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Whispers Under Ground by Ben Aaronovitch
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Whispers Under Ground (edition 2012)

by Ben Aaronovitch

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1,073657,788 (4.07)188
Member:crobins
Title:Whispers Under Ground
Authors:Ben Aaronovitch
Info:Del Rey (2012), Mass Market Paperback, 320 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
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Whispers Under Ground by Ben Aaronovitch

  1. 40
    Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman (Jannes)
    Jannes: For all your "supernatural secrets in the London underground" needs.
  2. 20
    A Madness of Angels: Or, the Resurrection of Matthew Swift by Kate Griffin (amberwitch)
    amberwitch: Offbeat magicians in London
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Peter Grant once looked forward to a police career made of boring paperwork, but then he discovered magic. Now he's apprenticed to Inspector Nightingale, the last known British mage, and has more excitement than he can handle. The latest case: an American art student is found dead on the railroad tracks, and the murder weapon has a whiff of magic to it. Before he knows it, Peter is tracking pottery smugglers and slogging through sewers, all while trying to keep his supernatural ability hidden from his co-investigator, an enigmatic FBI agent.

Lots of subtle build-up of the magical community here. In the first book, the only magic seemed to be in Nightingale's Folly, but by now we've gotten a hint of magicians from all over the world, plus beings and magic systems hidden in London that even Nightingale did not know about. I think there might be something cool going on with Lesley's face--the half-goblin seemed fascinated by it. Perhaps magical people see it not as a barely healed mask, but as something beautiful or powerful? And I'm looking forward to seeing more of the Little Crocodiles plot. ( )
  wealhtheowwylfing | Feb 29, 2016 |
Whispers Under Ground is less poignant than its predecessor and longer on humor. I particularly enjoy Peter Grant’s constant sly references to the rest of the fantasy universe, from Pratchett to Tolkien, as well as Aaronovitch’s clear delight in the confusing world of police acronyms…half of which I’m convinced he has invented. ( )
  TadAD | Feb 16, 2016 |
I borrowed this from a colleague after realising that I finished book two in 2012 and haven't been keeping up with the series. I like Peter Grant, particularly his running commentary on London and architecture, but I'm not exactly bowled over by the magical aspect, as evidenced by the fact that I took four years to chase up the next instalment. Ghosts, fine, magical pottery people living underground, not so much. Also, there is a distinct Raymond Chandler quality to the plotting of these novels, in that subplot upon subplot is introduced until all I'm left hanging onto is the witty narration and returning cast of characters. So if the same colleague lends me book four, I'm all for reading on, but otherwise - meh. ( )
  AdonisGuilfoyle | Jan 30, 2016 |
It's ridiculous how much I love this series. The conceit in this installment used the knowledge of the London underground and also interesting bits of anthropology and art. Also the good things from previous installments. Peter Grant is still ridiculous and sarcastic and I enjoy his voice. But he's starting to grow into his role as a wizard and even reconcile his practice with science and technology while working on becoming as disciplined as his mentor wants him to be. On the one hand,I want to go get the next book immediately, but once I run out what am I going to read? ( )
  ewillse | Jan 18, 2016 |
This is the third part of the fantastic Rivers of London trilogy (so far) which sees Peter Grant, apprenticed to the Wizard, Chief Inspector Thomas Nightingale, investigating a murder on the London Underground. The story also sees a welcome return of Lesley who was notably absent in the last instalment following her injuries in book one and more of the wonderful Thames sisters (although I’d have liked more of them!).

Peter, Lesley and Nightingale – together with various members of the Metropolitan and Belgravia Police and Sergeant Jaget Kumar from the British Transport police investigate the death of a US senator’s son found on the tracks of the London Underground. The murder weapon appears to be a segment of pottery which exhibits traces of vestigia – a magical property meaning the supernatural is involved. The investigation takes them underground, not only into the tube system but also into the sewers beneath the city where they discover more than just a killer…

I have loved all three books of this series and this instalment doesn’t fail to deliver. Aaronovitch is a born story-teller and this has a fantastic mix of drama and humour. I think I said this about book 1, but when reading this it was like I could see a BBC Sunday night production playing out in my head. I'm looking forward to part 4! ( )
  Bagpuss | Jan 17, 2016 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Ben Aaronovitchprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Holdbrook-Smith, KobnaNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Knowles, PatrickCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Walter, StephenCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
I would say to them as they shook in their fear,

"Now what is your paltry book,

Or the Phidian touch of the chisel's point,

That can make the marble look,

To this monster of ours, that for ages lay

In the depths of the deaming earth,

Till we brought him out with a cheer and a shout,

And hammer'd him into birth?"

—"The Engine," Alexander Anderson
Dedication
In memory of Blake Snyder (1957-2009) who not only saved the cat but the writer, the mortgage and the career as well.
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Back in the summer I'd made the mistake of telling my mum what I did for a living.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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When the son of a wealthy, politically powerful family is found dead, London constable and sorcerer's apprentice Peter Grant investigates this case, which is linked to a rogue magician known as the Faceless Man--and which takes him deep within the deadliest subway system in the world.… (more)

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