London Falling by Paul Cornell
Paul Cornell is a name known to many thanks to his work in ‘Doctor Who’ fiction and comics writing, having written some of the best British-related DC superheroes in recent history. I loved his run on ‘Knight and Squire’ and much has been said of his ‘Captain Britain and MI: 13’ series. So when I saw he had written an urban fantasy novel set in London, I jumped at the chance to read it.
Sadly, Paul Cornell’s imagination didn’t have the greatest outlet, which was disappointing, because ‘London Falling’ had such an interesting and exciting story to tell.
Set in a London no doubt very much like our own, this story tells what happens when four of London’s police-force are inadvertently forced into the world of London magic. They have no supervisor or mentor to guide them – an interesting plot choice, and one which makes it all the more upsetting that Cornell couldn’t pull off the writing job necessary to tell this intriguing tale.
Littered to the point of absurdity with ‘authentic London slang’ and a haphazard-disjointed writing style, London Falling is a really tough book to get through. I had to fight through unclear storytelling, point of views, and reveals, leaving me confused as to what had happened, why it happened, and what the relevance was.
A London urban fantasy book simply must include traditional aspects of London culture – its language, understanding, and feel – but not to the detriment of anyone who lives outside the 32 boroughs.
So finishing this book was a real disappointment, given how intriguing the underlying story seemed. While it was a little hard to gauge all the nuances of the story that Cornell was trying to tell, the reality is, in other hands this could have been a gold-star book. And no doubt, if Cornell tried a little less to make this “authentic” then I have every confidence he would be capable of conveying this story in a manner accessible to anyone.
If you are from London, then this book might make more sense to you, however I still feel that it is a book suffering from disjointed narrative.
This London Falling book review was written by Joshua S Hill
Have you read London Falling?
We've found that while readers like to know what we think of a book they find additional reader reviews a massive help in deciding if it is the right book for them. So if you have a spare moment, please tell us your thoughts by writing a reader's review. Thank you.
London Falling reader reviews
Monique from Australia
Confused through much of it. Didn't enjoy it all, yet I loved Ben Aaronvitch's series in the same genre, so had high hopes. Didn't like the story, felt completely flat at the end. I do not recommend.
4/10 from 2 reviews
Write a reader review
Thank you for taking the time to write a review on this book, it really makes a difference and helps readers to find their perfect book.
More recommended reading in this genre
Elena Michaels is a model woman for the 21st century: self-assured, keenly intelligent, fighting fit. And like every modern woman, she has her secrets. Nothing extraordinar...
Blood and Feathers
Alice isn’t having the best of days: she got rained on, missed her bus, was late for work. When two angels arrive, claiming her life so far is a lie, it turns epic, g...
An explosion in a nuclear power plant. Kids patched up with scavenged body parts and bionic implants. A growing army of superhuman soldiers programmed for destruction. '...
Ben Street: the Secret of the Lost Soul
When the students of a famous Performing Arts School left for their outing to Stonehenge one morning in 1946, they had no idea they would witness the crash of a meteorite. ...
The Never Pages
The Never Pages is a very odd book to behold – there's no blurb on the back, no author announced on the front and it actually looks like an old journal. It tells ...
The Enchantment Emporium
Alysha Gale is twenty-four, unemployed, and tired of her family meddling in her life personally and magically. So when a letter arrives from her missing grandmother, bequea...
This Savage Song
Kate Harker and August Flynn are the heirs to a divided city, a grisly metropolis where the violence has begun to create real and deadly monsters. All Kate wants is to be a...
What if angels not only walked among us - but were our celebrities? What if they saved people for money? That's the reality in Angel City, where hot young Jackson Godsp...
Grace Under Fire
Frog and Esther Jones
It’s the 21st Century, and magic users are outlaws. The public considers summoners evil and in league with the Devil. So when someone or something wipes out the entir...
The Lovely Bones
The Lovely Bones is the story of a family devastated by a gruesome murder -- a murder recounted by the teenage victim. Upsetting, you say? Remarkably, first-time novelist A...
Katharine Geryon is living the life her family name has dictated, and why not? After all, it has given her a good job in the family company and a fine life with all the thi...
License to Ensorcell
Psychic Agent Nola O'Grady isn't sure returning to San Francisco, and living near her unusual family, is a good idea. Her job, with a psychic agency so obscure even...
The Fallen and Leviathan
Thomas E Sniegoski
On his eighteenth birthday, Aaron begins to hear strange voices and is convinced he is going insane. But having moved from foster home to foster home, Aaron doesn't kno...
The body you are wearing used to be mine. So begins the letter Myfanwy Thomas is holding when she awakes in a London park surrounded by bodies all wearing latex gloves. Wit...
The Weight of Souls
Sixteen year old Taylor Oh is cursed: if she is touched by the ghost of a murder victim then they pass a mark beneath her skin. She has three weeks to find their murderer a...
Looking for more suggestions? Try these pages: