This is my haul--I kept it small, because, you know, budgets. I could happily have snagged a couple of cookbooks too, but I made myself put them back.
Spoilers for those who have not read books #1 through #4.
Seriously. I know I am probably going to get yelled at for this review. But I stand by everything I am saying. This felt like half a book. There were so many dangling threads left that when the book came to an end I had to make sure that I didn't accidentally skip over the pages. The lack of Nightingale being part of things was felt. Peter was being a fool throughout most of the book so that was frustrating. I don't know what we are supposed to be feeling about Lesley. But her coming out with a whole, "I did it for you Peter" mess just made me roll my eyes. I don't know what Ben Aaronovitch is doing with her character.
"Foxglove Summer" has Peter away from London going to help out on a case of two missing girls. Initially, Peter doesn't think that magic had anything to do with the two girls and really wants to stay and help (also to avoid thinking about Lesley) but once magic starts to creep up, he realizes that something supernatural is going on.
Peter was a mess in this one. I get it, it's like what happened to Muller when Scully was MIA. Peter though he is trying to deny it, misses Lesley cause she's not there to point out things he is missing. I really wanted him to be more angry though. At least Nightingale seems to get how dangerous it is that Lesley is out in the world working for the Faceless Man. I didn't like that Peter essentially keeps doing stupid things throughout this book and even in the end, without Beverly helping out, he would have been screwed.
We have Beverly fully in this one, so that is the only reason why I gave this two stars. I still don't understand her and Peter's "relationship" at all. I was just glad they finally stopped with the will they or won't they thing. I just found it very odd she and Peter don't really get into what Lesley did or what exactly does it mean that Peter is sleeping with her.
I don't get what Aaronvitch is doing with Lesley. Okay she betrayed Peter and Nightingale. I kept thinking that she wasn't jealous of Peter and Beverly, but that seems to be where she is at headspace wise. Is this why she is doing this? I hope not, I am not thrilled with her betraying everyone. But if this turns out to be she did this to get her face back so Peter could love her, yuck. It also didn't help that she goes that in a year the Faceless Man is going to ruin the world, but hey Peter I am going to keep you safe. Is she out of her mind? So screw her family, his family, Molly, Nightingale, etc. Only Peter matters? I was just baffled by the whole thing.
There are only phone calls between Peter and Nightingale which was frustrating. At least a new character finally clued us into what the big battle was all about and why Nightingale doesn't want to talk about it though.
I really didn't like anyone besides the character of Dominic who steps into Lesley's shoes and made me laugh. That said, there was very little humor in this one.
The writing was okay, just muddled at times. We don't have Ben Aaronovitch going back to tie things up so I was just confused about a number of plot points.
We know that the two girls are sisters (the fake Nicole and real Nicole) so how did that happen? Also how did everyone in the village sleep with one guy and no one thinks they should be concerned that they may share kids so they should be thinking about what happens when they are all dating age?
Does this mean that Nicole's oldest sister (blanking on her name) is a changeling?
Does this mean that due to Peter reneging on his deal with the Fairy Queen he is going to owe the Rivers?
Also does this mean that Peter is going to get into trouble with Nightingale for getting involved with Beverly?
I had so many questions and wanted to kick something.
The flow was off after a good 20 percent of the book. I found myself getting bored. Without anyone to really bounce things off of, Peter is kind of a boring character.
The setting of Herefordshire was good. I could picture a village that has a touch of magic about it and all of the neighbors knowing each other. I just didn't get a sense for the village as a whole. We stayed focused on the two families, and Dominic's family and that was about it. I wish that Peter had been out and about more with the locals.
The ending was a letdown. I think that Aaronovitch thought he wrapped things up...but yeah not even a little bit. This book felt shorter to me too. It was 333 pages though so it's not that. It just felt like very little got done in this one compared to the other books in the series.
This installment in the Peter Grant series was so much fun and the plot twist at the end was so unexpected and exciting that I rushed right into the next book in the series, which wasn’t at all on my planned TBR list. And in my excitement, I originally put a 5 star rating on the book, but after further reflection am bringing it down to 4 stars, because there were a few problems with the story. It was a little discombobulated at first, with episodes so seemingly unconnected that I did have some trouble tying them all together at the end. I’m also, on reflection, a little unsure about The Faceless Man’s objective with the Skygarden Tower and its relation to the
magic battery function
that Peter has discovered. To be fair, it’s entirely possible that I missed some of this, because I was glued to the audio while also trying to run errands and finish shopping in anticipation of the Thanksgiving holiday demands this week – not the optimal kind of multitasking that lends itself well to catching clues and parsing complicated plot points. I suspect that, once I get caught up on the series on audio – because I have every intention of continuing to experience them through Kobna Holdbrook-Smith’s fabulous narration – I’ll probably pick up the text version and re-read them, to better immerse in the world-building and location details that can be missed on audio and a first read.
But I loved this book for all the same reasons that I’ve loved the others in the series – the interesting cast of characters, including some strong women of both good, evil, and in-between varieties, the strong sense of location, the fun magical world, and the humorous observations of both society and policing.
Audio, via Audible. As noted, Kobna Holdbrook-Smith’s performance is masterful.
I read this for The 16 Tasks of the Festive Season, Square 5: Book themes for Advent: Read a book with a wreath or with pines or fir trees on the cover –OR– Read the 4th book from a favorite series, or a book featuring 4 siblings. Broken Homes is the 4th book in the Peter Grant series.
The powers that be made a concerted effort to rid London of its working class. The city was rapidly losing its industry, and the large numbers of servants who were needed for the Edwardian households were being superseded by the technological wonders of the Age of White Goods. London just didn't need that many poor people anymore.
On the audio side, I had to DNF My Brilliant Friend on Thursday because it was booooorrrrrinnnngggg and then I decided on Broken Homes for the Advent square and OH MY GOD that plot twist at the end made me spend another Audible credit so I could jump right into Foxglove Summer.
12 books for me this month! More than double my average. Add The thin Man and Turn of the Screw to the above pictured books.
Thanks to Bingo. Now time to get back to other things I do besides reading every spare minute, though it's been fun.
No samples again, but clearing that folder again will resume soon. I have 5 Netgalley books to clear and then I'll settle into keeping at least 1 A-list book going while working through the Bingo folder where I have a load of back-ups for some of the squares. I might even read something besides Horror soon.