#BookReview – SECRET GARDEN by Ian Martyn #Paranormal #Mystery

I’m back again with another review, this one the third in the Inspector Kirby mysteries – books 2 & 3 were released at the same time, so it was a great pleasure to go straight on to the next, after enjoying Brexitus! so much. If you missed my review, click on the title to see it, and also find the link to my review of Book #1.


Secret Garden: An Inspector Kirby Northumbrian Mystery (Inspector Kirby Northumbrian Mysteries Book 3)Secret Garden: An Inspector Kirby Northumbrian Mystery by Ian Martyn
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

New evidence has Kirby digging back into his earliest case as an Inspector – that of a missing girl who was never found. Inexplicably, her school bag, including her diary, has turned up looking as new as it would have done when it went missing along with Maisie, ten years ago. Her diary talks about a wall no one else can see, a door she has never been able to open, and the garden she just knows is on the other side.
Did Maisie finally open the door? And what did she find the other side? Kirby, Shirley (newly promoted to Sergeant), Harold, and some new friends set out to uncover the truth which, as usual, is stranger than anyone could have foreseen.
Over the course of his acquaintance with Harold Longcoat, and his new love, Connie, Kirby has had to accept the reality of some very weird things. Now he discovers there are some of those weird things in his own background. Add to this the pressure of a new Police Chief who is on his case about the vagueness of his reports, and his use of unorthodox ‘specialists’, and Kirby is up against more than just this re-opened case.
As ever, Kirby’s humour along with the juxtaposed attitudes of the old and the new brings this book to sparkling life. Characters continue to grow and change as a result of their experiences in very believable ways, and the mystery unravels through real police work, despite its weird nature.
I’m looking forward to the next one already!
Do note these books are very British in tone, language, references, and humour. If you can handle that, I highly recommend you start with Book #1, Inspector Kirby and Harold Longcoat, and enjoy them all.

View all my reviews

Take a look at Secret Garden here.

All three books are in Kindle Unlimited, so if you have a subscription, you can read them for FREE.


  1. Quite.
    In fact, when I looked it up on Amazon, there are a few books of this general title, not all of them versions of the classic by Frances Hodgson Burnett.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hers was really good.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I remember it as a childhood favourite ❤

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I remember your review of another book in this series. The entire concept is intriguing. I am going to check it out.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Fab.
      As I said to Debby, if you do go ahead and read them, you will find them very British in terminology, so be prepared! They are great reads, I hope you enjoy.


  3. Sounds intriguing Deb and clever using an already well-known title. 🙂 x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I must admit I’m a bit on the fence about the title – it definitely works for the story, but makes the much harder to find if you type it in a search engine, as the old classic comes up in many formats before you reach this one.
      Such a challenge, deciding what to do about titles.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I agree with YOU, but some authors think it’s a clever tactic.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. It sounds like you had a lot of fun with these. And there are going to be more? I enjoy British humor and sensibilities, so I imagine I would like this series. Thanks for sharing your reviews. 🙂


    1. I did indeed 😀
      If you enjoy British humour you’ll love them – and yes, there will be more. As I like, each story is complete of itself, but the characters keep growing and changing as the books go along.

      Liked by 1 person

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