Author: Charlie Fletcher
Number of Pages: 432 (Paperback)
Published: 18th August 2015 by Orbit
Genre: Fantasy, Urban Fantasy
SOMETIMES YOU LOOK IN THE MIRROR – SOMETIMES IT LOOKS BACK
Those who belong to the secret society called the Oversight know many things. They know cold iron will hold back the beasts in the darkness. They know it is dangerous to stand between two mirrors. And they know that, despite their dwindling numbers, it remains their duty to protect humanity from the supernatural. And vice versa.
But two of the society’s strongest members, Mr. Sharp and Sara Falk, are trapped in the world between the mirrors, looking for each other, searching for a way back home. What they discover there will have ominous consequences both for the Oversight and the world it protects, effects that will make them question everything they thought they knew.
The Paradox is the much anticipated sequel to Charlie Fletcher’s dark and compelling urban fantasy debut, The Oversight. – from Goodreads
The Paradox picks up right after The Oversight.
The Last Hand regroup having lost two of their number to the strange world beyond the mirrors.
Charlie Pyefinch and Lucky Harker become the youngest and newest members of the Oversight, and must learn the ways of this new and unknown world into which they’ve been drawn. Charlie learns with Hodge, while Lucy goes to the Isle of Dogs with The Smith, of whom she is incredibly mistrustful. The Smith’s story comes to light in response to Lucy’s misgivings and I thought it was just wonderful, one of my favourite parts of this book. What a revelation, and so sad too.
Strands entwine in a marvellous way, and characters who first appeared in the pages of The Oversight are developed further within this story. The Ghost of the Itch Ward, who remained at the edges of the previous book comes to the forefront now in her quest for vengeance. Her desire for revenge causes her to seek out an alliance that may become dangerous for Amos, the mute boy who accompanies her on her mission.
In the darkness and shadows the Sluagh plan to take back what is rightfully theirs, whilst Mountfellon and the Templebane family also remain worthy adversaries of the Oversight. Lingering almost out of sight is the enigmatic Citizen, a character who it seems has a lot to answer for.
The world beyond the mirrors into which Sara Falk and Mr Sharp have ventured is eerie and frightening – an endless maze where time ceases to function properly and the mirror wights dwell, waiting to prey on lost wanderers. I really liked these characters, particularly the nun who strikes up an uneasy deal with Mr Sharp and leads him to a terrible place, the scene of past crimes against the Oversight, and a place he may never escape from.
The Paradox introduces some great new characters.
Cait is a venatrix, a hunter who has similar goals to the Oversight but prefers to work alone. She joins forces with the group for a while but also has her own path to follow.
Then there are the Shadowhunters, Otto and Ida. I can’t wait to read more about them in the next book, because I think they will be a brilliant addition to the Oversight. I liked Ida’s strength and determination and loved the way Ida and Cook first met.
In the midst of the peril and scheming there was at least one moment I’d hoped for since the last book and it was done perfectly, but to say more would be to spoil it and I couldn’t do that.
The tale races through to a great conclusion, although talk about leaving us hanging… I CAN’T BELIEVE IT ENDED THERE!
I need to know what happens next, and what’s going to become of all my favourite characters. Will the Oversight triumph over their enemies in the end?
The Paradox leaves the stakes high as the Oversight are dealt a number of blows and various enemies will not doubt take advantage of the circumstances to carry out their plans, some of which are still to be revealed. The Citizen is particularly intriguing, so I‘m hoping for a great confrontation with the Oversight in the next book, which I‘m already really looking forward to.