Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Cat Who Knew a Cardinal” as Want to Read:
The Cat Who Knew a Cardinal
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

The Cat Who Knew a Cardinal (Cat Who... #12)

3.82 of 5 stars 3.82  ·  rating details  ·  4,082 ratings  ·  104 reviews
All the world's a stage--and now Jim Qwilleran's apple orchard hsa become the stage--for a real-life murder scene. The much-disliked director of the Pickax Theatre Club's Shakespeare production, Hilary van Brook, is found dead after the closing-night cast party...and with the help of his super-smart siamese, Qwill must cast a suspicious eye on all the players--especially t ...more
ebook, 288 pages
Published February 1st 1992 by Jove Books (first published 1991)
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 Knew a Cardinal, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Cat Who Knew a Cardinal

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

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Jan 10, 2012 Kirsti rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Cat lovers, Mystery lovers, Animal detective fans
Ah, I feel sad! Now I've read every one of these delightful books (I'm rereading the ones I own, it was just this one and the cat who came to Breakfast that I'd never read before) They are a great series, and one I can enjoy any time. Their simplistic style, fun mystery, and of course the involvement had me hooked from the minute I dug a few out of a box at a secondhand shop.

This was was really good, and once more Polly only makes a few appearances. The bit about the cardinal was sad though, but
Aug 12, 2011 AmniconStudio rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: cat lovers, mystery fans
Shelves: audio-book, cat, mystery
This is the 12th book in "The Cat Who ..." series.

Celebrations are all around because Qwill's apple barn has been renovated and he and the Siamese move in.

The theater club celebrates a successful closing of Henry VIII and decide to throw an after party at Qwill's new place. As everyone is driving away Qwill hears a backfire from a car. KoKo realizes something is wrong and alert's Qwill and they embark on another mystery in which the color red and cardinal's intertwine.

I love this little city
Wendy Howard
Jim Qwilleran is settling into his new life in the converted apple barn with his two Siamese cats Koko and Yum Yum and enjoying what his life has become, until their lives are disturbed one night by the local theatre company descending on them to celebrate the end of a spectacularly successful production. The party itself is fun, but after everyone has left Jim notices that a car is still out in the old orchard, and when he goes to see if help is needed, finds the director of the play dead in hi ...more
I really enjoyed it like I have everything else of hers that I have read so far. I truly enjoy all the characters in these stories and of course I adore KoKo and YumYum! If you like a well-written light weight mystery with interesting characters try the Cat Who.. series.
Qwill, Koko, and Yum Yum are still in Moose County, this time living in an old apple barn. Koko befriends the red cardinal outside the window...and so starts another mystery...a murder to which Koko has the answers. I am once again amazed at how well Braun has captured the characteristics of cats...the way they sit, their interest disguised as aloofness...

“Yum Yum settled down on his lap slowly and softly like a hot-air balloon debating, ending in a Bat mound of virtually weightless fur. Koko pe
Lisa Kucharski
I wish I could pick three and a half stars. I enjoyed the book, and finally got to the part where Qwill moves into the apple barn which I would love to live in myself. Here a not well-loved principle is shot after a party with the cast of the recent play that took part on the grounds where Qwill lives. While Qwill tries not to be involved with solving the murder he does, but he has finds another mystery in trying to figure out the past of the murdered man... who ends up a having some really inte ...more
Qwill and the cats have returned to Pickax (yay!) after some time Down Below in the last installment (cat who lived high). They have moved into the apple barn which has been restored. The theater club has just finished a wildly successful Shakespeare production and most of the cast shows up at the barn after the final show for cast party / barn warming. After everyone leaves, Qwill looks outside and notices a car still there. The cats are uneasy so he goes out to investigate and finds the direc ...more
This is one of a series of not terribly well written books that I just really enjoy. The earlier books are much better than the later ones - people have begun speculating that the latter books are even being written by Braun at all, they are so incoherent. They are mysteries and have as main characters intelligent, sly Siamese cats. Things happen too fast - the plot races on at the expense of character and she always seems to be willing to kill off characters that other authors might make into i ...more
You can sure tell these murder mysteries are written by a woman. I don't know a man who would go into such exhausting detail about tapestries and theatrical productions and restaurants and clothing for men and women, but Braun has created her exquisite little town of Pickaxe and its residents, especially the semi-retired newspaper man Qwill (Jim Qwilleran), who seems to stumble upon and then solve the town's murders, with the help of his two Siamese cats, Koko and YumYum. The victim this time is ...more
Lynne Tull
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
When you need a happy, clever read to lift your spirits this is a great book. I wish I had discovered all her books years ago.!!!
As a cat lover and owner, I really liked this book. It is great to listen to on audio books while driving. The reader has a very calming interesting voice that helps bring the book(s)and characters to life. I've read most of these and really enjy them. Being a cat lover myself, I loved KoKo and YumYum. Makes me want to get another cat, but one in our house is quite enough. Qwill is an interesting character, one I'd like to know. There was a murder in his neighborhood and the story works toward s ...more
This particular series I just really enjoy reading. Sometimes, I feel that the plot moves at fast pace as if it is in race, unfortunately, at the expense of characters. Braun seems happily killing off some characters that other authors might make them into interesting and re-occurring people in a series. I couldn't just terminate this series since I genuinely enjoy the charm, humor, interesting choice of words or phrases, and intriguing mystery by the author. To top this off, I relish the little ...more
Kate Millin
The cardinal is a bird and Qwilleran’s house is a little accident prone.
Another entertaining mystery solved by Koko (with some help from Qwilleran).
Enjoyed it as usual. So far I have really enjoyed all of her books that I have read.
I've read a fair number of Lilian Jackson Braun's "Cat Who" whodunits and I enjoy their whimsical style and setting (how can you not love a location called Moose County, with a county seat called Pickaxe?), the way she develops her characters, and the clean yet realistic descriptions of the crimes. Also, since I am a cat lover, the involvement of the two Siamese cats is also fun. Braun's writing style is just slightly subpar to what I would call excellent, but it's fun reading and is probably on ...more
Qwill discovers the local high school teacher has been shot in the head in his car after leaving a party at the apple barn. Koko makes friends with a cardinal outside in the tree, and Qwill takes them to Lockmaster while he attends a steeplechase there. Polly doesn't appear in this book much, but by the end of the book she and Qwill are back together. Lots of description of the apple barn (it was just an idea of Qwill's in the previous book) and the tapestries that hang from the 4th story rafter ...more
This wasn't a bad book, but after two of this series, they're already predictable.
This was the first book I've listened to by this author and it was a delight. The narration was also excellent. I've discovered that by listening to my books done by a professional, it adds another dimension to an already wonderful book and past time. Qwilleran and his two feline companions are treasures. The mystery provided several red herrings until I finally had an inkling who the culprit was. Looking forward to listening to more books by this author and narrator.
Man, Polly is a bitch. I don't think I ever realized how bratty she was until the last two books I read. Seriouslyyyyyy.
I am going through my bookshelves re-reading things that I can't remember reading. I loved this series when I was younger, and it was a relaxing, easy read, but mystery-wise I've moved on. The plot of the mystery wasn't bad, but I think the characters were pretty two-dimensional, and I have a hard time relating to someone whose cats eat better than I do.

