Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Cat Who Wasn't There” as Want to Read:
The Cat Who Wasn't There
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Cat Who Wasn't There (The Cat Who... #14)

3.87  ·  Rating Details ·  4,656 Ratings  ·  153 Reviews
Qwill's on his way to Scotland--and on his way to solving another purr-plexing mystery. But this time Koko's nowhere the scene of the crime. He and Yum Yum are back in Pickax being coddled by a catsitter...but Koko won't sit still once Qwill's traveling party returns--minus one member. He's behaving oddly, and Qwill knows what that means: Koko may have been miles away from ...more
ebook, 288 pages
Published June 1st 1993 by Jove Books (first published September 8th 1992)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Cat Who Wasn't There, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Cat Who Wasn't There

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Selena
Jan 10, 2008 Selena rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who needs a mental break
Shelves: just-plain-fun
I'm only going to bother reviewing one of the "Cat Who..." books, so just consider this a general review of the whole series, I'm just using The Cat Who Wasn't There to do it because it was the first one I read. Since high school, these books have been my cheesy, fun, light-reading (yet with enough classical references to actually keep me occupied), something to do when I felt like reading, needed my mind occupied, but just didn't feel the energy needed to foucus on the new translation of Dante ...more
Loretta
THE CAT WHO WASN 19T THERE 5*****
The beginning of this book has Qwilleran racing back from the Potato Mountains to Pickax because he has received word that his present love, Polly Duncan was stalked by a mysterious stranger one evening when she was returning home. Qwillern immediately decides she was going to be abducted and be held for ransom. He has it in his mind that Pickax is being overrun by people from Down Below and that more of this type of crime is going to keep happening. This is true
...more
Lisa Kucharski
This book starts exactly after the storyline in: The Cat Who Moved A Mountain. Qwilleran returns to Pickaxe when he hears about a mysterious man who was hiding around his romantic interest Polly when she came home one night. Qwill senses something is wrong and suspects that someone intends to kidnap his friend to then extort money from him. Sounds crazy, but the 'stache knows!

Upon returning to Pickax ahead of schedule he meets up with friends and finds the town the same and yet changed a bit. Th
...more
Kirsti
Sep 07, 2015 Kirsti rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Cat lovers, Mystery lovers, Animal detective fans
I have to say, I miss the part of the book where Koko wasn't there, although he was making his presence felt. You come to depend on his Yows and Yargles signalling clues, and he is giving them, you just don't realize it.

Qwill has been persuaded to look into his Scottish heritage by joining a Pickaxe tour group. While there, Irma Hasselreich dies mysteriously. The truth comes out after Koko's obsession with Melinda Goodwinter and pink pills. It was odd seeing Melinda portrayed as she was, so mone
...more
Shannon
Jun 03, 2015 Shannon rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, audiobook
Once again, fairly good narrator (lovely rich voice that works for Qwuill), but the story & characters are such cliches. Qwuill in particular is such a knowitall, his superior make opinions and attitude towards the women in this book (and series) drives me nuts. Mystery was decent, but ... I tolerate the book/series more than I enjoy it. The cat antics are the only amusing part.

Still reading the audiobooks though, because I haven't found anything better that captures my attention.
Amy "the book-bat"
Another installment featuring Qwill and the cats. This time Qwill goes to Scotland (leaving the cats behind) and the tour leader dies. Upon returning to Moose County, Qwill does his usual investigating with Koko's help and solves the mystery. There were some interesting twists, but I figured out the biggest one pretty early on. I gave this one 3.5 stars because it seemed too easy and a bit repetitive. Maybe I just need a break from the series for a bit...
Bianca Andriese
I love these Cozy Cat Mysteries... they are a joy to listen to on the way to work and back (makes driving bearable hahaha). This is a great read or listen for everyone!
Jeanny
Jun 13, 2015 Jeanny rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Always enjoy "the cat who books" this was especially fine with Scottish lore in it
Athimar
Oct 26, 2016 Athimar rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This novel picks up where the last novel, The Cat Who Moved a Mountain, left off. After his long-time girlfriend, Polly Duncan, alerts him she had been followed and nearly attacked, James Qwilleran (Qwill to his friends) packs up his two Siamese cats and rushes home from his impromptu vacation in the Potato Mountains. When Polly suggest that they join a group of Moose County natives on a guided tour of Scotland, he agrees to go, thinking it an opportune way to get Polly away from Pickax City whi ...more
Charlene C
This series reminds me of MC Beaton's Hamish Macbeth series...perhaps not quite as good, but entertaining:)
Cheryl
Jan 03, 2017 Cheryl rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love the "Cat Who" cozies. I'm not looking forward to finishing them, although I still have more than 10 to go.
Kristina Marie
3. A solid Cat Who.
Heather
Some excited moments and some wrapped up plots introduced in previous books.
Rebecca
Nov 23, 2016 Rebecca rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Yum Yum gets cat-napped
M. J.
Aug 14, 2014 M. J. rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-fiction
I described the circumstances of my reading this book in my review of The Cat Who Could Read Backwards https://www.goodreads.com/review/show... so I'll keep it brief here. My reading was interrupted by my wife grabbing the book, and when I attempted to recover it I instead found the first in the series, which I read and reviewed. For a while I was reading whichever I could find, but I managed to focus on finishing that one, and then turned to this one.

