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Bryant and May and the Invisible Code Hardcover – 2012

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Hardcover, 2012

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Doubleday (2 Aug 2012); First Edition edition (2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0857520504
  • ISBN-13: 978-0857520500
  • Product Dimensions: 5.6 x 1.2 x 8.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (207 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,591,784 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Christopher Fowler was born in Greenwich, London. He is the multi award-winning author of thirty novels and twelve short story collections, and the author of the Bryant & May mystery novels. His first bestseller was 'Roofworld'. Subsequent novels include 'Spanky', 'Disturbia', 'Psychoville' and 'Calabash'. His books have been optioned by Guillermo Del Toro ('Spanky') and Jude Law ('Psychoville'). He spent many years working in film. His memoir of growing up without books, entitled 'Paperboy', was highly acclaimed, and was followed by a sequel in April 2013, 'Film Freak'. After this came his dark comedy-thriller 'Plastic' in July 2013.

He has written comedy and drama for BBC radio, including Radio One's first broadcast drama in 2005. He writes for the Financial Times and the Independent on Sunday, Black Static magazine and many others. His graphic novel for DC Comics was the critically acclaimed 'Menz Insana'. His short story 'The Master Builder' became a feature film entitled 'Through The Eyes Of A Killer', starring Tippi Hedren and Marg Helgenberger. In the past year he has been nominated for 8 national book awards. He is the winner of the Edge Hill prize 2008 for 'Old Devil Moon', and the Last Laugh prize 2009 for 'The Victoria Vanishes'.

He wrote the 'War Of The Worlds' videogame for Paramount with Sir Patrick Stewart. He is currently rehearsing his play 'Falling Stars' in preparation for a London debut.

Christopher has achieved several pathetic schoolboy fantasies, releasing a terrible Christmas pop single, becoming a male model, writing a stage show, posing as the villain in a Batman graphic novel, running a night club, appearing in the Pan Books of Horror, and standing in for James Bond.

His short stories have appeared in Best British Mysteries, The Time Out Book Of London Short Stories, Dark Terrors, London Noir, Inferno, Neon Lit, Cinema Macabre, the Mammoth Book of Horror and many others. After living in the USA and France he is now married and lives in King's Cross, London and Barcelona, Spain.

Customer Reviews

The stories are great mysteries and the very British humor is wonderful.
Lewis Flint, MD
There are certain plot issues that come out of that book and it will make The Invisible Code that much more satisfying to know about them.
Maine Colonial
Once you start reading this book you can't put it down till you have finished the last chapter.
Maureen Smith

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

38 of 40 people found the following review helpful By Maine Colonial TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on September 4, 2012
Format: Hardcover
In the churchyard of London's St. Bride's Church, a young woman sits reading until, driven away by the annoyance of two young children, she enters the church's nave. Minutes later, she collapses and dies. The children report that they were playing a game of "witch hunter" and put a curse on her that killed her.

When the autopsy fails to identify a specific cause of death, Arthur Bryant of the Home Office's Peculiar Crimes Unit naturally wants the case. But the Metropolitan Police have jurisdiction and the PCU, being persona non grata in the Home Office, lack the power to take over.

Certainly their enemy-in-chief, the satanic Oscar Kasavian, isn't about to lift a finger to help them. He has vowed to wipe out the PCU and, particularly its beyond-retirement-age leads, Arthur Bryant and John May. Imagine Bryant and May's surprise, then, when Kasavian almost humbly asks them to help him with a problem involving his young wife.

As Bryant and May and the rest of the PCU team begin to investigate, the case takes on ever larger proportions. Government corruption, whistleblowers in private industry, mental illness and its history in London, private clubs, Russian gangsters, codes and ciphers and the supernatural are all thrown into the heady mix. On top of all that, there are disquieting revelations of how the British class system, cronyism and the complete disregard of commercial/government conflicts of interest conspire to ensure that a cabal of venal and ruthless men stay in power in British government.

But this is no grim, deadly serious police procedural. With the PCU, that's just not possible.
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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Graves VINE VOICE on October 22, 2013
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
In the Invisible code we rejoin the "Peculiar Crimes Unit." A branch on the London police that get the little green man files handed to them, but due to interdepartmental jealousies other branches are cutting them out, starving them on the vine by not transferring cases to them. In particular the case of an otherwise perfectly healthy woman who just dropped dead in a church for no apparent reason, just the sort of thing the unit specializes in.

But when Oskar Kasavian, their arch enemy at the Home office is at his wit's end, he has no choice but to call them in. His wife has never quite fit in with British society and he is afraid she is being black mailed or might be going mad. When she's involved in several unseemly displays in public his fear is it might derail not only his career but various international security protocols he's working on. He's forced to call in the unit he's done his best to shut down to save his wife, his marriage, his career and just maybe the nation.

Detectives May and Bryant have to decide if she really is going mad or is someone really out to get her and if so, why?

This book is fun. It is not a comedy. It is a serious mystery but the two lead detectives, May, the young with better people skills and Bryant, older with amazing deductive powers but with people skills that would make Attila the Hun take notice, have a way of looking at things that seems reminiscent of Douglas Adams slightly off kilter view of things. Such as an interoffice memo at the front of the book detailing off what is going wrong in the office-such as the place is not haunted and British law officers are not required to have any imagination.

In the end it's a good mystery relying on wit and intelligence with just a touch of the sort on inspired madness the British excel at.
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Terri J. Rice TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on November 5, 2013
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Before even beginning, I was struck by two things.

1. I was enchanted with Fowler's dedication:

For Jennifer Siegel,
smart cookie, good egg, hot tamale

2. I applauded his bravery in bucking the advice to;

"'Make your leading character younger, and put more sex and violence if you want them to be a success...' Blithely ignoring his advice I ploughed on, determined to create a pair of intelligent Golden Age detectives who are forced to deal with the modern world. I knew I'd have fun just watching Arthur Bryant trying to use a smartphone."

Arthur Bryant and John May are the older detectives who are able to catch their witnesses and their suspects off guard because they seem so old school, so not with it. And that is precisely what Bryant and May want them to think while they are in fact cagily asking precise insightful questions.

Amy O'Connor is still furious with herself two years later for having lost the only man she's ever loved. On this particular day she sits outside the church with her book when two children playing a game of Witch Hunter "and you have to ride across the countryside and find witches to kill." When Amy goes into the church, the two children watch from the doorway and decide she is the witch. Moments later Amy falls over dead.

Soon, however, Bryant and May are taken off that case and put on a seemingly irrelevant and far less exciting case. Sabira has been married to Oskar Kasavian, the head of Home Office security, for four years. He would like to advance his career and it would seem that there are those who would like to prevent it. Eventually committed to a mental hospital, some believe Sabira is faking her madness to destroy her husband's career, others are certain she is being framed.
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