Did a black cat ever cross your path? If it did, it’s probably just looking for some petting or food, and most certainly is not interested in causing you misfortune.
With the superstition that a black cat crossing your path will bring bad luck still prominent, I try to educate people that fur is just a color and that black cats can be some of the sweetest feline companions. This is a subject close to my heart, so it was with great enthusiasm that I purchased my latest read, Black Cat Crossing, A Bad Luck Cat Mystery by Kay Finch. I would like to highlight this story because I feel it is an important one to tell. It isn’t just another cozy mystery with a kitty sleuth pal. There is a message of loving and adopting black cats.
This time of the year, when the sun sets earlier, is when I like to keep the fur babies inside. I also like to keep my cats indoors on every Friday the 13th, just for safe keeping. People can get some crazy ideas and may even try to harm the cats out of fear. This is something the main character, Sabrina, experiences first hand when she finds the neighbors in Lavender, Texas referring to a feral black cat as El Gato Diablo.
Amateur novelist, Sabrina, has moved to the small town of Lavender to help her Aunt Rowe with her Bed and Breakfast business. In between helping the guests with their needs at the B&B cottages, Sabrina is focused on her writing. During a sleepless night, Sabrina follows El Gato Diablo down to the river that runs near the cottages, where she discovers a familiar body. With Aunt Rowe as the primary suspect, Sabrina must find the real killer quickly before the Sheriff’s Department arrests her aunt.
A bit of luck and some hot coffee fuel this story: a disco-themed cafe, Hot Stuff Coffee Shop, sets the stage for this cozy. I’ve seen cafes in other cozies utilized as a hub of information. Being a transplant from Houston, Sabrina is able to uncover stories from the town’s past by talking with the locals. However, since she’s visited her aunt throughout her lifetime, she does know some of the citizens right away and even has a bookstore-owner friend in town named Ty that tries to get Sabrina a meeting with a literary agent.
I did appreciate Sabrina’s struggle with trying to stay on track with her writing while trying to solve a murder mystery. She embodied every writer who has faced down that flashing cursor in a moment of writer’s block.
There was also a bit of magic mixed into this story. An elderly woman named Twila had been trying to contact the spirit of her deceased husband in her antique shop. She believed that Sabrina’s presence was the missing link that could help her reach her beloved. Twila suggested that Sabrina is a witch who had recently been reunited with her familiar, the black cat. Again, Sabrina does her best to try to convince everyone that there is no magic or bad luck associated with the dark colored feline. This portion of the story with Twila was left open-ended, so I’m curious to see if Finch will address it in a later sequel.
Many of cozies I’ve read have taken place in the southern part of the states, and it was nice to read a story that featured the type of people I see everyday living on the West Coast. I relished the spicy attitude of Deputy Rosales, although I kept forgetting what she was supposed to look like and made up my own version based on people I know.
This book has someone singing country karoke, a black cat, two friends who love books and drink wine, BBQ and Mexican food, and of course, a mysterious murder. Love it!
I came across this book by following the Cozy Chicks on Facebook. Once I read a summary of the story and saw the black cat on the cover, I knew I would love this book –and I did.
To learn more about the Cozy Chicks, visit http://www.cozychicksblog.com/
Drink of Choice: Tevana Joy tea
Cost: $7.99 on Amazon.com