I was my dad's vinyl-wallah: I changed his records while he lounged around, and that's how I know my Argo from my Tempo. And it's why, when Dr Walid called me to the morgue to listen to a corpse, I recognized the tune it was playing. Something violently supernatural had happened to the victim, strong enough to leave its imprint like a wax cylinder recording. Cyrus Wilkinson, part-time jazz saxophonist and full-time accountant, had apparently dropped dead of a heart attack just after finishing a gig in Soho.
He wasn't the first. No one was going to let me exhume corpses to see if they were playing my tune, so it was back to old-fashioned legwork, starting in Soho, the heart of the scene. I didn't trust the lovely Simone, Cyrus' ex-lover, professional jazz kitten and as inviting as a Rubens' portrait, but I needed her help. There were monsters stalking Soho, creatures feeding off that special gift that separates the great musician from someone who can raise a decent tune, taking beauty and leaving behind sickness, failure and broken lives. And as I hunted them, my investigation got tangled up in another story: a brilliant trumpet player, Richard 'Lord' Grant - my father - who managed to destroy his own career, twice. That's the thing about policing: most of the time you're doing it to maintain public order. Occasionally you're doing it for justice. And maybe once in a career, you're doing it for revenge.
©2011 Ben Aaronovitch (P)2011 Orion Audio
This comes as close to perfection in an audiobook as I think it's possible to get. The mix of wry observation about everyday policing in London combined with a clever supernatural storyline is brilliant. And the narrator is fantastic. His dry, deadpan delivery works well both for the comic one-liners and for the action sequences. In fact, I suspect that I would not enjoy this book so much on the page because it would lack Kobna Holdbrook-Smith's timing and character voicing. Great stuff.
Its books like this that make me happy to try new authors, the delight you experience when you realise there another one by "that guy who did..." doesn't occur often enough. This is the second Rivers of London novel and its as much fun as the first .
Hopefully Ben Aaronovitch will continue with this series (I suspect there are enough "story arcs" (as American TV writers like to say) left open to work with) as the characters are entertaining and enjoyable.
I hope Kobna Holdbrook Smith continues to narrate as he is now "the voice" for these books in my head.
Having not long finished 'Rivers of London', I was delighted to see 'Moon over Soho' as an audio book. Kobna Holdbrook-Smith is a perfect narrator and the plot is entertaining and tight. A very, very enjoyable listen.
A brilliant second novel, written and read perfectly. Keep this combination up because its magic!
Always a worry when you have enjoyed a first book a lot - "Can the second match it?" This does and sent me back to re-listen to Rivers of London as great detail that I missed first time round. Looking forward to listening to this again shortly.
I knew I shouldn't have bought this so soon after it was released, now i've got to wait ages for the next one! Needless to say it's brilliant! Great book, fantastic narration.
I really enjoyed the first book and this sequel did not disappoint. Takes off exactly where the other left off and is ripe for another. I really hope there is more. I do love the Policing / London angle, which is the bit I thought would be least attractive to me (not liking police dramas in the least), but the Ben Aaronovitch merges magic with the everyday brilliantly.
Really great narration by Kobna Holdbrook-Smith. Every character is brought to life with their own 'voice'.
Extremely entertaining! Fingers crossed there is more coming.
This series is really starting to develop. It's not perfect yet, the characters are still bedding in as we get drawn into the world of magic, but the plot is complex and thought provoking. I have no interest in jazz but still enjoyed those elements of the story.
I originally started reading this series expecting a sort of British Harry Dresden but this is very different and very British. I am looking forward to the third in the series next year.
Excellent reader that Kobna Holbrook-Smith. Catches the spirit of the main character and the book spot on!
This second book, as the title hints, takes place in Soho. The author juggles effortlessly with multiple strands of plots from jazz to horror cabinets and the history of british practitioners.
In the first book everything was new, fresh and exciting. Often it is not easy to raise stakes and still keep it tight but Aaronovitch handles it splendidly!
When I first decided to buy this book I was a little apprehensive as I usually opt for the more traditional sci fi novels. However I was really pleased.
The book is well written and the narration is great adding atmosphere to the audio book.
If you know the UK you will be happy to know that lots of different places streets etc are mentioned, this helps to build the overall picture in your mind and adds to the enjoyment.
"Even Better Than the First One"
I enjoyed this even more than the first in the series, and now I'm hanging out for Book 3. I found the action a little easier to follow (maybe that's because I have got a bit better control over my iPod now... though I can't make it stop replaying the last half hour of any session whenever I switch it on!) and a lot of things from Book One suddenly made sense. Peter is an interesting character with a good deal of tolerance for the "different", though not a lot for the "ethically challenged". Back story for Nightingale, Molly and Richard "Lord" Grant slides seamlessly into the current action. Excellent work, Messers Aaronovitch and Holdbrook-Smith.
"Pure Imaginative Brilliance"
I came across this book/series by accident but it is a terrific listen. such wonderful imagination combining the geography of London, the mundane details of police procedure and magic. The book moves between humour, tragedy and compassion so one has little idea what is coming next. The narrator is pitch perfect accents are spot on and makes the street references of modern London speech that much more pertinent. Enthralling, looking forward to the next book and I have yet to finish this current book.
"Stellar performance of an enthralling book"
Both this and the previous effort by Ben Aaronovitch were excellent fun books to read but were made even better by Kobna Holdbrook-Smith's narrations.
He does multiple characterisations effortlessly without sounding corny and this adds to a sense of involvement in the story which with Aaronovitch's descriptions, make you feel you are watching rather than listening.
"All that Jazz with magical whipped cream"
I've thoroughly enjoyed the first book in the series and couldn't wait for the follow-up. It was a fun listen and I really loved the jazzy parts of it. The humor I so loved in the first book was still there but a bit dampened. The love scenes were sizzling and sassy, who would not like to spent an afternoon rolling in the hay with Peter Grant?
Yes, it was
Now I'm going to listen to the third one, hope it meets my expectations!
"Devoured this, can't wait for the next installment"
Same but different
Rivers of London because it's the sequel, but they stand alone just as well
He's Peter, I can't imagine Peter sounding any other way, perfect!
Where the past the present the future and the impossible collide
"What to do when you finish the Dresden Files"
Being an Australian resident I can't get anymore than #4 of the Dresden Files on Audible and after having 'Rivers of London' recommended by the good blokes at Pulp Fiction I discovered that book 2 of the series was available. Hooray! I love an author who can bring a city to life, now I really want to revisit London. I have been thoroughly enjoying the afternoon listening to Kobna do a mighty job with all the voices and all the accents.
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