Jun 24 2013 10:40am

Ben Aaronovitch’s Peter Grant Series Optioned for UK TV Adaptation

Rivers of London

Author Ben Aaronovitch’s hugely successful series of urban fantasy/police procedural novels featuring a copper who becomes a trainee wizard with the Met is to become a TV series in the UK.

Aaronovitch—brother to journalist David—confirmed today that his Peter Grant series of novels is heading for the small screen courtesy of Feel Films, the production company behind the forthcoming TV adaptation of Susannah Clarke’s Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell.

Ben Aaronovitch said:

Our aim is to produce a TV series that will blow the audiances’s socks off and out via their earholes.

This is of course just the beginning of the process and there will be many, many...many meetings and proposal documents and ideas being run up flagpoles, etc., but I’m hopeful we can not just get it done but get it done well.

Aaronovitch appears to be heavily involved in the production and is no stranger to writing for TV himself—he wrote two episodes of Doctor Who when Sylvester McCoy was at the helm of the TARDIS.

There have so far been three Peter Grant adventures, with the fourth—Broken Homes—due to be published by Gollancz on July 25.

The first, Rivers of London, was published in January 2011 and introduced Aaronovitch’s protagonist Peter Grant, a constable with the Metropolitan Police who sees and converses with a ghost during a routine police operation. His evident ability in dealing with paranormal matters brings him to the attention of Inspector Nightingale, an eccentric officer who holds a post not talked about very often either inside or outside the Met—the last wizard in England. Grant moves in with Nightingale in their base of operations, The Folly, from where they tackle the supernatural-tinged crimes that regular coppers don’t want anything to do with.

Rivers of London was an instant hit both with genre readers and a mainstream audience as well, earning Aaronovitch slots on the likes of Simon Mayo’s Radio 2 show to talk about the books. Contemporary, funny, and accessible, the Peter Grant books have opened up the sub-genre of urban fantasy to the same sort of people who took Harry Potter to their hearts but wouldn’t consider themselves fantasy fans.

The first book introduced a paranormal sheen to London built around the personifications of the capital’s rivers, themes that were continued and added to with the follow-up Peter Grant books Moon Over Soho, in which Aaronovitch had Grant exploring London’s jazz scene, and Whispers Underground, which ventured into the capital’s Tube network.

Next month’s Broken Homes sees Grant heading south of the river to the Elephant and Castle, layering yet more of Aaronovitch’s magical London on to his rapidly growing world.

David Levinson
1. DemetriosX
Great news. These are terrific books (Rivers is known as Midnight Riot in the US) and just about the only time I can think of where a modern protagonist is exposed to a hidden world of magic and then applies the scientific method to understand it.

My personal pick to play Peter is Alfie Enoch (Dean Thomas in the Harry Potter films). He's a touch darker than Peter is described, but it's how I've always seen him.
Steven Halter
2. stevenhalter
This should translate well to the screen, I would think. Fun.
Becca Hollingsworth
3. bibliobeque
I am really pleased to hear this. Reading the books, I always thought they'd work well as a TV show.
4. AEBlackwell
This is great news. I love these books. I bought Rivers of London right when it came out. Thought it was a shame the US covers were not nearly so nice.
It should be interesting to see the visuals for all the weird things Peter sees.
Emily Lind
5. Malana
Yes. Yes yes yes. I would be very pleased if this comes to frutition. The books are great and should translate really well to a tv show.
6. Crane Hana
Oh, please, yes. I love these books. Done well, they could be amazing on the small screen.
7. DJAmbruso
I'm Thrilled at the prospect of a series from these books! It will be interesting to see who they cast as Peter Grant. For Beverly Brook, I nominate Jade Aouka.
8. roryok
I think Jacob Anderson (Grey Worm in Game of Thrones) would make an excellent Peter Grant

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