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The Cat Who Smelled a Rat (Cat Who..., #23)
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The Cat Who Smelled a Rat (Cat Who... #23)

3.78 of 5 stars 3.78  ·  rating details  ·  2,940 ratings  ·  99 reviews
Cat Who Smelled a Rat, The, by Braun, Lilian Jackson
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published January 29th 2001 by Putnam Adult
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I've read two or three of The Cat Who books, and for the life of me, I don't know what keeps me reading to the end. The characters are flat, the plots busy and erratic, the mood lazy and relaxed. In the surreal, sentimental world of Pickax, Moose County, nobody even seems to mind much about murder--nobody, that is, except the protagonist's obnoxious Siamese, "the cat who" yowls when someone in town meets on untimely end.

And yet, with over thirty books to her credit, Lillian Jackson Braun clearl...more
A cozy mystery solved by the witty cats' meows :3 nyaha!
This is my first "The Cat Who" series and it won't definitely be the last! I would really really love to read more of Lilian Jackson Braun's The Cat who novels!
The characters are endearing and the story is very relaxing ♥

I imagined my favorite character --the extraordinary Siamese cat Koko as this (the adorable cat on the photo) :3

Click see review to view the photo
Jacqueline O.
I used to read a lot of the Cat Who books, then I got bored and stopped. This one, The Cat Who Smelled a Rat has been sitting on the "to be read" shelf for at least ten years.
But returning to PickAx and meeting up with Qwilleran and company again is kinda' like going home to a small town - a very small town, where everyone knows everyone else - for better or worse. This particular novel is set at the end of the Summer and everyone is worried about wild and forest fires. The fires seem to be occu...more
Though this was written in 2002, I only recently came upon a copy at a used book sale, and realized that it was one of this series that I hadn't read before. Some readers might find this rather simplistic, but there are some interesting facts sprinkled in the plot. Jim Qwilleran is a good main character, but I STILL question his choice of Polly Duncan as the woman in his life. He isn't interested in marrying again--his first attempt did not work out well. Not all the characters are what they see...more
Lisa Kucharski
Nice to read some more about Koko, Qwill, and Moose County. In this there are a lot of fires (literally and figuratively) burning. I would have liked more direct involvement with Qwill and the events and for him to investigate more fully, but he kept a more distant stance in general. Though in this story some of the people who've been leading shady lives have finally had their dealings come to light.

Interesting for someone who has read the series and enjoys reading about the town and the people...more
 Gigi Ann
Meet prizewinning reporter Jim Qwilleran and his extraordinary Siamese cats Koko and Yum Yum, the most unlikely, most unusual, most delightful team in detective fiction!
The way Jim Qwilleran sees it, there’s nothing worse than being left high and dry. But that’s exactly where he’s been ever since a record-breaking drought hit Moose County. He’s bedraggled. Beleaguered. And, following a rash of fires at local historic minesites, deeply bewildered. Some blame the blazes on bad weather conditions,...more
Ivonne Rovira
I've just reread The Cat Who Smelled a Rat. In it, Jim Qwilleran is still in fine mettle. This mystery, No. 23 in the "Cat Who" series, is the last one most fans will enjoy. In this book, Qwill still remembers small details from previous novels. He's still interested in the mysteries around him, and he does some active snooping around. He's still a bit of the Lothario despite himself. And he still has faith in Koko's awesome powers.

Starting with the next book, the mystery gets solved almost by a...more
BOTTOM LINE: an OK entry in this long series, filled with lots of folksy bits and a tiny glimmer of a sharp plot lurking in the background. Unfortunately, there's too much "folksy" and 'way too lilttle plot for my taste.

Wildfire season, arson settings, land speculation, undercover investigations, new inhabitants, and the death of an old friend, makes Qwilleran long for “The Big One” (the first snowstorm of the season) as it would mean a week of peace and quiet. And Polly’s jealousy of every wom...more
Benjamin Thomas
Here are some stats: The Cat Who Smelled a Rat is the 20th book I've read by Lilian Jackson Braun. My database tells me that equates to 5,054 pages, all about Jim Qwilleran, his two Siamese cats, and life in a small town just south of the Canadian border. That puts this author 9th on my list of most read authors if measured by number of books read but because they are not thick books, she only ranks 25th if measured but total pages read. Did I ever mention I was sort of anal when it comes to my...more
I thought I had read all of the Cat Who ... books, so I was delighted when I happened upon this one on the library shelf. I had a happy time visiting with the denizens of Pickaxe Co.

There's more going on in this one than in the later (sorry, but I must be frank) inferior efforts. There's financial malfeasance, a suspected murder (or two), arson, even local politics. There's also drought and a major snowstorm. That's a lot to keep Koko occupied! As a longtime reader of the series, I was happy to...more
This is the 23rd "The Cat Who..." book. Published in 2001 ten years befoe the author, Lillian Jackson Braun, died at the age of 97. If she finished this book in the year it was published, she was 87. Amazing.

These books are an enjoyable read and don't have to be read in order. However, you should read the first book in the series as soon as possible.

