(Sorry it’s overlit. Pretentious fountain pan and notebook are there to hide some coffee mug stains)
Kyril Bonfiglioli wrote dark crime narrated by a wicked (old and new senses) degenerate. There’s coal black humour, romance, erudition and plenty of the old ultra violence, all of it informed by his various lives as an art dealer, bon viveur and spy. Stephen Fry and Julian Barnes are fans as was the film director Michael Powell, who planned a biopic of the Krays with Bonfiglioli (correspondence in The Mortdecai ABC).
Johnny Depp is currently filming the fourth in the series The Great Mortdecai Moustache Mystery.
There’s something of Flashman about Charlie Mortdecai, he has been described as an experienced coward. Like Flashman he’s handy enough when he needs to be, indeed ruthless.
All The Tea In China has one of Mortdecai’s ancestors embroiled in an exotic globe trotting adventure – fast, furious and funny. His books read like no one else’s. To adapt Dick Emery the narrators may be awful, but you can’t help liking them.