Taking place after the seventh novel, Lies Sleeping, in author Ben Aaronovitch’s hugely successful (and incredibly enjoyable) Rivers of London series, The Fey and The Furious is a high-octane tale of fast cars, fierce fairy folk, murder, deceit, double cross and betrayal. Magician in training and Detective Constable, and long standing River’s hero, Peter Grant finds himself dragged back into the world of law and order following his recent suspension when a body of a young street racer from London is discovered at the bottom of a reservoir in the Netherlands.
While people die every day and the discovery of a corpse usually falls within the jurisdiction of the local constabulary, as the young man in question had no passport and there was no record of him leaving the UK and an unusual and highly specialised cargo is found with his body in his car, the locals decide that it’s better to pass this particular case up the food chain and it ends up dropping into Peter’s lap. Even though he’s seen his fair share of unusual and strange things, this investigation forces Peter to confront old enemies as he becomes immersed in a world of illicit street racing that stretches magical barriers to breaking and plunges him headlong into a fairy political struggle that’s mired in conspiracy and blood soaked riches.
Unlike a lot of tales that are part of a long series, you don’t need to be steeped in existing Rivers mythology to completely lose yourself in The Fey and The Furious. Riffing on the popularity of Vin Diesel’s box office shattering franchise, while lightly mocking the overbearing macho insecurity that it’s engulfed in, The Fey and The Furious is an engaging story that’s works as a standalone tale while adding to the canon to Aaronovitch’s long running series. Filled with detailed characterisation, punchy dialogue and a plot that drags magic into an incredibly human, street wise, slobber-knocker of a romp that revolves around horsepower, intrigue and all things fantastical, that’s brought to life by the delicate and sumptuous art of Lee Sullivan and Mariano Laclaustra. If you’re not a fan of Aaronovitch’s richly detailed world already, by the time you finish reading The Fey and the Furious you’ll be fully committed to exploring all of London’s Rivers… Tim Cundle