Book Review – Cosplay Killer by Dahlia Donovan

London Podcast Mystery #1
Publisher: Hot Tree Publishing
Pages: 211
Characters: Osian/Dannel
POV: 3rd
Genre: Mystery Detective

What happens when an autistic firefighter and his paramedic boyfriend share a thirst for true crime?

Osian Garey and Dannel Ortea live together in a colourful flat in Covent Garden. They run a podcast and throw themselves wholeheartedly into Cosplay, video games, and musical theatre. This year, they’re all fired up to attend their annual convention with a group of first responders.

When Osian finds a paramedic friend murdered in the middle of the crowded venue, the police immediately turn their attention to him.

They have one question on their mind.

Is he the first witness on the scene or the killer?

As the mystery unfolds, Osian has to face the trauma of his last job as a paramedic. Somewhere in those memories, a killer waits to exact revenge. They’ll have to prove Osian’s innocence and fight for their own survival when the killer puts them both in their sights.

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This is the first book I’ve read by this author, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. The characters are likeable, there is a wonderful family vibe, and loads of red herrings that kept me guessing as to the identity of the murderer.

I loved Osian and Dannel. They’re sweet together, and there for each other. I liked how Osian gets Dannel’s autism and the coping mechanisms he needs to deal with the sensory overload of everyday life, and particularly his job. I think it says a lot for Dannel’s strength of character that he’s managed the stress of a job that would be difficult without his extra issues. I also liked that Osian realistically came across as a paramedic with his medical knowledge etc. I’ve read books where a character is a nurse or some other professional and you never see them in the field, or showing why they’re good at their job.

I also loved the supporting cast. Osian and Dannel’s family and friends don’t only talk about being supportive. They’re there immediately they need any kind of help, and that includes the murderer trying to make them the next victims! The mystery part of the story is very clever, and I liked how it all tied together, and made sense, yet wasn’t that obvious as I was reading. The author writes a great action scene too, and as an aside, Chris is totally a secret agent or something. He totally rocks.

I’m very happy this cozy mystery is the first in a series. I’m looking forward to reading more.

5 out of 5 stars.

About Anne Barwell

Anne Barwell lives in Wellington, New Zealand. She shares her home with a cat with “tortitude” who is convinced that the house is run to suit her; this is an ongoing “discussion,” and to date, it appears as though Kaylee may be winning. In 2008, Anne completed her conjoint BA in English Literature and Music/Bachelor of Teaching. She has worked as a music teacher, a primary school teacher, and now works in a library. She is a member of the Upper Hutt Science Fiction Club and plays violin for Hutt Valley Orchestra. She is an avid reader across a wide range of genres and a watcher of far too many TV series and movies, although it can be argued that there is no such thing as “too many.” These, of course, are best enjoyed with a decent cup of tea and further the continuing argument that the concept of “spare time” is really just a myth. She also hosts and reviews for other authors, and writes monthly blog posts for Love Bytes. She is the co-founder of the New Zealand Rainbow Romance writers, and a member of RWNZ. Anne’s books have received honorable mentions five times, reached the finals four times—one of which was for best gay book—and been a runner up in the Rainbow Awards. She has also been nominated twice in the Goodreads M/M Romance Reader’s Choice Awards—once for Best Fantasy and once for Best Historical. Anne can be found at
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