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Murder of the Cat’s Meow
A Scumble River Mystery #15
Denise Swanson

September 2012 / / ISBN: 978-0451237811

Reviewed by Cheryl Green

Skye Denison’s biggest problem was figuring out how to rid her house of Alma Griggs’ ghost. Just because Alma left the house to Skye was no reason for her ghost to remain and cause trouble. Most of the time it was a quiet peaceful ghost, but when Skye’s fiancé, Wally Boyd, was over and they tried to make whoopee, the ghost starting making herself known. Precious items had been known to crash to the floor. Wally insisted that Bingo the cat was behind the accidents, but Skye knew better. She was about to start her plan to get rid of Alma when she got a frantic phone call from Frannie Ryan to come to the bowling alley.

The scene at the bowling alley is certainly not what Skye expected – it is filled with cats in crates. Oh, and cat owner Elijah Jacobsen had a choke hold on cat judge Alexis Hightower! Trying to break up the fight gets Skye a cut cheek and a possible black eye. Alexis Hightower has insulted just about everyone at the event. She is a first class bully and never takes prisoners. The worst was when she insulted twin octogenarians – who were selling cat toys and kitty condos. She even managed to insult Skye, but years of being a school psychologist had toughened Skye’s skin.

Skye agrees to stay and help Bunny Reid at the cat show and will earn lunch and some spending money. And to make it even more interesting - they are having a speed dating event in the evening. Bunny is trying to make some extra cash to go on a singles cruise. During a break, Skye makes an appointment to have her cat, Bingo, photographed by Kyle O’Brien the next morning.

After arriving at the bowling alley, Skye enters, finding no one around. Bingo then has an accident in his carry bag, and Skye goes to the basement utility closet to clean up the mess. What she finds is a dead cat judge. Alexis Hightower has been murdered with a cat toy.

Things to ponder: Will Skye ever rid her home of the unwanted ghost? Who talked Alexis into staying at the bowling alley after it closed? With all the people Alexis insulted and bullied, Skye will not have an easy time finding the murderer.

Murder of the Cat’s Meow is one of the best in the series. It is like being back with old friends and never missing a beat. This is a well written mystery with interesting characters that you care about. I always end up reading the Scumble River Mysteries in one sitting – I hate to put them down. This book was no exception.

Reviews of other titles in this series

Murder of a Small Town Honey, # 1   [review]
Murder of a Sweet Old Lady,
# 2    [review]
Murder of a Sleeping Beauty,
# 3    [review]
Murder of a Snake in the Grass,
# 4   [review]
Murder of a Pink Elephant,
# 6   [review]
Murder of a Smart Cookie,
# 7   [review]
Murder of a Real Bad Boy,
# 8    [review]
Murder of a Botoxed Blonde,
# 9   [review]--Thanksgiving
Murder of a Chocolate-Covered Cherry,
# 10    [review] - Halloween
Murder of a Royal Pain,
# 11    [review]
Murder of a Wedding Belle,
# 12   [review]
Murder of a Creped Suzette, # 14    [review]
Murder of the Cat’s Meow
#15 [review]
Murder of a Stacked Librarian #16 [review] --Christmas
Murder of a Needled Knitter #17 [review]

Reviewer's Note: In addition to the Scumble River Mysteries Ms. Swanson also writes the Devereaux’s Dime Store Mysteries.
Reviewed 2012