Tuesday Mooney Wore Black is a novel about what happens an eccentric billionaire creates a game for people to try and win his fortune after his death. Tuesday Mooney is weird, a woman who wears black and works investigating donors for a hospital. She’s closed off even from her closest friend Dex, who works in finance but really loves karaoke and performing. When Tuesday finds out about the game, she can’t help but be drawn into the puzzle, but as well as the game, there’s the mysterious eldest son of a wealthy Boston family who had a strange connection to the dead man to investigate, but who also seems to have teamed up with Tuesday to try and solve it all. Surely everyone can’t find what they’re looking for in the game?
The novel was a surprise, something that was a lot more fun and gripping to read than it seemed it might be. Tuesday is a notable protagonist, but it was the supporting characters—Dex, Archie, Dorry—who felt most interesting, and it was good to get insights into their lives and thoughts as the novel unfolded. The narrative follows the playing of the game, but beneath the quirky surface of the unraveling secrets and weird characters, there’s an undercurrent of emotion, looking at grief, coping methods, and finding and being yourself. The writing style is light and readable, and it’s the kind of book that allows you to escape into the story and characters.
Full of revelations and a literary reference game around Boston, this is a book that makes a good light read, with an enjoyable plot and characters. In some ways, it feels like it takes some of the elements of a YA novel, like character and detail, and transport them into an adult novel where the characters are still a bit lost, but just no longer as teenagers. Its quirkiness might feel a bit forced to some, but it’s a good testament to people being who they want to be.