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Dead Man Switch

(A Billie Walker Mystery #1)

4.15  ·  Rating details ·  33 ratings  ·  21 reviews
Bestselling author Tara Moss returns to crime fiction with a stunning new series, and a stunning new heroine. Meet PI Billie Walker - smart and sexy, with a dash of Mae West humour, she's a hard-boiled detective with a twist.

'A cracking thriller, with a marvellous, strong, flamboyant heroine. Loved it.' Joanne Harris, award-winning author of Chocolat

She's a woman in a man'
Paperback, 368 pages
Expected publication: October 21st 2019 by HarperCollins - AU
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1946, post-war Sydney and Billie Walker has come home to take over her father's PI business after her death. Prior to that she worked with her photojournalist husband in warn torn Europe but he disappeared after she left to return to Sydney and is presumed dead. With most women leaving their war time jobs to allow returning servicemen to work, she's considered a curiosity, particularly in a career with few women at the helm. But Billie with her 'Fighting Red' lipstick, elegant clothes and little ...more
Sep 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
“’He looks a lot more like a body rolled in a rug than I was hoping.’ Ella observed quietly as she and Alma inspected their handiwork. ‘Let's hope we don't run into any neighbours or the next tenant meeting will be hell.’”

Dead Man Switch is the first book in the Billie Walker Mystery series by award-winning Australian/Canadian author, Tara Moss. It’s 1946 in Sydney, and the climate favours returned servicemen in jobs while the women who filled those roles during the war are relegated to domestic
Mandy White
Being a massive fan of Tara Moss' previous series - Mak Vanderwall and Pandora English - I jumped at the chance to read the first book in a new crime series. Dead Man Switch did not disappoint. In fact I stayed up way past my bedtime last night to finish it. It is a book that I could not put down. Billie Walker is a fantastic new character and I look forward to spending more time getting to know her in the future.

This is a crime series with a difference for me. Set in Sydney in 1946 after the wa
Jul 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
A Billie Walker #1 Mystery.

This book was a romp through post war Sydney's steamier parts. Billie Walker, recently returned from Europe, where she worked as a journalist, takes over her late father's Detective Agency. Nothing deters this lady as long as she has the right shade of lipstick, Fighting Red. However Fighting Red is on its way out and so will Billie be if she doesn't get some private detection work pretty soon. While divorce cases pay for most of her needs, Billie longs for some seriou
Gloria Arthur
Sep 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: the-bookshelf
Dead Man Switch

Murder, mystery and suspense with a stylish detective

It’s Sydney Australia, 1946 and Billie Walker is a Private Inquiry Agent in a predominantly male business, she carries a Colt 1908 pocket semi-automatic with mother of pearl grips (a gift from her mother) hidden in her garter. She's attractive, smart, fearless and has an attachment for her favourite shade of lipstick 'Fighting Red’. Billie employs a male secretary/assistant Sam who is easy on the eye and injured from the war.

Terry Maxwell
Sep 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
It was a fantastic read. Grabbed you from the start. Being the first is what I’m assuming will be a series for Billie Walker it starts of fast then introduces you the main characters. Unlike a lot of books that are starting a series it doesn’t get bogged down with everyone’s backstory but does give enough so you know there will be more backstory in future books. The story was great that brought all the parts together to wrap up the story but leave a few threads loose for a follow up book. The st ...more
tba - closer to pub date
This story is set in Sydney after World War 2. The historical details are researched and definitely add a layer of interest to the story, including the buildings that were around, the style of dress, the attitudes of and towards war returnees, etc.
The plot didn't lose momentum and the ending was satisfying. I'll look forward to more in the series.
Jackie Cook
Sep 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars!

Sydney 1946
Wartime journalist Billie Walker has returned home to re-open her late Father's Private Inquiry agency. Billie's latest case, the disappearance of a teenage boy, is not as open/shut as she hoped with each lead uncovering another piece of the puzzle that refuses to fit. Billie, along with her trusted assistant Sam, are hurled into the underground of criminal activity and find themselves closing in on a case that is more then Billie bargained for. As for some, the war isn't ov
Sep 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
The talented Tara Moss has returned to crime with this first book in what I hope will be a long and successful series, and has introduced us to a new protagonist, P.I. Billie Walker.
It is 1946 in post-war Sydney, where returned soldiers are back in the work force, leaving most of the women, who had stepped up to the plate admirably in the absence of men, expected to go back to their pre-war domestic duties. But not Billie.
As a reporter in Europe during the war, Billie worked alongside her husb
Laura Jones
Sep 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing

Living in a post WW2 man’s world, Billie is an independent free thinking woman. During the war she worked as a journalist in Europe, where she fell in love with Jack, a press photographer, who hasn’t been seen for years presumed dead. .
Upon her return to Australia, Billie is working as a Private Inquiry Agent after taking over her Fathers business. The case she is employed to solve is that of a missing young man, and, like all good detective novels everything isn’t as
Jay Dwight
Aug 26, 2019 rated it liked it
3.5 stars

Moss captures the atmosphere of the time - late 1940's post War Sydney. Billie Walker is a private investigator - a female in a man's world - pushing the boundaries and following in her fathers footsteps.

