The Cat, The Wife and The Weapon by Leann Sweeney is the fourth book in the “Cats in Trouble” mystery series. Publisher: Obsidian (Penguin), April 2012

After returning from craft fairs and cat shows to her lake house in Mercy, South Carolina, quilter Jillian Hart discovers her friend Tom is missing—and his estranged half brother has made himself at home in Tom’s house. Jillian doesn’t trust the guy, especially since he allowed Tom’s diabetic cat to escape.

When Mercy police officers find Tom’s wrecked car with a dead stranger inside, Jillian’s worry turns to dread. What is this man doing in the car—and who killed him. Aided by a trio of cats and a spunky rat terrier, Jillian is determined to find out what kind of trouble Tom has gotten himself into—before someone else turns up dead.

Upon returning from her travels, Jillian learns that Tom is missing and when she finds a stranger in his home and his diabetic cat has disappeared, Jillian’s concern springs her into action. She finds Tom bruised and learns that Tom’s stepson has run away from home. When the boy’s stepfather is found murdered, Jillian knows that neither Tom nor Finn is capable of this crime, especially when evidence points to Finn. This was an emotionally filled story that captivated me and tugged at my heartstrings in this well-crafted whodunit. The tension-filled mystery kept me turning the pages, as I had to know what happens next. The characters were superb, the plot well defined and the dialogue powerfully moving. This is the best one yet in this wonderfully fantastic and charming series.

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