Shelf Control #299: The Angel of the Crows by Katherine Addison

Shelves final

Welcome to Shelf Control — an original feature created and hosted by Bookshelf Fantasies.

Shelf Control is a weekly celebration of the unread books on our shelves. Pick a book you own but haven’t read, write a post about it (suggestions: include what it’s about, why you want to read it, and when you got it), and link up! For more info on what Shelf Control is all about, check out my introductory post, here.

Want to join in? Shelf Control posts go up every Wednesday. See the guidelines at the bottom of the post, and jump on board!

Title: The Angel of the Crows
Author: Katherine Addison
Published: 2020
Length: 448 pages

What it’s about (synopsis via Goodreads):

This is not the story you think it is. These are not the characters you think they are. This is not the book you are expecting.

In an alternate 1880s London, angels inhabit every public building, and vampires and werewolves walk the streets with human beings under a well-regulated truce. A fantastic utopia, except for a few things: Angels can Fall, and that Fall is like a nuclear bomb in both the physical and metaphysical worlds. And human beings remain human, with all their kindness and greed and passions and murderous intent.

Jack the Ripper stalks the streets of this London too. But this London has an Angel. The Angel of the Crows.

How and when I got it:

I received an ARC in early 2020.

Why I want to read it:

This is an odd choice for me for a Shelf Control book. For once, I’m highlighting a book that I started but ending up DNFing.

So why pick it for Shelf Control? It’s simple. It’s all about the author.

I love, love, love The Goblin Emperor by Katherine Addison, so back in early 2020, when I saw she had a new book on the way, I immediately requested an ARC, and was thrilled to get approved for it. Then I started seeing reviews, and realized that this might not be a book for me.

What I didn’t know in advance is that this is a Sherlock story (but with angels, vampires, etc) — and I’m just not a Sherlock fan. So when the book blurb says “This is not the story you think it is. These are not the characters you think they are. ” — are they just being coy? Why hide this information from readers?

In any case, once I understood what this book was, I lost interest pretty much right away. So again, why feature this on Shelf Control when I already decided not to read it?

Well, I’m open to being convinced to give it another try, that’s why! I’m interested in hearing from anyone who’s read it: Is it worth reading? Is it worth the effort, especially given the length and that I’m not excited about the Sherlock aspect?

It bugs me to just give up on a book by this author… but we’ll always have The Goblin Emperor!

What do you think? If you’ve read this book, do you recommend it? And if you haven’t read it, would you want to?

Please share your thoughts!


Want to participate in Shelf Control? Here’s how:

  • Write a blog post about a book that you own that you haven’t read yet.
  • Add your link in the comments or link back from your own post, so I can add you to the participant list.
  • Check out other posts, and…

Have fun!