Death at the Gates by Katie Gayle (Epiphany Bloom 3)

Thank you to Sarah Hardy and Bookouture for the invitation to join the blog tour for this book on publication day in the UK. I enjoyed reading the first two books in the series (see my reviews at and ) .


Hurlingham House school is a high-achiever’s heaven, full of happy, hard-working pupils. There’s just the small matter of the dead body on the field… Sounds like a case for Epiphany Bloom!

When Epiphany Bloom’s best friend’s sister Claire is accused of trading exam papers for money, Epiphany agrees to see Ms Peters, the headteacher of Claire’s fiercely competitive school, to provide moral support. Claire has always been a model student and is loudly protesting her innocence: surely it’s all just a misunderstanding.

But when Ms Peters hears about Epiphany’s previous sleuthing exploits, she enlists her help to track down the true culprit!

Taking a job as a PE teacher, Epiphany soon realises she has plenty of suspects for the exam scam mastermind. The broke young teacher with a shady past? The father willing to buy his daughter anything – including grades? The school governor desperate to keep Hurlingham House at the top of the ranks?

Then Epiphany finds one of them dead at the school fair, and it becomes clear someone is taking the cut-throat culture of the school too literally – and when mysterious accidents start happening around her too, it seems the killer knows she’s onto them.

Can Epiphany solve the murder as well as clearing Claire’s name, before she becomes the next victim? This is one test she can’t afford to fail…

A charming and totally addictive cozy mystery with a hilarious and warm-hearted heroine. A must-read for fans of M.C. Beaton, Lee Strauss and Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum series.

Please check out the other reviews on the blog tour.

My thoughts:

Having enjoyed the first two books about Epiphany (Pip) Bloom I was pleased to see that there was another book in the series. So I curled up with my kindle last week and joined the adventures of Pip again.

Pip starts the story leaving another job (the one she had at the end of The Museum Murder) after a disastrous event. Regular readers of the series will know that Pip has tried many different careers, and doesn’t stay in a job for long.

Her next job is investigating exam cheating at the school for her IT expert flatmate’s sister. Tim has helped Pip with her investigations, and hopes that she can clear his sister’s name.

Pip is starting to make progress on the exam cheating investigation when she discovers a dead body of a school parent. Could the cases be linked? And are the accidents she experiences truly accidental?

This was another excellent light hearted cosy mystery from the combined pen of the two authors known collectively as Katie Gayle. I loved the humour, and how the characters are evolving, and the llamas make a welcome return too.

I had worked out who was behind the exam cheating scandal early in the story, but that didn’t spoil my enjoyment of the book. I believe that you could enjoy this story without reading the first two books, but I’m happy to recommend all three.

Author Bio:

Katie Gayle is the writing partnership of best-selling South African writers, Kate Sidley and Gail Schimmel. Kate and Gail have, between them, written over ten books of various genres, but with Katie Gayle, they both make their debut in the cozy mystery genre. Both Gail and Kate live in Johannesburg, with husbands, children, dogs and cats. Unlike their sleuth Epiphany Bloom, neither of them have ever stolen a cat from the vet.

Buy Link:Amazon:


By Karen K is reading

An avid reader from the age of 4. Love escaping into a good novel after a busy day working with students. Mum. Adopter of dogs.

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