Review: Detective Fox and the Christmas Caper (Dick and the Sidekick #1) by Isobel Starling

Every good Dick needs a sidekick…

Actor Tom Lewis’s world came crashing down when a honey trap and tabloid exposé outed him and put pay to his flourishing career. The housewives favourite was most well-known for his role as ‘Detective Fox’ in the quaint British series Malmesbury Murders. But after the media speculation about his sexuality, the show is in hiatus and Tom hasn’t worked six months.

Now things are getting serious, the money he made from M.M is running out and he needs a job desperately. So when Tom’s agent offers him a six week seasonal acting job, he reluctantly agrees… and takes on the role of Santa for a top London department store. 

This decision changes Tom’s luck. Not only will he have an income for the holiday season, he’ll also be working with a very sexy young elf that he spotted at the auditions, named Eli Mason. 

While on a break Tom overhears two unidentified store workers discussing a ‘job to get a little Christmas bonus”. He realizes the job is of the illegal sort. Now, Tom could call the police, but then again, wouldn’t it be great for his flagging career if Detective Fox saved the day.

So Fox is on the case, and as every good Dick needs a sidekick, Tom decides Eli will fit the role, in more ways than one.”

I had a lot of fun reading this Christmas novella. It’s got humor, steam, a bit of mystery and did I mention steam? Detective Fox definitely read like the first in a series to me. Not that that is a bad thing, but there was necessary setup to the characters, plus the mystery plus the lead in to further episodes to cover in a novella length story, so much was touched on without a ton of detail. Again, not a bad thing and I’m hoping the bits I want more of will be further explored in coming tales. If they are, then I can see this as being the kind of series you want to reread once you get to know everyone and the whole series will end up balanced and complete.

The mystery isn’t overly mysterious and for me that worked considering the detectives here were not detectives by any means, so anything more complex would have been too unbelievable considering the time that was dedicated to solving the Christmas crime. The fun was in Tom, Eli and their band of merry elves working together to figure out how to be heroes so they can get a little face time. Tom is an actor after all and while I wouldn’t exactly say he’d been disgraced, he did have a serious slump going on with his recent scandal in the press.

I liked reading about Eli and Tom together and feel like we are just at the beginning of something with them. That pacing worked well even though that is a big part of the bits I want more of. If their relationship evolves how I’m hoping, the progression of their togetherness will be better than any mystery, and then the mystery can be a fun vehicle to move these guys forward. There is some delicious kink that the author tapped into that was a total treat and I most definitely need more of that. What I read was complete but because I loved the unexpected avenue the author went down with Tom and Eli, it felt like such a tease which has got me hooked and ready to read book two.

For more information on Detective Fox and the Christmas Caper, check it out on Goodreads.

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**a copy of this story was provided for an honest review**

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