“Jennifer Morgue” is a loose follow up to the “Atrocity Archive” by Charlie Stross. The main protagonist, Bob Howard, is working for the “Laundry”. A British intelligence branch countering the occult and paranormal threats to the Crown (of mainly a tentacular origin). I loved the first book and I enjoyed this one. The story is entertaining, although it is a pastiche of James Bond flicks and as such it made me less immersed in the story. That is problem with me I guess – I like to believe that the story I read could happen and here I feel too much like author is blinking to me - “See how cleverly I play with the conventions?”. On the other hand, I admire the way Stross handles Cthulhu mythos – especially magic. As I am an avid Cthulhu roleplaying Game Master I am more than happy to steal his ideas of how magic works and what can be achieved with it.
“Jennifer Morgue” has interesting cast of characters, some romance and all around Open-source geekines. A perfect mix. My biggest gripe with the story comes from the fact that the author uses first person, present tense narration – the same as in his short story collection “Accelerando”. For some reason I find this type of narration harder to read than your typical third person, past tense. Over time I got used to this but the reading was a bit of a chore. Overall a worthy read, particularly if you are interested in thrillers, Lovecraft and British sense of humor.