DARWINIAN IMPLICATIONS? – Review of “Seventh Deadly Sin” by D.B. Borton

Now that friend and neighbor Moses Fogg, who is also a retired cop, has received his Private Investigator’s license, Cat Caliban is an official PI-in-Training and she’s up to some new tricks in “Seventh Deadly Sin”. While she may be a white-haired, sixty something grandma, she doesn’t intend to sit home and be an On-Demand babysitter. No ma’am, not nohow! Cat figures she served her time doin’ the family thing and now it’s her turn and she intends to reinvent herself as a private detective. So when asked by another older lady to find out who murdered her grandson, Cat is all over it. She knows that establishing a motive will help her identity the killer but that’s going to be a tall order given that said grandson was a community-minded, well-liked student, athlete, and all-around good guy. But apparently someone disliked him enough to strangle him. The question is, who and why?

As titular head of the Catatonia Arms, Cat has a cadre of friends who offer moral support and lend a hand when called on. In this endeavor she enlists help from her band of loyalists and they definitely rise to the occasion. Cat’s inquiries and interviews get her into some tight spots that put her at-risk of getting conked on the head. Again! In fact, at the current rate, Cat should probably have a neurosurgeon on retainer.

As Cat pursues a paucity of leads she soon discovers that Peter isn’t the only area teen who has died under questionable circumstances. Her efforts lead to an alternate reality in which a frilly-dressed chimpanzee named Evie and a church that is all too reminiscent of the old days of Jerry Falwell slowly develop. Added to that mix is Cat’s penchant for uncoverinag multiple suspects that seem to complicate the investigation but she eventually gets them all sorted out. Make no mistake, this ain’t your average gray-haired granny. Cat’s salty tongue, her off the wall sense of humor and her tell-it-like-it-is attitude keep everyone on their toes and I wanna’ be just like her when I grow up.

Are We Descended from Apes?

This seventh book in the series is decidedly more sober in nature as it deals with questions of societal mores on sexuality and religion in the 1980s. Looking back, I’m not so sure that we as a society have advanced as much in the interim as we’d like to think we have. However, hope springs eternal.

Author D.B. Borton has set the Cat Caliban series Circa mid-1980s in the Cincinnati Ohio area and this escapade touches on the then emerging PC era. I had to smile at Cat’s description of an early PC with its green screen running MS-DOS. Don’t get me wrong though. I’m not really nostalgic for those “good ole’ days”. Unlike Cat I embrace modern technology but even so, I can relate to her misgivings. Besides, Cat Caliban has excellent instincts when it comes to sleuthing and she always gets her man. Four stars.

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