peter learning about the hidden magical side of London; there was never a dul
Aug 10, 2016 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: everybody

Beware this review is infected with spoilers!
I was eager to put my hands on this book to feel the magic of “Moon over Soho”. And it didn't disappoint. Though it had less jokes but had more feelings and passion. Peter Grant developed more as a wizard apprentice. It’s his time to shine more. With two new cases it’s a really ridiculous and fun mess. For example, why do we need simple vampires when there are (view spoiler)! It may sound absurd, but Mr. Aaronovitch makes
Lois Bujold
Dec 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Sequel to Rivers of London aka (in the US) Midnight Riot, which I read and reviewed here last week, and which I would link if I could figure out how. Start with that one, not this one, but you may as well pick up all three while you're at it. It will save steps. (#3, now in my library queue, is titled Whispers Underground.)

No sophomore slump here, I'm happy to report. Upon longer consideration, what the prior book and this one also remind me of is the movie Men in Black -- the good first one, no
Feb 06, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“Men have died for this music.
You can’t get more serious than that.”
- Dizzy Gillespie

Jazz monsters.

Ben Aaronovitch is laying down a cool, smooth GROOVE of an urban fantasy. The kind of prose, that if it were music, would sound smoky and stylish and would be jazz.

Body and Soul

Aaronovitch’s second Peter Grant mystery works because this is a police procedural that has urban fantasy elements and made better by the inclusion of modern day magic, but not because of it. I think where some practitione
Will M.
Dec 26, 2014 rated it really liked it
Jazz music and vampires combined results into a new problem for constable Peter Grant.

I liked this way better than the first novel in the series. The characters were more developed here and it didn't tackle on introducing them anymore. I liked how the author gave us a deeper story about Peter's life and family. The plot as a whole was a bit okay. It wasn't phenomenal but I was entertained throughout the novel. The major plot twist in the end was shocking for me, because I was reading it at 6 am.
William Gwynne
Feb 08, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, audible, reviewed
Check out an expanded review on The Brothers Gwynne... Moon Over Soho booktube review

“For a terrifying moment I thought he was going to hug me, but fortunately we both remembered we were English just in time. Still, it was a close call.”

Moon Over Soho is a great sequel to Rivers of London, continuing the same humorous yet serious tone in the detective escapades of police constable Peter Grant.

Moon over Soho is the second instalment in the Rivers of London series. It continues to develop the alre
Almost literally, unless it grew legs and bolted when I wasn’t looking, Moon Over Soho hit the ground running from where Rivers of London left us. Not only does Ben Aaronovitch make it as smoothly readable as its predecessor (to the point where I was often having to cover up the next page with hands and/or arms), but this one truly feels like part of a larger story, doubtless to continue on and reward our patience handsomely in the following books, as opposed to a smaller, self-contained one th ...more
Megan Baxter
Apr 17, 2013 rated it really liked it
I got pushed into reading this slightly earlier than I had intended - but my mother is here for a visit, and she started to read the first book, and as she neared the end, there started to be threats about what might happen if I didn't hurry up and finish this one. (Threats of booknapping!)

Note: The rest of this review has been withdrawn due to the changes in Goodreads policy and enforcement. You can read why I came to this decision here.

In the meantime, you can read the entire review at Smorgas
Oct 30, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4ish stars.

I'm so pleased I continued with the series. Usually unless the first in a series is at least a 4-star book, I don't bother. Midnight Riot (Rivers of London) was a not-quite-4-star-read for me, although I could recognize its potential.

The audiobook narrator, Kobna Holdbrook-Smith was one of the biggest factors in my decision to continue. I honestly just love listening to him read. If I could choose anyone to read bedtime stories to me each night, he'd be top five, easy.

The plotting,
Jul 31, 2015 rated it really liked it
So I remember I was not totally convinced by the first book in this series and thought I would probably not move on to the sequel. Well I did move on and I find these books are growing on me. I am starting to find Peter and Nightingale interesting and this book, after it got over imparting huge amounts of jazz knowledge that I really did not need, became very interesting indeed. Peter is developing some quite effective magical skills and by the end of the book seems to have gained another possib ...more
Wanda Pedersen
2021 Re-Read

***2021 Dog Days of Summer***

It's time for my summer theme and this year I have chosen to read books that include canine companions. It was a marvelous excuse to revisit the Rivers of London series complete with Toby the terrible terrier. Toby continues his influence on the Folly, being a smelly companion on car trips and a weary walking responsibility after a long day of work.

Peter develops a magic measuring system based on Toby: And what did Nightingale and I have to measure ve

4-1/2 stars, rounded down because I'm not sure all the mysteries in this one quite got cleared up satisfactorily. But it was still a great read.

Another amazing whirlwind with Peter Grant. The mysteries were gripping, Peter's further discoveries about the magical world were fascinating, and I just love spending time in his head and in the atmosphere of these books.

