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Book Report: To Catch a Treat by Linda O. Johnston

cover78455-mediumTo Catch a Treat is a cute cozy mystery, especially if you happen to be a dog owner. Honestly, it was the basset hound on the cover that convinced me to read this second book in the Barkery & Biscuits series. It was easy to pick up on the story line and become invested in the characters, even though I never read the first book.

The main character, Carrie Kennersly, works as a tech in her town’s vet office and also is the (recent) owner of Barkery and Biscuits bake shop – a split bakery and shop that offers mouth watering options for those on two and four legs. Carrie comes across as independent, running her shops and balancing her part-time vet work, along with spoiling her own dog (Biscuit), and dating one of the town vets, Reed.

At the beginning of To Catch a Treat, we find Carrie on a hike with her brother Neal, Reed, and the girl Neal recently started dating, a rather sad young woman named Janelle. We find that Janelle is one of the victims of a recent string of dog-nappings, following the suspected culprit, Ada Arnist, into town. When Janelle’s dog Goliath (Go for short) is dropped at the local shelter, Janelle finally confronts Ada. The celebration of recovering Go is short lived as Ada’s body washes up on shore the day after. With the police on the wrong path, Carrie is determined to help Janelle clear her name and locate the remaining dog-napped hounds.

There are a few glaring issues in To Catch a Treat. The plot gets slow and Carrie is incredibly off-putting. Carrie describes the physical attributes of each woman she meets and believes that every man is flirting with her. For a woman who is suppose to be observant, Carrie comes across as incredibly shallow. Like a kiddie pool of depth. While it’s impressive that Carrie can juggle two shops and a separate part-time job, she stays so busy that the story gets repetitive – bakery from early morning till lunch time, maybe lunch at Cuppa-Joe, vet tech job where she drops Biscuit at the on-site doggy daycare, dinner with Reed. It made it easy to put the book down and pick it up later, but that’s not something I look for in a mystery. I want to be so drawn in that I can’t put the book down. Ending had a few twists and I’d read another book in the series, but I’d really like to see a bit more character development.

3 out of 5

You can purchase To Catch a Treat on Amazon.

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