>Malcolm Pryce, Aberystwyth Mon Amour (2001)

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This cosy caper is the first novel in a series about the private detective Louie Knight, Aberystwyth.

The setting is Wales, and to judge from this book, it is an even more exotic place than I thought. The small town Aberystwyth is controlled by two mafia-like groups, the Bronzinis and the Llewellyns, and they, in turn, are controlled by the mysterious Druids.

Schoolboys begin to disappear, and though most of them are lowlife scum that won´t be missed by anyone but their naive mothers, the sleuth Louie Knight gets involved because the beautiful femme fatale of Aberystwyth, Myfanwy Montez wants him to find her missing cousin. The private investigator feels most safe and comfortable with his shoes on his desk or eating Sospan´s ice creams, but his self-appointed sidekick, the schoolgirl Calamity Jane, forces him to get up and try to do something to save the town from the Druids. Her theory is that the Welsh teacher is killing off his own students. And why not, we all know how cruel teachers can be.

All lovers of cosies and capers must appreciate the scene where the owner of the wool shop KnitWits identifies a rare tea cosy because of the Mayan symbols on it. I also enjoyd learning about the cartographer´s folly, but my favourite quotation was this one:

“I wondered how the gene for risking one´s life on stupid causes could survive in the gene pool.”

Yes, indeed.

A delightful mystery though there is some violence against dogs and donkeys. The style might be called “Donna Moore meets Godfather” – and he will never be the same guy again.

So now I know much more about Wales – or do I???? The book was a delightful and entertaining gift from Maxine, Petrona.

About Dorte Hummelshøj Jakobsen

I am a Danish teacher. In my spare time I read, write and review crime fiction.
This entry was posted in cozy mystery, Malcolm Pryce, review, Wales. Bookmark the permalink.

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