A Twist in the Tail is book number one in the Oyster Cove Guesthouse Mystery series. It was released on May 16, 2019.
Josie Waters isn’t starting off so well…
Josie Waters is recently divorced from a wealthy and well respected chef. She returns to her hometown of Oyster Cove, Maine to start a whole new life. Josie begins by purchasing a unique Victorian guesthouse once owned by her mother’s friend, Millie Sullivan.
I was not really able to grasp why she bought a guesthouse where she would be somewhat expected to live up to the culinary treats that her predecessor had offered her clients. But she gets an “A” for effort I suppose. She is trying her best to improve her cooking skills while sinking her life savings into her new venture.
The old mansion is going to need repairs. And that is going to cost her some money. Anyone who owns a home can sympathize.
Which is why it is why it is especially dreadful when she discovers that one of her patron’s dead body in a wing of the mansion that has been enclosed and is clearly in a “do not enter zone”. Someone clearly didn’t heed the construction zone signs and even worse that someone happens to be a known food critic who had already complained about his eggs not being done to his liking.
Mom and Millie to the rescue…
Thankfully Josie has a mother who is a nosey individual and listens in on CB radios along with her friend Millie. They do not mind getting right down to the bottom of whodunit. Even if they’re in the way of everyone while doing it.
Nero, Marlowe and their kitty gang…
One gift that Millie left behind were two criminal investigation cats, Nero and Marlowe. They don’t think Josie is the smartest creature by far so they quickly take to acting out and throwing things around in order to slam clues in her face. They’re not above messing up her whole house in the process.
Seeing their side of things was a lot of fun. They even have an entire kitty gang that runs the streets of Oyster Cove checking out everything and everybody. What would dense Josie do without their collective efforts?
It did seem like everyone made an effort to find the killer in this book. Josie had her mom, Millie and childhood crush Mike on her side. The cats had their kitty gang all ready to spring into action. And in the end the main character, Josie, seemed to need all the help she could get.
There were some things that I found repetitive, particularly between the narrative of the cats and Josie. I think I would have preferred it from one perspective. The relationship between Nero and Marlowe was entertaining. Very neat to see a cat detective and a protege. I loved how well they worked together.
There was a subplot involving some pesky birds but I found that it wove nicely into the unveiling of the mystery. I rather liked the bickering between Josie and her high school rival Stella- it was just enough cat fighting for my liking.
But I won’t deny that if there was a book devoted exclusively to the cat crime fighting squad I would be all over it. As for whodunit I loved the final scenes and learning the motivations of the killer. The person that was killed had a number of people who would benefit from their demise and I enjoyed guessing along the way until the conclusion.
Would Josie be able to solve a crime entirely on her own? I think that is yet to be seen. Perhaps a sequel will convince me.
Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for allowing me the opportunity to read this book in exchange for my honest opinion.