And then The Rook decided I needed to read something so fantastic, so clever, so damn funny, that it would leave me a happy camper for a few hours.
I am a happy camper. I loved this book. Seriously, loved it. I can imagine it as a BBC series full of quirky characters in that beloved quirky place, London. There's something to be said for a city that is a gazillion years old--you do believe pretty much anything can happen there. And in the center of this craziness, you meet Myfanwy Thomas (pronounced Mifany). She's lost her memory, and is surrounded by a ring of dead people; she's in a park and completely gobsmacked. This begins Myfanwy's journey as she pulls out a letter from her coat, reads it, and quickly discovers she's a Rook--a top notch member of the Checquy--Britain's secret supernatural agency. It keeps all of Great Britain safe from all the supernatural stuff that goes on all day, every day. Most people are oblivious to it, and the Checquy likes it that way. Imagine Emma Peele with amazing abilities to control people's nervous systems just by thought. That's what Myfanwy does. Except the Myfanwy that wrote that letter (and many more for the new Myfanwy) is known as meek, mild, and top notch with numbers. The new Myfanwy isn't quite that way, and as she navigates her first day at work--bluffing the whole time--she soon discovers her powers have been underutilized and she's pretty pissed at whomever took her memories.
Follow Myfanwy as she works to find out who stole her memories, why, and what it's got to do with what the old Myfanwy uncovered during her routine paperwork duties. You will love the new Myfanwy--who's not afraid to swear, stand up for herself, and kick some ass. You'll also come to know the old Myfanwy, who knew something was going to happen to her and took the time to build a file full of information for the new Myfanwy. All of the players in this novel are so much fun to get to know, and Daniel O'Malley's ability to construct such an amazing, crazy, convoluted, oh-so-British world full of supernatural creatures and situations will keep you glued to the pages.
Quite simply, this book is one of my favorite books of 2012. Maybe, just maybe, it could take the top crown for this year. This book is perfect for anyone who loves science fiction/fantasy, all things British, and wants to read a rollicking good story. I found myself snickering quite a bit.
Rating: 5/5 for an amazing, imaginative novel. Please do not stop writing, Daniel O'Malley.
Available in hardcover, paperback, and e-book.