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The Cat Who Knew Shakespeare (The Cat Who... #7)

3.87  ·  Rating Details  ·  6,147 Ratings  ·  183 Reviews
Qwilleran and his Siamese cats, Koko and Yum Yum sniff out a shocking secret in an unusual edition of Shakespeare that may prove CATastrophic.
Hardcover, 249 pages
Published 1988
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Kirsten *Dogs Welcome - People Tolerated"
I'm not a cat person, I'm really not. But you just can't not love these cats.

Lilian Jackson Braun really knew how to craft a cozy. Murder and violence happens, but conveniently off-scene. There are lots of lovable and quirky characters in a small town. (Of course, this small town's murder rate must be atrocious!)

This is actually one of the better ones. Very enjoyable.
The gym I'm a member of has a shelf of free books to take for your workout, if you happen to be one of those folks who can run, bike and read at the same time. I'm not, but noticed this volume of Braun's "The Cat Who" series while waiting for my friend in the foyer. I'd read many of these books as a kid, and liked them. So, wondering if Braun would hold up to twenty years of life including a college and graduate school education, I took home "The Cat Who Knew Shakespeare."

Though not a work of (
Mar 12, 2016 itchy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: w
koko trying to (view spoiler) is by far the funniest thing to happen
Laura Cowan
Liked it, and the atmosphere is intoxicating, which is what really kept me reading, but because of all the emphasis on hints toward the solution to the mystery and my own familiarity with Shakespeare, I guessed not all the tie-in parts of the end (which were great) but the central mystery. Unfortunately that kind of ruined the read. But, even though I sometimes think the mustache tingling thing is a little contrived (Poirot's cat-like eyes glowing green when he was on to the murderer come to min ...more
Jan 07, 2015 Barry rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: american-lit
Friends shouldn't buy bad books for friends. Guilt read. Reminds me of a made-for-TV Animal Planet show. Sorry, Yum-Yum and Koko, but your owner is an insane man who gets credit for solving crimes when he does nothing and then pretends that his cats help him. He, like all of the characters, is flat; he only exhibits good qualities to the older women in Moose County. The man can do no wrong-- he loves art and cats, stands up for women, and has a nice moustache that hints that something is awry: " ...more
Mar 15, 2015 Susan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Good, my only problem is that she keeps killing off 2 or more residents of the town in each book. By the time I get to #30 of her books, there won't be any one left in town.
Sue Smith
Jul 19, 2007 Sue Smith rated it it was amazing
If you've never read any of "The Cat Who...." books, you really should. They are a mindless, easy read...and really fun! I've read them all, and love them!
Nov 05, 2014 Jessica rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Cat Who fans
Recommended to Jessica by: Catlovers, Cozy mystery fans
Shelves: 2008, 2010, 2013, 2014
A Quick Review of The Cat Who Knew Shakespeare by Lilian Jackson Braun

Rating: Five Stars

Genre: Cozy Mystery

Date Published: 1988

Series: The Cat Who Series #7

General: This book is a cute cozy mystery about a man who has a psychic cat that helps him solve mysteries.

Plot: The pace is slower than normal mysteries and has a lot of small-town aspects interwoven into the book. It is definitely a "light" read.

Character: The cats are very memorable, and Qwilleran is a fun character. If the reader is alrea
This is one of many books of this series. They all revolve around the central character Jim Qwilleran and his two Siamese, Koko and Yum-Yum. Mr. Qwilleran is a newspaper journalist who gets involved in various murder mysteries. In this particular story he is living the good life due to his now a millionaire after inheriting a vast estate from a long lost wealthy relative. The terms of the will, however, dictate that he actually live on the
Lisa Kucharski
This story really ramps up the death toll a bit. So many "accidents" or "suicides" invade this series to the point where it becomes a bit crazy to believe that no one would actually question them. The location tends to take the blame. It isn't that uncommon for the more remote areas to be a bit more lax when it comes to investigating or questioning an apparent suicide. The wild frontier of Moose County tends to be a place where people make their own rules and play judge and jury at times.

