Sunday, December 9, 2018

Bryant & May: Hall of Mirrors

Bryant & May: Hall of Mirrors is the 15th (!!) book in Christopher Fowler's glorious series featuring an ensemble cast of synergistic misfits.  The quality of this series simply can't be overstated. The characters are perfectly drawn and obey believable internal motivations. They're always 'in character'.

This is one of my favorite series.  I anticipate each new entry and despite having received review copies, I buy copies and indeed have recommended and gifted books in the series to friends. Although Hall of Mirrors is temporally displaced from most of the rest of the PCU books, the seeds are there for the unfolding of future events.

It was genuinely touching to see the genesis of quirky trademarks like Bryant's pot plant, ratty striped scarf, and hippie Mini Victor. I loved seeing Bryant and May doing what they do together.

In exploding the classic English country house mystery, Mr. Fowler provides a perfect blending of tongue in cheek sarcasm, wonderful humor, engaging mystery and fun.  I loved seeing Bryant and May trapped in the countryside and as always lying under threat of an administrative sacking for them and the PCU.

This episode of the series could be read as a standalone, however, I strongly recommend starting from one of the 'current' books, especially since this book provides the origin for so many lynchpins of the books released earlier.

As always, the author's research and background are meticulous. I didn't notice any glaring anachronisms. The inconvenience of not having access to internet searches, Wi-Fi, mobile phones and other electronic doo-daddery is clear and present.

This book (and the series as a whole) are sharply funny.  They are biting and fast paced and funky and truly superlatively well written.

I recommend this book and the series wholeheartedly.

Five stars.

Disclosure: I received an ARC at no cost from the author/publisher for review purposes.

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