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A Spell of Murder

Polis. (Witch Cats of Cambridge, Bk. 1). Dec. 2018. 304p. ISBN 9781947993327. $26; ebk. ISBN 9781947993495. M
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Becca's cats mean well, but when Harriet, the eldest of the three, conjures a pillow, Becca, a member of a coven, believes she did it. Youngest cat Clara is worried the pillow will create problems. Becca lacks self-esteem and needs money after being laid off from her job as a researcher. Now that it appears she can cast spells, the coven's only male, Trent, shows more interest in her. Some of the women want to confide in Becca, which draws the attention of the police when she finds the body of Suzanne, another member of the coven. But it's only then that Becca learns her ex was seeing Suzanne. While Becca attempts to question people and find the killer, Clara and her feline sisters use their powers to follow and protect their human. Although Becca is a weak character, the anthropomorphized cats are amusing as they argue, cast spells, and behave as if they truly were sisters.
VERDICT Simon specializes in mysteries, such as Cross My Path, which combine cats and the paranormal. The talking, spell-casting felines might appeal to readers who suspend disbelief for Rita Mae Brown's "Mrs. Murphy" books or Sofie Kelly's "Magical Cats" mysteries.

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