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Book Review: If Catfish Had Nine Lives by Paige Shelton

Updated on November 7, 2014
Broken Rope hosts this year's Cowboy Poetry Convention (and unexpected guests)
Broken Rope hosts this year's Cowboy Poetry Convention (and unexpected guests)

Cowboy Poetry and the Pony Express

I'm not sure how author Paige Shelton does it, but the Country Cooking School mysteries seem to be in a genre all their own. Figuring out the genre is hard.

True they are mysteries, but there's also a lot of heart and soul put into them which somehow makes magic and there's also a little bit of hope to them. I don't think a lot of people are interested in a ghostly encounter, but Shelton's ghosts are pretty special.

As If Catfish Had Nine Lives Gram's Country Cooking School is on spring break and she and Betts are helping with the cowboy poetry convention. They've offered up the use of the school for some cooking demonstrations and they're also giving lessons at the campsite on how to fry up catfish over an open fire.

As Betts is catching the fish (along with her ghostly guardian Jerome) they hear a pop and race back into town where chaos is running amuck on the streets of Broken Rope. During a staged skit a real shooting has taken place leaving one of the actors dead and Betts' brother, Teddy is the main suspect.

Betts also has concerns when another ghost rides into town and needs help in delivering three letters. This ghost has had help from Gram in the past and now with the letters left, they don't know what will happen to him once they are delivered to their respective owners (in this case the families).

Shelton has done a lot of research on the Pony Express and by introducing a ghostly rider, the story goes into another direction. As usual, this is a page turner with great characters and above all else an intriguing plot.

I should say always use caution when reading a book that has recipes in it. You could easily gain a pound or two and you may even find an updated recipe of your favorite dish.

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