Published: July 27, 2021
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Format: Print from Publisher
Reviewed by name and email address: Gina firstname.lastname@example.org
Whitney Dagner has left the high pressure world of Los Angeles for a more relaxing life on Santa Catalina, an idyllic island off the California coast. There, along with her grandparents and brother she runs her own sea themed shop featuring local artists and helps out with the family touring business which includes a glass bottom boat. Her best friend Maribel made the move with her and life has been pretty good. Good until returning from a glass bottom boat cruise, instead of a colourful fish they see a body. And not just any body, but the self-proclaimed Master of the Island, Jules Tisdale. While Jules may have claimed a special title on the island, given his wealth he’s done a lot for the residents and local businesses including Whitney’s. Of greater concern for her though is the fact that it looks like her brother may have killed Jules. Complicating things is the arrival of her ex-boyfriend, Felix. She can’t imagine what the part-time police department diver is doing there and the last thing she needs is to rekindle that relationship when she’s determined to clear her brother, Nick’s, name.
Living in California and visited Catalina many times I was excited to see a series set on this idyllic and very romantic island. And even better for me is the series is called a Whit and Whiskers Mystery—and features an adorable orange tabby cat!
Allan is off to a good start in her debut MUCH ADO ABOUT NAUTICALING – she has the right number of characters who are just quirky enough without being overboard. Catalina may be small but there are some great areas for crimes to be committed and the fact that there are few cars on the island add a bit more adventure to pursuing a killer. Having a best friend/roommate who works for the police department adds a few extra layers to potential stories as does ex-boyfriend, Felix, also working for the police. I liked Whitney for her loyalty to family and faith in Nick. And she’s not a dummy either. She’s smart, organized and logical. She’s not going to be the dumb blonde who says she shouldn’t go alone in the basement but goes any way.
There were points where I felt Allan wasn’t quite sure where to go with the story. What disappointed me was that Whiskers, the cat, is presented as one off the main characters. He doesn’t really appear until later in the story when Whitney takes him out in her autoette for a ride and then at the very end. It was almost like she forgot him and then quickly added a bit about him to the story. Hopefully the little feline hero will have more of a role in future books.
This is an objective review and not an endorsement of this book.