Death at Paradise Palms by Steph Broadribb

Title: Death at Paradise Palms (The Retired Detectives Club #2)

Author: Steph Broadribb

Published on: 11 October 2022

Genre: Mystery and Thrillers

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Rating: 5 out of 5.

I am so excited to be sharing a review of the next installment of my favorite series – The Retired Detectives Club. I came across Steph Broadribb’s The Retired Detectives Club earlier this year and I absolutely loved the concept of four retired detectives living in a retirement community in Florida (not Del Boca Vista 😉 ) and solving crimes happening in the community.

What’s more interesting is that, the management of the community does their absolute best to make sure no negative news about the community is released to public or on social media. (They monitor their Facebook group posts at all times.)

The Retired Detectives Club members include Rick (ex-DEA), Moira (former undercover officer from England), Philip and Lizzie (husband-wife duo, husband – police officer, wife – CSI; both moved to Florida from UK).

When movie producer Cody Ziegler goes missing from The Homestead’s Millionaires’ Row, his wife, retired actress Olivia, asks Rick to help find him. Olivia and Cody were in the news a couple of years ago – mainly because their relationship was one of those in which the wife was older than the husband. In this case, as Moira learns soon after speaking with Olivia that, Cody is thirty years younger than Olivia.

Olivia dislikes the cops and does not wish to involve them. She did contact them, alright. They said he must have gone out – probably spending time with his mistress. But Olivia knows for sure that is not the case. Then comes a letter from the kidnappers – not a ransom note. Just a letter giving proof of life – a photograph of a badly beaten-up Cody Ziegler.

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Meanwhile, Moira’s been getting calls from an unknown number. When she does not receive, they send her threatening messages – from I know who you are to stop interfering. Moira’s left her old life behind in England – she was caught in a shoot-out and is currently on the run from the Mob boss who had threatened her. Is it possible that the messages are from someone from her past?

Then we have the tension between Philip and Lizzie. In the previous book, we learned of the muck-up that Philip was involved in – something to do with the death of a young kidnapped child. Learning this incident ten years later, Lizzie cannot bring herself to forgive Philip.

Coming back to the mystery behind the kidnapping of Cody Zeigler, as the team starts to investigate, they learn of a disgruntled employee, a jilted film-maker and many more. To add a cherry on top of this already-going-nowhere case is when Moira finds Cody’s car in a nearby lake. And as we all know, spouse must also be one of the suspects…

We have some development, or should I say, revealing of a well-kept secret – Moira’s past. Gosh, I did not see this coming nor did I expect it. No wonder Moira is always anxious and has to look over her shoulder every single time. This shocking revelation gave me chills!

The story takes an unexpected turn when Cody’s car is found in the lake. Then something happens… a very chilling twist but it goes unnoticed (by the retired detectives) until the very end.

I absolutely loved every bit of this story. Be it the writing, the mystery behind the kidnapping, the excitement and tension of finding Cody before it is too late, suspense, character development (Moira’s was the best!) and plot to story development – absolutely Fantabulous!

Though this book can be read as a standalone (there are a few mentions of the team’s previous case), it is better to read the first book before diving into this one.

Before I forget, there is some exciting development in the mystery behind the Homestead’s management team. In the previous book, the Retired Detectives team had found out that, the management has been purposely hiding all negative news about the community. Moira and Philip decided to look into it. In this book, we have an investigative journalist from Boston wanting to dig deeper into the case. I am curious to learn how this particular development will be explored further.

Death at Paradise Palms by Steph Broadribb is an absolutely engrossing, riveting and keeps-you-on-the-edge-of-your-seat kinda mystery. If you love detective fiction, you must give this book a try.


I received an ARC from Thomas & Mercer and NetGalley in exchange for an honest and unbiased opinion.

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