#BrokenHomes (Rivers of London 4) Mini Spoiler Free Book Review

Broken Homes is the 4th instalment in the Rivers Of London series following the adventures and investigations of Peter Grant - Detective Constable and budding warlock, working for a special branch of the Met that the rest of the force, excluding his commandeer in chief Nightingale and recently maimed-by-magic co-worker Lesley, tend to avoid talking about wherever possible.

And of course, what these books address so eloquently is the surprising amount that this mystical magical met department is actually needed within the London districts to help tackle crime on another level, specifically incidents concerning gods, spirits, magic, potions and the occult arts in general.

Each of the prequels so far has centred around an investigative theme - the first focussing mainly on the spirit's of the rivers of London; the second on deaths surrounded by London's remerging Jazz music scene, and the third on an entire underground civilisation, as well as a unifying investigation into the Faceless Man.

This time, the investigations focus on the famous 70s brilliantly awful architecture that is the all encompassing high rise flats. The local council are making an effort to have a specific building called 'Skygarden' torn down, but all is not quite as it seems, and Peter and Lesley, accompanied of course by Toby the dog, quickly set up residence within the building to delve into the magical mysteries shrouding it's unique design.

The book does little to shake the structure of the previous entries, but as someone famously said, why fix what ain't broke? It's a gripping read from beginning to end and it almost feels a little more mature a style of writing here, including elements from past books naturally without taking too much focus and creating a very legitimate alternative universe of London town. By this point, character's relationships are already established and I feel that suitably less time is given to these. Yhere is lots of inclusion of historic data however  about the architecture of the buildings (with artistic license, of course) which makes the story even more real, not to mention interesting.

The investigation as a whole feels like more of an investigation, with events only truly heating up towards the end of the book when I felt like the pace dramatically increased all of a sudden. It then finished on an excellent cliff hanger which has made it incredibly difficult to put off reading the next entry whilst I get through some of the backlog of other books I now have mounting up...

So, once again, a positive no-spoiler review for an Aaronovitch novel. I highly recommend (if you haven't done so already) that you go and start this series from Rivers Of London immediately, as they're all unique fantasy detective fiction in their own right, but come together to create something much more. You'll still be reading an absorbing tale without the hindsight of reading the prequels, but it will help cement the believable London that has been created.

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