Tuesday, December 30, 2014

FAT CAT AT LARGE by Janet Cantrell


Publisher:   Berkley  
Published:   September 2, 2014
ISBN:  978-0425267424
Genre:  Historical Fiction
Format:  Cozy Mystery
Obtained via:  Publisher Paperback
Reviewed by name and email address:  Gina Gina@loveromancesandmorereviews.com


Along with her dear friend and stand-in grandmother, Anna, Chase Oliver is the co-owner of Bar None—a dessert bar shop in Dinkytown, Minnesota.  While business is booming at the start of school, there are a few flies in their ointment.  Gabe Naughtly wants to buy the shop and two of their employees, Laci and Violet, are unable to get along for more than a few minutes.  Added to the mix is the arrival of Chase’s ex in town and suddenly money is missing from the cash register.  If that isn’t enough, Chase’s kitty, Quincy has been put on a diet that he’s none to pleased about.  Quincy is also quite the escape artist and in his search for a morsel of food he manages to escape to roam the streets.  Quincy however, finds more than the sought after food—he finds a body.  A very dead body and since Chase is hot on his tail to bring him home, it is Chase who is found hovering over the body.  Can she prove her innocence before the killer comes after her?

I had high hopes for Janet Cantrell’s FAT CAT AT LARGE.  What’s not to like in a book that features an escape artist cat on the prowl for some decent eats? 

Well, I did like Quincy, a lot.  He is quite a character and having my own kitty who needs to lose a pound or two I did enjoy his antics while seeing out some decent food.  Unfortunately, Quincy was about all I liked.

I never really connected with Chase.  She wasn’t all that likeable.  The thread around her former boyfriend didn’t make a whole lot of sense except to get her to move to Dinkytown.  The constant bickering of the two employees and discussions with co-owner Anna over which one should be fired got tiresome.  In a college town they couldn’t find other, competent, help?  When she suddenly had a back problem and the chapters that followed had her popping pain pills like candy I wondered if perhaps the killer would use them as a way to get Chase off his or her trail.  She also seemed to enjoy her wine—and while I have no problem with adult beverages being featured in a story, Chase started to sound like a pill popping alcoholic rather than the heroine who would solve the crime.  Maybe those elements are lead ins to a future story that Chase will be looking to solve.  At this point I don’t see myself reading further to find out. 

The dessert bar recipes do sound good and I might try a few.

This is an objective review and not an endorsement of this book.

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