The Annihilation Score

The Annihilation Score

Book - 2015 | First edition.
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To the average civilian, Mo O'Brien and her husband Bob Howard are boring middle-aged civil servants. But within the labyrinthine secret circles of Her Majesty's Government, they're operatives working for the nation's occult security service known as the Laundry, charged with defending Britain against dark supernatural forces threatening humanity. Mo's latest assignment is to assist the police in containing an unusual outbreak: ordinary citizens suddenly imbued with extraordinary super powers. Unfortunately these people prefer playing super-pranks instead of performing super-heroics. The Mayor of London's being levitated by a dumpy man in Trafalgar Square would normally be a source of shared amusement for Mo and Bob, but they're currently separated because something's come between them--something evil. An antique violin, an Erich Zahn original, made of white human bone, was designed to produce music capable of slaughtering demons. Mo is the custodian of this unholy instrument. It invades her dreams and yearns for the blood of her colleagues--and her husband. And despite Mo's proficiency as a world-class violinist, it cannot be controlled.
Publisher: New York : Ace Books, 2015.
Edition: First edition.
Copyright Date: ©2015
ISBN: 9780425281178
0425281175
Branch Call Number: STR
Characteristics: x, 401 pages.

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SCL_Justin Aug 16, 2017

Short orientation: The Laundry is a British governmental department dealing with “things humans were not meant to know.” It turns out the multiverse is leaky and math that looks like magic (and that’s much easier to do with late 20th-early 21st century computing power) can summon tentacly beasts and other malign entities from nearby or far realities. The Laundry tries to clean up those messes.

The Annihilation Score is a Laundry Files book about superheroes and policing, but more importantly it’s a Mo O’Brien centred story. After the vampire threat lay waste to the Laundry (and Bob and Mo’s marriage) in The Rhesus Chart, Mo is put in charge of dealing with the outbreak of super-abilities among people who aren’t sorcerors.

It’s about PR and what a superhero uniform looks like, and explaining actions to very powerful government people, especially when there’s a racist super tossing trucks at counter-demonstrators vs the much more powerful djinn summoner hiding in a friendly neighbourhood mosque. Politics yo.

It was good. I found the marriage-breaking-up stuff good and humanizing along with the demon violin infiltrating Mo’s head, but needing it to do her job. Again, this one made management seem like a not-so-terrible thing if done properly, which makes me wonder what I’m becoming.

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