A Cat’s Garden of Secrets by Jacqueline Diamond

A Cat’s Garden of Secrets by Jacqueline Diamond
Publisher: Self-Published
Genre: Mystery/Suspense/Thriller, Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Paranormal, Contemporary
Rating: 3 Stars
Review by: Astilbe

Awakening magical powers? Yes! Solving a murder, sure. But turning into a cat? Who, me?

On the weirdest day of my life, my cat starts talking, my car kidnaps me to a charming hidden village, and I inherit a mystical library. Plus, I discover I have superpowers!

As an orphan who grew up in foster care, I had no idea I came from an enchanted land full of furry shapeshifters, including—surprise!—me. Or that I had a gifted grandmother, who’s been murdered. Now it’s up to me, with the help of a handsome, otherworldly detective and my know-it-all cat, to uncover the truth… if someone doesn’t kill me first.

Identity matters…even for folks who don’t know much about where they come from yet.

The mystery elements of the storyline were handled nicely. This was one of those books that wove multiple genres together seamlessly. While it did feel like slightly more of a mystery to me than anything else, the fantasy themes were strong as well. There’s something to be said for authors who pull this off. It’s not an easy thing to do by any means, and I tip my cap to Ms. Diamond for following the rules of all of the genres she included here while still leaving space for a few surprises.

I struggled to keep track of the large cast of characters in this novella. There simply wasn’t enough time or space to develop dozens of different people and animals, and the ones that were given more attention were still only able to reveal limited parts of their personalities due to how many of them there were. As interested as I was in the world building and storyline, this prevented me from choosing a higher rating.

With that being said, the world building was handled nicely. Sometimes I found myself wishing I really could travel to Loobly and explore all of the magical things to be found there. I’d recommend taking notes about how the characters know each other and what the mysterious terms they use mean unless you have a photographic memory as recalling all of these details will be extremely important later on. There were a lot of moving pieces in this tale, but the complexity of it truly pays off later on.

A Cat’s Garden of Secrets kept me guessing.

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