Feb. 5th, 2017

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I wanted something entertaining and easy to occupy an afternoon of lying on the sofa feeling grotty (ready to be over this lurgy any time it likes, really), so I decided to download Body Work, the first of the graphic novels linked to Ben Aaronovitch's Rivers of London series, and read it on my iPad. 45 minutes later, I downloaded the second, Night Witch, and have preordered the third, which isn't due out as a collected volume until May.

Each graphic novel is basically a short piece of casefic; Body Work is set between Broken Homes and Foxglove Summer, and Night Witch comes between Foxglove Summer and The Hanging Tree. They're adjacent to the main canon, rather than advancing the overall plot, although I recognised things in both that were referred to in The Hanging Tree and although Peter doesn't realise it, as readers we are shown a connection between the events of Night Witch and the series arc plot. (One thing that the graphic novel format allows is the opportunity to escape the confines of Peter's first-person narrative and see things from other people's points of view for once, or even scenes where he isn't present.)

I found both easy, fun reads; I think I slightly preferred Body Work, but only because it features Guleed and Stephanopoulos, two of my favourite minor characters, and neither is in Night Witch. I was worried that the format would completely lose Peter's snarky, geeky narrative voice, which is one of my favourite things about the books, but it managed to retain enough of it, and it was interesting to see a visual interpretation of the characters. There are also some entertaining "extras": vignettes of life at the Folly and Peter's notes on various areas of London and magical techniques. Graphic novels aren't my preferred format, but if you enjoyed the novels I'd say these are wortha try, especially if you're feeling under the weather.


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