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Pet behaviorist and psychic Pru Marlowe is back! Fear on Four Paws is the seventh book in Clea Simon’s Pet Noir series.

When Pru is asked to help with an illegally trapped bear, she finds a colleague passed out drunk, his pet ferret locked in his truck. When one of her former friends turns up dead, and an unusually high number of some of the town’s pets go missing, Pru becomes involved in a series of mysteries. Frank the ferret is not talking, and while Wallis, Pru’s tabby, does her best to point her human in the right direction, Pru struggles to understand what is going on in her small town.

Even though some readers may find that they have to suspend belief when it comes to Pru’s ability to communicate with animals, it is one of my favorite aspects of the series. Simon’s sensitive portrayal of Dru’s abilities, without entering into “woo woo” territory, will make you want to believe even if you may be a skeptic. Wallis is the only one in Pru’s life who knows about  her gift, and she has insights into Pru’s nature that are occasionally unsettling even to Pru herself.

As is the case with all of Simon’s books, this is a well-written, fast-paced mystery, but it really shines in the portrayal of the animals. Recurring characters such as Bitsy, a white Bichon who insists that his real name is Growler, and Pru’s crabby tabby Wallis are joined by delightful new animals like Spot the cat who introduces himself to Pru as Bunbury Bundersnatch.

Simon provides enough back story so that this book can be read as a stand-alone, but why not treat yourself to the whole series? Clea Simon shines at character development, both human and animal, and for me, one of the joys of reading this particular series is seeing Pru’s character change and grow with each book.

Fear on Four Paws is available from Amazon.

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*The Conscious Cat is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. This means that if you decide to purchase through any of our links, we get a small commission. We only spread the word about products and services we’ve either used or would use ourselves. I received this book from the author. Receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review.

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