Catnapped! by Elaine Viets
(NAL Hardcover, 2014, 276 pages)
Catnapped is the 13th book in the Dead-End Job Mystery series by Elaine Viets. Helen Hawthorne and her husband, Phil Sagemont, own a detective agency in Florida called Coronado Investigations. In Catnapped, Helen and Phil are tasked with finding a missing prized Persian cat as well as solving a murder or two. The Persian cat named Justine has been “catnapped” and her frantic owner, Trish Barrymore, will do anything to get Justine back, including paying a $500,000.00 ransom. Helen takes a job at a cattery to learn the ropes of cat shows as well as to gather information on potential “catnappers.”
In Catnapped, Helen and Phil are also investigating the death of their landlady’s (Margery’s) ex-husband. After 30 years, Margery’s ex shows up with a bouquet of flowers and an apology. He is quickly and publicly rejected by Margery. When Margery’s ex turns up dead, Margery is the prime suspect. Helen and Phil know that Margery is not a murderer.
I enjoy reading the Dead-End Job Mystery series even though the heroine, Helen Hawthorne, no longer needs to take dead-end jobs. Helen still takes unusual jobs as a means to investigate crimes. Elaine Viets also has another popular series, Josie Marcus Mystery Shopper. Though I haven’t read one, that series also get good reviews.