Column: November reads full of mysteries, Christmas, cats and more – Brainerd Dispatch


Those of you who read last month’s column were introduced to my new kitten Agatha, named for one of my favorite authors, Agatha Christie. In the spirit of fairness, this month’s write-up is dedicated to my other fur baby — my orange tabby cat Arthur, named in part for author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, who created Sherlock Holmes. So this month, I’ve got some Sherlock Holmes mysteries and a book about a special orange cat.

This month’s featured Minnesota writers are Doug and Sally Mayfield of Deerwood.

This is the first book among my reviews this year that I did not actually read a word of.
I had a decent bit of traveling to do over the past month, so I downloaded this audiobook on the library’s Hoopla app and listened to it as I drove long distances.

“The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes” is a compilation of 12 short stories, narrated by famed sidekick Dr. Watson and centering on the renowned Sherlock Holmes.

For those unfamiliar with Holmes but in want of a good detective story, I’d suggest starting with “A Study in Scarlet,” where the sleuth makes his first appearance.

But for those acquainted with Holmes and Watson already, this compilation is a fun read, with each short mystery taking up only two or three chapters. The subject matter ranges from murder to theft to mistaken identify, all showcasing the incredible deductive reasoning skills of Sherlock Holmes and challenging readers to get to the conclusion before he does. Spoiler alert: You probably won’t.

For anyone who needs a feel-good pick-me-up, I’ve got just the book. And if you happen to be a cat lover, even better.

I think I grabbed this book at a library book sale a year or two back when I saw the big orange cat on the cover. I didn’t have imminent plans to read it, but Agatha kind of picked it out for me this month. I was sitting in my living room watching TV one night, about to get up and find a new book to start, when Agatha jumped on my lap and decided to snuggle in. Of course I didn’t want to disturb her, but luckily I was sitting next to one of my several bookshelves, so I decided I’d just pull out a book at random and start reading it. That book introduced me to Dewey, and it could not have been a better choice.

The true story of Dewey starts on a frigid January morning in 1987, when someone left a tiny orange kitten in the book return at the public library in Spencer, Iowa. The poor little baby was nearly frozen to the metal bin by the time staff came to work and found him. Library Director Vicki Myron adopted him on behalf of the library, and Dewey …….


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