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Tuesday, 17 November 2020

 

I’m a fickle reader. My favourites change with every book I read and I read one a day. I have a set of old friends I reread, loving both the writing style and the characters. Patricia McKillip, Rosemary Sutcliff, L. M. Boston, J.K. Rowling, Diana Wynne Jones, Cynthia Voight, C.J. Cherrhy are a few of these. I need old favourites, comfortable reads with character friends to send me to sleep or my dreams are full of the terrible things happening in this nightmare time we are currently living through.

However, once I got round the constant use of fuck as an exclamation, I've been delighting in reading and rereading Ben Aaronovitch's Peter Grant series starting with the 'Rivers of London'. Satirical and wickedly funny in the way Terry Pratchett's Sam Vines books are, here we have a young, green, newly qualified London police officer run into a ghost and discover the world of magic, the magic police, the Folly, and his boss, Chief Inspector Thomas Nightingale.  Much of the fun comes from Peter's interaction with Thomas Nightingale who is an upper middle class gentleman. Peter is a mixed race council estate brat with a strong sense of justice and a working class dislike of the privileged - like Inspector Nightingale. 

As a reader I have been entertained and amused by the characters and the clever Harry Potter like blending of magic and reality. As a writer I boggle at the imagination, which I know I lack, of writer Arronovitch. Discovering he's been a scriptwriter for Dr Who doesn't surprise me and I wish I had half his imagination and way with dialogue. I bought the graphic novel (Comic Book) versions for my grandson and he's now reading the novels with gusto.

Do start with novel number one - Rivers of London - or you'll miss half the fun. And fun they are, and clever and satirical and thoroughly entertaining.  






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