Item description for The Cat Who Saw Red (Cat Who...) by Lilian Jackson Braun...
Download DescriptionSomething is amiss at Maus Haus. Not just the mystery of an unsolved "suicide" which hangs over the old mansion, but something ominous in the present-day residence. When Qwilleran moves in to work on his new gastronomical assignment, strange things begin to happen. First it's a scream in the night, then a vanishing houseboy. But when his old girlfriend disappears, something has to be done. Qwilleran, Koko and Yum Yum set out to solve the mystery--and find a murderer!
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Format: Audiobook, Unabridged
Studio: Recorded Books
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 7.1" Width: 4.6" Height: 1.3" Weight: 0.3 lbs.
Binding Audio Cassette
Release Date Jul 31, 2001
Publisher Recorded Books
ISBN 0788754882 ISBN13 9780788754883
Availability 0 units.
More About Lilian Jackson Braun
"The New York Times"-bestselling author Lilian Jackson Braun lives in North Carolina with her two Siamese cats.
Reviews - What do customers think about The Cat Who Saw Red (Cat Who...)?
Koko Discovers Caviar Apr 15, 2005
Poor old Jim Qwilleran, everywhere he goes people are drinking in front of this recovering alcoholic. To make matters worse, early in this book his doctor puts him on a strict diet just before he gets assigned to cover the gourmet scene for the Daily Fluxion. Just as he really begins to feel sorry for himself he runs into an old flame at a party he is attending that is on his new beat. The party and the old flame are at the Maus House, something of a boarding house for the gourmet set. Since the house was built as an artist's conclave and must remain so to some extent, the new owner has kept the pottery going and brought in Joy Graham and her husband to run it. Joy is the reporter's old flame and his perspective brightens as soon as he sees her.
Soon however Joy disappears and her husband Dan claims she has left him and gone to Florida. Except for the fact that Joy had just told Qwilleran that she hates Florida the story is plausible enough but something just doesn't ring true to the ace reporter and he starts sniffing around. Soon there is another disappearance but no one takes Qwilleran's suspicions seriously and this book ends up reading like the disaster movies of the 1970's. The hero knows the dam is about to break but nobody will listen so he spends the entire movie trying to prove his point until the dam does break and everybody drowns. There are indeed a couple of drowning victims in this story but they may or may not have any connection to the mystery at hand.
The solution to the mystery becomes apparent early but Qwilleran, despite his suspicions, can't prove a thing. Again Koko rises to the occasion, this time on a typewriter and Yum Yum makes the collar. One sometimes wonders if these cats need Qwilleran for anything beyond food and water. You can also rest assured that these cats, unlike their human, will never swallow red herrings.
As is the norm for Lilian Jackson Braun's books, the characters and their often-odd behavior are the bread and butter of the story. And speaking of odd, I am happy to report that photographer Odd Bunsen makes a return in this book after being absent from the previous story. For a free meal Bunsen will help Qwilleran with almost anything and just like the rest of Jackson's characters and this book, Bunsen is witty, engaging and sometimes a little devious.
The Best Braun has to Offer Feb 18, 2005
"The Cat Who Saw Red" was my introduction to the "Cat Who" series way back when I was about 10 years old. To this day, I have no idea how that book ended up on my mother's shelf - my parents are not readers. But I'm sure glad it did - I've read every book in the series since!
Braun's work has been highly criticized lately for going drastically downhill, and I agree. That criticism is justified. To read "The Cat Who Saw Red" again reminds me of exactly from what great heights Braun has fallen.
The mystery, as others have said, is not that hard to figure out. But the characters are so rich, the writing so fluid, and the situation so compelling that one cannot put this book down. The way Jim Qwilleran interacts with those around him is just fabulous in this book. Unlike later "Cat Who" novels, he doesn't take himself seriously at all - and he can also be heartbreakingly vulnerable. Qwill's buddy Arch Riker is a treat in this book, too, witty and cranky at the same time.
I highly recommend this book as an introduction to the series, or as a re-read for longtime fans.
The Cat Who Saw Red Jan 17, 2005
This is my favorite Cat Who... mystery so far. Qwilleran, the newspaper man and his cats Koko and Yum-Yum solve another murder mystery. The setting takes place at the Maus Haus, the vintage apartment home where Qwilleran now lives. All types of odd characters live there, including Dan and Joy Graham. They are artists who make pottery by hand.
Qwilleran knew Joy from along time ago. They grew up together and were boyfriend and girlfriend. One night, after Qwilleran moved into the Maus House, Joy came to visit and told him of her miserable marriage. She wanted to leave her husband. That same night, she disappeared. Qwilleran did not believe the story about her moving to Miami. He did not trust her unsophisticated husband, Dan Graham. Qwilleran would not give up until he solved the mystery! Koko and Yum-Yum help to unravel the clues.
Best of the early cat who books May 4, 2004
The early "Cat Who" books have Jim Qwilleran as a middle-aged, impoverished, recovering alcoholic journalist barely hanging on at a newspaper in an un-named Middle West city. Later he moves north 400 miles to a little town and inherits a fortune. "The Cat Who Saw Red" is the last mystery novel that ties him to the gritty city, and it is the best of the city books--by a considerable margin.
Other readers have outlined and commented on the plot, so I will say only about it that the plot here is much better than in the previous city novels. It moves better and the outcome is more logical, more satisfying. But the author's forte is not plotting. It is in the remarkable characters, unusual without being grotesque (a fine line to walk), not the least of whom are Qwill's Siamese cats. To those who have read none of the series, it may sound just a little too cutesy, having prescient cats solve crimes, but the writer makes it work and work quite well.
The writer also excels in creating atmosphere, the city, the newspaper office, fancy and not so fancy restaurants and Maus Haus, a rather weird boarding house for people interested in food--and in pottery.
Like Dickens, Ms. Braun invents no astonishing plots. Her great strength is in making characters come to life in interesting settings. As in Dickens, characters and settings are sufficient.
Nominated for a Edgar Mar 25, 2004
This 4th book of the series, I understand, was nominated for an Edgar (as in Edgar Allen Poe), which is the mystery series equivalent of an Oscar. It deserves such recognition. First, it brought L.J.B. back after a long break from writing (for which fans are forever grateful). Second, it is a truly remarkable crime, probably one of the most unusual ones I've heard about apart from the C.S.I. television series. I still get chills thinking about that crime (I should stress it is not gory, unlike C.S.I., though it may be the "darkest" story in this mystery series)
This book does a fine job of fleshing out its primary characters and their current assignment: a curious neighborhood of artists. I was particularly delighted with the descriptions of the cats, so vivid as to create a vicarious cat lover experience for me(I'm allergic to cats, so the printed word is all I can handle). Of course, Koko, the Siamese cat with unusual abilities, steals the show.
If you are new to the "Cat Who..." series, this is an excellent starting point. The whole series is one big "can't put it down" pleasure read. Please keep in mind that the entire series is forever evolving, which in some ways is just like real life (and unlike some mystery series where everything resets between stories). So what you read in this book will have remarkable contrasts to books before and much later in the series, though the core elements remain in tact. The series of books divides into two time periods in the protagonist's life: Qwilleran as a reporter in the Big Cities, and later Qwilleran as a columnist in Moose County. The first group is urban, slightly gritty and darker in some ways, the second group is still edgy at times, but is more small-town cozy and much quirkier, in a hometown fashion, which really appeals to the fans. The dividing point for the series is the book "The Cat Who Played Brahms", which is therefore another good starting point. This one, "The Cat Who Saw Red" is in the first group.