The Cat Sitter’s Whiskers Review
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As temperatures begin to rise and kids start to suffer from their end-of-the-school-year fever, it’s time to start thinking about summer getaways—and the books that you’ll be packing in your beach bag. So the release of Blaize and John Clement’s latest Dixie Hemingway mystery, The Cat Sitter’s Whiskers, comes just in time for the search for summer beach reads.

The tenth installment in the popular series finds the devoted pet sitter in the middle of yet another mystery. As she sets out on her rounds one morning, she sees a car lurking near her home, and she assumes that it belongs to Siesta Key’s other early riser—the town’s dependable paperboy, Levi.

But then, while she’s checking in on the Kellers’ cat, Barney Feldman, an intruder wearing one of Mrs. Keller’s exotic masks knocks Dixie out with what seems to be an ancient statue. When the police arrive on the scene, though, they find that all of the couple’s expensive collectibles are accounted for, leaving Dixie to wonder if she simply fainted and imagined the whole thing.

Each new book in this beloved cozy mystery series feels like a seaside retreat with an old friend. Even though The Cat Sitter’s Whiskers takes place in the middle of the scorching Florida summer, there’s always something soothing and tropical about the island setting. And although Dixie has suffered through a great tragedy in the past—and she seems to encounter new tragedies around every corner—she’s still a lovably laid-back character with a quirky sense of humor and a personality that’s all her own.

Dixie’s latest outing is definitely loaded with drama and mystery. The incident at the Kellers’ house shares the spotlight with the story of Levi the paperboy—and there’s a touch of relationship drama thrown in to continue Dixie’s own story. Each storyline has its own touches of drama and suspense—but with so many interesting storylines playing out at the same time, none of them really get the development that they deserve.

At the same time, author John Clement also takes full advantage of the standard series formulas, inserting the familiar back story passages that appear in every book. And while the frequent reminders of everything from Dixie’s background, her daily routines, and even her signature uniform to her family, friends, and regular clients mean that newcomers can pick up any book in the series without feeling lost, it will feel a bit too repetitive for long-time readers.

For fans of the Clements’ lovable cat sitter and her four-legged friends, The Cat Sitter’s Whiskers is yet another enjoyable beach-front mystery—a relaxing return trip to the white, sandy beaches of Siesta Key. But while it’s a worthwhile pick for some light poolside reading, it isn’t one of the stronger books in the series.

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