Monday, May 23, 2011

Moon Over Soho by Ben Aaronovich

Moon Over Soho is the sequel to Rivers of London (published as Midnight Riot in the U.S.), which I loved. I spent extra again to get the UK edition in hardback, which I think is entirely worth it even though I had to buy through Amazon (ick). I don't always understand the slang, but it adds to the atmosphere of the book--and I like the UK cover a lot better.

The book picks up a few months after Rivers of London. PC Peter Grant is apprenticed to the last magician on the force, learning Latin and magic while also investigating some strange cases. Like the men who've died after having their penises bitten off--and the teeth weren't in the mysterious woman's mouth, either. But when a pattern of unexplained deaths come to light among jazz musicians, Peter takes more than just an academic interest. His own father's a jazz musician--nearly famous, twice--and is working on a comeback.

The plot is fantastic. It's unbelievable. All the elements dovetail so beautifully after they seem so complex and disparate that I was left in complete awe. And the best thing is, everything unfolds naturally; nothing is forced or cobbled together or clumsy.

I like that we get to see more of Peter's parents, particularly his dad. While this book had a lot of action--more, I think, than the first book--the pacing was perfect. It's also darker than the first book, but just as funny. While the issue of Peter being multiracial isn't a big deal, it's always there, a deft and subtle reminder that he's living and working in what is often a quietly racist society.

I'm willing to shell out for the hardback and overseas shipping charges for as long as Ben Aaronovitch wants to keep writing these books.

B&N link (U.S. edition)
Amazon UK link (UK edition)

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