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Familiar Diversions

I'm a librarian who loves anime, manga, and reading a wide variety of genres.

Currently reading

The Dark Victorian: Risen Volume One
Elizabeth Watasin
Progress: 35/97 pages
Welcome to Night Vale: A Novel
Dylan Marron, Jeffrey Cranor, Cecil Baldwin, Retta Andresen, Joseph Fink, Harper Audio, Dan Bittner, Therese Plummer
Progress: 211/722 minutes
Death Note: Another Note
Progress: 54/176 pages
Jane Jensen: Gabriel Knight, Adventure Games, Hidden Objects (Influential Video Game Designers)
Jennifer deWinter, Carly A. Kocurek, Anastasia Salter
The No Asshole Rule: Building a Civilized Workplace and Surviving One That Isn't
Robert I. Sutton
Progress: 140/210 pages
The Invisible Orientation: An Introduction to Asexuality
Julie Sondra Decker
The Mystic Marriage
Heather Rose Jones
Progress: 302/426 pages
Ichi-F: A Worker's Graphic Memoir of the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant
Kazuto Tatsuta
Progress: 448/553 pages
The Naked Sun
Isaac Asimov
Progress: 20/187 pages
Jennifer Foehner Wells
Progress: 58/367 pages
Midnight Riot - Ben Aaronovitch This is one of those cases where my enjoyment of the main character's voice eclipsed my issues with the story. I loved Peter Grant. He had a dry, snarky, and often self-deprecating sense of humor, even when describing his work, London, or his childhood. When Nightingale took him on and started teaching him magic, he didn't begin to morph into a Gary Sue – his training involved lots and lots of repetition and practice, and he didn't become a magical whiz just in time for the final showdown with the killer. His strength lay in his ability to deal with people, including the not-quite-human sorts, and his interest in information of all sorts. I have no idea how much of it was true, but I loved all the little London details.The main thing that turns me off a lot of urban fantasy is painful, angst-filled, messy relationships, particularly love triangles (or polygons). This series has the potential to go in that direction, but so far it's just that, potential. This book introduces two possible love interests: Leslie, another cop, and Beverley, a goddess of a small river.There was a bit of flirtation between Beverley and Peter, but her being not-quite-human meant that going any further was not a decision to be made lightly. Peter and Leslie were very comfortable together, but weren't a couple. Peter was attracted to her, but Leslie was...I'm not quite sure. One particular scene had me raising an eyebrow and wondering if she was really more interested in Peter than he realized. I was relieved to see that, at this point in the series, there was no hint of snarling female jealousy between Leslie and Beverley. After the way the first book ended, though, I'm a little afraid that the next one is going to feature more relationship guilt/angst.The weakest part of the book, for me, was probably the mystery itself. For a long while, things didn't seem to be moving forward. Peter would look into apparently random incidences of violence with Nightingale, or be on the scene during one of those incidences of violence. There wasn't much in the way of hints as to what connected those incidents, so it was just random stuff that happened in between Peter trying to learn magic and figure out a way to mediate the situation between Mother and Father Thames. It wasn't until later that the mystery really started to interest me, but I don't know if I would have gotten that far if Peter's “voice” hadn't appealed to me so much.I definitely plan on reading the next book. Peter's an enjoyable character, and I want to see Aaronovitch does with him and his world. I'll just cross my fingers that the relationship aspects stay tolerable.(Original review, with read-alikes and watch-alikes, posted on A Library Girl's Familiar Diversions.)