Book Reviews

Blog Tour: Barnabas Tew and the Case of the Enlightened Cow by Columbkill Noonan

Released: September 2019
Publisher: Darkstroke
Pages: 205

I’m absolutely thrilled to be taking part in my first ever blog tour! My review of this charming book is one of today’s stops on the tour. For new readers to my blog, welcome! I hope you enjoy your stay in my little nerdy world. For regular regulars, hi! How’s it going?

To find out more about the blog tour, check out the banner and other bits of information below.


Rama, the Hindu god who maintains dharma, or the balance of all things, is in terrible trouble, and only Barnabas and Wilfred can save him!

Private detectives to the gods, Barnabas Tew and Wilfred Colby, believed they’d discovered the secret to taking charge of their destinies. Unfortunately, they’re about to be taught a hard lesson: nothing is as it seems and taking control is easier said than done.

Fresh off their most challenging case to date, the two detectives step into a cenote: an otherworldly portal that connects worlds and can take them anywhere if they how to use it. Each is hoping to be reunited with someone he left behind, but they soon realize that something has gone terribly, disastrously wrong. Instead of being reunited with their lady-loves, they find themselves in a Hindu temple, together with Kamadeva, the Hindu god of desire.

Kamadeva asks them to save his friend Rama, who is in grave danger. It seems an innocent enough request, but Barnabas and Wilfred have learned that not everything is at it seems, and the right thing to do is not always so obvious. It doesn’t take long to discover that not all the gods want Rama saved, leaving the two detectives to make a terrible choice.

The detectives have faced dangerous deities before, but the Hindu gods are different. Otherworldly, wise, and full of shadowy motivations, they all seek to manipulate the hapless detectives to suit their purposes.

Can Barnabas and Wilfred see through the illusions and the lies to uncover the truth of the matter? Or will they fail, and choose the wrong side?


Imagine Sherlock Holmes. Now imagine him with none of the skill, charm, or intuition: what you’re then left with is more or less Detective Barnabas Tew. Even though he is the head of his private investigation outfit, it is his assistant Wilfred who is really the brains of the pair (not that Barnabas knows this). Barnabas is a bit like when a four year old makes you breakfast, giving you uncooked rice in a bowl of juice. You take it and say with fake delight, “Oh my, what a yummy breakfast!” and pretend to eat it, humouring the kid that they’re a big help and very good at what they do. Pretty much everyone Barnabas encounters treats him similarly, while his much more astute assistant Wilfred handles the actual investigating.

I was at a slight disadvantage since I haven’t read any of the previous books. The author did a great job bringing new readers up to speed so I didn’t necessarily feel like I had to have read them before being able to read this installment. I just think I would have enjoyed The Case of the Enlightened Cow more if I had been familiar with our detectives.

For a mystery, there is very little actual investigating as the pair of them continually bumble along from one hilarious calamity to another, meeting various different gods and people along the way. The story was mostly the reader watching the detectives getting into scrapes and going off on amusing bickering tangents like an old married couple.

It was an enjoyable little story, perfect for a bit of charming escapism. It’s a really interesting premise as well, these two detectives having been killed off early on in the series so that they could be PI’s for the Gods. So far it appears that they’ve previously assisted Egyptian and Norse gods, so it’ll be interesting to see where they go to next as the possibilities are nearly endless.


Barnabas Tew and the Case of the Enlightened Cow is a very fun and well written read, full of humor and heart (which more than makes up for the very little actual sleuthing the book contains). Our detective duo is delightful and endearing, especially when they’re bickering. If you’re looking for a light-hearted book to lose yourself in, this cozy mystery is a perfect choice.

About the Author 

Columbkill Noonan is the author of the bestselling “Barnabas Tew” series, which features the bumbling-yet-lovable Victorian detective Barnabas and his trusty sidekick, Wilfred. Columbkill combines her love of mythology and her affinity for period fiction to craft unique cozy mysteries that will leave you guessing (and chuckling!) till the very end.

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