“A librarian, with his cat Diesel, tries to solve a murder amongst high-society women.”Foggynights wrote this review 2 weeks ago. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“Another good story.”Sir Casey wrote this review Tuesday, October 1, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“In James’ mystery novel, Charlie Harris the librarian with a very large Maine coon cat named Diesel is up to his ears in the planning of the library fundraising gala. Local residents the Ducote sisters and Vera Cassity are at each other’s throats in the mist of all the tedious planning. It soon becomes clear that Vera is not well liked by just about everyone in town and at the gala she instigates a very public display that cements that reputation nicely. Not long after the outburst, Charlie finds his housekeeper standing over Vera’s very dead body and immediately steps in to clear her name.
A kindhearted librarian and gentle cat that will steal your heart and solve the case—a strong addition to the A Cat in the Stacks Mystery series.
“An unpleasant woman with a huge chip on her shoulder is murdered at a costume party gala. Charlie Harris, Diesel and family must figure out "whodunit" before the sheriff mistakenly arrests his beloved housekeeper, Azalea.”RA Librarian wrote this review Wednesday, July 31, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
Charlie Harris is talked into joining the library board and finds he has walked into a social battle royale between the traditional doyennes of Athena, Mississippi society, the Ducotes, and mouthy pushy nouveau riche Vera Cassity, who has plent of pull because of her family's generous donations to localc auses. Shortly after voting his support of the Ducote sisters' decisions over the upcoming fundraising gala, Vera braces Charlie in his office, demanding to see the family papers of the Ducote family. Charlie, quite properly, refuses as these can only be shown to persons authorized by the Ducotes or their legal representatives. Ethically he has no other choice, but Vera believes he has chosen against her personally, and declares war on Charlie Harris, his girlfriend Helen, even his cat. Actually Vera has it in for quite a few people, and when she is found murdered at the gala, there is no shortage of suspects. Unfortunately, one of them is Azalea, who was accidentally locked in at the bottom of the narrow servants stairs when Vera was shoved down towards her. Kanesha is locked out of the investigation by a boss who is now nervous of Kanesha Berry's prospects in replacing him as Sheriff and concentrating on Azalea as chief suspect. Everyone who knows Azalea, as well as those who have logically considered the murder scene is aware of how unlikely this is, despite Azalea's own personal differences with Vera, but it still puts Kanesha is a bad spot, so she asks for Charlie's help herself this time. The Ducote sisters have already roped in his investigative gifts for their own reasons. At least Charlie has plenty of help searching for the real culprit, which is wonderful, as long as one of them isn't the real murderer...”
“This book took me a long time to slog through. Pretty boring.”danae wrote this review Monday, June 10, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“Mildly entertaining.”Michelle M wrote this review Thursday, April 25, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“This is the 4th novel in a continuing excellent series. I adore the cast of characters, their lives, their jobs, and, of course, Diesel, the Maine Coon Cat.
A semi-retired University Cataloguer for valuable Library collections, Charlie Harris is our resident sleuth. As well as working at his job in Athena University, Mississippi, Charlie is now on the Friends of the Library board. A man not liking conflict, nor does Diesel, he is thrown into the maelstrom surrounding the annual fundraiser. The three leaders of Athena society clash over the venue for the event. Vera Cassity, the newcomer is very vocal and filled with threats towards anyone that stands in her way. When Charlie and his lady, Helen Louise get under Vera's vile attention, it becomes too much to deal with her. To Charlie's amazement, his dislike is mild compared to his life-long friend/housekeeper, Azalea's. Then Vera is discovered dead by Azalea. Charlie senses the urgency of finding out the true killer and come to Azalea's aid.
This series continues to keep up it's excellent story plots and character development, it also keeps me turning the pages. Although this book is a Cozy genre of the mystery novel, I feel it has crossed into the true 'Mystery' section and hope people that worry about reading a gentle novel give it a chance...it is a good solid mystery and I also like the light romantic themes that flow beneath the story like a gentle stream. This is a favorite series of mine.”
“Everyone in Athena, Mississippi, knows Charlie Harris, the librarian with a rescued Maine coon cat named Diesel. He’s returned to his hometown to immerse himself in books.
Charlie has found himself on the committee to plan this year’s library fundraiser gala. Mainly that means staying out of the way as barbs fly between Vera Cassity and Miss An’gel and Miss Dickce Ducote. It seems no one really cares for Vera, even Charlie’s housekeeper, Azalea, seems to have it out for her. At the gala Charlie starts to understand why. Apparently no one ever taught Vera that “if you have nothing nice to say, say nothing at all.” She had a verbal jab for almost everyone that night. And these bitter words happened to be her last. Yes, while Vera was not the life of the party her death turned the party upside down. She was found dead and Azalea was standing over her body. Charlie knows there is much more to the story so with a bit of help from his sidekick Diesel he sets out to catch the killer before his last chapter is finished.
This 4th installment is the best one so far. The female characters are the shining stars this time. Miss An’gel and Miss Dickce are wonderful characters. Full of Southern charm and feisty. These are not women to mess with. We get to know Azalea better in this story too, a little blast from her past. She is another strong opinionated woman and I loved her speaking out – finally. Her daughter, Kanesha, gets her spunk from her mother. I see her taking over that police force in the near future.
James writes fun and entertaining mysteries with characters fleshed out making them real and identifiable. Writing strong women that have the relate with each other and relate to the reader can be a difficult task especially when the protagonist is a male. The author, yes also a male, has become a master with this latest story.
I will admit it. I absolutely love Diesel!! He is such a special cat that is tuned in to the humans around him. His meows, warbles, chirrups, and head bumps are priceless. No magical powers just a real cat acting like a cat. I live with one that could be Diesel’s brother who looks and acts exactly the same way.
All of these characters are part of a terrific mystery with a very important and surprising twist. Cozy readers will love this story!!”