Title: The Wrecker’s Curse (The Edge of the World Detective Agency #1)
Author: Jo Silva
Published on: 10 March 2023
Genre: Mystery & Thrillers
The Wrecker’s Curse is the first book in Jo Silva’s The Edge of the World Detective Agency series.
When Donna ‘Deadly’ Nightshade branches out from floristry to private investigation and opens The Edge of the World Detective Agency, the last thing she expects is to have a murder fall into her lap almost immediately. The victim – also the first client of Donna’s Agency – is none other than Donna’s Uncle Jack.
Donna might have hated the man – something to do with killing her dog and forcing her to smuggle drugs when she was a teenager – but she’s not the only one with opportunity, means, and motive to kill Uncle Jack. Detective Sergeant Jose Enys, Donna’s ex, is given four days to solve the case and prove Donna’s innocence – failing which, Donna will be behind bars for good.
Wow!! What a fantastic, totally quirky and wacko, entertaining, and completely engrossing mystery. Three things I liked the most about this series debut: 1)quirky characters 2)setting – Cornwall!!! 3)pirates and curses
The Nightshades come from a long line of pirates. The women folk continue the clan and each leader is given the power to curse. They write their curses in a journal and it comes true one way or the other. Another interesting fact about the Nightshades is that, every first born female is named Belladonna Nightshade.
‘ye curse of the deadliest of all ye black pyrates.’
Donna is hosting a one-night play at a local theatre – Sleeping Dogs Lie. It’s loosely based on her own life – you know, the incident involving Uncle Jack and her dog. Uncle Jago (another Nightshade) is to play the role of the dog. But at the end, when he’s (the dog, not Uncle Jago) supposed to reach heaven (figuratively because Uncle Jago is alive), hell breaks loose. The dog (human in costume) is dead – for real! Interesting to note that it’s Uncle Jack in the costume, not Uncle Jago.
Donna spent a couple of years behind bars and she automatically becomes the main suspect. But Detective Sergeant Joe Enys (who’s still in love with Donna; interesting to note he was the one who arrested her years ago) believes Donna is innocent.
Meanwhile, Donna’s started her new PI agency and Uncle Jack had come to her the previous day asking for her help. He was receiving threatening notes and he wanted Donna to find the culprit. But it’s too late now. Someone’s killed Uncle Jack.
Mystery aside, I have to talk about the side characters. Yes, Donna is great, quirky, best at whatever she does, blah blah. There’s one character who stood out from the rest and that’s Lamorna, Donna’s younger sister. She’s practically a child (eighteen years younger than a thirty-something Donna) but she’s far more intelligent than all the Nightshades put together. She plays various instruments and has a tune for every mood.
Then there’s Ruby – the family macaw – who has an Attitude with a capital A. Aunty Kerensa and her sibling Aunty Donna (Donna’s predecessor). Kerensa is the lollipop lady – the one who holds a stop sign at school crossings. Donna is in a prison for psychiatric patients – she tried to kill Uncle Jack(her husband) a couple of years ago. Finally, we have Uncle Jago (a Nightshade) who loves pigs and smells like pigshit.
If this eclectic mix of characters wasn’t enough wacko, we have a totally wacko murder mystery here. Donna dons her pirate suit and arr, arr, arr she goes in search of clues. Ahem! I mean, Ahoy!
I loved every bit of this story. Quirky humor seals the deal. The murder mystery keeps one guessing till the end. Speaking of which, the ending is simple unexpected and mind-blowing. Wow, so many twists and revelations, I was like “let sleeping dogs lie!”
The Wrecker’s Curse by Jo Silva is a fantabulous series debut. I am looking forward to reading the next installment.
If you are looking for a quirky and completely entertaining mystery, I highly recommend The Wrecker’s Curse by Jo Silva.
Many thanks to Chloe from One More Chapter for the ARC. This is my honest and unbiased opinion.
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