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What Abigail Did That Summer: A Rivers Of…

What Abigail Did That Summer: A Rivers Of London Novella (edition 2021)

by Ben Aaronovitch (Author)

Series: Rivers of London (5.2)

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1257169,637 (4.08)8
Title:What Abigail Did That Summer: A Rivers Of London Novella
Authors:Ben Aaronovitch (Author)
Info:Gollancz (2021), 208 pages
Collections:Your library

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What Abigail Did That Summer by Ben Aaronovitch


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» See also 8 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
Well, now we've got Rivers of London lite, the YA version. Not that RoL was so heavy it required deboning, but here it is, with foxes. ( )
  quondame | Jun 8, 2021 |

I'm a Rivers Of London fan of longstanding but I hesitated to buy this. What I'd wanted was another full-length novel where I saw what happened next with Peter Grant. What I got was a novella that goes back to earlier in the series, has Peter engaged somewhere else and instead follows the exploits of his thirteen-year-old magically-gifted cousin Abigail.

mean, how much fun could that be? Wouldn't it be better to just wait for the next book?

Fortunately for me, my hunger for more Rivers of London meant that I bought it anyway.

It was great fun.

This was a bookful of sunshine on a rainy day. It had me smiling all the way through. Yes, it has a slightly more YA cast to it than the other books, but it's a cheeky, precious, cheer-them-for-their-sheet-gall kind of YA read. Yes, it's a novella but it's also a whole story, properly told. And it delivered that same mix of mystery, magic, ironic contemporary observation and good-humoured fun that the other books did.

The big bonus was the indomitable, could-become-quite-scary, I'm-glad-she's-on-our-side, the-police-won't-know-what-hit-them Abigail. It was wonderful to have her telling the tale. She's full of energy and cheek and self-confidence and bravery. And then there were the talking foxes. We'd met them before of course but never this close up. I loved the way they worked with Abigail and the story they told her about how Man lost his tail.

So now, I'm a Peter Grant fan AND an Abigail fan and I'm hoping that there'll be a sequel, or several sequels, to 'What Abigail Did That Summer', including a full-length novel.

I listened to the audiobook where Shvorne Marks brought Abigail to life and made a good novella even better. Click on the SoundCloud link below to hear a sample.


( )
1 vote MikeFinnFiction | Jun 6, 2021 |
Nice! Not sure why this counts as a novella rather than a full book in the series - it's long enough (ok, the word count may be under, but not by much) and a complex enough story to be worth it. Not a Peter story, though - kind of obviously, from the title. Abigail deals, on her own, with a very strange genus loci - odder than the bookstore one, and rather more powerful. The ghost...what did she call herself? Sorceress? was really interesting - wonder if she might be able to pull free, and if so...hmm. The annotations for the slang weren't particularly useful - I understood most of it from context, if not the detail. Actually, the amusing part was the ones that didn't get annotated - bare meaning very? Not something I've encountered anywhere else. I learned a bit more about Abigail and her family, too; that may be important later on in the series. Good book, definitely worth reading and rereading. ( )
  jjmcgaffey | May 13, 2021 |
Part of the River of London series, taking place after Broken Homes and during Foxglove Summer. It fills in Abigail's backstory which has been alluded to in several volumes.

I think this is probably one for a completist; Abigail investigates disappearances in Hampstead, and links up with the foxes to do so. A bit disjointed; in some ways similar to The Left-Handed Booksellers of London in the way the action stutters a bit. It's told from Abigail's PoV (with translations by Harold Postmartin for the benefit of Agent Reynolds who is unfamiliar with Brit teen slang).

OK, but probably best to wait for a deal.
  Maddz | May 2, 2021 |
Barely teen Abigail has a precocious interest in magic, but the Folly won’t yet take her on. So she makes her own trouble/fun, and—with a new friend in tow, plus a fox spy/minder—goes off in search of whatever it is that’s pulling a Pied Piper on local children. Aaronovitch’s mouthy teen was not the best of his voices, but it’s still interesting to see other takes on the magic of his world. ( )
  rivkat | Mar 22, 2021 |
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