National best-selling author Carolyn Hart presents an original new novel about a woman with a curious ability that drops her headfirst into a world of intrigue and murder....
Ever since the death of her fiancé, Nela Farley has found herself plagued by a sixth sense: she understands the thoughts of cats when she looks into their eyes. Nela knows that what she's experiencing is completely irrational and tries to convince herself that she is simply transferring her own thoughts that she doesn't want to face.
When her adventurous sister, Chloe, goes on a trip and asks for a favor, Nela welcomes the distraction and agrees to substitute at Chloe's job at a charitable foundation. Chloe has arranged a place for her sister to stay, but when Nela shows up, she encounters the previous tenant's cat and gets a flash of thought: ". . . dead . . . dead and gone . . . She loved me . . . board rolled on the second step . . ."
Nela wants to ignore what the cat saw, but the idea that the death of former tenant Marian Grant wasn't an accident is something she can't ignore. As Nela begins to do some research into Marian's life, strange events begin to occur, all seeming to lead back to the Haklo Foundation. But when a detective becomes suspicious of Nela's sister and a second murder occurs, Nela realizes she'll have to make the most of her unwanted ability to figure out what's really going on, before she meets her own untimely end....
©2012 Carolyn Hart (P)2012 Penguin Audio
Likes: Cozy mysteries, esp w/cats, books on workings of the brain/autism, not-too-dark fantasy. Dislikes: Animal cruelty, torture scenes.
Thisis a mystery wherein a woman suddenly finds she can sometimes read the mind of a least one cat. Tidbits from the cat lead her to suspect someone was murdered. She gets caught up of course in the investigation. Oddly the cat angle doesn’t really do anything else. Mostly it is a regular mystery. It suffers to some extent from something that can happen when the author tries to provide a bunch of possible suspects that are together a lot. Scenes start taking forever while we hear everyone’s reaction to something. Like, “Suspect1 coughed uncomfortably and stared at her high heeled shoes. Suspect2 held his jaw tightly like it was an effort not to respond. Suspect3 stopped twirling his horn rimmed glasses and stared. Etc etc etc….” It was okay. Could have used more cats, and a better romantic ending
I really enjoyed the premise of the book, that Nela could hear cats' thoughts. That was only a small portion of the story. Sort of the jumping off point. There was the cast of characters, perhaps twenty names to keep straight. Get Ann a job? Who was Ann? That happened a lot. Then there were the two main characters, Nela and Steve. Nela is getting over the death of her significant other (we don't know if they were childhood sweethearts or spouses, only that he was the Love of her Life). Steve is getting over his feelings of betrayal over his fairly recent divorce. Yet here they are, thinking about relationships with one another within a few days of meeting. The plot is good but the death goes missing in all the subplots.
Then there's the mystery. Through the first half of the book I thought that the mystery was going to stay ... a mystery. Through the second half of the book they hit you over the head with The Clue over and over, but the police and protagonists kept misinterpreting The Clue.
I liked Nela and Steve. I liked the cat. I didn't like the detective, she was too one sided and tended to jump to conclusions. And I didn't care much for the story. It would be ok for a free read from the library but it's certainly not something I'd want to come back to in the future.
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