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The Cat Who Wasn't There

(Cat Who... #14)

3.89  ·  Rating details ·  5,753 ratings  ·  213 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 ...more
Paperback, 288 pages
Published June 1st 1993 by Jove (first published September 8th 1992)
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Average rating 3.89  · 
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 ·  5,753 ratings  ·  213 reviews

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Jan 07, 2012 rated it really liked it
Book Review
4 of 5 stars to The Cat Who Wasn't There, the 14th book in the "Cat Who" cozy mystery series, written in 1992 by Lilian Jackson Braun. This might be one of my favorite books in this series, as it takes the story on a new adventure. Qwill is on a trip to Scotland and the cats are left behind in Pickax. How will the solve the crime this time? Well... they do... thru odd behaviors with the cat sitter. More Polly in this one! And a change of scenery, with a good mystery, help make
Jan 10, 2008 rated it really liked it
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
Susan Webb
Jun 15, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I think when I finally read the last few books in this series, I will be sad. I have thoroughly enjoyed every book. They are not dirty, the language does not make you blush. There are times when you shake your head and have to wonder if people really act like this in small towns, but they are enjoyable books to read.
Ange H
Jul 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The 14th …Cat Who… book was set up by a cliffhanger in the previous installment. Polly has been frightened by a potential kidnapper and Qwill races home early from his sojourn in the Big Potato mountains to make sure she stays safe. Another event from the previous book has repercussions here – the deaths of Dr. Hal Goodwinter and his wife. As a result of this double loss, their daughter Dr. Melinda Goodwinter returns to Pickax to take over the family medical practice. I never liked Melinda ...more
May Helena Plumb
I haven't read any other books in the series. I wasn't expecting high literature, but I was expecting an engaging mystery, probably humorous, and I was really disappointed. Details which would help you solve the mystery are left out at the end (I felt like a grumpy Poirot when the details were revealed). The plot progressed extremely slowly, with lots of unnecessary detail, and honestly not enough pizazz. The writing is dull. The cats played a very minor role (I hoped from the bank cover that ...more
Jan 28, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Who doesn't love cats who know better than their humans?
Oct 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
A big fan of all the cat who books.
Jan 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Love her books! She makes the cats seem so real, so intelligent, so loveable. By the way
I do like the other characters in her books too. As well as the mysteries!
Dec 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing
First Read: 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 Under and that more of this type of crime is going to keep happening. This is true, when quiet
Jun 06, 2016 rated it it was amazing
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
Lisa Kucharski
Jan 19, 2014 rated it liked it
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.
Jan 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing
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
Jul 29, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I bought this book for 50 cents from the discard pile at our Silver Bay Public Library annual fund raiser. Most of Lillian Jackson Braun's "Cat" books were there. I picked a fun one. What I like is the rural setting in Pickax City, 400 miles north of everywhere, somewhere in the northeast central U.S. It fits the profile of several towns in my neighborhood. And, the bus tour of Scotland reads like a tour we took in Norway in 2013. It is a soft story compared to my other current read, "Dark ...more
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...
Feb 18, 2010 rated it really liked it
rereading this series has been a great experience so far. Qwilleran references a lot of things that happened in books I just read, so I feel like I actually know what's going on! it's also interesting to see where the characters go over time. the mystery in this one is pretty dark. I had a lot of suspicions about who could be responsible, and it was fun watching Qwill and Koko uncover clues together.
May 30, 2015 rated it liked it
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.
Aug 05, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
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!
Sep 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
This was a cute story, I kinda sorta figured it out, but there were a few surprises and it was fun to read.
Anna ~"People will think what they want to. Never take too much notice of it.”-Halt O'Carrick~
It was bland and not much really happened. Things did happen, but in a very unexciting way. I didn't enjoy this book...
Jun 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Always enjoy "the cat who books" this was especially fine with Scottish lore in it
Apr 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: to-listen-to, audio
A rolicking good romp through another mystery. Great fun.
Jun 27, 2018 rated it liked it
My grandfather recommended this series to me when I was around 11. We took a trip to Port Townsend and he bought me my first book from the series (the Cat Who Walked Backwards). I read I think a few chapters of it before I put it down and forgot about it, and then lost said book in a move across country.
A few years ago I happened upon this book and it brought back fond memories of that trip long ago. I snagged it to only display it for nastagia only, due to I don't read many cozy mystery
We're off to merry old Scotland with Qwill. Sadly, the kitties are staying home. But worry not, they get some action in the story, too.

