Los Angeles Times – August 13, 2009
“Kwei Quartey’s first novel — “Wife of the Gods: An Inspector Darko Dawson Mystery” — has all those qualities in abundance. It’s an absolute gem of a first novel and the sort of book that will delight not only hard-core mystery fans, but also those who visit the genre only casually in search of an occasional literary entertainment. …Wife of the Gods undoubtedly will be compared with Alexander McCall Smith’s phenomenally successful No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series, but Quartey’s debut is — to this reader, at least — a far richer and more sophisticated experience. The author is working on a second novel…”
Kirkus Review – June 1, 2009
“Move over Alexander McCall Smith. Ghana has joined Botswana on the map of mystery… There’s plenty of room for them both, and the newcomer is most welcome.”
Essence Magazine – June 1, 2009
“Like The No.1 Ladies Detective Agency? You’ll love Wife of the Gods”
Booklist Starred review – May 1, 2009
Quartey’s crisp, engrossing debut introduces readers to Darko Dawson, a talented and temperamental detective inspector in Accra, capital city of Ghana. As the novel opens, DI Dawson is called out to the remote village of Ketanu to investigate the suspicious death of Gladys Mensah, a medical student and passionate AIDS worker. Was Gladys killed for her professional ambition (she had a run-in with a local healer who was convinced she was stealing his potions) or because of an unrequited romance with a married man? Returning to Ketanu is a deeply emotional experience for DI Dawson, whose mother disappeared there more than two decades before. He immediately senses the hostility of the Ketanu police, who resent having a big-city officer in their midst. He is also unsettled by the area’s tolerance of the custom of trokosi, in which beleaguered families atone for sins by marrying off their young daughters to fetish priests. Quartey, a Ghana-born medical doctor who now lives in Los Angeles, renders a compelling cast of characters inhabiting a world precariously perched between old and new. Fans of McCall Smith’s No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency novels will relish the opportunity to discover yet another intriguing area of Africa.
— Allison Block
Publishers Weekly – April 13, 2009
Quartey’s winning debut, a police procedural set in modern Ghana, introduces gifted detective Darko Dawson… Dawson is a wonderful creation, a man as rich with contradictions as the Ghana Quartey so delightfully evokes—a loving husband and father with anger management issues on the job and a personal fondness for marijuana… …readers will be eager for the next installment in what one hopes will be a long series.