The Cat Sitter and the Canary (Dixie Hemingway)
by John Clement & Blaize Clement
Review by Mel Jacob
Minotaur Books Hardcover ISBN/ITEM#: 9781250051172
Date: 20 December 2016
Dixie Hemingway is in trouble again. Someone wants to kill her. She has no idea who could want her dead. Meanwhile, she has a pet sitting business to run and a love life to sort out.
A close friend of Dixie's has gone away with a new beau on a cruise and asked her to care for her cat and Gigi, a male rabbit. When Dixie goes to do so, she encounters a stranger on the doorstep looking for a different address. She points him to the house across the street, but the dog she has in tow scratches at the front door. She takes the dog to a side entrance and enters the house, but the dog wants to go after something beyond a door to the front entry.
A day later, Dixie discovers what had excited the dog. Seeing a body through the mail slot, she unlocked the door and discovered the person on the floor. After checking for a pulse, she discovers the person is dead. She calls the police and waits while an officer verifies her report and the police arrive to secure the crime scene. They tell her about note found with the body threatening her and then assign an officer to guard her.
Dixie overhears two strangers discussing buying her family home, but doesn't know who they are. She is furious. Then, adding to her anger, she remembers a wedding invitation from her former lover to his wedding in New Orleans. A number of local police members are going because he was a former officer of the local unit.
Another death occurs, this one near Dixie's home. The note attached to the dead woman indicates the next victim will be Dixie. The novel flows along while she attempts to maintain normalcy amid chaos. Evading the killer while solving another crime keeps her and the police busy. The author saves a major surprise for the ending of the novel.
Blaize Clement who died in 2011 authored seven Cat Sitter Mysteries. Beginning in 2013, her son, John Clement, took over the series working on notes he and his mother put together for future books. He has added four titles the latest being The Cat Sitter and the Canary.