Review of Antiques and Alibis
Author – Wendy H. Jones
Rating – 5 Stars *****
Cass Claymore, a red headed, motorbike riding, ex-ballerina inherits a Detective Agency, and accidentally employs an ex-con dwarf and an octogenarian. Hired by a client who should know better, Cass has no leads, no clue and a complete inability to solve a case. Still a girl needs to eat and her highbred client’s offering good money. Join her as, with bungling incompetence, she follows a trail littered with missing antique teddies, hapless crooks, a misplaced Lord of the Realm and dead bodies. Will Cass, and Scotland, survive?
Antiques and Alibis is a bit different from Wendy H. Jones usual style of the gritty Shona McLean crime books and I really like it. This book is gentler in pace and funnier than her usual crime books, but the style works very well for the type of mystery that unfolds.
The very fact that the main character is a red-headed, motorbike riding, ex-ballerina who inherits a detective agency and accidentally hires an octogenarian and an ex-con was one of the premises to Antiques and Alibis, grabbed my attention. It’s quirky and rather different.
Cass Clay is a biker with courage and attitude. You soon realise that her full Christian name of Cassandra just would not suit her at all!
Cass meets her first client who wants her to investigate her son’s missing teddy. You have to keep with it because it is very funny and not just any ordinary teddy, it’s a Steiff teddy bear.
Our main protagonist does, however, become caught up in more than she expected as she is also on the hunt for another client’s missing brother. Events turn into something more sinister for her and the rest of her clueless team. The twists and turns keep the story moving forwards and creates a bit of tension to the tale.
The book is worth reading to see if she can overcome the fact that she has absolutely no experience in detective work. There’s a saying that “everyone has got to start somewhere” and Cass Claymore is definitely right at the beginning of learning a lot and more than she ever thought she would about the crime that inhabits the north-east of Scotland.
There is much humour to find within this book, right down to how each new character is introduced.
I enjoyed really getting to know the characters and their personalities, what made them tick and getting to know how all the relationships between them worked. This and the setting are very well-written, so the scene is set and any reader will feel they really know the main characters in time for (hopefully) the next book.
I also love that cover. I find it to be eye-catching and it’s quite exciting in an artistic sort of way. I also must mention the title. It’s a great title and one that also caught my attention. I have been to a couple of Wendy H. Jones events before (worth attending because they are fun). She talks a bit about her passion for alliteration within her events and in the case of the title, it is used exceedingly well.
Overall I enjoyed the book. It was a lot of fun. Wendy H. Jones has pitched the humour just right and I liked the style of writing. This is the first a brand new series of books. I would recommend it to anyone who also likes a bit of quirkiness and a laugh in their life. It’s a book that can be easily read any time of the day.
About the Author
With thanks to #LoveBooksGroupTours for giving me this great opportunity to be part of the blog tour to write a review of Antiques and Alibis.
Author: Wendy H. Jones
Main Purchase Points: Amazon, Waterstones
ISBN 978 – 0 – 9956475 – 4 – 5