Saturday, June 30, 2018

Oil Painting #CaturdayArt

Visit more artsy kitties at Athena's Caturday Art blog hop!

And now our weekly answers (answered by Mommy) for the Friendly Fill-Ins challenge, hosted by 15andmeowing and Four-Legged Furballs!

1. Fireworks don't excite me that much, probably because the displays around here are pretty ho-hum.

2. My favorite 4th of July picnic food is watermelon.

3. I begin every day with some Mudpie love.

4. Air conditioning is the best thing since sliced bread. What did anyone ever do without it? Today we're beginning a stretch of 90+ degrees for the next week, with tomorrow and Monday inching towards 100 Vermont!!!

Friday, June 29, 2018

What's In the Box? #PetPhotoFails

Meows from Mudpie!

Today we're super excited to be joining our sweet friends Paisley, Webster and Miss C from The Cuddlywumps Cat Chronicles for the Pet Photo Fails blog hop!

These pictures were taken earlier this month when Mommy brought in a *huge* box with the mail. While waiting for her to hurry up and open it I got impatient and decided to jump on top. She grabbed the camera and as usual I was quite uncooperative, first giving her a raspberry, then a wink, and of course in constant motion...

Don't worry - she finally ended up getting a good one - and we'll show it to you soon and let you know what was inside. Let's just say it could have been loads of fun for me, but Mommy had other plans for it.

So our question for you is...what do you think was inside the box???
If anyone comes close to guessing there might be a prize in it for you!

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Review: NonScents Cat Litter Deodorizer

I have an aunt who lost her hearing at an early age due to a series of childhood illnesses, and then subsequently lost her sight as a young woman. She has enjoyed a full life thanks to an amazing husband, four great kids...and a deep love of cats. (I come from a loooooooong line of cat ladies on my mom's side of the family.)

Many years ago after losing Sashi I went 15 months without a cat before adopting Tara. I hadn't had a chance to let my aunt know about my new family member before she surprised me with a visit one day. Upon entering the house the very first thing she communicated to me was, "You got a new cat!"

How on earth could she know that?

Her answer horrified me...she could smell the litter box.

Now granted when a person has lost two of their senses, those remaining are going to be enhanced, but I couldn't help but wonder if the odor really was that obvious and I had just become accustomed to it?

We were recently contacted about trying out the NonScents Cat Litter Deodorizer, and accepted since litter box odors are something so many pet parents struggle with. (Although in all honesty, litter box odors should never be *that* bad if you're religious about cleaning and scooping on a regular basis. Inappropriate elimination is one of the top reasons why cats are relinquished to shelters, and many times occur simply because a cat is trying to say the smells coming from their litter pan are simply intolerable!)

Before telling you about our experience, here are 5 things the NonScents people want you to know about their cat litter deodorizer:
  • Eliminates odor: Our scientifically developed zeolite formula doesnt just mask odors- it completely neutralizes them at the source, leaving litter pans completely scent-free
  • Gentle, fragrance-free: Unlike other brands that contain harmful chemicals and strong fragrances, our formula is scent-free and free from chemical additives, which keeps your cat safe and comfortable
  • Concentrated: Our professional grade formula is 4x concentrated, making it strong enough to neutralize even the strongest litter box odors
  • Long-lasting: Our formula was designed to help extend the life of your cat litter: by eliminating odor, you can get the most of out your preferred cat litter without resorting to harmful chemicals or overpowering air-fresheners
  • Easy application: Simply sprinkle a small layer of NonScents over your cats litter tray, and enjoy a safe, odor-free environment

We've been using the cat litter deodorizer for about 6 weeks now and have been very pleased by its performance. We received 3 bottles which are sure to last a long time because a very light layer is all that's necessary for a one cat home, and I've reapplied a layer each time I refill the box, which is typically about once a week. The "bleachy" scent of the deodorizer itself is initially rather strong but once added to the litter quickly dissipated, and it never seemed to bother Mudpie, which is all that really matters. Granted my little angel isn't known for dropping many stink bombs, but even the most miniscule odors I would be able to detect every now and then seem to have disappeared!

I would say a home with multiple cats would be better able to test this product out completely, but if you've been thinking about trying out a cat litter deodorizer, we definitely recommend this one!

Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by NonScents. I am being compensated for featuring this content but we only share information we feel is relevant to our readers. This post also contains Amazon affiliate links.

Monday, June 25, 2018

Book Review: Claws of Death (A Cat Lady Mystery) by Linda Reilly

Whisker Jog, New Hampshire, is a long way from Hollywood, but it’s the place legendary actress Deanna Daltry wants to call home. Taking up residence in a stone mansion off Cemetery Hill, the retired, yet still glamorous, septuagenarian has adopted two kittens from Lara Caphart’s High Cliff Shelter for Cats. With help from her Aunt Fran, Lara makes sure the kitties settle in safely with their new celebrity mom.

But not everyone in town is a fan of the fading star. Deanna was in Whisker Jog when she was younger, earning a reputation for pussyfooting around, and someone is using that knowledge against her. After being frightened by some nasty pranks, Deanna finds herself the prime murder suspect when the body of a local teacher is found on her property. Now, it’s up to Lara, Aunt Fran, and the blue-eyed Ragdoll mystery cat Lara recently encountered to collar a killer before another victim is pounced upon . . .

You have to love it when the character list in the beginning of a book is all the feline characters, not the human ones! In Claws of Death Lara and her Aunt Fran have officially opened the High Cliff Shelter for Cats out of their cozy home in Whisker Jog, New Hampshire. It's pretty exciting when legendary actress Deanna Daltry moves to town and adopts a pair of Lara and Fran's kittens. The only concern is Deanna's housekeeper Nancy's apparent dislike for the precious babies, and when Lara visits one day to check on the kittens she's horrified to find a dead body in the private cemetery behind Deanna's home. The victim is Donald Waitt, a face from Deanna's past who she recently had a very public altercation with. Lara likes Deanna very much and can't help but get involved to prove her innocence. 

In between investigating, Lara keeps busy breaking in a new shelter employee who seems too good to be true, and matchmaking cats and humans leading to very sweet scenes, especially when kids are involved. Just as in the first book, the star of the show is Blue, a ghostly Ragdoll cat only Lara can see who protects her and gives a paws up or down to potential forever homes for the shelter's charges. This series is a dream come true for cat-loving mystery readers, and I hope it enjoys a long and happy nine lives!

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review. As members of the Amazon Associates affiliate program, if you click on our links and buy something Mudpie gets a little money for her piggy bank!

Sunday, June 24, 2018

Cat World Domination Day #SundaySelfie

Meows from Mudpie!

Did you know that today is a very special day? It's Cat World Domination Day, a day for us kitties to celebrate our world domination!

Don't forget to visit Summer's blog today to join in all the fun and festivities. I understand there's going to be a pawsome giveaway!

We're also joining our friends at The Cat On My Head for the Sunday Selfies blog hop!

Saturday, June 23, 2018

Caturday Art

Visit more artsy kitties at Athena's Caturday Art blog hop!

And now our weekly answers (answered by Mommy) for the Friendly Fill-Ins challenge, hosted by 15andmeowing and Four-Legged Furballs!

1. My favorite scent is lilacs.

2. I hope to visit an A&W restaurant this weekend. I have to go to a memorial service out of town on Sunday, and this town has the only A&W in Vermont. It's only open during the summer months and I've never had the chance to go so I'm looking forward to grabbing some dinner there. What should I get?

3. The sound of a purr or meow is music to my ears.

4. Home is where Mudpie is.

Friday, June 22, 2018

Unboxing June's CatLadyBox

The theme of June's CatLadyBox was "Summer of Meow"'s what was inside!

Featured Cat Lady Artist: Shannon Spencer's "Mouse Dreams"

Summer of Meow T-shirt: Is it possible to have too many cat t-shirts? We think not.

Cat Lady License Plate Frame: This license plate frame is too cute for words. I haven't put it on my Jeep yet, though. It's standing up on the bureau in my bedroom!

Bright Cats Insulated Tumbler: It's so important to stay hydrated, especially during the summer, and with a tumbler this cute there's no excuse for ever being without a cold beverage!

Catnip Convertible & Fishy Fishies Catnip Toys: Mudpie thinks fishy is purrfect for tossing in the air, and the way we love race cars at our house, you just know the convertible was a huge hit!


