Meow If It's MurderMeow If It’s Murder by T. C. LoTempio is the first book in the new “Nick and Nora” mystery series. Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime, December 2014

Nora Charles doesn’t believe in fate, even if she is a crime reporter who shares a name with a character from The Thin Man. In fact, she’s moving back to Cruz, California, to have a quieter life. But after finding an online magazine eager for material, and a stray cat named Nick with a talent for detection, Nora’s not just reporting crimes again. She’s uncovering them.

Back in her hometown, Nora reconnects with old friends and makes some new ones, like Nick, the charming feline who seems determined to be her cat. But not everything about Cruz is friendly. Writing for a local online magazine, Nora investigates the curious death of socialite Lola Grainger. Though it was deemed an accident, Nora suspects foul play. And it seems that her cat does too.

Apparently, Nick used to belong to a P.I. who disappeared while investigating Lola Grainger’s death. The coincidence is spooky, but not as spooky as the clues Nick spells out for her with Scrabble letters—clues that lead her down an increasingly dangerous path. Whether fate put her on this case or not, solving it will take all of Nora’s wits, and maybe a few of Nick’s nine lives.

I’m a fan of Nick and Nora from the Thin Man, so when I heard about this series, I was eager to read it and I totally loved this light-hearted and engagingly entertaining whodunit featuring new amateur sleuth Nora and Nick her feline companion. The premise of the mystery sparked a memory and I liked how the author took care to bring this story to a satisfying ending, despite another mystery lurking in the winds which I suspect will be a continuum subplot. I enjoyed the interactions Nora has with her BFF Chantel and the tall, dark and handsome detective, as well as Ollie who I hope we get to see more of in future stories. This was a great read and I can’t wait to read the next book in this wonderfully terrific series.

previously posted on the Cozy Chicks blog

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