The Chocolate Cat Caper Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of The Chocolate Cat Caper

Lee McKinney has given up her career as a Texas trophy wife and moved back to the small town of Warner Pier, Wisconsin, where she spent the summers cashiering in her aunt's TenHuis Chocolade shop. Lee is helping out her Aunt Nettie by working at the store and balancing the company books while studying for her CPA exam. She knows that the store, while doing well, needs all of the extra summer business it can get to stay profitable so when a large order comes over from Clementine Ripley, Warner Pier's wealthiest and most hated resident, Lee urges her aunt to accept it regardless of her personal feelings on the matter.
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Lee comes to regret this decision as Clementine Ripley dies the night of her party due to cyanide poisoning in the amaretto truffles that her Aunt Nettie provided. Things look even worse when Lee finds out that her Aunt Nettie blames Clementine Ripley for the death of her husband, which definitely provides her with a motive and she certainly had the means! But Lee quickly discovers that her Aunt Nettie was certainly not the only one who held a grudge against the infamous defense lawyer. There is Marion McCoy, Clementine's personal assistant, who ran her life, but didn't seem to really like her; Joe Woodyard, Warner Pier's golden boy and the subject of Lee's teenage crushes, the former Mr. Clementine Ripley inherits the entire estate; the Police Chief, who retired to Warner Pier after Clementine Ripley ruined his career in the big city, but couldn't escape her shadow; Mayor Herrerra, who looked like a fool when Clementine Ripley backed out of her deal to sell her land to the city to build an observation facility; not counting the town's notorious gossip Greg Glossop, Clementine's slick and charming investment partner and every criminal that Clementine Ripley kept out of jail.
The review of this Book prepared by Debbie

Signet, March 2002, 5.99, 240 pp.
ISBN 045120561

    Lee McKinney was considered a trophy wife because she came from an impoverished background and married a very wealthy Texas bachelor. She left him when the marriage went sour and refused a financial settlement so she was more financially impoverished than before her marriage. Her aunt Nettie, who lives in the Michigan resort town of Warner Pier, hires her to manage her chocolate business.

   Clementine Ripley, a world famous and widely detested defense attorney, orders a few thousand dollars in specialty chocolates for a party she is throwing. Lee delivers the candy to her and is a waitress at the party whose Clem dies from cyanide poison injected into one of the chocolate candies. With her and her aunt's reputation and freedom on the line, Lee decides to do some sleuthing and manages to become a hostage to the killer.

    Do not eat THE CHOCOLATE CAT CAPER on empty stomach. The descriptions of the individual pieces of candy are so mouth-watering; one will gain weight just from reading about them. JoAnna Carl has created a delicious mystery starring a heroine who will endear herself to the audience. This is the beginning of what looks like a terrific new cozy series.

Harriet Klausner

The review of this Book prepared by Harriet Klausner

Chapter Analysis of The Chocolate Cat Caper

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Plot & Themes

Composition of Book descript. of violence and chases 15%Planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives 40%Feelings, relationships, character bio/development 30%How society works & physical descript. (people, objects, places) 15% Tone of story    -   very upbeat How difficult to spot villain?    -   Very difficult--no foreshadowing/clues    -   Somewhat obvious Time/era of story:    -   2000+ (Present) What % of story relates directly to the mystery, not the subplot?    -   20%    -   60% Special suspect?    -   relative Murder of certain profession?    -   lawyer creatures Misc. Murder Plotlets    -   Proving innocence of very obvious suspect Kind of investigator    -   amateur citizen investigator    -   comical investigator Kid or adult book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book Any non-mystery subplot?    -   food/cooking Crime Thriller    -   Yes Murder Mystery (killer unknown)    -   Yes

Main Character

Gender    -   Female Profession/status:    -   small businessman Age:    -   20's-30's Ethnicity/Race    -   White/American


United States    -   Yes The US:    -   Midwest Small town?    -   Yes Small town people:    -   nice, like Andy/Opie/Aunt Bee Misc setting    -   fancy mansion

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   generic/vague references to death/punishment Unusual forms of death    -   poisoning Unusual form of death?    -   Yes Amount of dialog    -   roughly even amounts of descript and dialog

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