Monday, April 22, 2013

The Cat Who Knew Shakespeare

1988, Jove Books edition from later that year
Lilian Jackson Braun
The Cat Who Knew Shakespeare
Probably bought newish for $4.99
Paperback in pretty bad shape

In this book Qwill has been living in Moose County for about 18 months (more like 16 or 17), and we actually get calendar dates, like Monday, Nov. 11th.  That date fell on a Monday in 1985, for the first time since '74 and, with the R.R. reference in Post Office, this seems a reasonable year.  (The references to videotape in this book and the next show it's unlikely to be 1974 or earlier.)  True, he's "age fifty or so," and Qwill was "over forty-five" in Danish Modern, but maybe he was 47 or 48 then.

Speaking of Danish, Harry Noyton returns, only to die in a car accident with Gertrude "Gritty" Goodwinter, wife of newspaper-printer Senior (who's bumped off), mother of newspaper-publisher Junior.  (Speaking of Goodwinters, Dr. Melinda has left town, but Qwill gets a new love interest, Polly Duncan, of whom more later.)  This is not the only Cat Who to reference Shakespeare, but this time it's mostly Hamlet that Koko's dropping clues about.  The mystery seemed pretty obvious this time, especially after rereading Shakespeare a year and a half ago, but I'll cut Braun some slack since I was still entertained.

A slimmed-down Hixie also reappears, and while she's still unlucky in love, she's unsinkable and will become a fixture, including on the revamped newspaper....

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