A Tale of Two Kitties
A Magical Cats Mystery, Book #9
By Sofie Kelly
Author Website: sofiekelly.com
In this charming mystery from the bestselling author of Paws and Effect, two magical cats have powers of detection that prove indispensable to librarian Kathleen Paulson…
With a well-placed paw on a keyboard or a pointed stare, Kathleen’s two cats, Hercules and Owen, have helped her to solve cases in the past—so she has learned to trust their instincts. But she will need to rely on them more than ever when a twenty-year-old scandal leads to murder…
The arrival of the Janes brothers has the little town of Mayville Heights buzzing. Everyone of a certain age remembers when Victor had an affair with Leo’s wife, who then died in a car accident.
Now it seems the brothers are trying to reconcile, until Kathleen finds Leo dead. The police set their sights on Leo’s son and Kathleen’s good friend Simon, who doesn’t have much of an alibi. To prove her friend innocent, Kathleen will have to dig deep into the town’s history—and into her sardine cracker supply, because Owen and Hercules don’t work for free…(Goodreads)
I loved it! What fun these two magical cats are! I enjoy what Kathleen does as head librarian. This is a delightful novel that includes many moments of heart-thumping suspense. At the end of this charming tale, we are gifted with an excerpt from the short story, “A Cat Burgler”. This would make a great beach read or something to wrap up in an afghan with in front of a fireplace.
Owen and Hercules are the cats who chose Kathleen as their person shortly after coming to Minnesota from Boston. Originally there for the remodel of this Carnegie library for it’s 100th anniversary, Kathleen was later hired to be the head librarian and has a family within the library and her circle of friends. She discovered something unique about these adorable kits – one can disappear completely and reappear in another room, while the other can walk through walls and doors. Both have a knack of understanding what she talked about, and helped her with the mysteries that presented themselves in the past couple years. Every cat owner “gets” their pet’s habit of walking away mumbling, but I might have a hard time if one of my cats were to … well, you know. I think I could handle Fred the Funky Chicken more easily…
Kathleen’s boyfriend Marcus, detective at the local police department, has a kitten who was from the same place Owen and Herc came from. Little Micah just might have some of the same characteristics as her boys. And one of these days, Kathleen has to find a way to tell him.
Mia is a student intern at the library, and her father Simon is a widower. They are very close, in spite of Simon’s long working long hours. With Thanksgiving on the way, Simon’s father Leo is coming to visit. He and Mia have been very close, and he couldn’t say no to her loving pleas. Unfortunately his twin, Victor, is also coming to town at Leo’s invitation. There has been bad blood in the family for over 20 years, and Leo wants to make peace. Victor has cancer, and may not have long to live.
One evening Kathleen was going to visit her friend Rebecca, taking Mia to visit her grandfather next door. Something seemed off. Especially when she saw the look on Owen’s face. She had Mia stay with Owen and Rebecca while she went in to see why Leo wasn’t answering and found Leo dead, murdered with a heavy sculpture.
Marcus is the detective on the case, so he can’t share anything discovered with Kathleen. She did learn that Simon is the main suspect. Kathleen could think of at least a couple other culprits, and wanted to give Mia some peace about what happened. Photos and unopened mail from at least 20 years earlier and discovered in the wall of a remodel may hold at least one clue.
Kathleen and her friends genuinely care about and will do anything to help another. While we know Kathleen best, we learn more tidbits throughout that round out the other regular characters. For example, Mary, the older librarian on staff, is a sweet lady who looks like a grandmother and is the long-running state kickboxing champion in her age group. Kathleen shares hard-learned bits of wisdom with Mia, which each of the friends do freely with each other. Marcus is a great guy, also, well-liked by his co-workers and Kathleen’s friends.
There are plot twists and turns that change the landscape of the mystery; the breakup of the family more than 20 years ago is an added layer. I really enjoy reading about the antics of the cats, as well as some general historical notes on Carnegie libraries. Simon says he is innocent of Leo’s murder, and Kathleen believes him. She had caught Simon in a couple fibs, so he knows he has to be honest with her. There are several viable suspects, and I admit to have followed one of the red herrings, at least until Owen uncovered the truth. The culprit has been a suspect, yet was still a surprise. The ending is satisfactory, with much ahead to look forward to in Mayville Heights. The author has gifted us with another magical cats mystery that I highly recommend to cozy mystery and cat lovers. Even Owen and Hercules would give this a five sardine cracker (or Fred the funky chicken) rating!