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Showing 1-10 of 33 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 52 reviews
on February 25, 2015
It is just amazing how these books capture me! John is iff again on a wild adventure and there are some funny surprises in it! If you are a fan it's a must read! If your new start with book 1 if you hate references you have not read yet, if you don't mind them read it and get hooked!!!
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on January 4, 2008
_The Unnatural Inquirer_ is the eighth book in Green's Nightside series, and it is a good detective story. For those not familiar with the Nightside, it is the rotten supernatural heart of London, where it is always 3 A.M. and anything and everything is for sale. The Nightside was created to be outside the domains of either Heaven or Hell, and a lot of strange and powerful characters make their home in the Nightside. John Taylor is a cynical and hard-boiled private investigator along the same lines as Chandler's character Philip Marlowe; unlike Marlowe, John has some very powerful abilities of his own and can be quite cold-blooded and ruthless if he's pushed.

The book opens with a brief lost-person and lost-item case for John Taylor to solve. After dealing with that case John gets a call from the offices of the "Unnatural Inquirer", the cheapest and most scandal-mongering tabloid in the Nightside. The Unnatural Inquirer has purchased exclusive rights to a DVD which shows a transmission from the afterlife, but the DVD and its owner have disappeared and it's up to John to find them.

As in "Hell to Pay", something or someone shuts down John's gift for finding things. John resorts to the time-tested P.I. tradition of tracking down and either cajoling, interrogating, or threatening anyone who might have a lead in the case. In their determination to get SOME kind of story out of this no matter what, the staff of the Unnatural Inquirer have assigned Bettie Divine to be a partner for John and follow his every move.

At the end of the day, the DVD and its owner have been located (if you want to know what happens to them you'll have to read the book), John's reputation gets even nastier than it was before, and John's favorite bar is again shot up, incinerated, and just generally trashed (this is a common occurrence, much to the bar owner's irritation).

Some parts of _The Unnatural Inquirer_ seemed a bit too close to plot elements used in _Nightingale's Lament_. And while Bettie Divine's character was enjoyable to have along, she didn't really add a whole lot to the detecting. However, her presence and her temptation force John to decide whether he's happy with his girlfriend Shotgun Suzie, and if not then why should he stay?

As with many of the other Nightside books, the detective cases are just one half of what is going on. The other half is John struggling with questions many of us face (although not on the grand scale he encounters, thank goodness!!!), such as whether it's better to be partners with the cheerful person who likes an idealized version of you, or the taciturn person who sees you as you are and still loves you; how long can self-inflicted guilt last and how much is enough; and if the whole basis of religion is faith, then does anyone really want to KNOW? As one deity on the Street of the Gods remarks, "It's our job to provide mysteries and wonder, not grubby little facts."

Walker, who was formerly the very visible and very powerful voice of the Authorities, is still around and is still hip-deep in the power and politics of running the Nightside. The Authorities all died during the Lilith War, and John has started asking some very pointed questions about who is backing Walker now? I think there is also some foreshadowing that Walker and John Taylor will eventually come to blows.

I'd like to give the book five stars for the religion and free will themes, John's relationship with Suzie, the detective work, the truth about what is really on DVD, and the surprises of Kid Cthulhu and Alex Morissey's new girlfriend. But some of the plot elements were just a little too convenient and there were at least three typographical errors I found, including one where the names of two characters got mixed up. So I'm giving it four stars overall.
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VINE VOICEon September 5, 2016
Continuing the series where it left off at the end of book 7. I am a fan of Simon Green's work, particularly the Nightside series. If you have read the others, this is a worthy sequel. If you haven't, what are you waiting for? I would strongly suggest starting at the beginning in order to fully experience the series, but there are quite a few places where some of the common weirdness of the Nightside are explained at least as much as they have been previously.

It isn't high literature, but it is entertaining and kept me occupied during my latest flights and airport stays.
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on July 23, 2009
While I still found this installment to be interesting not seeing Suzi Shooter for almost the entire book just felt wrong and really Green seems to be casting about for a new way to keep the series interesting that he just can't seem to find. Hell to Pay was fine not only did it deal with the power vacuum left over from the Lilith War it also had an A story that was interesting. That is not the case in this book. Shooter is gone replaced with an idiotic stand-in I wanted to strangle after 10 pages. The interesting power vacuum stuff raised in the last book was not touched on at all and the part of the story where John goes in search of yet another magic object that could spell the end of all life in the Nightside is starting to wear a little thin plus the item isn't even all that impressive when you stack it up against all of the others he has dealt with over the years.

