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Rivers of London - Ben Aaronovitch (book review) *contains spoilers*


Book: Rivers of London
Author: Ben Aaronovitch
Genre: Fantasy, Mystery, Crime
Published By: Gollancz
Published Year: 2011

My Review:
Having been recommended Rivers of London by a work colleague and them letting me borrow their copy I wasn't sure what to expect about this book but from what they told me I was intrigued. Hearing that this was a paranormal crime book which had wizards, vampires, ghosts and more left me interested in how it would be brought together and I am so glad that I did decide to read this.

Rivers of London is about a police officer called Peter Grant who on guarding a crime scene ends up getting a statement from a ghost which leads to him working for the supernatural department in the police. Not only this but with people's faces falling off and crimes seeming like they are out of the Punch and Judy puppet show will he be able to solve the crime and stop more murders taking place?

I really liked how the start of the book showed how Peter was just a normal person who stumbled upon the supernatural world and didn't believe in the things that he was seeing. This made him rather relateable for the reader and showed how he also wasn't aware that there was a hidden world in which he lived in. I thought by also having the killer use the story of Punch and Judy was really cool and left a story that a lot of people knew but also left the reader wondering how they were going to stop them and what would happen when all of the crimes had taken place. I also thought that the twist at the end of the book was rather predictable and that I had actually figured it out much earlier in the book however by having Punch as someone different was interesting to me as I thought that it was only one person in which was causing the problems around London.  Not only this but by having a second side story for the reader with the Thames and the different people fighting for their territory was really cool in order to break up the story and give a little more into other types of crimes in which they are to solve and not just murders that have taken place. I ended up really liking some of the characters introduced from the sub-story and really wanted to know what would happen for them. By finding some new characters I really liked it left me wanting to read more and actually made me read a lot faster and enjoy the book a lot more. I did think one character is still rather a mystery and that is the housekeeper in which I hope we are able to find out a lot more about in future books.

However, I did think that Rivers of London  was rather slow to get into and that was rather disappointing for me to begin with. I do understand however that it was because of the trying to build the new world in which Peter was getting introduced to. Not only this but I thought it would have been better if they gave more backstory to some of the characters such as the inspector, housekeeper and even some of the other smaller characters in which the audience is introduced to as it left me continuously wondering more about them.

Overall, this book is a good crime read and one that I am lad my coworker suggested to me as it was captivating and kept me guessing throughout. Not only this but it is different from the crime novels in which I am used to reading. I would recommend Rivers of London to those who are fans of crime novels and want something in which is different to the normal format. I am looking forward to finding out what happens in the next book.

My Rating: 3/5 

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