Monday 3 June 2019


A couple from Mike Ripley and his Fitzroy Maclean Angel series

Ripley's Angel series spans 16 books with the first published in 1988 and the last - Angels and Others - dropping in 2015. The series has won a few awards, most notably the CWA Last Laugh Award a couple of times. Comedy thrillers is how these books have been described.

According to his page on Fantastic Fiction......

It has been said that he 'paints a picture of London Dickens would recognise' and that 'he writes like the young Len Deighton, wierd and wonderful information and very, very funny'. Described as 'England's funniest crime writer' (The Times), he is also a respected critic of crime fiction, writing for the Daily Telegraph, The Guardian, The Times and the Birmingham Post among others.

There's a (somewhat dated) piece about the series at The Thrilling Detective Web Site

In addition to the Angel series, he's written a few standalone novels and more recently half a dozen "Albert Campion" novels, continuing with the series character created by Margery Allingham.

Just Another Angel (1988)

Band-leader, Fitzroy Maclean Angel, agrees to help an enigmatic lady, Jo Scamp, recover some stolen jewellery. But what begins as a simple search soon develops into violence involving a deranged London gangster and a policeman with a vendetta.

"Mike Ripley may be mentioned in the breath as George V. Higgins and Elmore Leonard."

Daily Telegraph

Angel Touch (1989)

The London Stock Exchange can be a peculiar and dangerous place when financial reputations are at stake and no end of shocking scams and insider dealings are lurking under the surface. Enigmatic band leader Fitzroy Maclean Angel is drawn into this intrigue and puts his knowledge to work.

"Mike Ripley is one of the best things to have happened to British crime fiction for years."

Birmingham Post


  1. I've liked the Ripley stuff that I've read, Col. There's wit, some good stories, the whole thing. And his protagonist, Fitzroy Angel, is, I think, a solid character. In my opinion, you're in for some good reading.

    1. Thanks Margot. It sounds like a decent brew of characteristics in these. Good reading ahead!

  2. I can't think why I haven't gotten around to Ripley as yet -- I've heard so many good things about his books, including his Campion continuations. Too many tantalizing books, not enough time . . .

    1. I did think you might have crossed paths with his work, but like you say, too much and never enough time. The Campion's don't really hold a lot of appeal for me, more you I think.

  3. Col – The quote comparing him to Elmore Leonard and George V. Higgins is high praise. Thanks for the post.

    1. It is an interesting comparison. One which also has me wanting to read something else by Higgins.

  4. I saw this post earlier and never commented. So here I am, late. I have the first Angel book by Ripley, just need to get around to reading it.