This book was part of my collection of books back at my parent's house.
This book was a World Book Day book from 2007. It's only an 80 page book so it was a quick read.
Tim Diamond is a very bad, somewhat annoying detective - but his brother, Nick, is a 14 year old whom has his head screwed on.
They have very little money (due to Tim’s incompetence, and lack of skill in being a private detective) and the fact that their parents emigrated to Australia.
One morning, Tim received an invitation to visit his old school friend, multi billionaire Rory McDougal, to be part of a school reunion at Crocodile Island, in Scotland. As part of the invitation, Tim was given a first class ticket to Scotland as well as £1000. As money was hard to come by these days, Tim obliged - and ended up transferring his first class ticket for two second class tickets so that his brother could come with him.
He met the rest of the reunion group, of which there were eight of them in total, at a quay and they all boarded a boat called the “Silver Medal” which would take them to Crocodile Island. The captain of the boat, Captain Randle wished them well and said they would he would be back in a couple of days to take them back.
The Silver Medal was a very rickety old boat, very out of character for a multi millionaire to use - that should have been the first warning sign.
When they arrived, they found that Rory McDougal had been murdered - his body had been disembowelled (or divided, as the book put it). The party tried to call the police, but the castle which they found themselves in had no phones, and they had no signal on their phones. They had no way to get off the island other than wait for Captain Randle to return and take them back
As each day passed, one by one, each of them got murdered until two of them remained, Tim and Nick.
- Sylvie Binns ate a poisoned chocolate
- Janet Rhodes had a model of the Eiffel Tower thrusted into her chest
- Libby Goldman had a globe dropped on her
- Eric Draper was shot using an old flintlock pistol
- Brenda Blake had a big organ pipe clatter her to death
- Mark Tyler had a javelin thrown through him
Each one of them were killed with an object which had some form of correlation to what they came first in at school, whether that was Maths, Chemistry, French, Geography, History, Music or Sports.
Tim was the only one of the reunion group that was left - it turned out he came first in Needlework (is that even a subject?)
Tim, not being the sharpest tool in the shed, accused his 14 year old brother of being the murderer and ran away from him. He ran right into the final trap, which was near a cliff edge which had “long, slender with pointed tops, standing upright out of the water” beneath them - which are called “needles”. Suddenly, a charge was triggered and Tim was about to meet an untimely death.
Fortunately, Nick was able to grab hold of Tim and pull him up to safety. It was only then that Nick worked out who the murderer was, it was the only uninvited member of this school reunion group Johnny Nadler (which was an anagram of Randle - he was the captain of the boat who took them all there!)
Nadler was known for coming second in every subject, losing out to everyone in the group at some subject - this trait of coming second followed him into later life, where he would come second in job interviews, relationships, selling inventions he created and so on. The boat that they all arrived on was called “The Silver Medal” - which is a symbol of coming second in a competition.
Nadler confronted them and was on the verge of killing the brothers, only for Eric to appear and clobber Nadler with a blunderbuss firearm (who it turned out, had only a flesh wound from the shot that was aimed at killing him).
They bound and gagged Nadler and got onto the Silver Medal and sailed to the mainland, where the police took Jonny Nadler away.
This was a really silly read, a small book that I had at my parents’ house - that I read so I could give to a charity shop. #minimalism and all that.
The one upside (or downside) of reading this book, is that now I have added seven more books to my reading list. Anthony Horowitz is a tremendous writer.
Thanks for reading :) x