Brought to you by OBS reviewer Beth
This fifth book in the series brings us to another entry in the search for Uncle Oscar’s secrets. The secrets that are being searched for are reveled throughout the series, and this continues in this installment. Central to this book is the murder of a young intern Spider, with suspicion falling on Uncle Oscar and Sam, the frog whisperer. Spider’s ghost is very much in evidence in this book, though only Isabella and Rupert, our two cat heroes can see him clearly. San Francisco itself is a major character in the book, and the clues this time are the murals that decorate many of its public spaces.
This was an enjoyable addition to the series, the funniest scene in the whole book being the one where the cats encounter the paint. No spoiler here, given the title of the book. Their person returns to find paint covered cats, and a message painted on the kitchen floor, sneaker footprints appearing as someone or something flees the kitchen. An interesting facet of this book is the myriad points of view that make up the narration. We see things from the perspective of the cats, the ghost, and various other characters throughout the book.
While this entry was enjoyable in and of itself, I do find it frustrating that we still know so little of what Uncle Oscar is up to, and why. Sometimes the changing points of view can be a little frustrating, and you have to stay on your toes to piece together the stream of what is happening. My favorite character in the books is Rupert, who is not at all complex, but adorable and very single minded. If you can stand the suspense, the ongoing mystery of Uncle Oscar and his part in the history of San Francisco is fascinating. Definitely a series you have follow in order, or you will be completely lost. Cat lover, history lovers, and mystery lovers will have fun with this one.