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The Queen's Conjuror: the science and magic of Doctor Dee
Benjamin Woolley
Progress: 177/344 pages


Not really impressed by this one, it read oddly like Dickens/Wilkie Collins fanfiction in that, places and people from their books turned up weirdly mixed in with people and situations which sounded like they came from the same sources but didn't.


Case in point, Doctor Woodcourt, Jo the crossing sweeper and Trooper George all make appearances under their own names and with their own  characters.  There are  quotes and echoes from Bleak House and other Dickens works.  There are also characters called Hester, Carley and Mr Jarvis - not Esther, Charlie and Mr Jarndyce although they say enough of the same things and behave in enough of the same ways that I spent more time trying to work out who they were meant to be than I did enjoying the story.


Also not impressed by the "detective" work of the hero, or indeed of anyone especially Inspector Bucket who kept turning up and announcing that he knew things essential for the plot without any explanation of how he knew them.


All that said, London and its characters high and low are interestingly portrayed but I don't think that's enough to get me to read any more in the series.


Bleak House is perhaps my favourite book of all time: I don't think this added anything to it.