It occurred to me at some point that the tit
...more
Gloria
Dec 30, 2016 Gloria rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone over 18; detective; mystery stories; who done it?; cats
This one joins with the next one as Polly Duncan's predicament seems to be less an emergency than Qwill thought it was, which brought him rushing from the Potato mountains.

Instead, Polly, Qwill and others from Pickax (and from surrounding towns) band together and undertake a tour of Scotland. Irma is chosen to lead it, but after she dies, no one is quite willing to continue on. Qwill and Polly return home, and Koko's strange behavior convinces Qwill that something sinister happened to Irma.

He is
...more
Benjamin Thomas
I was due for a straight who-dunnit mystery and I also needed to read a shorter novel after just completing the lengthy "The Seventh Scroll". This book is the 15th in the "Cat Who..." series and although I haven't read all of them up to this point I would guess I have completed about 10-11 of them. I confess to not having read them in order, something I normally never do, but that is due to the nature of how I acquire them. You see I received several as gifts, years ago and I knew my mother had ...more
Roger Verstraete
Characters/Peopleeditsee section history
Jim Qwilleran: Previously a journalist for a big-city newspaper. He inherited a large estate and now lives in Pickax.
Irma Hasselrich: Volunteer at the Pickax Hospital Senior Care Facility. Plans and leads the Bonnie Scots tour.
Melinda Goodwinter: Daughter of a Pickax GP, is also a doctor; has dated Quill and still wants to marry him
Mildred Hanstable: Resident of Mooseville, teaches in Pickax. Scatterbrained but nice.
Nick aka Dominic Bamba: Engineer at Moos
...more
Cherry
Nov 02, 2011 Cherry rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Like all the other books in the series, this book held me in suspense. It is about yet another of Jim Qwilleran's mysteries, in which this one was how the leader of the Bonnie Scotts Tour was murdered by one of the tourists. In the end, the answer was very surprising. Melinda Goodwinter really likes Qwilleran, but he doesn't really like her that much. But the reason she likes him is because she hopes to marry him into the Klingshoen fortune. She notices that he doesn't like her that much, and do ...more
Abbey
BOTTOM LINE: Qwill visits Scotland and, of course, bad things happen. This 14th in the long series has a comfortable, and rather satisfying plot (if a wee bit too coincidental), but while the latest stories were unbearably "cute!!", at this point they're still well-plotted, and worthwhile.

Polly’s got a stalker, the lovely Melinda is back in town (and pushing for marriage), and somebody steals YumYum - seems Qwill just doesn’t have any luck with the females in his life, unless it’s bad. And on a
...more
Sue
Dec 06, 2014 Sue rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, usa
Qwill's lady-friend Polly lets him know about about a group trip planned to Scotland and invites him to go along. Polly's friend Irma, who reportedly has connections in Scotland, is organizing the trip and will serve as tour guide. The first few days of the tour are a blur of riding through the countryside listening to Irma tell stories about the area. Tragedy strikes Day Six of the trip when Irma dies in the night from an apparent heart attack. Several people abandon the trip at that point, wi ...more
Lorraine
Qwill and Polly and a bunch of their friends from Pickax and Lockerby head to Scotland for a two week tour, guided by Irma Hasselrich. After about a week of touring, Irma is discovered dead of a heart attack, as diagnosed by Dr. Melinda Goodwinter. Qwill and Polly cut their trip short and head home to Pickax. Melinda Goodwinter was an old girlfriend of Qwill's, and she has just come back due to her father's death. She begins pestering him, making suggestive invitations, and finally tells him she ...more
Becky
Jan 19, 2015 Becky rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think this is right in the era when the author starts to realize her particular brand of cheese and starts to play into it. The Cat Who Moved a Mountain was kind of testing the waters (could there be more potato puns?), but this one evens out the cheese factor with a *slightly* more complex plot than the other novels. It pulls in old plots and characters that keeps that great tight knit community feel in her world building, and adds new characters which allow for the plot to take place in mult ...more
Christie
Jul 16, 2016 Christie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Once again, Lilian has given us a masterpiece! Koko was almost 4,000 miles away from the scene of the crime, and he still knew the exact time the person died, and did his "death dance" at that precise moment. When Qwill found this out later while calling home to check on the brats, he got chills. Even he didn't think Koko would have known, since he wasn't there at the time (hence the book title), but he did! After the group returns home, Koko keeps dropping subtle (and sometimes not so subtle) h ...more
hana
Jul 13, 2016 hana rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016
first time read/listening this series,
I LOVE the accents and the cat sounding