Billie is asked to search for a missing 17 year old boy - but there's a lot to uncover in the search for him.

An entertaining start to a series with more to come.
Kerry A
Jul 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
What a treat to read this new book by Tara Moss. Billie Walker has returned from London now that the war has finished to run her recently deceased father's private detective agency. It's 1946, Billie has been left a widow by the war and doesn't want to rely on any man for her future security. There are terrific supporting characters (her 'girl Friday' who is a young man home from the war, both physically and mentally wounded; her mother who's slowly selling off her jewellery to survive and a bun ...more
Sep 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Thank you Better Reading for the opportunity to read Dead Man Switch by Tara Moss.

Well this was one book I didn’t want to put down!!

The main character Billie Walker is a P.I. who is tasked with a missing persons case, which takes her to the underworld of Sydney.

I loved the character Billie and I want to be Billie, she is smart, determined and tough as nails and doesn’t get scared easily.

An extremely well written murder mystery that flowed so well I was constantly asking myself who, why and how
Dominique Wilson
Sep 06, 2019 rated it liked it
Tara Moss' Dead Man's Switch is the first of a new series set in post-WWII Sydney, featuring female P.I. Billie Walker – described as 'smart and sexy, with a dash of Mae West humour, she's a hard-boiled detective with a twist.' I don't normally read from the detective genre, which may influence my opinion, but there were a number of things I found bothersome, which I don't think are a reflection of the genre.

The first was too much use of description – from multiple adjectives for simple everyda
DNF 26%

A big thank you to NetGalley, HarperCollins Australia and Author Tara Moss for this ARC.

I’m not sure why this book didn’t hold my interest because it ticked so many boxes.
Aussie Author I’ve read before ✔
Set in my hometown Sydney ✔
References to WWII ✔
Mystery ✔

I found the pacing slow and the flashbacks to the past interrupted the flow of the story in the present. But to be honest I wanted to know what happened to Jack back in Austria during WWII more than I did to Adin Brown - Billie’s
Tony Nielsen
Aug 23, 2019 rated it liked it
Tara Moss is already a best-selling author. In "Dead Man's Switch" she creates a convincing crime story, the first in a new series featuring Billie Walker. The timing is 1946 and the location is Sydney. Billie has inherited het father's business as a private investigator. It's a man's world but Billie is tough as nails, her world sharpened by bereavement through the loss of her husband, a photojournalist missing in post war Europe.

Mostly Billie's bread and butter is the usual husband and wife st
Sep 25, 2019 rated it really liked it
Dead Man's Switch is the kind of book I wish I could read for the first time all over again. It's clever and fun with a lot of intrigue and mystery. If someone had dropped Veronica Mars into a Raymond Chandler novel set in Sydney - this is the book you would get.

The cast of characters are interesting and I hope to get to know them better in future books. They are all recovering from war and trying to move on however best they can. Billie Walker is a gem to follow as she steps into her fathers s
Angela Robyn
Sep 22, 2019 rated it liked it
3.5 stars

The first in a new female detective series by bestselling author Tara Moss, Dead Man Switch sees war widow Billie Walker pushing against the constraints of 1940s Sydney in an attempt to make a living from her late fathers Detective Agency.
Moss brings the post war city to life with atmospheric, detailed descriptions of the physical, social, and sartorial aspects of the world Ms Walker inhabits.
While this book seemed to have all of the ingredients of my ideal read - history, mystery and a
Sep 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
What a fun read!

Tara Moss’s first installment in the Billie Walker series sees its main character, a female private inquiry agent in 1940s Sydney, investigating the disappearance of a young man. During her quest for answers, Billie encounters thugs, corrupt cops, and other unsavory people in Sydney’s seedy underbelly. She will be involved in car chases, shoot outs and remote surveillance operations without ever losing her sense of style and elegance.

The book has a great level of historical deta
Alice in Wonderland
Oct 02, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2019
I loved the premise and the idea of this book but I get like the execution could have been better. At times when Moss describes the main character it felt like a man describing her with waaay too much description about how she looks and it was just super annoying. Really enjoyed the plot though!
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Aug 29, 2019
Dave Sloan
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Sep 19, 2019
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Sep 21, 2019
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Tara Moss is an author, documentary host and producer and human rights advocate. She is the author of 12 books, published in 19 countries and 13 languages, including the Mak Vanderwall crime fiction series and the Pandora English paranormal series. Her 12th book is a historical crime thriller launching in Aus/NZ as Dead Man Switch in October 2019, and The War Widow in the USA and Canada in summer ...more