The problem with genres is that they sometimes don’t work. A murder mystery isn’t a mystery when the murder is simply the inciting incident but doesn’t need much sleuthing to be solved when characters tell the Inspector fairly early on in the novel whodunnit and why. I was kind of expecting a twist to the murder, that the magical characters would be wrong and that, in fact, there was a personal or different reason, some twist. But nope.
This book is nonetheless enjoyable. The mystery is more of an adventure. It’s like being an explorer, discovering new worlds and new cultures. The writing is extremely good. I fell in love with the book from the start because of the writing. Andy Redsmith uses cliches but in such a way that they become original metaphors or clever and witty. This is not an easy thing for a writer to do.
An undercurrent about the main character, Inspector Nick Paris, appears on the first pages but not as an undercurrent. It seems, at first, a bit of a cliche on the detective isolated from relationships and finding solace elsewhere. A bit eye rolling. But a twist to it appears almost instantly, and you frown and stop eye rolling; then Redsmith begins to play on this theme and you, the reader, begin to realize it’s an undercurrent that adds depth to Paris. The beginning was better written than the end, but the end was satisfying and made me want to read the next book in the series.
Fun characters. Lively, clever, witty writing. An enjoyable romp.