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The Severed Streets

Sunday, November 14, 2021

The Severed Streets (2014) Paul Cornell (Shadow Police)

The Severed StreetsWhen the Secretary of the Treasury is killed violently and inexplicably, Quill’s group is certain the case falls to their remit–even if they are the only ones who know it.

‘We’ve been given access to … advanced sensor … techniques, the details of which we can’t go into. It gives us a bit of an edge.’

‘You jammy buggers. We could do with that technology for the riots.’

‘We’re trying it out. Maybe other units will get it soon.’ ’Cos you’d really enjoy that.

But it’s only been a few months since they received the Sight, and the still barely know what to do with it, so they still have to reply upon standard policing techniques.

‘Oh, right, I get it: you’re the good cop.’

Costain pointed to himself, looking surprised. ‘Bad cop.’

‘Surreal cop,’ said Sefton, also pointing to himself.

‘Good cop,’ admitted Quill. ‘Relatively. Which is weird.’

Ross just raised an eyebrow.

Tunstall looked between them, unsure if they were taking the piss.

Being interviewed by this unit, thought Quill, must sometimes seem like being interrogated by Monty Python’s Flying Circus.

Even on a reread, this story still shocks me with the twists. Because once the Big Surprise happens, you realize all bets are off, and anything can happen.

One of the things I particularly enjoy about this story is that Sefton is just accepted by the other members of the team.

Sefton suddenly grinned. ‘I’ve been thinking about that,’ he said. ‘You remember when Losley scanned our bar codes and suddenly knew about my batting for the other team?’

‘I’m so glad we all speak metaphor,’ said Quill.

And although bad things happen to Sefton, in a lot of ways he gets of easier than everyone else on his time, and (as is noted) he is one of the two lucky to be able to have someone outside of their unit to talk to about the weird shit.

Yes, I am talking super vaguely about the story, but that’s because there are so many twists and surprises that it’s hard to talk about anything of the first chapter or so.

Anyway. this book is amazing. It’s dark as shit and will wreck you, but it’s so good, I remain pissed off there was never a fourth in the series.

Publisher: Tor Books
Rating: 9/10




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