In this
Melissa Miller
Oct 25, 2015 Melissa Miller rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love the Cat Who series. Good, entertaining, light reading.
Found this priceless book in an used book store in middle of Kansas, not a world class literary novel or catching story. It just reminded me of those simpler times, I could totally relate this book to a James Hardley Chase Novella, which can be picked up on a Railway Platform. Perfect for an evening in Train with a bag of Chips and a Pepsi.

Do read it if you miss short novels and simpler childhood stories. Fun, simple, one time read for a one sitting.
The mystery is paper thin and it's more a tragi-comedie in a small, incestuous town 400 miles north of every where. Rereading these you can make your own drinking game, mine is which Goodwinter is gonna be murderer?
We had two in this one like in the last novel.

The villain of the tale is grotesque and the "will it snow or not" motif was tiresome. So barely two stars.
Dec 28, 2007 Kiddo rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Every one
I love these books. I've been reading them for years. I first started reading them when my kids were in grade school and I still am not that I'm a grandma! They are a light hearted mystry series that really gets you into the characters. If you love cats, you will love these books!
Feb 23, 2008 Bonnie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
I just love this series. The distinguished retired bachelor who has two cats named Koko and Yum Yum solves mysteries with the help of Koko. This is the first one I read. They are easy and clever reads.
Feb 05, 2008 Jess rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Yes I am really into this series right now. Each book has a great new mystery to be solved by two highly intelligent cats and their inquisitive owner
Jun 13, 2008 Leaves rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I think I read this book too early...Although I have a high reading level I don't fully comprehend it. I can't see the mystery...yet.
This one wasn't as bad as the last "Cat Who..." book I read. The mystery was mostly competent. But I felt like it was told out flatly in the last page or so. If maybe the mystery could have been unveiled piece by piece. Or maybe if there was more of a confrontation with the villain (rather them just dying off screen) I would have liked it more.

The main character sounded awfully pretentious to me most of the time. And way too obsessed with his cats. But that was less obvious in this one than in
M. J.
Sep 25, 2014 M. J. rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-fiction
Sometimes when I re-read a mystery I'm way ahead of the story, and sometimes I'm way behind; this time I was somewhere in the middle. I did not anticipate any of the major events, but I was suspicious of the right people.

This book is one after the transition. It seems that Braun wrote several books starring Qwilleran and Koko (and adding Yum-yum at the end of the second), in which he was a starving newspaper reporter; then she took a decade or so off and returned with the same characters having
#7 in The Cat Who ... Series.

The Cat Who ... Series - Vastly wealthy due to his inheritance of the Klingenschoen estate in Pickax City way up North, Jim Qwilleran now enjoys the eccentricities of life in Moose County. Including his pampered pair of Siamese cats; Koko, the male, pushes various Shakespeare plays off the shelf in Qwilleran's library, presumably commenting on events that excite and scandalize the town: the ``accidental'' death of the newspaper publisher, the disastrous fire that des
Roger Verstraete
Jim Qwilleran: Former journalist, now living in northern Michigan, with two pet siamese cats, Koko and Yum Yum.
Koko: One of Qwilleran's amazing Siamese cats; able to read backwards and sniff out clues faster than his human partner.
Hixie Rice: Qwill' former neighbor Down Below. Clever young woman who loves to eat well.
Jody: Junior's girlfriend who works as a dental technician for Dr. Zoeller.
Mr. O'Dell: Quill's houseman
Hettie Spence: 85 yr old member of Old Timers, used to write the obi
Sep 10, 2011 Ellie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, mystery, series, cozy
The Cat Who Knew Shakespeare is the seventh in a very lengthy "Cat Who..." series of mysteries by Lilian Jackson Braun. The protagonist of the series is curmudgeonly Qwilleran, a journalist in a small, very cold, town, and his cat Koko (by this book, Koko has a companion, Yum Yum).

