Imagine Harriet the Spy struggling through a quarter-life crisis and you’ve got the premise for Katie Siegel’s cozy mystery Charlotte Illes is Not a Detective.
Former child detective Charlotte Illes is unemployed, living at home, and using her deductive reasoning to spy on potential first dates. It’s a relief when she comes out of “retirement” to help her brother’s girlfriend get to the bottom of some workplace drama. But is Charlotte out of her depths? Is she putting her family and friends in danger?
While the mystery isn’t terribly complicated, the banter between Charlotte and her best friends is as amusing as anything Casey McQuiston has written. Fans of Lisa Lutz’s Spelman series should give Charlotte Illes a chance.