Another suspicious death in Beauville, Massachusetts, leaves animal empath Pru Marlowe (Panthers Play for Keeps, 2014, etc.) babysitting a new kitten as she stumbles around trying to figure out who’s settling old scores.
The medical evidence says that David Canaday died of an acute myocardial infarction. That’s not good enough for Pru, who’s convinced that Ernesto Vuitton, the kitten beseeching her to play as Canaday’s body cools in his kitchen, knows more than he’s saying about the lawyer’s death. As if on cue, Canaday’s daughters, three weird sisters who might be opening a roadshow Macbeth, stir the pot of Pru’s suspicions. Jill, the youngest, attaches herself worshipfully to Pru and Doc Sharpe at the County Animal Hospital, even though she’s in line to inherit the bulk of her father’s estate. Her older sister Judith, who sent the kitten before arriving herself from LA, is very interested in the contents of her father’s will. And Jackie, the resident sister who first asked Pru to come out and take care of the kitten before she knew her father would die, is alternately defensive and combative. When another of her clients, attorney Laurence Wilkins, turns out to be Canaday’s partner, Pru knows she’s in for the long haul. So is the gentle reader, who’ll be asked to sit still for pages on end while Pru goes over and over the same ground with the human suspects and tries to worm more information out of the animals whose minds she can read without tipping off other humans to her special gift. No wonder she keeps hitting the bottle.
Spoiler alert: The kitten doesn’t kill anyone. Fanciers of chatty cat mysteries will be happy to know that all the animals survive in fine fettle.