Posted in Reviews

Review of Pets on the Prowl: An Animal Mystery Anthology edited by J.K. Larkin

*****5 stars

If you’re an animal lover and a mystery fan, you’ll love this collection of twelve pet mysteries by talented authors.

“Stealing Roscoe” by John M. Floyd is the first story in the anthology. Taking place on a college campus, it involves the dog napping of a bulldog that’s the mascot of the school’s sports team. The next story in this collection, “Murder Gone A-Stray” by Debbie De Louise (me) features an officer who is invited to attend the will reading of a rich, old man whose children may have played a role in his death. When Officer McDonald arrives at the mansion, she discovers that she must spend a night at the house with the relatives and a cat who has witnessed his master’s murder. “The Catbird Seat” by Dawn DeBraal is told in the point-of-view of a cat who also witnesses a murder. “Troubles in Paradise” by Kathy Chencharik features a cat who interacts with other neighborhood animals in a search for missing pets.

Not many would consider a cockroach a pet, but the main character considers it her mascot and uses it as inspiration for revenge in Jeffrey A. Lockwood’s “La Cucaracha.” Another unusual addition to this collection is “My Best Friend is a Ghost Who Happens to be a Dog Named Rosie” by Stephen Johnson. This is a story about a young girl who meets up with a canine ghost on Halloween who helps solve the case of missing pets.

“Fetch” by Ken Goldman was one of my favorites in this anthology. It has a supernatural element to it and involves an old man and his dog who begins to bring home human bones. The ending is quite a twist. “The Daring Duo of Shady Elm” by Shari Held features a Siamese and Cavalier King Charles Spaniel as the main characters. The cat and dog help solve neighborhood burglaries. “The Three Lives of Thomasina Bug” by Elizabeth Elwood is a cute story about a cat who, with his favorite toy, leads police to where illegal drugs are hidden.

“His Sister’s Keeper” by Matt McGee features a wildlife sanctuary employee whose brother alerts her about a bear blocking traffic on a busy road. Arriving at the scene with her dog, she figures a clever way to deal with the bear without harming it. “Null and Void” by Rashmi Agrawal is another unusual tale. This one involves a woman whose boyfriend asks her to get a divorce from the dog she married at the request of her parents. Last, but not least, David Lange’s “Bessie’s Cap,” is a fun romp of an adventure involving two raccoons in an air and space museum who set out to discover the thief of two historic aviation artifacts. Lots of fun as they interview the mice and other inhabitants of the museum while trying to avoid the snake.

I highly recommend this book of pet mysteries which is another fine addition to the Red Penguin Collection edited by J.K. Larkin. Pick up your copy here:



I'm a retired librarian and the author of the Cobble Cove and Buttercup Bend cozy mystery series and other novels, short stories, poems, articles, and a novella. My books include CLOUDY RAINBOW, REASON TO DIE, SEA SCOPE, MEMORY MAKERS, TIME'S RELATIVE, MEOWS AND PURRS, and MEMORIES AND MEOWS. My Cobble Cove cozy mystery series published by Solstice Publishing consists of 6 books: A STONE'S THROW, BETWEEN A ROCK AND A HARD PLACE, WRITTEN IN STONE, LOVE ON THE ROCKS, NO GRAVESTONE UNTURNED, and SNEAKY'S SUPERNATURAL MYSTERY AND OTHER COBBLE COVE STORIES. My new Buttercup Bend series published by Next Chapter Publishing includes THE CASE OF THE CAT CRAZY LADY and THE CASE OF THE PARROT LOVING PROFESSOR. I've also written a romantic comedy novella, WHEN JACK TRUMPS ACE, and short stories of various genres published as eBooks and in anthologies published by the Red Penguin Collection. My poetry appears in the Nassau County Voices in Verse and the Bard's Annual. I'm a member of Sisters-in-Crime, International Thriller Writers, and the Cat Writers' Association. I live on Long Island with my husband, daughter, and 2 cats.

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