Inspector Hobbes and the Curse is an amusing fantasy take-off on Sherlock Holmes and Watson. Hobbes, the Sherlock of the pair, has enormous physical and mental capabilities that aren't quite human. His bumbling sidekick, Andy, is accident prone, particularly when he drinks too much, or is faced with a beautiful woman.
The novel is set in a charming village in the Cotswolds. The villagers are upset because Felix King, a billionaire developer, is trying to buy up local property. His sister and assistant, Viola, is a tempting target for Andy's attraction to beautiful women.
Panthers and werewolves are sighted in the area around the village and may be responsible for the sheep killings that initially involve Hobbes in the investigation. However, human murder is also on the agenda, and this book turns into a typical murder mystery.
I enjoyed the book. It's light-hearted reading appropriate for a rainy day, or any day you're eager for amusement. The characters are well drawn. They're not quite human, except for poor Andy, but that makes them more fun. The plot and setting are interesting and draw you in to the world of the novel.
Although this is the second novel in Wilkie Martin's mystery series, it can be read as a standalone tale with no reason to go back to the first story for background. I recommend it as a relaxing fantasy read.
I reviewed this book for Net Galley.