Not a subscriber yet? Visit CatLadyBox today!

Interested in purchasing individual items from past boxes? You can do that too!

Disclosure: I receive a discount on my CatLadyBox subscription as a thank you for my monthly review. Regardless of compensation received, we only share information we feel is relevant to our readers.

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Pom Pom Pawty Time!!!

Meows from Mudpie!

Are you all ready to *squeee*??? Today we're sharing Mommy's favorite video that she's ever taken of me.

To set the scene, I love playing with pom poms more than just about anything else, and Mommy has the coolest pom poms *ever* hanging from her pink kitty bathrobe! I wish she's just clip them off for me, but since she won't I take every chance I can to bat them around when she's wearing the robe. On this particular night she leaned over me on the couch and I started whapping away at them. For once the iPawd was within reach. She loves how the video captures my playful personality and over-the-top adorableness just purrfectly.

Enjoy the short film!

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

The Purrfect 10: Fascinating Facts About Cat Noses

We love reading and researching anything and everything about cats, and wanted to find a fun and unique way to share the interesting facts we learn with you! Since top 10 lists are very popular in the blogosphere, we created The Purrfect 10 as a way to present 10 educational or fascinating tidbits about a wide variety of cat-related topics, everything from health issues to cat breeds to famous felines.

A human’s sense of smell is arguably the one we take most for granted, but try to imagine how dull life would be without the pleasure of smelling that first cup of coffee in the morning, the flowers blooming in spring or your favorite cake or cookie baking in the oven. Our nose even has the power to save our lives, warning us of the dangers of smoke, toxic gases and spoiled food.

While we find our feline friends’ little noses irresistible to “boop” with affection, their nose could actually be considered their most important organ. Here’s why!

1) A cat’s sense of smell is nearly 14 times greater than a human's, checking in with 200 million scent receptors in their nasal cavity versus our measly 5 million. That’s even more than many breeds of dogs! A cat’s entire olfactory system extends through nearly their entire head.

2) Although cats are largely olfactory hunters, a cat uses their nose for much more than sniffing out food. Since outdoor cats establish territorial lines with their urine and pheromones from glands in their face and feet, other cats passing through can either decide to respect another’s territory and move on or stage a coup and deposit their own scent markings. The pheromones they leave behind are like their calling card! During mating season, female cats in heat release powerful chemical signals that a male’s nose can detect from miles away. A cat’s nose is also able to alert her to dangerous situations such as nearby predators.

3) As powerful as a cat’s sense of smell is, their taste receptors are lacking. (We have approximately 9,000 taste buds, they have less than 500.) How something smells triggers their hunger reflex more than how it tastes. This is why older cats or those with respiratory infections end up not eating. They can’t smell their food so they lose interest in eating. Warming food up to simulate the temperature of freshly killed prey can help to release the food's natural aromas.

4) When introducing a new cat to the resident feline, it’s best to do so gradually by smell. Rub a towel or washcloth over the new cat, and vice versa, allowing each to get used to the scent of the other before meeting face to face. And when you’re meeting a new cat yourself, extend your hand and let her smell you first. You’ll be fast friends in no time!

5) A kitten’s sense of smell is present at birth and fully developed by four weeks of age. Many kittens claim a certain nipple for their very own and can find it with ease, most likely because they smell their own pheromones deposited while nursing.

6) A cat’s nose has a powerful accessory called the Jacobsen organ (also called the vomeronasal organ). It’s a second scenting mechanism of sorts and is located behind the front teeth, connecting to the nasal cavity. According to, “Odors are inhaled to the tongue, the lip is slightly curled, and the tongue is rubbed on the roof of the mouth. Then the mouth, nose, and Jacobson’s organ in some way allow the animal to sense the essence of the flavor and scent in a way that we do not have the capacity to experience.” Have you ever seen a cat sneer? That funny little lip curl is triggered by their “flehmen response”. All cats use this process to analyze pheromones, but males grimace more often than females, always in tune with the opposite sex…even if they’ve been neutered!

