BOOK REVIEW: The Rook (The Checquy Files)

omalley-rookBond meets The X-Men in The Rook the first book by Daniel O’Malley, which is a thrilling rollercoaster right from the beginning to the end.

Dear You,

The body you are wearing used to be mine…..But you are probably care little about this body’s past. After all, I’m writing this letter for you to read in the future. Prehaps you are wondering why anyone would do such a thing. The answer is both simple and complicated. The simple answer is because I knew it would be necessary. The complicated answer could take a little more time.

You are probably aware of this next part already, since if you are reading this then you have survived several immediate threats, but you are in danger. Just because you are not me does not make you safe. Along with this body, you have inherited certain problems and responsibilities.

Go find a safe place, and then open the second letter.

This is the letter that Myfanwy (Rhymes with Tiffany) Thomas finds in her pocket, after she wakes up in a rainy park in London, surrounded by bodies wearing latex gloves, with no memory of who she is. Her responsibilities lie with her job: She is a Rook – a high-ranking member of a very secret British organisation called the Checquy. High up members all have different abilities that enable them to fight the many supernatural things that ‘go bump in the night’. Her problems are that she has been betrayed by someone with the Cheqcuy. Myfanwy musy therefore try and carry on with her work (without letting on that she has no memory of her past life), whilst also trying to work out which person is responsible for her memory loss, and is a traitor to the court.

The characters are wonderfully created and it is a brilliant plot idea that as Myfanwy learns about her past, job and who she is (from letters and files left by the ‘old’ Myfanwy) so do we. It really immerses you deep into the story, and make you feel like you are following Myfanwy on her journey of discovery as she learns how to use her own supernatural powers, and works out just who Myfanwy Thomas actually is – and it’s certainly not the quiet, scared women she used ot be. This Myfanwy is on the war path and everyone better get the hell out of her way!

The world that O’Malley creates is very vivid and real, and as mentioned previously you really feel like you are part of the action, and all aspects of the Cheqcuy are well thought up, as are the threats they face – purple fungi carpet anyone!. Starting off the novel with the letter is just a stroke of genius, and so original, it just made me want to keep reading and reading.

The plot is very fast paced, yet I didn’t fell like the end was rushed at all. And which the traitor was finally revealed their idenity was a huge shock, which was cool. The Rook has a great amount of humor running through it, and that just helped to make this a joy to read. I hope this is the first of many books, as I just want to keep reading about Myfanwy Thomas and The Checquy.

Rating: 5/5
Reporter: Wendy

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