This one truly had something that appealed to me across the board. The tale the of rare book and manuscript trade appealed to the collector in me. The fact that the main character plied his trade in forging Arthur Conan Doyle and Sherlock-iana played right into me love of all things Holmes. Like a cherry sitting on the top of a ice cream sundae, the writing, setting and characters made Bradford Morrow’s The Forgers an irresistible choice.
Morrow wastes no time in setting the hook with one of the best opening lines in recent memory; “they never found his hands.” From that jumping off point how could you possibly not be intrigued enough to track down the answer to the mystery?
While it is set in the present, the story is so immersed in the mysterious world of book antiquities and collectibles that there is something old world and underground about the collectors, dealers, scouts and forgers that populate the realm.
Morrow uses a masters touch to finely hone the mix between setting and time and collector and scoundrel. There is a certain level of elegance to his writing that just seems to add the proper patina to the story line; this is not a modern fast paced thriller, but an expertly crafted, story steeped in the great traditions of the masters of the form that the collectors in the story seek.