7) There are certain scents cats can’t stand: many perfumes and air fresheners, citrus, bananas, plant smells, spicy scents such as cayenne pepper and cloves, eucalyptus oil, and oil of wintergreen can be overwhelming to a cat’s sensitive nose. Even fragrances that have been added to kitty litter have been put there for our benefit, not theirs. Do you let your nose tell you when it’s time to clean the litter box? Your cat will be offended by the odor long before you will. Many problems with inappropriate elimination occur simply because they’re trying to tell you the smells coming from their litter pan are simply intolerable!

8) When a cat head butts or cheek rubs their favorite human, they’re claiming that person as their own. It’s a sign of affection. They will also mark fellow felines in this way, engaging in a scent exchange so their colony has one familiar scent. Even when a cat is scratching your favorite piece of furniture or “making biscuits” on your lap they’re marking their territory through the scent glands in their paw pads too!

9) There is a direct correlation between the color of a cat's coat and the color of their nose. A black cat will have a black nose, white cats have pink noses, orange cats have orange noses, etc. Multi-colored cats will most likely have a multi-colored nose (Mudpie does!) Some cats have cute little nose freckles too.

10) A cat's "nose print" is as unique as a human's fingerprint, containing its own pattern of bumps and ridges. The print could be used as a form of kitty ID if they would allow you to ink their nose and stamp it on paper!

So the next time you’re admiring that adorable little nugget of a nose sitting in the middle of your cat’s face, take a moment to marvel at all that organ actually does. And then give it a boop...all cat lovers know it’s impossible to resist!

Monday, June 18, 2018

Book Review: Bono: The Amazing Story of a Rescue Cat Who Inspired a Community by Helen Brown

From New York Times bestselling author Helen Brown comes a funny and moving account of her life-changing month as a foster mother—to a homeless cat named Bono.

When Helen Brown arrived in New York for a much-anticipated visit, a fellow animal lover talked her into fostering a shelter cat. Helen visualized a sweet-natured cuddler who blinked and dozed a lot. What she got at Manhattan’s Bideawee shelter was a wide-eyed and unpredictable Persian with a punked-out haircut and a feisty attitude.

Bono had become homeless during Hurricane Sandy, had survived a serious infection, and needed daily medications. As a “special needs” cat, he was an unlikely candidate for adoption. But as affection between them grew, Helen resolved to see that Bono found his forever home. She didn’t know that he would change her life in ways she never dreamed possible and teach her lessons she would cherish ever after. Just as this sweet, beleaguered, and hopeful guy deserved a fresh start, Helen too was ready for new beginnings. And so began a heartwarming, uplifting, lasting kind of love . . .

This is not only a book about a very special cat, but also one about a woman in search of what to do with the second chance at life she's been given following a battle with breast cancer. Helen Brown is facing a "two-thirds-life crisis" and bored with her daily life in Australia, jumps at the chance to spend time promoting her new book Cats and Daughters with her daughter in New York City. While she's planning on a carefree jaunt in the Big Apple, her publishing company suggests that she foster a shelter cat during her time there and writing a blog for the Huffington Post about the experience. A portion of what Helen is trying to escape is life with a difficult cat back home, but her daughter jumps at the idea and before long they're left in charge of a Persian with chronic kidney disease who seems unadoptable in so many ways.

It takes Helen and Bono a good deal of time to build a relationship, with both of them none too impressed by the other. But as Helen watches Bono live his life without fear of what's to come, just enjoying each day he's given, she begins to see how much they have in common and that she can learn a lot from this spunky little cat with a very uncertain future...
Next morning we woke to see a small black shape dancing across the floor, at war with one of Lydia's socks. Shaking it by the toe and tossing it in the air, Bono was so deeply engaged in battle, he didn't notice out interest. The previous day's trauma had melted away for him, and now he was delighting in the simple act of fighting a sock. Bono was unwanted and terminally ill, yet he was relishing the fact he was alive right now with a sock for a playmate. I wished I could be such a master at embracing the moment. It would take decades of therapy and spiritual practice for me to reach that level. If only I could be more like Bono and stop fretting over things beyond my control. 
The lion cat greeted the morning sun with curiosity each day. Every moment was brimming with adventure for him. Whether it was a cockroach or a fluffy toy cat, he was not disappointed. To Bono every day was a good one, simply because he was in it. ... He knew life is precious because we are all fragile, and out presence on Earth fleeting. He was too engaged with living to worry about dying. 
Before long Helen realizes she can't go back home again until she finds a forever home for this cat that comes to mean so much to her. It's an unforgettable journey for them both and a story that touches the heart of everyone they come into contact with. People think of New York City as a place people go to disappear, but this book shows how one tiny cat brought a community together while changing many lives in the process.