The book involves the mysterious death of a young friend of Qwilleran's father. I liked Qwilleran-he would fit comfortably in a tv series and Koko was entertaining, especially in the use of sophisticated literature to
Dec 06, 2014 Sue rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, usa
It's November - time for the first snowstorm in Moose County. Qwill's friend Arch Riker is leaving The Daily Fluxion and Qwill is heading Down Below to host a farewell party at the Press Club for his friend. He takes Junior Goodwinter, managing editor of the Pickax Picayune, with him believing that the exposure to a large city paper would be good experience for him. During the party, Qwill is called away to take a phone call. He comes back and tells Junior they need to get on a plane fast and g ...more
Aug 21, 2013 Roya rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I am actually re-reading the series. I first read "The Cat Who..." books with my mom during the 80s and early 90s, when we owned two female Persian Cats (Chloe and Keora). They were not Koko and Yum Yum as far as solving mysteries goes, but they were extremely spoiled and exhibited some of the mischievousness that Koko and Yum Yum do. I associate this series with many fond memories. Although the books are not "great literature" they are comfortable and great for a light read. I like Qwilleran an ...more
Nov 29, 2010 Rebecca rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cat-mysteries
I really liked this book. First of all, it has cats and being the owners/ cohabiter of three I love the challenges that only a life with cats can bring. Second, it mentioned Shakespeare in the title and that always intrigues me. This is my first Lilian Jackson Braun mystery and apparently she is quite the writer in this genre. There are more than 20 Million Cat Who... books in print and after reading The Cat Who Knew Shakespeare that does not surprise me. I can remember seeing these books come h ...more
Perry Whitford
The owner and publisher of an historic local paper, the Pickaxe Picayune, dies in a freakish motor accident, then the establishment burns down just as it was about to be sold off.

Jim Qwilleram's magnificent mustache starts to twitch as he suspects a dark family secret, whilst KoKo, the uncanny siamese shamus, begins to knock various folio editions of Shakespeare's plays onto the floor in a significant manor...

There is no possible way that I could fail to enjoy a book that has a cat solving crim
Apr 28, 2014 Connie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this book. It's the first one I have listened to (book on CD) by this author. (The reader did an excellent job.) It was a mystery, well developed. A very "Midwest" small town feel, but you're never quite sure how large the town really is. The cats create humor. It was not a hard book to digest. Good to listen to or read between "deep" reads.
Do not have to listen/read these books in order. Easy to step into.
Dec 02, 2015 Patty rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
If you haven't read any of these, you should. If you like one, you'll like them all. Very light and entertaining, for the most part, although dealing with death. Qwill is an unusual hero, but a generally nice guy who enjoys the simple things in life, like good food, thanks to inheriting millions. If you like your mysteries full of gritty realism, these are not for you. Great for reading on the plane.
Jan 02, 2015 Sarah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was one of my favorite "The Cat Who..." books. I liked the constant references to Shakespeare, but I couldn't give it five stars because Q seemed to be a complete idiot in this book, which is really out of character for him.

The answers were obvious the entire time, and Q normally picks up on Koko's clues much quicker, but Q just kept ignoring the answers over and over again. I thought Koko was going to have to slap Q with the book and then point at keywords with his paw. (If the cat had gr
These books are always a nice cosy reading and we fell that we know Qwill and the 2 cats.
The reading itself is enjoyable but I always fell the ending is a bit rushed, and in this book specifically, totally rushed. Is in the last 2 pages of the book that we know the truth, and it's just that.
Also, I found it a bit weird that the death of a friend, or if not a friend but a person that he knows and that he was responsible for bringing to Pickax, doesn't leave Qwill with sad and/or with a guilty fe
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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...

Other Books in the Series

The Cat Who... (1 - 10 of 29 books)
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  • The Cat Who Saw Red (Cat Who... #4)
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  • The Cat Who Sniffed Glue (Cat Who... #8)
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