From Publishers Weekly
Ex-deputy Dixie Hemingway still mourns the loss of her young daughter and cop husband in a freak accident three years earlier, but takes solace in her pet-sitting job in Siesta Key, Fla., in Clement's thoughtful and at times somber fourth animal-themed cozy (after 2008s Even Cat Sitters Get the Blues
). Eager for friendship, Dixie forms an immediate bond with an attractive new neighbor, Laura Halston, who has a cat named Leo. When someone stabs Laura to death in the shower, Dixie suspects Lauras soon-to-be ex-husband, a sadistic surgeon skilled with a scalpel. As Dixies new sweetie, sexy homicide detective Lt. Jean-Pierre Guidry, investigates, surprising information comes to light that will challenge everything she knows about Laura. Some readers may find the subplot involving Maizie, a seizure assistance dog for a boy undergoing brain surgery, more compelling than the somewhat predictable murder story. (Jan.)
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The latest entry in Clement’s pet-sitter series, starring former Sarasota, Florida, deputy Dixie Hemingway, remains on the darker side of the rather light animal-mystery spectrum. This time, while caring for a seizure-assistance dog whose young charge is undergoing surgery, Dixie befriends Laura, owner of an escape-prone Havana Brown cat. Laura tells Dixie she is getting divorced from her sadistic husband and being stalked by a man she met at the hospital. But when Laura is murdered, Dixie discovers her new friend was both a liar and a bank robber. Even so, Dixie feels responsible for finding her killer, even if it means putting herself in danger. Recommend this one for readers who liked the southern setting and animal characters in Joyce and Jim Lavene’s The Telltale Turtle (2008), although Dixie, burdened by the accidental death of her husband and young daughter, is not as fun and carefree a lead character as the Lavenes’ Mary Catherine. Two possible love interests do provide a feel-good secondary plot here, offering a nice counterpoint to the darkness of the main mystery. --Jessica Moyer