Bryant and May and the Bleeding Heart
Christopher Fowler
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Buy *Bryant and May and the Bleeding Heart: A Peculiar Crimes Unit Mystery* by Christopher Fowleronline

Bryant and May and the Bleeding Heart: A Peculiar Crimes Unit Mystery
Christopher Fowler
Bantam
Hardcover
400 pages
December 2014
rated 5 of 5 possible stars

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You know that when the crime-fighting unit in this brilliantly conceived series is called the PCU--Peculiar Crimes Unit--you are in for a treat. In the deft hands of author Christopher Fowler, you will not be disappointed.

The lead detectives of this close-knit and eclectic squad are Arthur Bryant and John May. They are described as being two sides of the same brain, both brilliant in their own way: Bryant is bizarre, sloppy and at times uncouth, while May is pragmatic, buttoned-up and the ultimate professional.

In the 11th entry in this London-based mystery series, The Bleeding Heart, we are presented with one of the oddest cases the PCU has faced to date. Two teens stargazing in an old cemetery one night witness a body literally rising from the grave. Is this a case of premature burial, pure supernatural trickery, or something else?

Turns out the corpse was a man who recently hung himself. He left behind a wife and teenaged son, both of whom are angered and horrified over the macabre activities in the graveyard. Just as the investigation is given to the PCU, they lose a major witness. The teen boy who witnessed the 'walking dead man' is run down in a hit-and-run. The oddest thing is that someone took the time to change the victim's shirt before his body could be claimed.

Bryant, May and team have their hands full in this case and are getting pressure from all sides--specifically Scotland Yard, which has sent in a special investigator to analyze the team and their unorthodox methods. The mystery begins to focus on an underground group who call themselves the Resurrectionists. It also involves uncovering the truth behind the legend of Bleeding Heart Yard--a courtyard known for housing murderous activity.

The Bleeding Heart is Fowler at his finest. Best of all, anyone can jump right in not having read the previous ten novels and will instantly feel at home with this great bunch of characters. Never predictable and containing elements of classic mystery, some horror and spine-chilling action nicely mixed with social commentary and some truly moving passages. A winner!



Originally published on Curled Up With A Good Book at www.curledup.com. Ray Palen, 2015

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