The Wrecker’s Curse

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Pub Date 10 Mar 2023 | Archive Date 13 Mar 2023


Donna Nightshade’s first rule of composting: shred. Things rot quicker that way – cabbages, flowers, dead bodies…

When Donna 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. Now, normally she wouldn’t be one to look a gift horse in the mouth, but there’s one significant problem with the case – all the evidence points to Donna as the murderer!

Donna may have hated the man, but she’s not the only one who had the means and motive, so she dons her deerstalker. Staying two steps ahead of the police – specifically her ex, Detective Sergeant Joe Enys – won’t be easy, but with pirate blood in her veins nothing can stop ‘deadly’ Donna from claiming her bounty and making the real culprit walk the plank!

Donna Nightshade’s first rule of composting: shred. Things rot quicker that way – cabbages, flowers, dead bodies…

When Donna branches out from floristry to private investigation and opens The Edge of...

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ISBN 9780008622800
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Average rating from 39 members

Featured Reviews

Fantastic fun read. This murder mystery set in Cornwall has it all murder (obviously), drama and a lot of fun thrown in. I enjoyed this book from cover to cover and found it hard to put down. The characters are fabulously written, how exciting it would be to be part of the swashbuckling Nightshade family. There are lots of twists and turns, I changed my mind several times about who I thought was the murderer, it kept me guessing till the end. I can’t wait to read the next book in the series as the ending certainly set the scene for that. I will be glad to be back in the company of the Nightshade family and the lovely DC Joe Enys. A must read for sure.

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A fun Cornish mystery with plenty of colourful characters to keep me entertained along the way. As a Cornishwoman, it can sometimes be tedious when people write about Cornwall and get it wrong. No chance of this here as this author clearly knows her Cornish stuff, even though the stereotypes were exaggerated for good humour. The names were a bit similar Jago, Jack, Jo, 2 Donnas but otherwise a good and engaging read.

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private-investigators, law-enforcement, Cornwall, myths-legends, sly-humor, situational-humor, murder, murder-investigation, contemporary, pet-parrot, verbal-humor, snarky, first-in-series, new-series,*****

The Edge of the World Detective Agency is out in the far reaches of Cornwall and is run by Belladonna Nightshade. All of the Nightshade family are a bit different and have the names to go with it. Some of the humour is particular to this area and there is an immersion in the myths/legends of this pirate ridden area.
But this is more than a fun read, it is a good cozy mystery with fascinating characters, sneaky twists, and incredible red herrings. Great read!
I requested and received an EARC from HarperCollins UK/One More Chapter via NetGalley. Thank you!

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This was recommended to me as the first in a new comedy crime series and for me, it really lived up to that billing!

Belladonna Nightshade is diversifying her businesses and starting up The Edge of the World Detective Agency! Her first case tests her belief in her friends and family and possibly reawakens a past love.

The characters were well written and the way they interacted and flowed around each other was fun to read. I've never been to this part of Cornwall but the descriptions of the locations gave me a great view into where this story was staged.

I do still have questions about Donna's past and her relationships, past and possibly future so I'm going to be looking forward to the next book in this series too!

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A fantastic and amusing read.
Donna Nightshade has decided to set up her own detective agency and the story that follows is guaranteed to keep the readers interested!
Donna’s family are eccentric and odd to say the least ,
The book is intelligently written with comedy , sarcasm , murder and peculiarity at its heart making for an entertaining and intriguing read.
I’m looking forward to the next book in this series and wondering how it can better this one!
A great cosy mystery read set in a beautiful part of the country.
Thanks to NetGalley and HarperCollins UK, One More Chapter.

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There aren’t enough words to tell you how much I enjoyed this book. Odd. Funny. Engaging. Brilliant. I absolutely loved it. I am not often lost for words when trying to explain what makes third book special read it now and let it make up your own mind.

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Honestly I wasn’t expecting this book to be so captivating since it’s my first time reading something by this author, but color me surprised and pleased! I didn’t put it down until I was finished…and slightly sleep deprived as a result…and I’m thrilled! This is a great start to a new series that I WILL be keeping an eye on for the next release.

