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London Falling

Friday, November 5, 2021

London Falling (2012) Paul Cornell (Shadow Police)

London FallingMe, to myself. “I haven’t read the Shadow Police series in awhile”. Also me, “It’s really dark.” “I know it’s dark! I read it and listened to it!” “Are you sure you’re up for that right now?” (stomps off in a huff to read London Falling.)

Oh. Yeah. It’s really really dark. Content Warnings for child harm, child murder (mostly off the page), kidnapping, parental murder, scenes of hell. Lots of bad things.

It’s also a stunning book that I highly recommend.

Costain and Sefton are UCs on a long operation that is being ended. Tonight.

“You think I’ve gone native?”

“Oh, you don’t catch me out like that, sunshine. I wouldn’t dream of using such ill-considered language to a gentleman of West Indian extraction … who’d be on to Professional Standards like a shot.”

Quill has been running Operation Goodfella who doesn’t trust at least one of his UCs, and just wants to nail Rob Toshack(the head of the gang they are after) to the wall.

Quill knew one old lag who’d been successfully cautioned with “Get in the fucking van, you’re nicked,” but that one had heard the full standard caution on forty-three previous occasions, and was thus claimed to have got the idea by now.

Lisa Ross has spent her entire adulthood focused on one goal: to take down her uncle, Rob Toshack.

Ross had been told her appearance could put the fear of God into people at the best of times. Her right eye was blue, but her left one was gray, and her nose was askew.

Unwillingly, the four are made into a team, and try to unravel just what is going on with Toshack’s organizaion.

“Footballers who score hat-tricks against West Ham do not always die in suspicious circumstances, but—”

She clicked to the next image, which showed a series of graphs.

“— they often do. More often, statistically, than they should.”

There is levity in the story.

It was actually an unprofessional level of secrecy; even international terrorists paid their council-tax bills.

“I saw a lot … of fuckwittery concerning myself,” said Quill, “about which I feel like suing someone. Pity, then, that it was all true.”

But it’s dark humor. Police humor.

“Might as well look as if we’re together,” said Sefton, under his breath, as he pressed the tea bag against the side of his cup to try and force out a bit of flavor. “Seeing we’re the only black guys in here.”

“The New Age,” agreed Costain, “does not recruit in line with best practice.

It’s dark. It’s really dark. But it’s also am amazing story where you never expect what’s coming.

Publisher: Tor Books
Rating: 8.5/10




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