Tuesday, July 9, 2019

ARC Review: The Pawful Truth by Miranda James

The Pawful Truth
Author: Miranda James
Series: Cat in the Stacks Mystery (Book 11)
Publication: Berkley (July 16, 2019)

Description: When Charlie Harris decides to go back to school, he and his Maine Coon cat, Diesel, find themselves entangled in a deadly lovers quarrel on campus in the latest installment of the New York Times bestselling series.

In addition to his library duties and his role as doting grandad, Charlie has enrolled in  an early medieval history course offered by young, charismatic professor Carey Warriner. Charlie feels a bit out of place- his fellow classmates are half his age- except for Dixie Bell Compton, another ‘mature’ student. When Charlie hears an angry exchange between her and their professor, his interest in piqued. He’s even more intrigued when she shows up at his office asking for a study partner. Charlie turns her down and is saddened to learn just a few days later that Dixie has been killed.

Charlie wonders if Professor Warriner had anything to do with Dixie’s death. Warriner is married to a fellow professor who happens to be a successful author. There are rumors on campus that their marriage was on the rocks. Was Dixie's death the result of a lovers’ triangle gone bad? Charlie soon discovers that the professor’s wife may have some secrets of her own and his suspect list is only getting longer.

As he and Diesel step further into the tangled web of relationships, someone else is viciously killed. Whose jealousy finally erupted into murderous rage? Was it a crime of passion or is there another  more sinister motive? Charlie  races to unravel this mystery: and to draw out the culprit, he may just have to put his own life on the line…

My Thoughts: College Librarian Charlie Harris decides to audit a class in medieval history because he has long been interested in the topic. He is one of two mature students in the class which is taught be a handsome, charismatic teacher. He is surprised to overhear the professor - Dr. Warriner - speak in an angry manner to the other mature student - Dixie Belle Compton. Not wanting to be rude, he leaves before he hears very much.

He's surprised when Dixie Belle stops in his office and asks him to be her study buddy. Since he's only auditing the class, he doesn't need a study buddy. When he next hears about Dixie Belle, she's a murder victim and Charlie's involved in another murder investigation.

Dixie had something of a reputation as a home wrecker. Was she trying to come on to the married Carey Warriner? He makes a great suspect until he is found murdered himself. Now Charlie busies himself helping the police by concentrating on the relationships among the faculty at his college which yield a number of suspects.

Among the suspects are Warriner's wife who is a professor in the English Department and who has a second career as an author of Regency Romances. Another suspect is Armand d'Arcy who is a professor in the music department and who has been spending quite a bit of time with Mrs. Warriner. Maybe Dan Bellamy, another professor in the History Department and a friend of the couple, has something to do with the murders. Coincidentally - or maybe not, Bellamy is a new roomer in Charlie's house while his home is being remodeled.

This was a fun Southern cozy. I liked that the main character was a librarian. It was also nice that he was also a doting grandfather to two infant grandchildren. I liked the part Charlie's large Maine coon cat Diesel plays in the story.

Favorite Quote:
"I have no doubt some students are there to sigh and gaze at Warriner," I said. "He is handsome, I grant you, but he has a brain."

"Like me." Stewart sighed in dramatic fashion.

"I'll come to one of your classes and ogle you." Helen Louise batter her eyelashes at Stewart.

He grinned. "I have a better idea. Let's go to Charlie's class with him and ogle Warriner. He is almost too beautiful to be real."
I received this one in exchange for an honest review from NetGalley. You can buy your copy here.

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