Ok ok …. I survived the writing group review. More than survived even. Some people really liked what I had written and even better some big flaws had been pointed out to me so I can now fix them.

Of course I have not edited any further or even touched the manuscript yet… But all that is about to change! Because I have a very cunning plan. I will post one short flash fiction a day in November under my stories Page and I will attempt to finish the whole first draft as part of NaNoWriMo. Fool I hear you cry. I agree perhaps its a bit much pressure but what’s the worst that can happen? I fail? At least I would have tried and even that paltry try would have moved me on a bit!

So here goes something or possibly nothing 🙂


Rivers of London – Three amazing books by Ben Aaronovitch

It’s a lost art – book buying. I wince even as I type that – like I’m personally killing books by saying it. But if not lost today then soon. Ebooks are great and do make life easier, yet they just aren’t the same. But they are changing the reading/writing/publishing game. Getting a kindle was a bitter sweet moment in my life. You see I’m a book geek. Always have been. I love to touch them, leaf through them, smell them. I also love to feel their covers. I’m not proud of it but I just can’t bring my self to buy or love a book with a rubbish cover. It’s taken me a while to overcome this enough to buy ebooks. It’s made a bit easier by my snazzy tactile kindle cover.

What first attracted me to Rivers of London was the cover. Its doodle / graffiti map of London overlaid with the strong bold font in blood red, not to mention how smooth and right it felt in my hand.

Sci-fi set in London. I was sold! I grew up in the big smoke and any books that are set in it immediately pluck at my nostalgic heart strings. The pictures in my mind are sharper and more vivid.

From the first page I was impressed. It’s rare to find a main character so immediate and likeable. You are instantly in his head for the crazy ride through the unknown magical side of London.

Peter is honest, modest and most importantly funny. No matter how serious the shit going down is, his perspective is light and likeable. It doesn’t detract from the severity of the events but it provides a counter point which gives it a great balance.

There is a winning combination in the book that makes it such a page turner: it combines the behind the scenes crime novel with magic and myth adding a big helping of London’s secret history into the mix.

The secret ingredient is Peters perspective and his world view. He has had a tough life; black in a mostly white profession and city; his dads continuing battle with addiction and driving passion for music. Yet he is not maudlin nor troubled. He is just trying to get on and do the best he can. It makes him easy to identify with and really easy to like.

So far there are three books in this series with a fourth in the pipe line (Broken Homes (2013)).

Book 1) Rivers of London (2011) introduces us to Peter Grant, a well meaning if not always very focused police constable who haphazardly discovers another side of London – a darker side. He works with the last wizard in England to unravel a mystery and save ordinary Londoners from a sly evil that is literally tearing people up.


Book 2) Moon Over Soho (2011) follows on directly from the previous book. We have the cast of regular characters plus many new ones through whom we begin to learn more of the magical side of London. We look back on Nightingale’s past as well as Peter’s own history. We see how his parents, his childhood made him what he is. There are good times and bad, plus plenty of twist and turns to keep the adrenalin soaring.


Book 3) Whispers Under Ground (2012) is a continuation that sees lovely Lesley installed at the Folly and Peter with a chance of getting on the Murder Squad. It’s the amazing mix of history and myth all told in the crisp funny voice that keeps you totally hooked from the first sentence to the last.


Revenge is not a dish best served cold. Revenge is a primal urge to show your opponent how you have suffered and how you have worked so hard to make them suffer.

Furthermore how their suffering has inspired you to do a jig of joy on their freshly made grave, while their limo corpse is still cooling.

I, of course, speak metaphorically.

Boss – Your review is due in the next two weeks.

Me – Huh. Oh is it? (casual to the point of disinterest)

Boss – I was wondering when you wanted to come over for it. My diary is pretty free next Thursday.

Me – Oh. Well I’ve been thinking about that. Funny story really. I was at this work event and bumped into &&&&. Isn’t he your boss? He’s so lovely! You never mentioned that he was so lovely! And i didn’t know he was a keen golfer.

Boss – Hmm is he? How interesting.

Me – (adopting a subconscious Vally girl upspeak) And i love golf (lie) and it was really weird as we both knew Steve from marketing and &&&& didn’t know Steve was a golfer too (partial lie) and we both thought how nice Steve was (blatant lie) and how we should all go golfing together. Anyway we talked about work and where we saw the sector going (utter lie). He was keen to hear how the project was going (badly) and why (badly run fiefdoms die splendid deaths).

Boss – That’s nice (meaning anything but).

Me – And we are meeting for lunch Next week. Which is great, because it turns out he was looking to mentor someone and I was looking for a mentor. Isn’t that a weird coincidence!?! (by this point the glee is genuine and all my words run to form a kind of breathless gobbledygook)

Boss – I see. (le penny it starts to descend).

Me – Yeah so we chatted about that for aaaaaaggggges and he was really interested and the he mentioned that your review was on the 20th. And that you would both be here then (by this point I can’t even stop myself 1- from using ‘and’ as every other word, 2- from the upspeak. In all honesty I don’t even know why it came out. Neither one of us is American. Perhaps I didn’t want my implied ‘nahnah nah nana’ to be so obvious or that implied. Who knows?)

Boss – Yes…. I guess it makes sense for me to come and see you for your review then.

Me – Oh good. I thought you’d agree. (go lie down as adrenaline recedes)

Ta da!!

Ok so not a huge victory in any way shape or form i hear you say! No victory in playing her own pointless little game. But i had the opportunity and didn’t want to waste it! To me it was like realising she is not my master and more importantly that I’m no longer her bitch! I have a secret (she is shit at her job (shhhh don’t tell)) and I now have HER masters ear.

The next few weeks will be a whole load of sadistic fun!!