Whiskers and Lies
Magical Cats Mystery #14
By Sofie Kelly
Author Website: sofiekelly(.)com
Brought to you by OBS Reviewer Jeanie
Librarian Kathleen Paulson is always willing to help a friend, but to save one from a wrongful arrest, she’ll need magical backup from her affectionate cats in the newest installment of this New York Times bestselling series.
Baker Georgia Tepper has been hired to provide delicious and spooky cupcakes for the Reading Buddies Halloween Party at the library, and she and Kathleen are meeting to finalize the menu of festive confections. Unfortunately, once Georgia’s former mother-in-law ambushes her at the library and threatens Georgia with legal action, the afternoon of fun is soured.
When Georgia’s litigious in-law is later found dead and the friendly baker is implicated, Kathleen is eager
to help prove her innocence. Luckily, Kathleen and her intrepid magical cats, Hercules and Owen, have solved their fair share of mysteries. As a result, she knows that in life as well as crime solving, it is all relative, but with hard work, she can make sure the right criminal is booked. (From Goodreads)
This is one of my favorite series, so I always look forward to the new mysteries, and this one is even better than the prior ones. It has a rich blend of humor, loyal and loving friendships, engaging characters, some of my favorite fictional felines, and a challenging murder and ongoing mystery. Kathleen, her friends, and coworkers at the library in Mayville Heights are my kind of people. You can’t go wrong with folks who love cats and books!
Kathleen, the library director, is from the east coast, the only one in her family to not be in the performing arts. She and her boyfriend Marcus, a police detective, are planning a holiday trip to Boston to visit them.
Kathleen and her friends have been preparing a special Halloween party at the library for the children’s Reading Buddies program. Georgia, a talented baker, has brought samples of the cupcakes she is making for the event. While she is talking with her boyfriend, Larry, and Kathleen, Georgia’s former in-laws came in to see her. Hugh and Mary are the parents of Scott, her late husband. They blamed her for Scott’s death several years ago and had tried to kidnap her daughter. Georgia disappeared with her daughter and legally changed their names. She and Emmy have a good life now, one in which they have a community of friends who are like family. Scott’s parents are threatening litigation to, at minimum, get regular visitation with Emmy if not outright take her away.
After the older couple left, Larry picked up Emmy at school, then they went to see Georgia’s attorney. One of her biggest fears has been realized in that Scott’s parents found her. She must protect Emmy at all costs.
That night, Kathleen and Marcus are walking to where they were parked when they noticed that the local practical joker has struck again. The gazebo outside the library has been the staging area for elaborate, yet harmless, schemes. No damage has ever been done, except for the time and effort required to remove the materials. One past joke was a portable swimming pool filled with Jell-O. Tonight’s is perfect for Halloween, a large, headless centaur that will require a couple people to remove.
While looking to see if a culprit was nearby, Kathleen looked down the nearby riverbank and saw what looked like a body lying at the rocky shoreline. Marcus called it into the station, then climbed down behind her. It was Margery, Georgia’s former mother-in-law. The couple desperately attempted CPR until paramedics took over, but it was too late. It looked as though she had fallen, or been pushed, down the embankment and hit her head on the rocks. In her hand was a scarf that looked like one of Georgia’s.
Kathleen is a well-liked member of the community. She is also one of the staff members people go to at the library when looking for anything from a special recipe to a rare publication related to local history. As such, it is easy for her to ask questions and get answers more easily than the police in the murders she has helped solve before. Kathleen and her friends are defined very well and continue to grow throughout the series. We get to know the hobbies and hang outs of these three-dimensional characters, including those near to my heart who care for the feral cat colony.
Kathleen’s cats, Hercules and Owen, and Marcus’s cat Micah come to life through the cat-loving heart of the author. Their pets are unique due to the location where they had come from and the special traits they have. Kathleen had not told Marcus about the traits until his cat, Micah, like Owen, began to disappear and reappear at their feline whim. Hercules can walk through solid things – there is no house or vehicle that can keep him in or out.
Marcus would prefer that Kathleen not get involved in yet another murder case, as he has almost lost her more than once to a killer. She has to at least see what she can learn from others, however, when Georgia is arrested, then Hugh tries to get emergency custody of her daughter. This intriguing tale led me through unbelievable plot twists to an incredibly startling resolution. I was satisfied with the ending in every way, and I can’t wait to see what happens next! I highly recommend this novel and series!