Cattery Row

Cattery Row

"This feline mystery is the cat's meow"

Someone is stealing show cats, and when a kindly breeder is implicated, Theda Krakow determines to uncover the truth. But when Theda is attacked and her pals start acting strange, the feline-friendly freelance writer realizes that more than pedigree pusses are at stake - and that not all the competition is in the ring.

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About the Book

Spiky freelancer Theda Krakow has fallen on a bare patch. Changes at the newspaper have cut out her regular columns and magazine work is slim. An assignment to write a piece on Cool, a gifted musician back in Boston who is being oddly reclusive behind a screen of a fancy hotel and an entourage, comes as a welcome distraction from Theda’s money and man troubles. Somehow she and policeman Bill aren’t clicking.

But worse, someone is stealing show cats. Feline-friendly Theda, who helped set up a Cambridge cat shelter that is run by her friend (the former barista) Violet, is outraged. When a kindly cat breeder is implicated in the thefts, Theda resolves to uncover the culprits. But when a murder hits close to home, the circle of suspects widens to include family and an extortionist, and more….

Theda is a great guide to the city, whether running its streets, hanging out in her Cambridge neighborhood, or enjoying bands— particularly Violet’s brand of riot grrrl punk. She’s less adept at sorting out her own heart, though it largely belongs to her kitten, Musetta.

But as a sleuth, Theda is razor sharp.

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In Simon's satisfying second kitty cozy (after 2005's Mew Is for Murder ), spunky Boston journalist Theda Krakow and her feline friend, Musetta, are plunged into a crazy quilt of cat-related crime. In recent months, eight catteries near Beantown have been broken into, and expensive show cats stolen. Theda is puzzled over these thefts-without documents of their lineage, the cats are practically worthless, so why would anyone steal them? Then, one of Theda's friends, eccentric cat-breeder Rose Keller, lets on that she's received some threatening phone calls. A few days later, Rose turns up dead. Meanwhile, a blues singer called Cool tells Theda that she's being blackmailed. Someone has evidence that Cool has been drinking and using prescription drugs. With its well-developed cast of characters and a multilayered plot, this feline mystery is the cat's meow.
– Publishers Weekly
Someone is stealing the show cats of Boston. And Theda Krakow, freelance journalist and cat lover, wants to know why. Cattery Row is Clea Simon's second entry in the series, and it finds Theda caught up in murder and extortion, as well as the cat thefts. The mystery's a winner, but the real appeal of Simon's work is Theda herself -- torn between two lovers, trying to make her freelance career work, balancing her eccentric friends, trying to stay active in the rock-club scene. Cat-themed mysteries are often classified as "cozies," but "Cattery Row" is, if not hard-boiled, nowhere near cute -- except, of course, for the cats. Simon writes with grit, and in Theda, she has created a flawed and sometimesinfuriating protagonist, one readers will want to see for many more lives.
– Richmond Times Dispatch
Another fun and well-crafted mystery that is entertaining enough to appeal even to readers for whom cats hold little charm....It's clear that Simon has a real love for, and understanding of, contemporary music, and that knowledge adds a unique flavor to her books that makes them stand out from the rest of the clowder of cat mysteries
– Boston Globe
There is a lot going on in this book. Theda herself is an interesting personality: a hard-playing, rock-loving, somewhat wild soul with an even wilder assortment of friends and a cop boyfriend who is as straight as they come. These off the wall characters add an element of interest and diversity to the story. Add in an exboyfriend who appears on the scene, the odd relationship with her current boyfriend, and her true love-her cat-and you have the basis for a good story. A well constructed plot adds to the mix and helps tie the various situations together. Although cats feature in this story, they neither solve crimes nor speak, so if you are not into that you do not have to worry. Cat lover or not, this story should please.
– Mystery News
Series: Theda Krakow, Book 2
Genre: Mystery
Publisher: Poisoned Pen Press
Publication Year: 2006
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