Friday, June 25, 2010

Cat in an Ultramarine Scheme-Carole Nelson Douglas

Cat in an Ultramarine Scheme
Carole Nelson Douglas
Forge, Aug 3 2010, $24.99
ISBN 9780765318633

Public relations specialist Temple Barr is setting up a campaign for the Fontana family to take advantage of Las Vegas’ mob roots. The "Chunnel of Crime" is a monorail within a museum connecting two hotels. During a promotional event, an underground vault is opened for the first time in years. Temple and her clients hope to find buried gangster loot instead of what was found in Capone’s vault. Instead, they find something worse to accentuate the gangster past. Inside is the corpse of former magician Cosimo Sparks. Someone stabbed him and buried him. Temple accompanied by her pet owner Midnight Louie investigates; as does the Fontana family and the police.

At the same time, Temple and Louie make inquiries, her fiancĂ© radio star Matt Devine is in Chicago. Her “dead” ex, magician/counterterrorist Max Kinsella, is in Ireland suffering from amnesia but cared for by Garry “Gandolph the Great” Randolph as he seeks information on the late orphan Kathleen “Kitty the Cutter” O'Connor.

In his twenty-second starring appearance (see Cat in a Topaz Tango), Midnight Louie remains fresh and amusing as if he was working with his human pet on their first case (see 1993’s Catnap). The twisting story line is fast-paced as Temple relies on Midnight Louie’s posse the Vegas Strip Irregulars to solve the homicides. This is a terrific entry as fans of the series will believe rascally lovable Louie has several lives left.

Harriet Klausner

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