It seems to me not very long ago (but I see now that it was more than four years >> March of 2016!), I wrote about Sofie Kelly’s Magical Cat Mystery Series as part of my series of posts talking about the first book in series that are among the most popular and recommended Cozy Mystery series. This month I decided to read another book by the same author (this time writing as Sofie Ryan), the first in another series with a cat in the title, the Second Chance Cat Mystery Series’ first book, The Whole Cat and Caboodle.
The series revolves around Sarah Grayson, who owns and runs “Second Chance, the Repurpose Shop” in a small coastal town in Maine called North Harbor. Second Chance isn’t exactly a thrift shop. As Sarah describes it:
Second Chance was a cross between an antique store and a thrift shop. We sold furniture and housewares—many things repurposed from their original use, like the tub chair that in its previous life had actually been a tub. As for the name, the business was sort of a second chance—for the cat and for me. We’d been open only a few months and I was amazed at how busy we already were.
In fact, at the beginning of the story, Sarah had only been in town for a few months. She had returned to a place she dearly loved from childhood visits — where her grandmother lived after her late-night syndicated radio show had been canceled. After only a few months, Sarah’s new store was already a success. And, Sarah had already acquired Elvis, a big black cat that, as a stray in the town, had acquired a large scar across his nose. Before long, one of Sarah’s grandmother’s friends is found sitting beside a dead man, and the friend, Maddie, is accused of murder.
In a refreshing change, Sarah is not eager to begin her detecting career. Maddie’s friends, who are mostly elderly ladies, are though. Sarah is, however, very interested in trying to keep Maddie’s and Sarah’s grandmother’s friends out of trouble. And, after failing to persuade them to let the police do their job, Sarah reluctantly begins to participate in the sleuthing to try to keep them safe.
Of course, as you could guess from the title of the series and the title of the book, Elvis, the cat, plays a pretty big role. Sarah is convinced that Elvis can understand everything that people say, although she also believes that sometimes Elvis just isn’t interested enough to be listening. Be that as it may, although Elvis is not overtly magical, he sure is smart and plays a part in almost every scene in the book.
Finally, there are several eligible men in town who will probably provide plenty of romantic interests in this series of books, although not much in that direction happens in this first book.
Sofie Ryan, aka Sofie Kelly, has a way of making me feel as though I too spent my summers in North Harbor, Maine. At least after having visited there in this book, I sort of wish I had! If you like your Cozy Mysteries with a lot of cat, a bit of second hand store, and a strong dash of New England charm, The Whole Cat and Caboodle should be high on your to be read (TBR) list!
P.S. As always, if you are interested in reading some of the other entries about highly recommended Cozy Mystery series, you can find them at the Most Popular & Recommended Cozy Mystery Series page on the site.