Koko and YumYum are the "cat characters". Beautiful Siamese. But Koko is special. First he has 60 whiskers, far more than the usual cat. And he pre...more
This is an interesting series of books in which Jim Qwilleran and his Siamese cats solve mysteries. It is intriguing how Koko provides clues so Qwill can fill in the blanks and suggest to the authorities what they may have overlooked. In this book the mystery consists of two accidental deaths and an explosion in a store.
It's October in Pickax and the residents are experiencing very dry conditions and wild fires are threatening the mine shafts, which are considered heritage structures. Qwill has moved to Indian Village in preparation for "The Big One" and Fran Brodie does some redecorating, adding a batik wall hanging, a thick carpet, a bowl of wooden red apples and five potted geraniums, which Koko knocks over one by one. XYZ Enterprises has dissolved, and Don Exbridge is starting a new company. Eddington Smith...more
Amanda Hendsbee
I've been reading this series off and on since I was a teenager. They're never what you might call nail-biters, but they're cute and whimsical and always a relaxing read. The "mystery" aspect is never overly graphic or violent, and the characters are vivid and realistic. Nothing spectacular, but still a fun read.
Ken Montville
I've read a couple of these books before and forgot how, er, simple they are. The characters are all pretty cartoonish and the plot is pretty thin. It used to be enjoyable reading. Now, I could hardly wait to get through it. Very easy read and not very challenging.
It was a interesting book. Unlike the last three books I had read in the series I really had no guess on who killed those three men and was setting all those brush fires. So I shall give the author props on keeping the reader guessing until the very end. She wraps everything that has happened in the book all together in the very last chapter, if you ask me in most books like that would seem like it was too quick and easy making it feel rushed to be done with and making the reader wish it was str...more
Jean Barrington
This would probably be 4 stars on most folks rating, but I can only say, "I liked it." I will read more of this series. They are well written and the story line is very good. Sorting out names for me is always a small challenge, but I think I managed very well with the central characters. This is my first The Cat Who. . . book, so I have no idea if the setting is the same in every book. I'm sure I'd like that because after a couple of reads, I'd have everyone sorted out.
Although I did like it,...more
This is book #23, so if you are new to the series, don't start here :). For long-time fans, with this novel we learn a bit more of Qwill's backstory. And the characters of, and goings-on in, Pickax are as good as the mystery plot.
Jan 16, 2012 Kirsti rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Cat lovers, Mystery lovers, Animal detective fans
Arson, of the worst kind. Thousands of books go up in flames, and fires start at historical mine sites. A man is murdered while patrolling for the fires, and another is pushed down the stairs in strange circumstances. Koko is thinking of apples, robins and glove boxes, and when you put them all together you find the perpetrators. Lots of small details add up to the big picture in this one, and finally a small 'menace' to the quiet life in Pickax is silenced.

What can I say? I love these books. Th...more
The Visual
The theme of the story is very appropriate within our time---corrupt politicians, ponzi schemes, elections...
Lynne Tull
It was evident in this book that Ms. Braun was having a hard time writing the continuing story of Qwill and his two cats. This book was filled with a lot of lists: Haiku from a contest; campaign songs for Amanda Goodwinter and several tales for a book Qwill is writing: "Short and Tall Tales". In fact, I think this book was actually published. I didn't buy it. I am not a fan of short stories. She introduced a lot of new characters with a lose connection to the story...and again killed off a sympa...more
Not much of a mystery in this one, but a lot of fun tidbits about the folks in Pickaxe and ofcourse interaction with Koko and Yum yum.
It is October with the continuation of a summer drought. Qwill and his Siamese cats, Koko & Yum Yum, are back in their Indian Village condo as people wait for the "Big One" the season's first major snow storm. Continuing drought conditions have brought more wild fires to the area with many around the closed mines and their shafthouses considered arson. There are also a couple of murders and mysterious business dealings. As usual, it is Qwill and Koko who resolve the various mysteries.
Ok - WHAT am I missing? This book was a slogfest. Sadly, this will be my only 'The Cat Who" book. Too bad, because I really wanted to like it - Lillian Jackson Braun seems like such a sweet old lady. Alas, she's no Agatha Christie. Too many times I had to ask myself "WHY am I still reading this?" Maybe it was due to the flat characters - and too many of them - I found I really didn't care about Quilleran, his friend/girlfriend (is she or isn't she?), his cats, OR his mustache.
Angela Belcher
I fell in love with the characters of this book. I hadn't read anything in years and saw this at a library and decided I could read it on a road trip. I ended up reading the previous 22 books in the series within a month. The characters are well thought out and funny. A funny mystery with a great town and relatable characters. Some characters you love and others you love to hate. This is a fast read and left me wanting more and returned me to my love of books.
I haven't been reading this series in order but it doesn't seem to matter much. I am enjoying them; they are easy to read.
Sherry (sethurner)
The "big one" is coming (snowstorm, that is) and Pick Axe County has to get ready for it. Someone want the world to end in fire raather than ice, and there is a series of arson fires. Who will figure out the culprit? Nobody but those darn cats and their adoring owner. Lots of small town this and that happens before you'll be rewarded with the answer to the mystery. This series is heavy on local color and light on action. Twenty-third in the series.
Una Tiers
A very busy plot. I was sorry to see the bookseller go.
PickAx is waiting for the "Big One," the giant snowstorm that starts off the winter season for them. When the storm stalls over Canada, the town begins to suffer the effects of drought and wildfires. But there are reasons to believe that the wildfires may actually be arson, especially after a volunteer for the community fire watch is shot while on duty. Who's the rat? Only Koko knows! Another fun, quick Cat Who!
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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...
The Cat Who Could Read Backwards (Cat Who..., #1) The Cat Who Saw Red (Cat Who... #4) The Cat Who Ate Danish Modern (Cat Who..., #2) The Cat Who Played Brahms (Cat Who... #5) The Cat Who Knew Shakespeare (Cat Who..., #7)

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