Friday 17 March 2023

The Accidental Medium - Tracy Whitwell

The Accidental Medium is the first book in a hilarious series from Tracy Whitwell featuring Tanz, the accidental medium who, with the help of the dead, is about to become an unwilling crime-solver.

Tanz is a wine-loving, straight-talking, once-successful TV actress from Gateshead, whose career has shrivelled like an antique walnut. She is still grieving for her friend Frank, who died in a car crash three years ago, and she has to find a normal job in London to fund her cocktail habit. When she starts work in a ‘new age’ shop, Tanz suddenly discovers that the voices she’s hearing in her head are real, not the first signs of madness, and that she can give people ‘messages’ from beyond the grave. Alarmed, she confronts her little mam and discovers she is from a long line of psychic mediums.

Despite an exciting new avenue of life opening up to Tanz, darkness isn’t far away and all too soon there’s murder in the air . . .

What did I think?

I was drawn to this book when I discovered that the author originated from my native north-east, and ok the large glass of red wine on the cover helped to pique my interest.  The Accidental Medium completely exceeded my expectations as it has a bit of everything in it - murder, crime, paranormal, friendships, family life and Geordies.

I knew I was going to love this book from the very first page when main character Tanz is on the phone to her best friend Milo and Milo says 'Gateshead needs you!'  Eeeeh, wor Gateshead's mentioned in a book!  Tanz is from Gateshead but she's an aspiring actress living in London...oh and she's also psychic but she doesn't know it yet.

Acting jobs, or lack thereof, don't pay the rent so Tanz gets a job in a new age shop and her life changes, whether it's for the better remains to be seen.  With the help of her new friend Sheila, Tanz finally realises that she's not going mad...she really can hear voices in her head.

I absolutely loved this book; it's funny, entertaining and something so completely different to what I'm used to reading.  Of course I loved it even more because of the Gateshead link but I would have still loved it if Tanz hadn't been a Geordie.  It's just so refreshing to read 'mam' in a book instead of 'mum' and I loved how Tanz heads for the comfort of home when things get too much for her.

I don't know how many times I laughed out loud (but it was a lot) and I loved Tracy Whitwell's humour.  I was delighted to see a reference to Chorlton and the Wheelies, one of my favourite TV shows as a child, and I snorted with laughter when Milo called Tanz Fenella...if you know, you know!

Entertaining, hilarious and spellbinding (witchy pun intended), The Accidental Medium is an absolutely cracking book that I wouldn't hesitate to recommend and I can't wait to read more of the series, so it's straight on to book 2 (Gin Palace) for me.

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