Synopses & Reviews
Christopher Fowler’s Peculiar Crimes Unit novels have been hailed for their originality, suspense, and unforgettable characters. Now Arthur Bryant, John May, and their team of proud eccentrics have been given only one week to hunt down a murderer they’ve already caught once—and who is now luring them down into the darkest shadows of the London Underground.
The young man they seek is an enigma. His identity is false. His links to society are invisible. A search of his home yields no clues. The Peculiar Crimes Unit knows only this: Somehow Mr. Fox got out of a locked room and killed one of their best and brightest. Facing a shutdown, Bryant and May learn that their man, expertly disguised, has struck again in the world’s oldest subway system. But as their search takes them into the vast labyrinth of tunnels that tie the city together, they discover a fresh mystery as bizarre as anything they have ever faced. . . .
As the city blithely goes about its way, as tales of ghost stations and Underground legends emerge, Bryant and May, men of opposite methods, are each getting closer to what lies hidden at the heart of London’s celebrated Tube—and to the madness that is driving their man to murder.
Sophisticated, fast-paced, and confounding until its final twist, Bryant & May off the Rails is Christopher Fowler dead on track and at the height of his power to beguile, bewitch, and entertain.
"British author Fowler's outstanding eighth Peculiar Crimes Unit mystery (after 2009's Bryant & May on the Loose) easily conveys the main characters' rich backstories in the course of a typically bizarre series of puzzles. In the previous book, the PCU, spearheaded by elderly senior detectives Arthur Bryant and John May, apprehended the King's Cross Executioner (aka Mr. Fox), who beheaded his victims, but failed to keep him in custody. In making his escape, Fox killed a police constable. In order to continue being funded, the team now has a week to recapture the fugitive. A series of mysterious events in the London Underground may also be Fox's work: the fatal fall of a single mother down a flight of stairs and the disappearance of a drunken social engineering student after boarding a late-night train. Fowler has few peers when it comes to constructing ingenious and intricate plots--or integrating contemporary technology into a golden age mystery plot. (Oct.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright PWyxz LLC)
About the Author
Christopher Fowler is the acclaimed author of sixteen previous novels, including the award-winning Full Dark House and six other Peculiar Crimes Unit mysteries: The Water Room, Seventy-Seven Clocks, Ten Second Staircase, White Corridor, The Victoria Vanishes, and Bryant & May on the Loose. He lives in London, where he is at work on his next Peculiar Crimes Unit novel.