Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for The Kensington Kidnap by Katie Gayle. If you follow my blog at all, you know that I love cozy mysteries, so when I was invited to read and review this first book in a new cozy series, I jumped at it. Thanks to Sarah Hardy at Bookouture for this opportunity.

The Kensington Kidnap by Katie Gayle

Published December 2nd 2020 by Bookouture

A missing teenager, a mysterious cult and a case of mistaken identity – just another day’s work for Epiphany Bloom.

Epiphany ‘Pip’ Bloom is down on her luck. She can barely afford cat food, and just because Most has three legs doesn’t mean he eats any less. So she absolutely can’t afford to mess up her latest temp job. But when she walks through the door of the private investigation firm, her new boss mistakes her for a missing persons expert. He then charges her with finding Matty Price – the teenage son of two A-list celebrities – who has mysteriously disappeared from his home in Kensington.

It ought to be a disaster, but Pip reckons it’s actually an opportunity. She’s always been curious (nosy, her mother calls it) and has an uncanny knack for being at the wrong place at the right time (she doesn’t want to know what her mother thinks of that). After years of trying to find something she’s good at, has Pip managed to walk straight into the job she was born to do?

She owes it to herself and poor missing Matty to find out. But searching for Matty takes Pip into the strange, intimidating world of the rich and famous. And it soon becomes clear that some of these people’s love for themselves doesn’t extend to their fellow humans. As Pip investigates further, she realises the question isn’t whether Matty ran away – it’s whether Pip will find him alive and make it home safely herself…

An absolutely brilliant, light-hearted cozy mystery for fans of M.C. Beaton, T E Kinsey, Lauren Elliott and Joanne Fluke, featuring an irresistible new heroine.


Stars: 

I loved this story. There was a mystery, a lot of humor, an entertaining investigator (amateur sleuth), a cult, intrigue, celebrities and a plot that kept me interested all the way through this story. Epiphany ‘Pip’ Bloom is in trouble. Her mother has cut off her allowance, she has no job, and owes rent. She has a three-legged cat named Most, and influencer sister named Fliss and her landlord and friend Tim to support her. When she takes on a temp job and a Private Investigation firm, she is mistaken for someone else. When they offer her an envelope of cash to work on a missing person case, she makes the decision to take the money and solve the case. This will show her mother that she can be responsible and just as good as her sister. The fun starts there.

Pip and her sister Felicity, aka Flis, were quite the pair. Pip is a bit of a clutz and leaves disaster and misadventure in her wake. Flis has a vocabulary that had me spitting out my coffee at some points. She uses so many words incorrectly that Pip has become a pro at interpreting what she is trying to say. I enjoyed the secondary characters as well and thought they were all well-developed. Pip actually did a great job with her investigation. She followed the clues, dug into things and did a good job with her impersonating to get to the bottom of what was happening. There were a lot of clues to follow and chances were taken. This turned out to be a serious investigation with life threatening consequences, and what Pip ended up uncovering was a lot more than this reader expected. My one niggle is that there appears to be a love triangle emerging. I like both of the male characters so, hopefully, it will work out in a positive way, only time will tell. I am definitely looking forward to the next book in this series, to see what Pip gets involved in next. I was gifted a copy of this book upon request. The rating and opinions shared are my own.

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About the Author: Katie Gayle is the writing partnership of best-selling South African writers, Kate Sidley and Gail Schimmel. Kate and Gail have, between them, written over ten books of various genres, but with Katie Gayle, they both make their debut in the cozy mystery genre. Both Gail and Kate live in Johannesburg, with husbands, children, dogs and cats. Unlike their sleuth Epiphany Bloom, neither of them have ever stolen a cat from the vet. 

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