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review. As members of the Amazon Associates affiliate program, if you click on our links and buy something Mudpie gets a little money for her piggy bank!

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Basement Beauty #SundaySelfie

Meows from Mudpie!

Summer has officially arrived here in Vermont and with temps rising into the 90s this week I plan to spend my time hanging out in the nice cool buggy basement. I took my selfie this week from my favorite spot down there high on top of a big box beside a sunny window. Lots of athletics are needed to get here meaning I'm safe from Mommy's grabby paws!

Happy Father's Day to all the wonderful cat guys out there!!! And if you missed my post earlier this week where I discussed my love for my grandpa and we shared our Father's Day mewsic playlist, check it out here!

We're joining our friends at The Cat On My Head for the Sunday Selfies blog hop!

Saturday, June 16, 2018

Caturday Art

Visit more artsy kitties at Athena's Caturday Art blog hop!

And now our weekly answers for the Friendly Fill-Ins challenge, hosted by 15andmeowing and Four-Legged Furballs!

Mommy's answers:

1. My favorite Disney characters are Si and Am from Lady and the Tramp.

2. If I could stay any age for life, I would choose to be age 29. Turning 30 freaked me out, turning 40 was even worse. My dad has always joked he stopped counting birthdays at 39, but I stopped a decade sooner.

Mudpie's answers:

3. Using my looks to get anything I want is my secret talent.

4. Life is like a mud pie. Some days you're the mud, some days you're the pie.

Friday, June 15, 2018

Stalking My Pro Plan Prey #ChewyInfluencer

Meows from Mudpie!

This month when my Chewy influencer email arrived I didn't choose something new to try, I picked one of my favorite foods that I eat on a daily basis.

You all know how I'm a kibble addict, and I have a few bags open at any given time so I don't get bored. I have one brand and flavor that I eat for breakfast, another for lunch, and for dinner and a before bed snack it's Purina Pro Plan True Nature turkey and rice recipe. (Mommy substitutes wet food whenever she can too, but I still always go back to my kibble.)

Key Benefits
  • Grain-free formula made with real turkey as the #1 ingredient and packed with powerful antioxidants for a strong immune system
  • High-protein diet featuring 45% protein is specially designed to optimize lean muscle, strength and energy your cat needs to thrive
  • Omega-6 fatty acids and zinc help nourish irritated skin and promote a beautiful, shiny, and healthy coat
  • Natural prebiotic fiber sourced from chicory root helps promote optimal digestive health
  • Natural formula made without the use of corn, wheat or soy provides 100% complete and balanced nutrition for adult cats

Since Pro Plan has been a staple in our home for many years, Mommy was so happy I turned out to be a Pro Plan cat. (I adore their treats too. She only wishes I would love their wet food as much!) I've been eating the turkey & rice formula since my first week here in my forever home nearly 3 years ago. I can honestly say I eat it every single day and I absolutely love it. Mommy even thinks my shiny furs and muscular bod have a lot to do with this food!

The Purina Pro Plan True Nature Turkey & Rice Recipe Dry Cat Food is currently on sale at Chewy for $15.59 for a 3 pound bag. Chewy offers FREE 1-2 day shipping for orders over $49, and with over 500 brands in stock they have something sure to make every cat or dog happy. Tell them Mudpie sent you!

Disclaimer: We received product compensation from as part of their Blogger Outreach Program in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are our own and we never recommend a product we don’t fully believe in.

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

12 Amazing Facts About Me!

Meows from Mudpie!

Today I'm answering the latest round of "getting to know you" questions from my good friend CK over at Stunning Keisha!

1. What's your favorite number? Number one - because that's what I am!

2. What is your dream job? Quality assurance tester for a cat toy company.

3. What is something no one would ever guess about you? I'm a total tomboy! Although I look like such a lovely and delicate ladycat, there's nothing I love more than running and jumping around and acting like a goofball.

4. A trait you have that people would be shocked to know about you? It's not a secret, but probably my disdain for most wet food. It sure shocks Mommy because she's never had a kitty not love it.

