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The Severed Streets

por Paul Cornell

Outros autores: Ver a secção outros autores.

Séries: Shadow Police (2)

MembrosCríticasPopularidadeAvaliação médiaMenções
3072165,603 (3.82)27
"Desperate to find a case to justify the team's existence, with budget cuts and a police strike on the horizon, Quill thinks he's struck gold when a cabinet minister is murdered by an assailant who wasn't seen getting in or out of his limo. A second murder, that of the Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, presents a crime scene with a message...identical to that left by the original Jack the Ripper. The new Ripper seems to have changed the MO of the old completely: he's only killing rich white men. The inquiry into just what this supernatural menace is takes Quill and his team into the corridors of power at Whitehall, to meetings with MI5, or 'the funny people' as the Met call them, and into the London occult underworld. They go undercover to a pub with a regular evening that caters to that clientele, and to an auction of objects of power at the Tate Modern. Meanwhile, the Ripper keeps on killing and finally the pattern of those killings gives Quill's team clues towards who's really doing this..."--… (mais)
  1. 10
    Rivers of London por Ben Aaronovitch (LongDogMom)
    LongDogMom: Both series feature British police who deal with supernatural crime and both are more creative and well written than the average urban fantasy
  2. 00
    The Midnight Mayor por Kate Griffin (LongDogMom)
    LongDogMom: British supernatural mystery dealing with the hidden world
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Mostrando 1-5 de 20 (seguinte | mostrar todos)
The number of times I muttered, "You are INSANE," Could pretty much paper a wall here. Large font needed, but still: Insane book is insane. That's not a bad thing. ( )
  wetdryvac | Mar 2, 2021 |
I found "The Severed Streets" to be a surprisingly brutal book. It goes beyond the "Old Bill vs Old Nick on the West Ham Pitch" feel of the first book "London Falling" and crosses the boundary from Urban Fantasy to real Horror.

It continues with the unconventional police unit, all of whom have been gifted with The Sight - the ability to see the magic associated with Old London and used by members of Underground London. This magical community is not glamorous. It's filled with the poverty, grief and sacrifice that are the price paid for using London's magic.

The London at the centre of the magic in this book is very different in tone from the London in Ben Aaronovitch's "Rivers Of London" series. It makes Peter Grant's London seem calm and hopeful. The London of "The Severed Streets" is a meat-grinder city, where people's hopes and fears are used to keep them in line while they feed more power to the people at the top. It's a place of desperation, punishment and betrayal.

The plot, which involves an unstoppable supernatural killer that slices up its victims with a supernatural razor, is powered by a strong pulse of contemporary British politics - circa 2014 but it still sounds current - with the police being cut and division being ramped up via social media and street protests and counter-protests to fuel a right-wing coup. The motivation for the coup would fit the current government. The main architect of the coup wants to replace Parliament with more direct control "because what the people in this country need is someone to tell them what to think".

The book is well-written. The characters are strong. The magic world is credible. I found the injection of Neil Gaiman into the novel as a character with an active role in the plot distracting and unnecessary. It seemed like fandom to me. Maybe it would have worked better if I was a Gaiman fan.

I felt the book lagged a little in the middle. I was just starting to feel bogged down in exposition of the crime and the culture when the big surprise happened, the tone got darker and I felt like I'd just crested the top of the rollercoaster and was falling to fast to do anything but hold on.

I found "The Severed Streets" to be a deeply depressing book, soaked in sadness. The Shadow Police themselves are a major source of grief and depression. They deceive each other, distrust each other, despise themselves for the deceit and bemoan the distrust. They are reckless and desperate and well out of their depth.

The overall tone of the book took me back to an explanation of sin that a Jesuit Priest once gave me. He said it starts as a loss of grace. It becomes an absence of grace. It peaks with an inability even to recognise grace. By grace, he meant joy/love/hope/, the things God gives us to help us live a worthwhile life. It seems to me that this book is about the loss of grace, especially by the Shadow Police. Some lose all of it, some have grace eroded but not only does no one thrive but the possibility of a grace-filled life has become nothing but an only partially effective self-deception.

I listened to the audiobook version which was skilfully narrated by Damian Lynch. Click on the SoundCloud link below to hear a sample. ( )
1 vote MikeFinnFiction | May 16, 2020 |
Well. That was unexpected. ( )
  thewanlorn | Feb 24, 2020 |
second volume of the Shadow Police series about occult detectives on the Metropolitan London police force. the first volume, London Falling, should be read first. there are still what seems to me large holes in the plot and the narration, so a fair bit of suspension of disbelief is required, but all the piled-up colourful detail kind of makes up for that, and everything builds nicely. a fictionalized Neil Gaiman is also a character (not sure what i think of that, given his role, but it's certainly interesting). London itself is a hugely central character, there's a new Ripper in the City, riots get in the way (but don't deter the tourists), and Hell doesn't quite freeze over (but it's a great setting for it). it's quite fascinating to see the very small team with the Sight apply police detection methods to horror fiction problems, and it's certainly a treat to see urban fantasy take such an unexpected turn. ( )
  macha | Aug 26, 2019 |
Brutal. Fun. Needs more Lofthouse. (More like three-and-a-half stars, rounded up because of how much I liked the urgent and ineluctable trainwreck that was Costain and Ross.) ( )
  cupiscent | Aug 3, 2019 |
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Cornell, Paulautor principaltodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Lynch, DamianNarradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado

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"Desperate to find a case to justify the team's existence, with budget cuts and a police strike on the horizon, Quill thinks he's struck gold when a cabinet minister is murdered by an assailant who wasn't seen getting in or out of his limo. A second murder, that of the Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, presents a crime scene with a message...identical to that left by the original Jack the Ripper. The new Ripper seems to have changed the MO of the old completely: he's only killing rich white men. The inquiry into just what this supernatural menace is takes Quill and his team into the corridors of power at Whitehall, to meetings with MI5, or 'the funny people' as the Met call them, and into the London occult underworld. They go undercover to a pub with a regular evening that caters to that clientele, and to an auction of objects of power at the Tate Modern. Meanwhile, the Ripper keeps on killing and finally the pattern of those killings gives Quill's team clues towards who's really doing this..."--

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