When a matchmaking cat takes it upon himself to find his young mistress a new mate, he accidentally stirs up memories better left forgotten.
Melody’s husband was murdered by what seemed a random act of violence. Two years later, the killer hasn’t been caught, and Melody is coping in unhealthy ways. During the day she’s a mild-mannered children’s librarian, but at night she’s a party girl, hanging out in bars, drinking with new friends, and often bringing home strange men.
Although acquaintances have tried to keep in touch, Melody has cut herself off from most of the people in her old life. Max, her eccentric cat, doesn’t approve of her new friends, he’s tired of the parade of losers, and he finally takes it upon himself to find Melody a new man.
Since Melody’s husband David was killed, her life has been pretty empty. A children’s librarian, she occasionally brings home one-night-stands, but never anyone permanent. It’s just her and Max, her late husband’s cat. But Max doesn’t like the men she brings home, and he knows they don’t make her happy, so he takes it upon himself to find someone for her.
The new guy had to have a nice voice. Nothing deep or scary. And he couldn’t move too fast either. He couldn’t smell funny. That was a big one— smell. Nice hands. Yes, hands were important. Maybe that was selfish, but so be it. They were a family, and the new person had to fit into both Max and Melody’s life.
Max, strictly a housecat, sneaks out into a noisy, frightening outside world and follows an odd man to a homeless shelter, where he meets Joe. Joe seems nice, feeds him chicken, and drives him back to the address listed on his collar tag. Max’s plan seems to work a little too well, though, when Joe starts staying over. It’s what Max thought he wanted — until Melody and Joe started closing him out of the bedroom, and especially when Max notices a gun hidden beneath the clothes in Joe’s bag.
The romance aspect of the story seemed to be more of a background thing than the main focus. While Melody and Joe’s relationship played a big part in things, since it was mostly told from Max’s point of view, it was a bit harder to connect with them. Yes, I was definitely rooting for them as a couple, but I didn’t become as invested in their feelings as I normally would with a romance story.
All in all, it was an entertaining read made even more interesting by the little mystery surrounding Joe. Normally I wouldn’t be a fan of a book narrated in large part by a cat, but Max’s thoughts were very much human, and his observations revealed things the characters might not have been able to easily put into words. Despite the sad bit about Melody’s husband’s death, the story wasn’t all grief and angst; it was more about her moving on and allowing herself to fall in love again — as long as Max approved, of course.