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‘Some people are great storytellers. Some people are funny. Hugh McGinlay is both in generous portions. Joyous reading.’ Charlie Pickering

Catherine Kint was drinking champagne, contemplating the moon and enjoying an encounter with a handsome man in tight pants when reality overtook her. Her enchanted evening at the zoo took a turn for the worse. But that was nothing to how badly things would go for those around her.

Unable to ignore the itch that scratched her forensic skills, she and her trusted mate, Boris the barman, were soon on the case. What they discover is at odds with the official line, of course, but that never deterred Catherine. By the time they solve this case a lot of gin will be drunk, reputations will be in ruins, and someone will have a very nasty end.

Praise for Pachyderm:

Pachyderm is the second outing for milliner Catherine Kint and her best friend (strictly platonic) Boris. The novel follows on from Jinx although not so closely as to make the earlier one mandatory reading, but they are both definitely highly recommended.

McGinlay does a particularly good line in tongue-in-cheek humour in these books. Never cruel, he's able to poke fun at the high pace, high drama Kint from the outset. Whether it's the way that she does (or doesn't) deal with the client from hell; whether it's her stomping mercilessly into the personal (and potential romantic life) of Boris without a seeming care in the world, Kint is one of those characters that stands out from the page (and would probably be one you'd cheerfully strangle in real life).

Jinx created a real sense of the inner Melbourne hipster place that the books are set in, whilst Pachyderm concentrates more firmly on character development and plot. There's a lot going on in both these books, but at no stage is the reader made to feel overwhelmed or confused (well not more than Kint herself anyway). There's contemplation time, there's sitting around in the pub drinking gin time, and in this novel, some poignant moments both in terms of love lost, love sought and what happens to the famous when they age and fail.

Quirky, fun, engaging and hugely entertaining, Jinx, Pachyderm and Catherine Kint are a really good combo — here's hoping there's more intended in the series.

— Karen, AustCrime


One way to have fun with crime writing might be to take several tropes of the genre and throw them in a blender with ample gin. Rather than cliches, you may end up with a refreshing and entertaining novel — if you're Melbourne writer and musician Hugh McGinlay.

Sleuth Catherine Kint — once a cop, now a milliner who solves crimes (and drinks buckets of gin) — is flung (via a fling) into a vicious world of psycho zoo-keepers as she uncovers dark secrets at Melbourne Zoo. When things turn sinister, Kint shifts into crime-solving mode, assisted by her sidekick/barman/existential guide Boris Shakhovsky. Wonderfully absurd right from the opening line, Pachyderm is a comedic and compelling romp. Best paired with a strong G&T.

Pia Smith, Australian Education Union News, Issue 3, 2017

The author’s prose flows effortlessly. He is a writer with a load of talent. 

Ian Lipke, Queensland Reviewers Collective

McGinlay’s second Catherine Kint Mystery is as good as, if not better than, the first. It’s a tale with a dramatic climax reached via not just red herrings, but an elephant, a tiger, a bunch of reptiles, generous quantities of gin and beer, and green felt. In the category of a cosy mystery, this is just a shade short of a five-star read.

Marianne, Goodreads 

The plot of Pachyderm, McGinlay’s follow-up to Jinx, is equally intriguing in characteristically off-beat, irreverent style. 

Believably flawed characters, cosily familiar inner-city locations and sassy, tongue-in-cheek, boisterous wit keep the chapters humming along to a satisfying and unexpected conclusion.

Catherine, Boris and Beau share centre stage with an eclectic cast: a slightly doddery visiting British documentary-maker and naturalist, a detestable bully with a prominent role in state politics, a bothersome millinery client who senses trouble before it strikes, a female laundromat customer with a penchant for pink-dyed men’s clothing, a flirty stranger who whistles openly on a train, and meerkats, lions and reptiles aplenty.

 Rosalea Ryan, Bendigo Weekly



Hugh McGinlay is a writer and musician. He published Jinx in 2015 and Pachyderm in 2017. He has also released three albums and tours regularly. He lives in Melbourne with his wife and children.