BookBrowse Reviews The Water Room by Christopher Fowler

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reviews |  Beyond the book |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

The Water Room

The Second Bryant & May Mystery

by Christopher Fowler

The Water Room by Christopher Fowler
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

     Not Yet Rated
  • First Published:
    Jun 2005, 368 pages
    Paperback:
    Mar 2006, 512 pages

  • Rate this book


Buy This Book

About this Book

Reviews

BookBrowse:


Detection's oddest, and perhaps oldest, couple go underground

From the book jacket: They are detection's oddest couple: two cranky detectives whose professional partnership dates back half a century. Now Arthur Bryant and John May, of London's 'Peculiar Crimes Unit' return in a case of multiple murder that twists through a subterranean course of secrets, lies, and extreme passions that drive even ordinary men and women to the most shocking crimes.

Comment: Publishers Weekly awards The Water Room a 'starred review' and Booklist also praises saying, 'the real thrill here is the delightful duo in the starring roles, two fresh and unusual characters who manage to breathe new life into an established genre in which it's getting harder and harder to find anything genuinely fresh. However, Kirkus Reviews is more guarded describing it as 'humorous, engaging, at times incoherent'. The New York Times has the final word saying, 'the plot isn't designed to make sense but to draw us into an imaginative funhouse of a world where sage minds go to expand their vistas and sharpen their wits.

This is Fowler's 12th novel and the second in his Bryant & May series, the first being Full Dark House. He lives and works in Soho, London, where he runs The Creative Partnership, a movie marketing company that produces TV and radio scripts, documentaries, trailers and promos. He spends half the day with his company and half writing.

Although he began as a writer of humorous books, he now focuses on what he describes as 'urban unease'. The Peculiar Crimes Unit is Fowler's invention - it handles crimes that the regular police are not equipped to deal with, cases that could cause social panic and ones that require sensitive handling. Full Dark House is set in 1940s London, but this second book is set in the 1990s. Fowler says, 'you know from the first book that they work together for fifty years, so I'm not too worried about being sequential'.

The third in the series, Seventy-Seven Clocks, was published last year, in what looks to be a paperback original (at least in the USA), and Ten Second Staircase will be published in hardcover in late June. Fowler says he is planning at least six books in the series, maybe more.

This review was originally published in July 2005, and has been updated for the March 2006 paperback release. Click here to go to this issue.



This review is available to non-members for a limited time. For full access become a member today.
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

One-Month Free Membership

Discover your next great read here

Join Today!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: Good Me Bad Me
    Good Me Bad Me
    by Ali Land
    Is a psychopath born or made? This is the terrifying question that author Ali Land explores in her ...
  • Book Jacket: Five-Carat Soul
    Five-Carat Soul
    by James McBride
    In the short story "Sonny's Blues," from the 1965 collection Going to Meet the Man, African-...
  • Book Jacket: This Blessed Earth
    This Blessed Earth
    by Ted Genoways
    For the Hammonds, a farming family in Nebraska, the 2014 harvest season started with a perfect storm...

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
All the Ugly and Wonderful Things by Bryn Greenwood

"A powerful, provocative debut ... Intelligent, honest, and unsentimental." - Kirkus, starred review

About the book
Join the discussion!

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    Never Coming Back
    by Alison McGhee

    A moving exploration of growing up and growing old, and the ties that bind parents and children.
    Reader Reviews

Win this book!
Win The Wisdom of Sundays

The Wisdom of Sundays
by Oprah Winfrey

Life-changing insights from super soul conversations.

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

A Good M I H T F

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.