Definitely recommended, and I can hardly wait to get on to Book Three.
3 1/2 stars

Whenever I contemplate continuing a series that I love, there’s always that little bit of anxiety in the back of my mind: will this one live up to the rest? Will I have to abandon yet another series? Well, if any of you out there are worried about this one, be at ease. This installment is lovely and I have no doubt that fans of the first book will enjoy this one just as much.

At the end of Midnight Riot (aka, Rivers of London), Peter had just learned of a rather ferocious new murder. I
Jan 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
“I’m sorry for your loss,” I said. “I’d like to ask you a few questions if I can.” “Is that entirely necessary, Constable?” she asked. “We often investigate cases where the circumstances surrounding the death are unclear,” I said. Actually we, that is the police, don’t investigate unless foul play is bleeding obvious or if the Home Office has recently issued a directive insisting that we prioritize whatever the crime du jour was for the duration of the current news cycle."

Peter Grant is no longe
I very much enjoy the world of this series - the story is leading us through the trials of a police force in an increasingly magical London very well. However, I spent much of this volume frustrated and annoyed with the main character.

Peter is an amusing fellow with a scientific turn of mind, always trying to unpick and understand how magic works. But he spends much of this book completely failing to _think_. (view spoiler)
Moon Over Soho by Ben Aaronovitch
Published 2011, Del Ray (US version)
Stars: (not yet rated)
Review also posted at: Slapdash & Sundry

This one was a little slower paced than book one -- if you don't count the character/world introductions from the first one -- at least at the beginning.

Honestly, I didn't think that this one, with all the focus on jazz music, would appeal to me very much. I was wrong. By the end of it, I loved it. The book, not jazz. Still not a jazz person. I don't dislike it. I ju
Executive Summary: Another enjoyable entry in this series. Good but not great. Short and fun. 3.5 Stars.

Audio book: Kobna Holdbrook-Smith is once again a perfect fit for this book. Not only does his normal voice seem to spot on for Peter Grant, but he does a great job with the other characters as well. He totally makes audio the only way to go for this series IMHO.

Full Review
The biggest praise I can offer this book, is the fact that I plan to continue on with the series. Pretty much every ot
Mogsy (MMOGC)
I don't know what it is about the Peter Grant series, but this is only the second installment and already I am completed addicted. I've not been a fan of urban fantasy for very long, but over the years I have come to appreciate the particular brand of "fun and fluffiness" that's so characteristic of books like this. They're reliable entertainment -- I know even before I crack the cover that I'll have a good time, and I'm hardly ever disappointed.

As it happens, Moon Over Soho was even better tha
Aug 28, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Soho. The artistic part of London known for theatres and music of any kind. London - any corner of the city - has a lot of history and Soho is definitely no different.
As it happens, musicians are being murdered under very "suspect" circumstances there. Peter is asked to investigate but the murders keep happening and he always seems to be one step behind. Maybe because he's distracted by the beautiful Simone? Or by Lesley's horriffic disfigurement? Or Nightingale still needing to recover having
Nov 30, 2013 rated it liked it
In this second in the series, young London constable Peter Grant is slowly advancing in his apprenticeship to the aging wizard Nightingale, who consults on all the cases crimes that may involve magic. He is called in when a murder of a jazzman in Soho is too bizarre to be committed by a normal criminal:. (view spoiler). Further investigation reveals that more jazzman have died mysteriously over the years. Is thi ...more
Jennifer Gaarder
Dec 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Read my reviews and blog at

Moon Over Soho (Rivers of London #2) US Edition
Random House Ballantine, March 11, 2011

288 Pages Paperback Edition (US)

From Goodreads:

"The song. That’s what London constable and sorcerer’s apprentice Peter Grant first notices when he examines the corpse of Cyrus Wilkins, part-time jazz drummer and full-time accountant, who dropped dead of a heart attack while playing a gig at Soho’s 606 Club. The notes of the old jazz standard are rising from the
With “moon” in the title and a setting like London, I was expecting there to be a werewolf tale or at the very least a shapeshifter subplot, but this a story about Soho and jazz… and murder and magic and supernatural forces and things beyond our existential control, but mostly Soho and jazz. So of course, my favorite kind of urban fantasy. You won’t even miss the lack of werewolves at all.

Once in a very rare while, an author’s writing style syncs up with all the qualities which I look for in a g
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The Folly Irregulars: Moon Over Soho Spoilers here! 37 73 Jul 30, 2021 01:23PM  
Play Book Tag: Moon Over Soho by Ben Aaronovitch - 3.5 stars 2 12 Jul 18, 2019 04:01PM  
Cover image required 1 19 May 23, 2017 03:00PM  
The Folly Irregulars: * Moon Over Soho--no spoilers thread 18 21 Jan 21, 2017 06:16PM  

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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 (9 books)
  • Rivers of London (Rivers of London, #1)
  • Whispers Under Ground (Rivers of London, #3)
  • Broken Homes (Rivers of London, #4)
  • 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)
  • Amongst Our Weapons (Rivers of London, #9)

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