Cheat the Devil: A Cat Austen Mystery

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Write Way Pub., 1998 - Fiction - 352 pages
1 Review
Fully recovered from the gunshot wound that landed Cat Austen in the hospital in "Death of a DJ", and over the shock of stumbling upon the corpse of Santa Clause in "Fruitcake", Cat has reluctantly agreed to take off with Lt. Victor Cardenas for a four-day weekend in San Juan. But fate steps in when Victor is called to a murder scene in what looks to be number three in a serial murder case.

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Cheat the Devil (Cat Austen Mysteries)

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Freelance writer Cat Austen lives in a climate conducive to investigation: her lover, Victor, and five of her brothers are cops. She and Victor work separately on a recent case of murder in Atlantic ... Read full review

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I think I have been going back to read Rubinos series because of the recent TV ads for the Stephanie Plum movie. I know these writers have been compared before but for my money 'less is more' and the smaller series and especially the characters are the ones that stick with me. Rubinos Cat Austen and Victor Cardenas (who is H-O-T) are like a satisfying Italian meal. Plum is like the candy bar you grab because you are skipping lunch.
Cheat The Devil pulls in threads that were mentioned in the two earlier books (Death Of A DJ and Fruitcake). Women have been murdered and it starts to be obvious that the deaths are related, and all connected to the church where Cat Austens brother, Father Dom is the parish priest. Victor and Cat both want to solve the crime - he is concerned with finding the culprit and Cat wants to clear her brother of suspicion.
What is surprising to me in this books and the others is how the 'less' is 'more'. Even with small mentions, a few lines of dialogue even minor characters seem flesh and blood. I love Cat and Victor and her brothers and his homicide team but it is the fact that I get a real picture of small characters by way of just a few lines. And the Jersey shore locale is great.
The 3rd book in a little known series that should be more popular.


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