Cat Sitter on a Hot Tin Roof Review
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After losing her husband and young daughter in an accident a few years ago, Dixie Hemingway decided to walk away from her job as a deputy in Siesta Key, Florida and become a pet sitter. At the time, it seemed like the perfect job—spending her time grooming and walking her neighbors’ pets, far from the dangers of law enforcement. But, unfortunately for Dixie, even as a pet sitter, she seems to attract trouble.

While taking care of a seizure assistance dog whose little boy is undergoing brain surgery, Dixie meets Laura Halston, a gorgeous woman who tells Dixie a horrifying story of abuse at the hand of her demented surgeon husband, followed by her brave escape from Texas. The two quickly become friends—and when Laura is found brutally murdered just days later, Dixie immediately suspects Laura’s husband.

But as disarmingly handsome Lieutenant Guidry investigates the murder, Dixie begins to realize that she never really knew the real Laura Halston—and she no longer knows whom to believe.

Though many of its supporting characters are of the four-legged variety, Cat Sitter on a Hot Tin Roof is more than just a fluffy pet-lover mystery—in part because of its well-developed and especially likable main (human) character. Dixie isn’t a dowdy old cat lady, nor is she a perfect, blonde twenty-something. She’s a thirty-something single woman with a difficult past and a somewhat uncertain future. She’s been hurt deeply by the death of her husband and daughter, and she’s afraid to care about anyone but her firefighter brother, Michael, and his undercover cop partner, Paco—yet she can’t seem to escape the strange power that Lt. Guidry has over her. Still, she finds happiness in the simple things: friends, playtime with pets, and (only occasionally) bacon. She’s a normal woman—and she’s a character that most readers (especially the female ones) will be able to relate to in some way. Even when she’s making the occasional what-was-she-thinking move, you’ll like her anyway.

At the same time, though, Cat Sitter isn’t without its flaws. Clement starts the novel with an unnecessary amount of exposition—going into detail about Dixie’s views on pretty much everything—and her writing has its share of nagging grammatical issues. And, as for the mystery, it’s not really a difficult one to solve. But the story is intriguing nonetheless—and so are the subplots. The huge cast of caring clients, creepy suspects, tight-lipped cops, and lovable pets keeps things interesting—and even, at times, suspenseful. And it’ll keep you coming back for more.

With its abundance of furry friends, Cat Sitter on a Hot Tin Roof is a cozy mystery—but it’s the book’s human characters who make it worth reading.

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