DiscoverMystery & Crime

Leather Britches


Not for me 😔

A very brief encounter with mystery - predictable, tedious and lack-lustre.


The quiet solitude of a vacationing private investigator is shattered by noisy neighbors and the discovery of a woman's corpse.

The synopsis promised much more than a seventeen page whodunnit which ended as quickly as it began.

The prospect of a vacationing detective brought the likes of Hercule Poirot to mind; a detective seeking only rest but stumbling upon a crime scene. Instead, McCaig's private investigator seemed nosey at best, seeking a quick case to solve and massage her ego (as also shown by one of the characters immediately recognising her from the local newspaper...).

The dialogue was weak and predictable - as was the mystery. The narrative lacked sincerity and suspense. Seventeen pages was not enough to explore Fin and Charli or Flanagan's ability to solve a case. Thus, the story was lack lustre, tedious and without feeling.

Others may enjoy the swift nature of the narrative and complete absence of plot and character development, but for the mystery genre it falls flat and reads more like a modernised and less subtle version of Agatha Christie’s short story ‘The Third-Floor Flat’.

Reviewed by

I am an English teacher and a writer. I published my first poetry collection, Between the Trees, in May 2019. I read widely and avidly and review through Reedsy Discovery, Amazon Vine and individual review requests. All reviews are published on Amazon, Goodreads and my blog - My Screaming Twenties.


The quiet solitude of a vacationing private investigator is shattered by noisy neighbors and the discovery of a woman's corpse.

Leather Britches

The sky was a spectacular array of pinks and purples, the air was fragrant with the scent of pine needles, the stifling heat of the day had softened into a faint evening breeze, and I was lounging on an overstuffed wicker sofa on the front porch of my cottage with my two pups, Mischief and Mayhem, thoroughly enjoying doing nothing. And then I heard voices.

For clarification, my name is Cathleen Flanagan. I'm thirty-three, never married, white, female, and make my living as a private investigator in Washington, D.C. I was born and raised in Dublin, Ireland, and traded one capital for another five years ago. There's an interesting story behind my move, but we'll save that for another time. 

"Crap!" the woman exclaimed. In the oncoming darkness I could just barely make out that she was rummaging in what appeared to be a small purse. Her companion, a man who I took to be either her boyfriend or husband, looked at her anxiously as they stood on the front porch of the cottage directly across the way.

"It’s not here. I know I put it in my purse, but it's not here now," she said.

"Look again, Charli," said the man. "It must be there somewhere."

"I've looked and looked, Fin. Here, you look," she said as she dumped the contents of her purse onto the wicker porch chair. 

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Published on May 22, 2019

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9000 words

Worked with a Reedsy professional 🏆

Genre: Mystery & Crime

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