Qwill, Arch, Amanda, Polly, and the gang head to Scotland on a tour. You know, Qwill's mother was a Mackintosh, so he can't resist a trip to the motherland. Dr. Melinda, Qwill's former flame, is back catting around because she inexplicably just can't resist the mustache. Then the tour guide tragically dies, and there is a mystery to solve, friends. Just like you
Oct 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
Fun, fun, fun with the Qwill, Polly, and their cats once again. It is hard to deny that Koko the cat is in tuned with all the people living in Pickax, so in tuned that he knows when they die, even when they're out of town. Yum Yum cat works her way into the hearts of those she suspects, while pilfering their small treasures. Bootsey the cat is a Koko and YumYum wannabe...but we love her anyway.

I was unsure that the good doctor Goodwinter would not once again become the apple of Qwillian's eye.
Lisa Hall
Feb 05, 2018 rated it liked it
Qwill goes on a tour of Scotland, this time, leaving the cats behind. Doesn't matter. Koko still knows when mystery is afoot. He's yowling across the Atlantic at the same time their tour guide dies.

When I read a series this big, (29 books), I compare the books against each other, not other stories. This wasn't one of my favorites. There was a note of sadness that ran through the entire story that normally isn't present in these books. The character Melinda Goodwinter returns, and it isn't a good
Jan 06, 2019 rated it liked it
I didn't like this book as well as the previous 2 I have read (my library doesn't have the first 11 of the series so I started at #12). It seemed as if Quill's mustache did more to solve the mystery than the cats and I like the cats. KoKo tried to give some clues... but alas, it seems as if it is after Quill figured out the mystery that the cat's messages were understood.

Another thing that bothered me were the teddy bears. It turned out that some thief stole them just to try to fence them? I
Rebecca Mulligan
Death in Scotland

Dr. Melinda Goodwinter reappears in this 14th installment of "The Cat Who" series. Melinda and Quill, and a dozen Pickax denizens, take a magic trip to Scotland. Koko and Yum Yum are left behind in the care of the erstwhile Mildred Hanstable. While on the tour the leader suddenly dies in her sleep of a heart condition. After their return to Pickax, Quill becomes increasingly convinced that the death was no accident. KoKo is on the case and, of course, correctly names the killer.
Shala Howell
Aug 14, 2018 rated it liked it
I recently discovered how easy it is to check out audiobooks from my local library to listen to on the phone, so I listened to this as an audiobook. It was far more entertaining than I expected, and the story works well as a spoken tale.

The book itself is an interesting combination of inside cat jokes, gossip about small town life, and murder with theft on the side.

I’d probably listen to another.
Joy Gerbode
Feb 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is the best of the series that I've read so far! I am loving the characters more with each book I read, and this one had a few extras to recommend it. First, the trip to Scotland provided great memories for me of things I saw there, along with some good Scottish history. Also, the mystery in this one was quite good, and woven throughout the story, so I really felt I was reading a mystery. It is a good book, with a not-too-surprising ending, but a very enjoyable read!
Dec 31, 2017 rated it it was ok
Not bad. I know I read this long ago, but could not get it on audio, so a re-read it was. Relatively fast paced, but a lot of set-up for a rushed ending and a bit of a let-down and anticlimactic. But, a comfort read is a comfort read and sometimes that's just what you need on a cold winter day. Not an awful choice for my last read of 2017.
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The Women's Myste...: The Cat Who Wasn't There #15 1 3 Aug 09, 2013 10:03PM  

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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, ...more

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“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
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