June 12, 2012

Review: The Fuller Memorandum, by Charles Stross

Author: Charles Stross
Title:  The Fuller Memorandum               
Series: The Laundry Files (#3)
ISBN: 9780441018673
Publisher: Ace (July 6th 2012)

Buy your copy: Kindle
 | Paperback

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

“Bob Howard is taking a much needed break from the field to catch up on his filing in The Laundry's archives when a top secret dossier known as The Fuller Memorandum vanishes-along with his boss, who the agency's executives believe stole the file.
Determined to discover exactly what the memorandum contained, Bob runs afoul of Russian agents, ancient demons, and the apostles of a hideous faith, who have plans to raise a very unpleasant undead entity known as the Eater of Souls...
” GoodReads’ blurb

So... We’re back to Bob.

He still rocks.

That said, though, the Fuller Memorandum  didn’t hold my attention as much as the two first books. Well... Wait, that’s not correct.

I didn’t understand the Fuller Memo as well as I understood the previous works. Outlandish as the whole idea behind the Laundry books is (and if you still don’t know about computational demonologists and advanced math turned into magic you really need to check out my previous reviews), the fact remained that I could follow every explanation, odd as it might have seemed, and I found it extremely amusing precisely because I understood the reasoning... which was scarily solid.

This time around, the stakes are higher. I still understand the basics behind the plot, but some of the logic leaps Bob takes to solve the mystery escaped me... and unfortunately those were some important plot points that I missed! So, while still entertaining, still funny, still amazingly written and narrated, and still a great novel all around, this didn’t feel like the masterpiece the previous ones were.

Except for the explanation about Angleton. Oh my. Wasn’t that a good one.

But, see? The other shoe dropped and I really didn’t see how it fell.

In any case, Bob is still one of my favorite spies, his monogamous, married life with Mo is the perfect sweet and realistic notion in a James Bond world, and this remains one of the best sci-fi series ever in my humble opinion. So, if you’re slighly geeky like me, you should get started. If you like the first novels and stories, you’ll surely like the whole thing.


  1. I am so slightly geeky:) I really have to start this series! Thanks for the review, Ron. Even with this not being your favorite it still sounds fun.

    1. I think you'll like it. Specially the second book... it had tons of laugh-out-loud moments!

  2. Oh, man! I can't believe I'd missed this! I feel like an idiot right now. First of all, Ace imprint pretty much guarantees I'll like a book. They publish the best ones. Second, this is so deliciously geeky! I have a friend who is sure to enjoy this, and I fully intend to talk her into a readalong of The Atrocity Archives (I just researched and added book 1).
    Thank you, thank you, thank you, Ron! This series will be perfect for me.

    1. Oh-oh! *does a happy dance* I'm so glad I pointed you towards a great series! Because this is a great series. Like... seriously amazing. I won't go into even more fangirl-ism because I've been at it for four reviews already but... I think you'll love it.

      You might want to check out the audiobook too; even if it's only to listen to the sample. The voice actor is Gideon Emery (Balthier in Final Fantasy XII and Fenris in Dragon Age II) and he just has this stiff-upper-lip when acting that I brust out laughing all the time!

      Plus, the guy knows how to do accents.

      In any case, whatever route you choose, Bob is a charming, loveable, and funny character. I think you'll love The Laundry as much as I do!

      (Or so I hope)