5. Do you think aliens are real? Absolutely! Haven't you ever watched ALF???

6. Can you use a hooded litter box? I can, but I prefer it uncovered.

7. Guilty pleasure? Playing with candy wrappers. I love when Mommy wads up a wrapper and flicks it across the room to me. I have a small Halloween pail full of wrappers that I paw at when I want to play. Anyone visiting our house must think Mommy eats a piece of candy and just tosses the wrapper on the floor instead of throwing it away! I even have quite a few tucked away in nooks and crannies around the house. MOL

8. If the world ends (as you know it) do you want to survive? Only if Mommy is still around to take care of me.

9. Do you have any outstanding markings? I'm a tortie. Every inch of me is outstanding!

10. Favorite kitten game that you played? Playing in my KONG Triangle Play Mat. I don't fit in it anymore :(  Where did my girlish figure go?

11. Do you purr to yourself? No, I actually don't purr a lot. I have a big (tortie) mouth but a very quiet purr. I purr the loudest when Mommy brushes me. It feels good!

12. Milk or Tuna juice? A little of both. Sometimes I ask for a taste of cereal milk at breakfast, and every time Mommy opens a can of tuna she offers me the juice. Sometimes I take it, more often I leave it.

Do any of my answers surprise you?
Is there anything else you'd like to know about me? 
My life is an open

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Mewsic Moves Me: Father's Day Edition

Meows from Mudpie!

It's a freebie week for the Mewsic Moves Me blog hop so we decided to devote it to the upcoming Father's Day holiday. 

I've written before about how much I love my grandpa. He was never really a "cat guy" - he just accepted that cats would always be around because of my Mommy and grandma's love for us - until the tortie trio of Tara, Truffles and now me came into his life. Now he's even more protective of me than Mommy is and I love crawling into his lap for a nap. Just look at this collage of can clearly see that I adore my grandpa and the feeling is mutual!

I sure hope all my kitty friends have a pop or grandpa as wonderful as mine is, and now I'm going to turn things over to Mommy to present a handful of our favorite Father's Day songs. (Hmmm...any guesses as to who she'll start with?)

You're right, Mudpie! No one will be surprised by my first choice, but this is seriously a Father's Day classic.

Alternatively, this is about a different kind of father - an absentee one. It's an amazing story song about a little 7 year old boy yearning for a man's influence in his life.

A couple songs that reflect my own feelings on my dad...

I rarely choose any non-country songs for these posts, but this one is an exception. The first time I heard it was a few years ago at my cousin's wedding. My uncle learned the song and sang it to her during the reception. There wasn't a dry eye in the house.

Do you have any special Father's Day plans for this weekend?
Any favorite songs that celebrate dads?

Monday, June 11, 2018

The Spook in the Stacks by Eva Gates: Blog Tour & Book Review

Halloween in North Carolina’s Outer Banks becomes seriously tricky when librarian Lucy Richardson stumbles across something extra unusual in the rare books section: a dead body.

Wealthy businessman Jay Ruddle is considering donating his extensive collection of North Carolina historical documents to the Bodie Island Lighthouse Library, but the competition for the collection is fierce. Unfortunately, while the library is hosting a lecture on ghostly legends, Jay becomes one of the dearly departed in the rare books section. Now, it’s up to Lucy Richardson and her fellow librarians to bone up on their detective skills and discover who is responsible for this wicked Halloween homicide.

Meanwhile, very strange things are happening at the library―haunted horses are materializing in the marsh, the lights seem to have an eerie life of their own, and the tiny crew of a model ship appears to move around when no one is watching. Is Lucy at her wit’s end? Or can it be that the Bodie Island Lighthouse really is haunted?

With The Legend of Sleepy Hollow on everyone’s minds and ghoulish gossip on everyone’s lips, Lucy will need to separate the clues from the boos if she wants to crack this case without losing her head in The Spook in the Stacks, the delightful fourth in national bestseller Eva Gates’ Lighthouse Library mysteries.

The Lighthouse Library mystery series was one of the unfortunate victims of Penguin's decision to drastically reduce its popular mystery line. I couldn't have been happier to hear the news that Crooked Lane Books was saving the series, leading to this 4th book.

