‘A Familiar Tail’… a twist on an old expression and this book is a delight, if you are – like me – into the COZY MYSTERY genre.
Really attracted to read this book from the fun of the cover, spooky old house, a cute cat, and various run down things …like an old (creaky you would guess) gate, a well worn shovel and.. why is there a little yellow bird there too? it all MEANS SOMETHING when you are reading a cozy.
I received this as a gift from ‘Man of Mine’ a few months ago, it has been eagerly waiting on my shelf to be read.
After a lot of time COVER GAZING, it really is a THING, ..with me anyway and I DON’T think I am alone, I took the plunge into the world written about by Delia James, I hadn’t read anything by Delia before but I CERTAINLY will again!
‘A Familiar Tail’ is set in the American seaside town of Portsmouth, our protagonist is called Annabelle Britton, and in this the first book in the series, Annabelle arrives having not visited Portsmouth before and wanting to forget about personal life troubles…(common cozy mystery problem).. the leaving them all behind vibe.
Annabelle picked Portsmouth as she has a friend from school days who lives in Portsmouth already, so the connection is there.
Very soon life get VERY COMPLICATED for Annabelle, with a silvery colored CAT that won’t leave her alone, (to be fair Annabelle doesn’t try to get Alistair -the cat- to leave her side…
The fast discovery of a MAGIC WAND (a great addition to a cozy so I am all for that, the cozy mystery version of Harry Potter, well, if Annabelle were younger, and went to school, and there was Voldemort… but you get my drift… its MAGICAL)
There are a strong cast of characters with the reveal of a local coven of good Witches, (but ARE they ALL good in this story) They are set on protecting the town of Portsmouth, even a police officer is a member of the gang. (Albeit the more PRACTICAL, BY THE BOOK one) she is called Kenisha. (so you can take that down in your notebook, just joking)
There is also pregnant Witch Val, with ever understanding husband, I can see her as a cosy mum type, who just happens to have a wand!
There is also a character Julia who we really don’t know if she is a goodie or baddie, and she has a very interesting shop and it has a room explained in such good detail you can see it vividly in your minds eye. She also has protecting dogs who are her familiars.
Familiars it is explained at creatures who adopt – for want of a better word, a Witch, to be a protector to them, Alistair, the cat of the dead woman involved in the mystery , has decided to adopt Annabelle.
Keeping up? … no spoilers are happening…
It also turns out that the poor murdered Lady has a grandson who inherits the house (ooh- suspect number 1 I guess) Anyway, it turns out that Frank and Annabelle get along, mostly as she worries HE is the killer, and I wondered if COZY ROMANCE was ABOUT TO OCCUR anyway!
One of my favorite bits was that in the house of the …deceased… only Annabelle could get into the MYSTERIOUS ATTIC, (don’t you just love a mysterious attic, ME TOO!!) ..the knob just turned for her and yet others had DIED TRYING, …
SORRY – that last bit is a LIE – I got CARRIED AWAY,..SORRY DELIA… NO one DIED TRYING as far as I am aware... but it would have made for a good twist.. Book 3 Delia?
So, as I was reading along, I was left with a protagonist who – as is a cozy requirement– sticks her nose into EVERYTHING – putting herself in constant danger, A discovery of a town with a Witches coven, a discovery that a murder had occurred in said town, and a choice of people to SUSPECT (oh goodie!)
Did I figure it out… NOPE, COOL, my favorite book RESULT in this cozy mystery genre.
You outwitted my cozy brain Delia and I THANK YOU FOR THAT, it is my reading desire to be OUTWITTED every time, as YOU? the author, – have the decided advantage of KNOWING ALL ALONG …WHODUNIT! and I want it to be KEPT FROM ME.. right up to when it all KICKS OFF BIG STYLE.
With that, I bid you good evening, or good day, ask you to share the COZY love by sharing this post, (if you would be so kind) and until we meet again soon,
HAVE A COZY TIME… (without the murder obvs!)