Monday, December 12, 2011

New Peculiar Crimes Unit mystery hitting these shores March 2012

Already published overseas, the ninth mystery starring Christopher Fowler's Peculiar Crimes Unit, The Memory of Blood (Bantam), hits American bookshelves (and eReaders) on March 27, 2012. The official description:
Christopher Fowler’s acclaimed Peculiar Crimes Unit novels crackle with sly wit, lively suspense, and twists as chilling as London’s fog. Now the indomitable duo of Arthur Bryant and John May, along with the rest of their quirky team, return to solve a confounding case with dark ties to the British theater and a killer who may mean curtains for all involved.

For the crew of the New Strand Theatre, the play The Two Murderers seems less performance than prophecy when a cast party ends in the shocking death of the theater owner’s son. The crime scene is most unusual, even for Bryant and May. In a locked bedroom without any trace of fingerprints or blood, the only sign of disturbance is a gruesome life-size puppet of Mr. Punch laying on the floor. Everyone at the party is a suspect, including the corrupt producer, the rakish male lead, the dour set designer, and the assistant stage manager, who is the wild daughter of a prominent government official.

It’s this last fact that threatens the Peculiar Crimes Unit’s investigation, as the government’s Home Office, wary of the team’s eccentric methods, seeks to throw them off the case. But the nimble minds of Bryant and May are not so easily deterred. Delving into the history of the London theater and the disturbing origins of Punch and Judy, the detectives race to find the maniacal killer before he reaches his even deadlier final act.

Whip-smart and endlessly entertaining, The Memory of Blood is an ingeniously intricate mystery from the deliciously inventive Christopher Fowler.
I love this series. Christopher Fowler does such a great job of conjuring up the Golden Age of detective fiction—in particular, the "impossible crimes" of John Dickson Carr—and yet makes it all fresh and new. These stories are as brilliant as they are funny.

Reviews:
Book Review: Bryant & May And The Memory Of Blood By Christopher Fowler (Londonist)
Bryant & May and the Memory of Blood (Financial Times)
Bryant & May and The Memory of Blood by Christopher Fowler (Milo's Rambles)

Related links:
Complete BRYANT & MAY (Peculiar Crimes Unit) by Christopher Fowler
Retirement is Murder: 10 Senior Sleuths
Crime Fiction Alphabet: L is for LOCKED ROOM PUZZLES
Merry Christmas From Bryant & May
150+ Mystery Series: 1841-2010
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