But I'll still probably read the other books by Lilian Jackson Braun that are hiding on my shelves. . .
Kara Thorpe
I liked the mystery more in this book because it seemed to be more prominent than in other books in this series. I didn't like the constant descriptions of Qwill's barn. Seriously. Whatever happened to leaving something to the reader's imagination? I like listening to the series because it's easy to slip in and out of, but I don't always like how Braun treats some of her characters. I do read the series for the cats. Those are my favorite parts.
I honestly don't know why I'm reading a book about cats who eat crab legs for dinner and solve mysteries in their spare time. Oh wait, I know. It's because I just read a book about dead people in rea life, so I probably thought dead people in a fluff mystery would be a nice intermission.

I'm really hoping I start to give a damn about this Qwill guy, his swanky barn mansion, and seemingly dysfunctional and bland relationship with his partner.
This book saw Qwill, Koko & Yum Yum return to Pickax after some time Down Below. With a new converted apple barn as their home, the three settle back into quiet country life until the murder of the school principal throws them back into mystery-solving. This book contained a lot of endearments between Qwill and Polly -- much more so than in previous books. A good little mystery filled with interesting characters!
Nancy Boyd
Loved it! I'd forgotten how much I liked this series after the break I took to read other books. But this is such great writing! I love the fact that the main character doesn't spend all of his time looking for clues to solve a mystery. He just lives life, exciting things happen, and his clairvoyant cats start giving him ideas about mysterious goings-on around town. Very lifelike! A great read!
A cozy mystery where two Siamese cats help Qwill solve the mystery of a dead school administrator in his apple orchard after an all cast party. The story centers on the theatre, horse set and people who enjoy books and birds. Sometimes there was more story than solving going on. Overall an easy read and I would read more from this author for something light.
Jon Rybka-Wachhaus
You cannot go wrong with these books. I enjoy them as they seem to have a bit of throw back to the way people are. This one had more of a mystery to it and took you on a few twists and turns but you usually figure out who did it before they tell you. That is fine. It is the journey of the people of Pickax that is the fun part of reading these books.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
The Women's Myste...: The Cat Who Knew a Cardinal #13 1 1 Aug 09, 2013 09:59PM  
  • Murder on the Prowl (Mrs. Murphy, #6)
  • The Cat Who... Cookbook: Delicious Meals and Menus Inspired By Lilian Jackson Braun
  • Classified as Murder (Cat in the Stacks, #2)
  • Cat Spitting Mad (Joe Grey #6)
  • Sleight of Paw (Magical Cats, #2)
  • The Cat, The Professor and the Poison (A Cats in Trouble Mystery, #2)
  • Cat in a Golden Garland (Midnight Louie, #8)
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)

Share This Book

“Apple barn’s better’n a pig barn,” they chortled over coffee mugs in the cafés. After four years they had become accustomed to the sight of Mr. Q’s oversize moustache with its melancholy droop. They no longer questioned the unorthodox W in the spelling of Qwilleran. And most of them now accepted the fact that the middle-aged divorced bachelor chose to live alone—with two cats!” 0 likes
More quotes…