A Madness of Angels

Reviewer: Naomi Hinchen

Author: Kate Griffin

Published: 2009

Reviewed: 2010-01-11

Publisher: Orbit

I had never heard of this book before I picked it up by chance at
Barnes and Noble, but I was sold the moment I read the blurb: "Two
years after his untimely death, Matthew Swift finds himself breathing
once again, lying in bed in his London home." With a setup like that,
I had to buy it out of sheer curiosity. I read it knowing nothing but
what was on the jacket flap, and I enjoyed it all the more because of
the complete lack of spoilers, so I'll try to keep the plot details to
a minimum.

One think I really loved was the world-building. In a lot of ways the
magical-London setting reminded me of Neverwhere, except that in this
case the protagonist is already part of the magical side of things and
knows his way around. I loved the integration of real places and
landmarks into the magical world, even if they weren't places that I
was personally familiar with.

I also enjoyed the protagonist's voice, which was different from
anything I had ever seen done before. It's a little confusing to read
at first, since the narrator switches between singular and plural
pronouns constantly, sometimes within the same sentence. However, I
liked that the author didn't immediately explain what was going on or
why Matthew would be referring to himself in the plural, and instead
let it gradually come out later in the book. There are hints, though,
if you know what to look for, and I think I may have to read the book
again just to catch all the clues and double meanings I missed the
first time.

Highly recommended to fans of urban fantasy. According to Amazon,
there's a sequel, so I'll be sure to read it when it comes out in the