Another Review at MyShelf.Com

Out of Circulation
Cat in the Stacks Mystery #4
Miranda james

Berkley Prime Crime
Feb 2013/ 978-0-42525727-2

Reviewed by Laura Hinds

Charlie Harris savors his work as a rare book cataloguer, and archivist at the local college. He also enjoys his volunteer work as a part-timer at the library. He knows how fortunate he is to have a job he loves, his son and daughter close at hand, and his beloved cat, Diesel, who goes everywhere with Charlie. He is also more than happy with the affections of his lady friend, the lovely Helen Louise, owner of the local bakery.

Charlie is a mild-mannered fellow, soft spoken and easily upset by conflict. Diesel is sensitive too, and they console each other with their special communication abilities. Not that Charlie is a cat-whisperer, or that Diesel speaks English, but rather that they understand each other on an intuitive level. Unfortunately, for these two gentle souls, there are always disruptive people in any small town, such as Athena, Mississippi where they live. To make matters worse, when murder rears its ugly face, circumstances conspire to get them involved in scratching the surface appearances to find the truth about the killer.

The victim of murder is a nasty woman named Vera Cassity. She seems to have had it coming, most likely at the hands of someone who’d had enough of her mean streak. It would be harder to find anyone who actually liked her, than it would be to narrow down the list of suspects from the people who couldn’t stand Vera. After Charlie finds his housekeeper, Azalea, by Vera’s dead body, he takes it as his personal mission to clear her name.

I do enjoy this series very much, and I liked this book much more than the previous one, File M for Murder, primarily because there was less fawning over Diesel the cat. Please, don’t get me wrong, I love cats and am known to fawn over my own. It’s just that other people generally don’t. This time there was the purrfect amount of attention to Diesel.

I had the pleasure of reading this charming book on a cold winter’s day, while sitting by a roaring fire and watching the birds through the window, with my own cats snoozing nearby. I think Charlie Harris would have been happy visiting with me. Ah, but yes, he was. Moreover, I thoroughly enjoyed his company and that of Diesel and all of the other citizens of Athena, Mississippi, with the exception of that nasty Vera Cassity!

Reviews of other titles in this series

Classified as Murder #2
File M for Murder #3
Out of Circulation #4
The Silence of the Library #5
Arsenic and Old Books #6
No Cats Allowed #7
Twelve Angry Librarians #8
Claws for Concern #9


Reviewed 2013