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Murder Past Due (2010)

by Miranda James

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Cat in the Stacks Mystery (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
7785728,569 (3.5)82
Fiction. Mystery. HTML:FIRST IN THE NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLING CAT IN THE STACKS MYSTERY SERIES!
Everyone in Athena, Mississippi, knows Charlie Harris, the good-natured librarian with a rescued Maine coon cat named Diesel that he walks on a leash.  He’s returned to his hometown to immerse himself in books, but soon enough he’s entangled in a real-life thriller...
 
A famous author of gory bestsellers and a former classmate of Charlie’s, Godfrey Priest may be the pride of Athena, but Charlie remembers him as an arrogant, manipulative jerk—and he’s not the only one. Godfrey’s homecoming as a distinguished alumnus couldn’t possibly go worse: by lunch, he’s put a man in the hospital. By dinner, Godfrey’s dead.
 
Now it’s up to Charlie, with some help from Diesel, to paw through the town’s grudges and find the killer before an impatient deputy throws the book at the wrong person. But every last one of Charlie’s friends and co-workers had a score to settle with the nasty novelist. As if the murder wasn’t already purr-plexing enough...
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English (55)  Spanish (1)  Piratical (1)  All languages (57)
Showing 1-5 of 55 (next | show all)
Charlie Harris is a widow who has moved back to his hometown of Athena, Mississippi, into the house he inherited from his aunt. He works part time as the archivist at the local college’s library. He’s also well known for his rescued Maine coon cat, Diesel; a cat that goes almost everywhere with him. I loved Diesel. I'm not a big fan of cozies but I am a big fan of kitties, so the story is worth reading just to meet him. Of all the people from his past Charlie never wanted to ever see again, Godfrey Priest was IT. Godfrey was a jerk when they had known each other in high school and college, and now his status as a bestselling author of thrillers has done nothing to deflate his gigantic, growing ego. Now Godfrey is back in town and appearing at the local college where...you guessed it...Charlie works. Since Godfrey returned, secrets start appearing out of the woodwork. Charlie then finds Godfrey dead in his hotel room. The investigation centers around Charlie’s boarder, who is the son of an old friend, and Charlie starts looking around and asking questions. Still, it won’t be easy to find the killer of a guy who no one seemed to ever have liked. Charlie isn't sure that he is the one to do it or even if he can. One of the reasons I don't especially care for Cozy Mysteries is that usually the plot moves forward at a snail's pace, and it takes forever for something to happen. That wasn’t the case with this one. This book had more twists in the first 100 pages than some books I've read had in the entire story. The pace did slow down a little as the story progressed, there were still some really good twists and reveals in the second half. The clues were well planted, and I found myself completely satisfied at how things came together at the end. ( )
  Carol420 | Mar 30, 2024 |
DNF @ Page 79

I thought, hey cats and books, sounds good! The cat kind of acted more like a dog, and I wasn't particularly fond of the MC Charlie. He was condescending and snooty.

I probably could have pushed through but I have so many other books I'm excited about reading. ( )
  filemanager | Nov 29, 2023 |
It has been a while since I've read a book in an afternoon, and this was just the book for it. Guess that's why cozy mysteries are such a hit!

In a small college town, Athena, Mississippi, Charlie Harris has moved back to his hometown and now lives in the home he inherited from his beloved Aunt Dottie. He is the new Athena College library archivist and the proud adopter of an abandoned Maine coon cat named Diesel. Charlie takes in boarders from the local college, one of whom is a freshman and the son of a friend who never left the town, Judy.

The action starts with another Athena local, Godfrey Priest, a renowned author of horror novels who is coming in for a book promotion tour. He was also a bully to his classmates. Including Charlie. So when Godfrey comes into Charlie's office, makes a gift of his notes and works, and drops a bombshell of some personal information, Charlie sees a different side of his former nemesis. And then Godfrey is murdered, so the murder mystery and solving begins.

It is a challenge for Charlie to navigate this murder, since he is by nature an inquisitive sort, and he early on runs into challenges with the Deputy assigned to the case, Kanesha. Not only is she a black woman in a predominately white male position, she's also the daughter of Charlie's housekeeper, Azalea. Sparks fly towards the end of the book, and my guess is that Charlie will be a much greater help in the next murder investigation. And besides, how many cats are a help in solving murders? ( )
  threadnsong | Sep 23, 2023 |
This is a quick read. Nice little cozy mystery. ( )
  talon2claw | Dec 30, 2022 |
When his boarder is under suspicion of killing a bestselling but personally unpopular author, Charlie Harris decides to help with the investigation at the request of his cleaner, who is also the lead detective's mother.

This was fun and I enjoyed the Jimmy Stewart vibe I got from the main character, so I'm going to continue with the series despite what struck me as a couple of false notes. ( )
  Robertgreaves | Apr 16, 2022 |
Showing 1-5 of 55 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Miranda Jamesprimary authorall editionscalculated
Craig, DanCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Estreicher, TiffanyDesignersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Worrell, LesleyCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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Fiction. Mystery. HTML:FIRST IN THE NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLING CAT IN THE STACKS MYSTERY SERIES!
Everyone in Athena, Mississippi, knows Charlie Harris, the good-natured librarian with a rescued Maine coon cat named Diesel that he walks on a leash.  He’s returned to his hometown to immerse himself in books, but soon enough he’s entangled in a real-life thriller...
 
A famous author of gory bestsellers and a former classmate of Charlie’s, Godfrey Priest may be the pride of Athena, but Charlie remembers him as an arrogant, manipulative jerk—and he’s not the only one. Godfrey’s homecoming as a distinguished alumnus couldn’t possibly go worse: by lunch, he’s put a man in the hospital. By dinner, Godfrey’s dead.
 
Now it’s up to Charlie, with some help from Diesel, to paw through the town’s grudges and find the killer before an impatient deputy throws the book at the wrong person. But every last one of Charlie’s friends and co-workers had a score to settle with the nasty novelist. As if the murder wasn’t already purr-plexing enough...

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