Keeping track of various members of the Peculiar Crimes Unit has always been a bit of a puzzler for readers, but I hope this forms a definitive appearance list.
Janice Longbright, Colin Bimsley and Ian Hargreave, the policeman Janice used to date, all appear in my very first novel ‘Roofworld’.
Bryant and May make their first appearance solving a very peculiar series of supernatural crimes in ‘Rune’.
Raymond Land was still a police doctor when he turned up in ‘Red Bride’. Hargreave is also in there, too. (It’s interesting to note that short stories were so popular during the late 1980s that the back of this book says ‘From the author of ‘City Jitters’ – a slender volume of tales which was still selling.)
Most of the early team are assembled by the time we get to ‘Darkest Day’, the supernatural-driven forerunner of ‘Seventy Seven Clocks’.
All of the next three novels were stand-alone without PCU players until we come to ‘Soho Black’, in which a sub-plot features Bryant and May. By now the novels have lost their supernatural tinge and are being played straight.
Arthur Bryant’s final pre-canon appearance comes in ‘Plastic’, which to this day remains without a publisher. Later this year I plan to publish it online if I can figure out the best way to do it.
There are two Bryant & May short stories in ‘Red Gloves’, with more to come in future collections.
‘The Soho Devil’ – the first Bryant & May graphic novel, is finished, and is without a publisher at the moment. Perhaps if I put them in tights and made them fly, I’d get them into comic shops.
I’m just putting the finishing touches to the tenth and possibly final Bryant & May novel at the moment – I say this because in these uncertain times, who knows what will happen to long-running series?