Happy Birthday, John and Arthur!
Today is the launch of my tenth Bryant & May novel, not too shabby for a series I was told could never take off in a million years because it didn’t have enough sex and violence.
A charming, if alarming, review has appeared in the ever-excellent Crimetime by the equally excellent Barry Forshaw, author of the British Crime Writing Encyclopaedia, an astonishing two-volume reference work that’s also fun to read in the loo (if you can lift it). Crimetime is a knockout read, by the way, and you can find it here;
‘Christopher Fowler is something of a British national treasure. Not content with being one of this country’s most idiosyncratic and imaginative writers of horror fiction, he brought his particular skills to bear on what has become a crime fiction series quite unlike anything else being produced in the UK. What is particularly cherishable about the Bryant & May series is its ability to function on a variety of levels: as a straightforward exploration of detective story tropes (with a duo of protagonists who are memorable in their eccentricity), as a constantly rejuvenated paen of praise to the city of London (few writers have such an acute sense of place as Fowler); as a delicious parody of the whole crime fiction form (but with sufficient seriousness to keep ridicule at bay) and – perhaps most significantly — as a series of narratives that exert an Ancient Mariner-like grip on the reader. As before in these quirky narratives, the reader is taken on a fascinating (and often bizarre) journey which is notably difficult to read in short measures – the insidious Mr Fowler demands our total attention. Just remember that if you unwisely start reading the book two stops before your destination…’
So now that I’m a national treasure, can I get a government grant to have my windows repaired?
In ‘Bryant & May and the Invisible Code’ you’ll meet several new characters including Bryant’s new neighbour, his doctor and the sinister Mr Merry, who we’ll hopefully be seeing more of. And there’s another stunning cover by artist David Frankland.
At the risk of pushing my luck I’ve started to outline two further adventures for the old gits, although in the meantime there’ll be plenty to keep you entertained, including a radio play for Hammer, a theatrical play called ‘Falling Stars’, a sequel to my memoir ‘Paperboy’ called ‘Film Freak’, due out from Transworld in April, ‘The Casebook of Bryant & May’, my graphic novel from PS Publishing in October, my non-fiction book ‘Invisible Ink’ from Strange Attractor Press around the same time, and my first big suspense thriller.
Oh, and this was in my in-box this morning, which was nice. (Catchphrase, anyone? Bueller? Anyone?)