Pachyderm by Hugh McGinlay, Review: Sassy modern mystery

Pachyderm by Hugh McGinlay is the colourfully sassy second title in the highly entertaining Catherine Kint mystery series. Read my full review.

Pachyderm Book Synopsis

Pachyderm by Hugh McGinlay - Catherine Kint Mystery #2 Review

A Catherine Kint Mystery #2

‘I didn’t have perspective on life until my head got stuck in an elephant’s anal tract.’

A romantic night at the zoo ends with a new mystery for milliner and sleuth Catherine Kint.

Before you can say ‘monkey business’ Catherine and her trusted barman Boris are annoying everyone from zoologists to police. This investigation would challenge the best of detectives, but this is Catherine and Boris.

Secrets, rivalries, lust and egos all set the dung flying. By the time this is finished, reputations will be tarnished, gin will be drunk and someone’s gonna get fed to the lions… or some other carnivore.

(Clan Destine Press, October 2021)

Genre: Crime-Detective, Mystery, Drama

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Book Review

Pachyderm is a novel that has been on my wishlist for far too long.

Looking for a thoroughly modern and edgy Phryne Fisher-esque leading lady? Meet Catherine Kint, ex-cop now bolshy high-end milliner, very partial to gin, and not so inclined to stick to the rules now that she’s a mere civilian.

She knew lots of people who worked in banks, generally the more they hated it the more she liked them. Extra points if they never considered buying a salmon coloured shirt or sunglasses where the brand was bigger than the lens.

But, Catherine’s heart is in the right place even if she’s prone to putting her foot in her mouth, and her devoted bestie Boris (her local barman) knows this. So much so, that she can badger him into almost any adventure – even a perilous night-time B&E – in pursuit of the truth.

I was thoroughly entertained by Catherine’s snarky sass and Boris’ goofy good-naturedness, but it’s the much deeper issues of life, love and loss that these characters confront in Pachyderm that really make them shine from within. That, and of course Aussie author McGinlay’s obvious talent for writing rapid-fire dialogue and fabulous visual comedy.

I read this slim but action-packed novel quite capably as a standalone, but after enjoying these characters so much I may just go back and read Book 1 Jinx before embarking on #3 Bodysurfing.

Hugh McGinlay’s Pachyderm is a highly engaging, under-appreciated gem for fans of modern mystery fiction.

BOOK RATING: The Story 4.5 / 5 ; The Writing 4.5 / 5

Get your copy of Pachyderm (Catherine Kint Mystery #2) from:

Amazon Bookshop US Booktopia AU

About the Author, Hugh McGinlay

Hugh McGinlay is a writer, musician and optimist. These poor career choices means that he has also worked as a bus driver, a kitchenhand, singing teacher and a seller of dental consumables. Now three books into the Catherine Kint series – including JinxPachyderm and Bodysurfing – he continues to be amazed at the levels his imaginary friends have been accepted into other peoples’ heads and bookshelves.

As a musician, he has released four albums and occasionally gets played on the radio. He lives in Melbourne with his wife, two children, a cat and six chickens.  Visit his website for more information.

This review counts toward my participation in the Aussie Author Challenge 2022.

* My receipt of a review copy from the publisher did not impact the expression of my honest opinions above.