You know what would be great? If you had a very special knitting bag that, in times of trouble, you could open and out would pop a cat to clear up whatever your trouble was.
Yes, I know it sounds far-fetched, but this is the basic premise in Willem Thomas’s short e-book, The Big Bag of Infinite Cats. But in this story, only one person has such a special bag: Miss Mayra Beeweather, a former detective who is enjoying a peaceful retirement.
Turned to stone
At the book’s opening, Miss Beeweather is just relaxing in the park, calling upon her bag for a cat to rescue a child who’s climbed up a tree (how's that for "flipping the script," as they say?). Then she’s approached by one Constable Fairfax, who has disturbing news. Detective Oswall has been murdered in a most unusual fashion: He has been turned to stone. On a wall near the lithified corpse is the mysterious image of a squid that has been magically applied. From this, Miss Beeweather knows immediately that this is a particularly dangerous case.
You should know from the start that Miss Beeweather’s world is one where magic is not so preposterous as it is in ours. Spells happen, you might say. But turning people to stone is something else again, and Miss Beeweather and Constable Fairfax are soon making the rounds of witnesses, a museum, and a rather fabulous bookstore as they follow in the footsteps of poor Detective Oswall. Hopefully they won’t follow so closely that they will be turned to stone.
Along the way, Miss Beeweather calls upon her bag of cats to find information and provide protection, and each cat is more intriguing than the last.
A fun read
The Big Bag of Infinite Cats is a fun read, and the story is intriguing, though the plot may not be complex enough for some. We did wish for a more thorough description of Miss Beeweather’s world. The setting is just different enough from our everyday reality that we found it hard to picture exactly what was happening. Further description would have enhanced the reading experience. There were also some missing commas and such that bothered She of Little Talent. In the end, though, the story is so inventive that those things weren’t too troublesome. We’d love to meet Miss Beeweather and her bag of cats again!
A note on the "Paws Up" system: Miss C gives either one or two paws up. One paw is for a good read; two paws is for a great read. She never gives three or four paws because that would require her to lie on her back...and Miss C does not do that!