I am so thrilled that Columbkill Noonan has just stopped by with her debut novel, hot off the press – “Barnabas Tew and the Case of the Missing Scarab”, a “weirdly wonderful” Victorian detective caper. Sounds right up my street!
It has been described by Nathan Robinson, author of “Devil Let Me go” as “fast-paced as it is thrilling, as funny as it is original; feels like an old-school caper”.
A day in the life of Barnabas Tew
When Barnabas lived in Marylebone, life was as it should be: dull, predictable, and, above all, orderly. His days were passed much as those of any other proper British detective of good, if middling, social standing.
He’d rise early in the morning (as only ne’er-do-wells stayed in bed past seven, in Barnabas’ opinion). He’d have a nice breakfast of some bland, boiled something-or-other, served by his landlady. Then he’d perhaps spend a few minutes reading the paper before welcoming his assistant, Wilfred, and then opening his doors for a proper day of work.
(Of course, there was little traffic through those doors, because Barnabas, whilst an earnest and hardworking man, was also not terribly good at detective work; indeed, his clients were just as likely to suffer an untimely death as to have their cases solved, despite Barnabas’ best efforts to prevent such tragic and terribly upsetting occurrences.)
Barnabas, like any good Victorian detective, likes things just-so. Breakfasts ought to be had on time, gardens ought to be properly kept and carefully tended (by a gardener, of course, since once mustn’t get one’s hands dirty), people should be neatly and properly dressed in clothing appropriate to their station in life. Everyone must always do their duty, at the proper time and in the proper way. But, to Barnabas, the most important rule of all is that one must always be polite, no matter the circumstances.
Then, suddenly, once day, everything changes.
Barnabas, together with Wilfred, is unexpectedly (and most unpredictably) whisked off to the Egyptian underworld to solve a case for Anubis, the God of the Dead. Here, things are not orderly, not even in the slightest; gardens are decidedly unkempt, nothing is predictable, and people do not dress according to British laws of fashion. Indeed, not everyone even has a proper head, as Barnabas discovers almost immediately when he comes face-to-face with Anti, the ferryman to the Land of the Dead (who has, distressingly, the head and wings of a falcon).
Barnabas, of course, is very confused by his new surroundings (and, if truth be told, more than a little distressed, as well). Still, he has been given a duty to do, which means that he will perform it to the best of his ability, bizarre circumstances or no. And, despite the strange things that happen to him, or the odd (and sometimes unsavory) characters that he meets, he still strives to maintain a degree of decorum about him, because one must never be impolite, no matter whom, or what, one is dealing with.
“Barnabas Tew and the Case of the Missing Scarab” is now available on Amazon at myBook.to/Barnabas
About the author
Columbkill Noonan had an M.S in Biology (she has in turn been a field biologist, an environmental compliance inspector and a lecturer of Anatomy and Physiology). When she’s not teaching or writing she can usually be found riding her rescue horse Mittens, practising yoga (on the ground, in an aerial silk, on an SUP board, and sometimes even on Mittens) or spending far too much time at the local organic vegan market