Kat Ailes - Shastrix Books

Kat Ailes

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Dead Tired

Dead Tired

Kat Ailes

9th June 2024

It’s sequel time, and we return to the sleepy Cotswold village that Alice moved to before Jack was born, and which now even the characters refer to as being like Midsomer.

I really like the bunch of characters and the sense of humour that the narration brings to them all. It must be hard to work with a large cast of main characters, all in a similar situation (early motherhood) and yet make them all stand out distinctly. I’ve definitely read a cosy crime that couldn’t achieve that at all, but this does so with style.

I also love the way the characters lives develop, we get to revisit various other characters from the first book too, and a rich new cast are introduced as well to fill out the new plot. Creating characters is clearly something that Ailes has put a ton of effort and talent into.

And the plot is great too - there’s a bunch of stuff going on, loads to investigate, clues all over the place, and enough that you think you maybe have worked some stuff out but without being confident enough to not want to race to the end and find out.

This was a two-day read for me, aided by two long train journeys, but also demonstrating how much it motivated me to focus on it.

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The Expectant Detectives

The Expectant Detectives

Kat Ailes

23rd September 2023

This was one of those books that I picked at random from the shelves of a bookshop one day based entirely on the cover. Big bold words and the promise of a cosy crime with a unique twist in the choice of detectives.

The set up is not quite what I had expected from the blurb - but it’s even better. Alice and Joe have moved to the countryside with only a few weeks to the baby’s arrival, and while at their ante-natal class, a murder occurs just downstairs. Naturally, the expectant mothers band together to investigate, and the police are unimpressed.

It’s a really funny narrative, with recurring laughs and many reflections on life which feel very much drawn from the author’s own experiences, and which make the characters and setting seem entirely real.

The plot is solid too, with plenty going on and loads of clues, red herrings, and side-mysteries to solve. There are some elements which to me seemed maybe a tiny bit obvious coming, but I don’t think that wasn’t deliberate.

Really good - looking forward to book two next year.

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  2. Dead Tired
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  4. The Expectant Detectives