Qwill's on his way to Scotland--and on his way to solving another purr-plexing mystery. But this time Koko's nowhere the scene of the crime. He and Yum Yum are back in Pickax being coddled by a catsitter...but Koko won't sit still once Qwill's traveling party returns--minus one member. He's behaving oddly, and Qwill knows what that means: Koko may have been miles away from the murder scene, but he's just a whisker away
...more
Barbra
Jan 01, 2009 Barbra rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
What a superior book this was. Qwill's on his way to Scotland with the Bonnie Scots Tour,without his KO KO or YUM YUM, but this does not matter for KO KO is still on the case. The story starts "In late August, sixteen residents of Moose County, a remote part of the United States 400 miles north of everywhere, traveled to Scotland for a tour of the Western Isles and Highlands, lochs and moors, castles and crofts, firths and straths, burns and braes, fens and bens and glens. Only fifteen of them r ...more
Carol
Mar 29, 2011 Carol rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What a terrific book this one was. Qwill is on his way to Scotland with the Bonnie Scots Tour, without his KOKO or YUM YUM, but this does not matter as KOKO is still on the case. The story starts "In late August, sixteen residents of Moose County, a remote part of the United States 400 miles north of everywhere, traveled to Scotland for a tour of the Western Isles and Highlands, lochs and moors, castles and crofts, firths and straths, burns and braes, fens and bens and glens. Only fifteen of the ...more
Roni
Mar 25, 2012 Roni rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Koko who wasn't "there" when the unfortunate incident happened halfway around the world, but he just knew. Qwill has been persuaded to travel to Scotland. While there, he got an opportunity to look into his Scottish family heritage and history which I appreciated to learn something about Scotland. Koko's attempt to communicate in Yows was one of the clues to Qwill who slowly figured out at end of the story.

It is another "The Cat Who..." that can be easily reading in one or two sittings. Most of
...more
Jason Caldwell
Mar 05, 2014 Jason Caldwell rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love how Lilian Jackson Braun uses such great words in her stories. I added a few to my expanding vocabulary list while reading this book including: potentate, alacrity, impudent, salubrious, blithe, flippant, verdant, & undulate.

The story covers a group from Moose County who take a group vacation to Scotland. This part of the story is kind of slow and slightly less interesting. However when one of the members of the tour has a heart attack and another has thousands of dollars worth of pr
...more
Tiffeny
Jun 25, 2012 Tiffeny rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
As with #13, this is one of the best I've read in this series. The mystery of this book was briefly introduced in the previous, which made me anxious to read it. The mystery was well written and Braun tied up all the loose ends that I noticed. I thought the ending was quite sad (and I was disappointed that Qwill and the readers) weren't able to read the note, but it seemed appropriate.

Qwill and his beloved cats have really grown on me. I recommend all my friends give this series a try. I've read
...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
The Women's Myste...: The Cat Who Wasn't There #15 1 2 Aug 09, 2013 10:03PM  
  • Murder at Monticello (Mrs. Murphy #3)
  • The Cat Who... Cookbook: Delicious Meals and Menus Inspired By Lilian Jackson Braun
  • Cat Laughing Last (Joe Grey, #7)
  • Sleight of Paw (A Magical Cats Mystery, #2)
  • Hair of the Dog (Melanie Travis, #4)
  • Cat in a Topaz Tango (Midnight Louie, #21)
21625
Lilian Jackson Braun was an American writer. She is well-known for her light-hearted series of The Cat Who... mystery novels. The Cat Who books center around the life of former newspaper reporter James Qwilleran, and his two Siamese cats, KoKo and Yum Yum in the fictitious small town of Pickax located in Moose County, "400 miles north of everywhere." Although never formally stated in the books, th ...more
More about Lilian Jackson Braun...

Other Books in the Series

The Cat Who... (1 - 10 of 29 books)
  • The Cat Who Could Read Backwards (Cat Who..., #1)
  • The Cat Who Ate Danish Modern (Cat Who..., #2)
  • The Cat Who Turned On and Off (Cat Who..., #3)
  • The Cat Who Saw Red (Cat Who... #4)
  • The Cat Who Played Brahms (Cat Who... #5)
  • The Cat Who Played Post Office (Cat Who..., #6)
  • The Cat Who Knew Shakespeare (Cat Who..., #7)
  • The Cat Who Sniffed Glue (Cat Who... #8)
  • The Cat Who Went Underground (Cat Who... #9)
  • The Cat Who Talked to Ghosts (Cat Who... #10)

Share This Book



“One should be able to say anything to a close friend, he reflected, and yet part of friendship was knowing what not to say and when not to say it,” 2 likes
More quotes…