All of my favorite characters have returned to celebrate Halloween at the Bodie Lighthouse Library. Murder revisits the sleepy Outer Banks when a millionaire announces his plans to donate his valuable collection of historical documents, only to be found strangled by the blue velvet rope used to shut off the used book room. Suspects include his doting granddaughter, personal assistant, and employees of a rival library vying for the collection.

My favorite new character introduced in this book is the victim's granddaughter, "the fair Julia," who steals Lucy's eccentric friend Teddy's heart. I adored the Halloween atmosphere, filled with ghostly legends and mysterious apparitions. Parallels to The Legend of Sleepy Hollow are in abundance. Loved it!

Character Guest Post
Charles the Library Cat Returns

It’s Charles the library cat here, and happy to be so. I appreciate being asked to write this post. You’d be shocked to realise how few times I get asked for my opinions.

I’m delighted to be able to tell you that I am back! Yes, thanks to the good people at Crooked Lane Books, the Lighthouse Library series by Eva Gates, staring me, has been saved. The fourth book in the series, The Spook in the Stacks, was released on June 12.

Let me introduce myself. I am named in honor of Mr. Charles Dickens, a great man of letters, because I am a great cat of letters. I live at the Bodie Island Lighthouse Library, where I work as head cat. I love it there. I keep busy all day greeting patrons and at night I retire to the apartment on the fourth floor and keep Lucy company.

In The Spook in the Stacks once again poor Lucy Richardson, assistant Librarian at the Bodie Island Lighthouse Library, finds herself involved in a murder.

To make matters worse, it’s Halloween and Lucy considers herself to be the Grinch of Halloween. A model of a ghostly shipwrecked ship has been set up in the main room as part of the decorations. There’s something about that ship I don’t care for. The cat figure seems to move when no one is watching. I’ll have to keep my eye on him.

There’s not a lot I can do to help Lucy with the investigation, being confined against my will to the interior of the library as I am, but I do my best. Like most humans she has a blind spot where other people are concerned. Really, it’s so incredibly obvious who’s planning what and who is up to no good and who’s not to be trusted. It took a while, but I think Lucy is starting to trust my judgement.

Here’s an example of what I mean:

Charles leapt onto the desk. He gave a soft meow and stretched out a paw toward Julia. She wiped her eyes and scooped him up. She held him close, and he comforted her.

I felt myself smiling. If Charles believed in Julia, then I would too. “Your parents were both musicians. Do you play?”

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Saturday, June 9, 2018

Stardust #CaturdayArt

Visit more artsy kitties at Athena's Caturday Art blog hop!

And now our weekly answers for the Friendly Fill-Ins challenge, hosted by 15andmeowing and Four-Legged Furballs!

Mommy's answers:

1. My favorite subject in school was English. I've always been all about reading and writing.

2. An extracurricular activity I participated in was being anti-social. I didn't participate in any after school events. I was happy to just go back home.

Mudpie's answers:

3. I want to learn some cat tricks. Summer makes it look like so much fun!

4. It takes courage to try something new.

Friday, June 8, 2018

Flashback Friday: Triple Crown Fever

For many years I said the only 2 sports achievements I needed to see in my lifetime were Kevin Harvick winning the NASCAR Cup Championship and a Triple Crown. The first took 14 years, the second took 37 years, but amazingly I got to witness both within the span of 8 months in late 2014 to mid-2015.

When American Pharoah won the Triple Crown in 2015 I collected as many newspapers as I could find and decided to gather them together on the bed with the hopes that Truffles would pose with them. She had other ideas...she instantly climbed on top of the papers and started rolling around on them. She was reveling in history as much as I was!

These actually ended up being some of the last pictures I ever took of short month later she was gone.

Triple Crown fever is alive and well this year thanks to a chestnut colt named Justify. It's exciting to think that it could happen again so soon, but I'm trying not to get my hopes up. Paws crossed that I'm wrong because Justify is undefeated so far, but I don't think he looks quite as impressive as American Pharoah did.

On the NASCAR side of things, this season just couldn't be any better. My guy has already won SIX races and I AM getting my hopes up for a second championship, even though I know there's still a looooooong way to go in the season.

It sure would be amazing to celebrate a Triple Crown and a Championship in the span of a few months again!