Thursday, August 12, 2010

Bryant & May Off the Rails-Christopher Fowler

Bryant & May Off the Rails
Christopher Fowler
Bantam, Sep 28 2010, $25.00
ISBN 9780553807202

The London based Peculiar Crimes Unit elderly lead detectives Arthur Bryant and John May, capture the King's Cross Executioner, who sliced off the heads of his victims. However, before they could bring this Mr. Fox to justice, he escapes (see Bryant & May on the Loose).

The brass is horrified by their failure especially since Fox murdered a constable as he fled custody. There is a new move to retire the senior PCU leaders and end funding for the unit. As time is running out, the team seeks to recapture the elusive sly Mr. Fox who they believe is the culprit behind lethal incidents in the London Underground in which a single mother fell down a stairwell to her death and an intoxicated student disappeared and is assumed dead.

This excellent Peculiar Crimes Unit police procedural will grip readers from the start to finish as the history of the unit’s members, specially their geriatric leaders, enhance a strong contemporary mystery. Amusing yet also perplexing as the baffled senior pair and their subordinates wok the Fox fiasco while the brass want the senior pair retired and the unit shut down permanently. Christopher Fowler’s talent is affirmed by the audience not having to read the previous Fox fable, though it is worth doing, as Bryant & May are on the case.

Harriet Klausner

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