It’s been years and years and years since the last time I read a graphic novel, and this may sound crazy, but I was actually a little nervous about whether I’d be comfortable enough with the format to make this transition in the Peter Grant series.
Body Work is the continuation of the “Rivers of London”/PC Peter Grant series from Ben Aaronovitch. I mis-copied the info, and I thought that Body Work belonged after Foxglove Summer, but there’s an indication that it comes after Broken Homes, which I found confusing, but no matter when it all comes down to it, because it’s completely unrelated to the series mytharc (do people outside of X-Files fandom use that phrase? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ ), and is totally a Monster of the Week.
Look, it’s a very short book. The edition that I read was 5 comics anthologized into a single collection, and even so, it’s very short. By its very nature, it’s forced to be superficial. And while I love that Aaronovitch makes room for this storytelling medium, I missed a lot of the heart of the series. There wasn’t a lot of suspense, or sustaining tension, because there just isn’t time for that.
That said, I’m glad he went for it. Not only because it’s a really cool idea, to take the same characters from novel to graphic novel and then back again, as he will do with The Hanging Tree, which is currently sitting on my coffee table, ready to be read. But because it was lovely to see someone’s renderings of so many characters that I’ve been visualizing by myself for five novels so far. I agreed with some of the artist’s (Matthew Dow Smith) renderings, and totally rejected others. I wonder if that’s fair, since Aaronovitch is the one who wrote them, and surely had veto power over the art in this book. But screw it, hashtag: notmyMolly.
A for effort, A+ for more Peter Grant (and smokin’ hot Beverly Brook!), B- for actual story told.