In spite of my problems with this book I am actually kind of encouraged it has not been my experience with Green that he continues down a bad track when he realizes he has dug himself into a hole. I hated "Nightside's Lement" and almost put the series aside but the book after that unfortunate installment was the start of all of the events that lead to the Lilith war so just because something is a little stale right now doesn't mean that it will stay that way. I am hopeful. Maybe another trip through time would help?

Overall-I'm going to keep on trucking with this series but the next installment is really going to have to "wow" me to get me back on board.
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on June 15, 2016
I vaguely remember reading this awhile ago, so glad I picked it up again. Because I'd read the previous books in the series, I understood it so much better. Wonderful world, so well-written and imaginative - totally awesome!
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on August 12, 2012
The Unnatural Inquirer (Nightside #9) by Simon R. Green is yet another fantastic addition to Green's Nightside series. John Taylor is at his best, complete with sardonic observations of the world at large. And, of course, the injection of Suzie Shooter immediately elevates the quality of novel. As an avid fan, I've been both gratified and intrigued by Suzie's role as Taylor's girlfriend. As a fellow author who also relishes and includes strong female characters in my own novels, I am completely smitten with the ever-edgy, emotionally complicated, and kick-butt Suzie Shooter.

The Unnatural Inquirer involves the search for a dvd purportedly containing a secret video from the Beyond (heaven or hell, nobody knows), which all of the major Nightside powers are trying to get their hands on. In this case, one of the Nightside's tabloids, The Unnatural Inquirer, has purchased the rights to the dvd, but its owner has gone missing. Naturally, John Taylor is the only detective with the special gift to find the dvd's owner. As part of his search, Taylor must accept the company of a snarky, captivating demon reporter, aptly named Bettie Divine, in order to satisfy the Inquirer's demands. Bettie is a wonderful character, who quite literally "divines" insights into John Taylor's mysterious nature and reputation, as well as challenges his notions of who a suitable companion would be for him. The psychological subplot surrounding this is quite intriguing.

The Unnatural Inquirer excels in its depth by helping readers to understand more about the tenuous fabric and foundations in the Nightside, as well as the effects of recent near-cataclysmic events that have affected the various shifts in both politics and powers. In the end, I was completely satisfied with character development, story flow, and the ever-unexpected and climactic story resolution. I highly recommend it. Well-done yet again, Simon Green!
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on February 5, 2013
I'm a nitpicker so there are little things I could write about "The Nightside" series but it's not enough to worry about. I haven't read fantasy for 20 years now and I love these books. I can literally finish one in the course of a day; these books are that good. They are rooted in reality, the characters are interesting and three dimensional, and the writing is smart. It reads like detective noir with a strong touch of science fiction thrown in there. Start with the first book and go from there. "The Unnatural Inquirer" is a good addition to the series and is actually not as action packed but is a little more interesting in terms of the places and characters that the main character visits which makes for a nice read. My only gripe is that the endings tend to be abrupt and rather simple but this can be forgiven since I've bought and enjoyed every book so far. If you need a kickstart back into science fiction/fantasy, this is the place to begin.
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on January 27, 2012
The Nightside: a place extant without influence from Above or Below. If you want it, you can find it in the Nightside... if it doesn't find you first.

The Nightside is this world's melting pot for EVERYthing mystical, magical, maniacal, holy, hellish, or downright bizare. It is a secret part of London, always 3AM, and technology is often seen side by side with elements of the Arcane.

John Taylor, Private Eye, is the hero of every story in the Nightside. He has a gift, a psychic gift, for "Finding Things". These could be anything from lost objects to ways to unbind a Voodoun Loa god from its earthly container....

In this episode, John is hired by the Unnatural Inquirer (tabloid to the Nightside's Stars) to find The Afterlife Broadcast, a DVD containing a broadcast from Somebody. Is it from Above? Below? Is it even authentic? Who is the Broadcast to? Where is it, and who has it now? Who will pay more for it than the last offer?

John is befriended by Bettie, a half-demon succubus reporter for the Unnatural Inquirer, and together they run into all kinds of trouble. The Removal Man, the Cardinal, and a collection of deadly combat sorcerers called the Clan Buckaroo -- killer magicians in a Cowboy motif, down to holsters and Stetsons.

How do they get out of this one? What's on the DVD? What is the Afterlife about? The answers may satisfy you in The Unnatural Inquirer.
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on October 10, 2014
Read all the books before this one in the series thoroughly enjoyed them needs a new dynamic now to freshen it up ( the same lines keep coming up "and as easy that I made it......." ) that said keep them coming simon.
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on February 9, 2014
The funny lines !!! The humor !!
The fascinating twists and turns in the plot ; you never know what is going to happen, or to whom or when a nightside novel;familiar places, familiar characters all growing and rounding out into very real personalities, and new problems in new places!
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