That's The Way To Do It
So said Mr Punch and I am pretty sure the author was listening intently because he has certainly taken those words to heart.
I purchased this book on sale because I had very few supernatural books in my current "to read" list and I am so glad that I did. It is a rip-roarer of a tale and I was absorbed from the start - probably because it mixes police procedural (and we already know my penchant for that genre) with the magical world in a manner that can only be called deft. To be honest I really liked the cover too so that swayed me a little bit.
Peter Grant is an eminently likeable character with a touch of the "ohh shiny" about him; something I can eminently relate too. His distractable nature proves to be of benefit as a mysterious witness to a dastardly, and very public, murder comes forward and suddenly he is thrust in to a netherworld that he never knew existed. At least it has saved him from the tedium of driving a desk. His relationship with Leslie May is a joy of will they won't they proportions and their dialogue and interactions are relaxed on the page with the undercurrents left, mostly, to the reader to divine.
At the risk of alienating people I can't help but relate this to a Harry Potter for a grown up generation. It has the same mystical world living alongside the depressingly mundane, a bumbling main character that is out of their depth but yet strangely compelling and a mysterious father figure in Thomas Nightingale. This is NOT a bad thing, except that it leaves you pouting that magic isn't real.
There are several story threads building up here - the slightly dodgy police force, the gruesome murders, Peter's training sessions at the folly, the power struggle between the River Gods and a little dash of romance just to season the cauldron. The murders may be resolved by the end of the book and a resolution appears to have been found that appeases the God's egos but Gods can be fickle so who can be sure. Everything else is still a work in progress and I already have the second book queued up and ready to go.