Angels of Music by Kim Newman
From the mid 1800s Erik the Phantom sends a succession of female agents on daring missions against the cream of the Parisian and international criminal underworlds. Known as the Angels of Music these agents work in gangs of three to investigate a series of crimes from a plot to marry off the social elite to mind controlling automata to an attempt to set Europe at war.
Yes its Charlie’s Angels with Gaston Leroux’s The Phantom of the Opera as Charlie and as you would expect from the magpie mind of Mr Newman our Angels are drawn from a variety of literary and cinematic sources including Conan Doyle’s the Woman, Irene Adler from A Scandal in Bohemia, George du Maurier’s Trilby and F Marion Crawford’s Unorna from The Witch of Prague. So too are the many and various villains and a whole host of incidental characters and institutions taking in just about everything from Dracula, Pygmalion and Citizen Kane to Star Wars and Carry On movies. Kim even mines his own works with Genevieve Dieudonne moonlighting from the Anno Dracula universe.
Although the big-ticket heroes and villains are usually fairly well-known, part of the fun with both this and Kim’s Anno Dracula books is pulling out the more obscure references and true to form with Angels of Music I found myself wracking my brains trying to remember where I had come across some of the characters in the past.There are also some splendidly corny conflation gags that had me rocking with laughter. Right saying any more would just spoil your fun go buy this book and enjoy one of the UK’s most mercurial minds in action.
A dazzling mash-up of cultural references I give Angels of Music a 666/666
Angels of Music is published by Titan Books £7.99UK $14.95 USA $19.95 Canada