Tuesday, November 22, 2022

Jeanne Reviews: Night of the Were-Cat by Eileen Watkins

For professional cat groomer Cassie, life is pretty sweet right now.  Her business is thriving and her personal life is going well—she’s still dating handsome veterinarian Mark. A date is interrupted when Mark is called to the clinic because of a break-in. An employee is injured and drugs are stolen from the clinic.  It seems to be part of a pattern: several clinics have been hit. There has also been a rise in reports of a date rape drug being used: ketamine, a drug often used to sedate animals. It can also be deadly, and a young woman has died recently because of it.

With his staff under suspicion, Mark is stressed and unhappy.  Cassie is anxious to help him clear his employees and also wants to catch the people who distributing the drugs.  Can the cat groomer help the police once again?

This is the sixth in the Cat Groomer Mystery series, but you don’t have to read them in order.

These books always have stunning covers and this time is no different. A magnificent black smoke Maine Coon graces the cover and does indeed play a part in the book.  A subplot has Cassie helping with a pet photo contest of non-canines for a were-wolf lookalike competition.  The idea was inspired when Cassie is hired to look after Maine Coon Quentin, named after the were-wolf in the old TV show “Dark Shadows.”

That’s one of the things I really enjoy about this series.  Each book has spotlighted a different cat breed, and Watkins seems knowledgeable about them all. There are some books with cats that leave me wondering if the author has ever actually interacted with a cat.  I don’t have any such concerns here.  Also, while the cats may not always be center stage, they do always play a role in the story.  They aren’t just on the cover to sell books.

I also like that Watkins takes up a different problem each time as part of the plot, offering a little education with the entertainment.  Previous books have taken on such things as community cats and TNR (Trap, Neuter, and Release), animal hoarding, and unscrupulous animal breeders; this time, it’s theft of controlled substances from vet clinics and the rise in the use of ketamine (usually a drug used to sedate animals) as a party and date rape drug.

The books in the series are:

The Persian Always Meows Twice

The Bengal Identity

Feral Attraction

Gone, Kitty, Gone

Claw & Disorder

Night of the Were-Cat

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