Saturday, August 23, 2008

Double Dog Dare - Linda O. Johnston


Double Dog Dare
A Kendra Ballantyne, Pet-Sitter Mystery
Linda O. Johnston
Berkley Prime Crime

Mystery

It’s not easy to keep up a pet-sitting business and a law practice at the same time. Fortunately for Kendra, her eccentric boss is more than understanding. What’s really got her off-balance at the moment is the fact that her boyfriend, PI Jeff Hubbard, is missing. The cops found his car, partially submerged, with a broken-out driver’s side window and blood in the interior. But no Jeff. And still no contact with Kendra or his office.

Desperately following any lead she can find, Kendra ends up meeting Jeff’s “Aunt” Lois. Lois admits that she hired Jeff, on condition of secrecy, to investigate a local lab. Lois wanted to have her dog cloned, against all the beliefs of her church. But the cloning never happened, the original dog died, and the lab is refusing to return her money. Kendra makes a visit to The Clone Arranger, posing as a client. The next she gets a call from Lois. One of the execs at the lab was murdered. And Lois is under arrest.

The search for Jeff makes an interesting and compelling twist on this series (MEOW IS FOR MURDER, THE FRIGHT OF THE IGUANA) and the change of scenery serves to expand the cast of characters. Which makes the pool of suspects deeper and murkier; a must for any mystery. Kendra’s professions seem to be at cross-purposes, but the author very nicely resolves that by allowing Kendra to work on animal-related cases. Animal lovers and cozy fans will enjoy this charming series.

Rating: 7 ½
June 2008
ISBN# 978-0-425-22232-4 (paperback)

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