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Donna Nightshade, the latest in a long line of Nightshades to rule the roost in Penberth Manor in Cornwall, has just opened a detective agency – the End Of The World Detective Agency, named after its location in Cornwall. This seems appropriate timing, as a Detective Agency might be just what’s needed when Jack Crowlas returns to town. Jack was the distinctly unpleasant ex-husband of Donna’s aunt, and it comes as no surprise to anyone when a) he’s still distinctly unpleasant and b) someone murders him.
Admittedly, nobody expected him to be murdered during a play, stabbed inside a kennel while wearing a dog costume that belonged to one of the actors – and that’s not the only odd thing about the murderer. The biggest problem for Donna, though, is that the Agency’s first case is to clear the name of the person running the agency. It seems that all the evidence points towards Donna, and most of the locals seem more than happy to believe it…
So, NetGalley, my source of review e-copies, sends me emails sometimes, suggesting things I’d like to review. The answer is usually either yes please, or goodness me, no. But occasionally, something catches my eye and the response is what the hell, I’ll give it a go.
I’m not quite sure what it was about this one that caught my eye – possibly the lack of quotes such as “in the style of Agatha Christie”, which as we all know, is never a good thing to see. I couldn’t find out much about the author – this is her first foray into crime fiction – and you know what? I really enjoyed it.
What’s not exactly clear from the blurb is that while this probably comes across as a cosy crime series – the sleuth is in love with the local police officer and has a pet (admittedly a macaw, not a cat) – it isn’t really. It’s a comedy crime series, although more in the sense of things going to all sorts of extremes than being full of one-liners. There’s some good backstory here, some of it revealed, some of it left for later instalments, and the dynamics between the characters is full of energy. The lead characters are far from saints, which does open up some possibilities in who did what to who that wouldn’t be there in a more traditional cosy.
As for the murder plot, you can see where it is going with the multiple murder methods quite early on, but even so, there are some good reveals, not least in a good misdirect with the identity of the murderer. There are clues to aspects of the plot, but a lot of it did seem to there to be guessed at, rather than figured out, and the motivations of at least one character were a little unclear to me – again, maybe that’s for Book Two.
There is also a great book-sized misdirect that adds a different spin on the book and where the series might go from here, but the less said about that the better…
It’s not perfect – there are times early on where the narrated sections and the third person sections seem to be written in the same voice (with the same amount of brackets) but this settles down by the halfway point, and I think there is perhaps a bit too much that the reader is told, rather than can figure out.
Most importantly though, I really enjoyed reading this book. Yes the plot gets a bit over the top at times – it’s a comedy, it’s allowed to be – but it kept me reading and put a smile on my face. And I can’t ask more than that. A really promising debut and I look forward to the next one.
The Wrecker’s Curse is out on 10th March 2023 as an ebook and 30th March 2023 as a paperback from One More Chapter, part of HarperCollins. Many thanks for the e-copy for review.

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Oh my gosh! So much fun! So twisty and fun to read. I never guessed whodunnit. In fact, I’m going to go back and reread the final few chapters just to take it all in. I was so invested in the story I read them too quickly. I know nothing about Cornwall, but now I want to visit there! If you like a fun mystery, do yourself a favor and read this book! I cannot wait for book 2!

Thank you to NetGalley and One More Chapter Books for the opportunity to read and review this book.

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5* Completely wacky

The Wrecker’s Curse reflects (exaggerates) the eccentricities of the British people, in particular the Cornish. Because the humour is so British, sadly this excellent book is unlikely to be appreciated or understood by US readers. The author, Jo Silva, has brought wicked sarcasm and snark into her character's thoughts, conversations and actions, all resulting in a very funny book, it's a cross between farce and chaos within a murder mystery. The plot contains constant twists and turns to hide the identity of the murderer, all is revealed at the very end.

I would love to have read this on a beach (in Cornwall), unfortunately I was stuck in bed fighting a nasty bug. I'm sure that my fuzzy brain missed a lot, there's so much here that warrants a second reading. Feeling still under the weather, I won't add my impression of the plot, anyway you've probably read what other reviewers think. I strongly recommend The Wrecker’s Curse, it's great.

Watch out for the second book in the series, Murder on the Mount, due to be released later this year.

ARC generously supplied by HarperCollins UK, One More Chapter and NetGalley, this review is my personal, unbiased opinion.

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