Anne's Reviews > The Victoria Vanishes: A Peculiar Crimes Unit Mystery

The Victoria Vanishes by Christopher Fowler
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's review
Apr 12, 2010

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bookshelves: mysteries, humor

This is the second 'Peculiar Crimes Unit' mystery I've read and the character of Detective Bryant comes across very clearly here as the absent-minded, but brilliant, polymath, especially in the arcane history of London pubs in this adventure. The ending is preposterous and implausible, but the book is very funny and well-written, so it's still worth reading if you aren't a stickler for logical conclusions in mysteries.
Sample excerpt, Bryant giving a eulogy for their medical examiner, 'Oswald Finch worked with the Peculiar Crimes Unit from its inception, and planned to retire on this very night....I had personally filled the morgue refrigerator with beer and sausage rolls,...Luckily, I was able to alter the icing inscription on his retirement cake, so it hasn't gone to waste...Because instead of retiring, Oswald Finch died in tragic circumstances under his own examination table...he could be a horrible old man, but I like to believe that Oswald was only bad-tempered because nobody liked him. He had dedicated his life to dead people, and now he's joined them.' (p 17-18)

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