Carol Wakefield’s new book “Art for Art’s Sake” is the 4th in her series about Catt Russell, an ordinary mom and wife whose life has been thrown out of whack - after being whacked in the head one day - by the discovery that she can read minds. This turns out to be more of a curse than a blessing because her psychic abilities are unreliable, uncontrollable and unpredictable. She has also been raised by die-hard hippie parents who didn’t let parenthood get in the way of their complete antipathy to “normal” – evidenced by the fact that they named their children Catamaran, Cosmic and Farout. The kids totally reject their upbringing and re-name themselves Catt, Mickey and Art. Through the first books we also find out that besides their names, the three siblings’ other inheritance from their parents are these uncontrollable psychic powers, which are constantly throwing Catt into sinister situations, but because she can’t control them, she can’t rely on them to extract herself.
Carol Wakefield’s books are packed with fast and furious action, humour, and dubious characters and this book even more so than the first three. From the opening sentence the readers are taken on a wild ride through a maze of changing scenarios as Catt and Mickey embark on a quest to find their brother. One scenario has them hanging on for dear life at the back of some burley bikers’ motorcycles, and as a reader, I felt as if I were also hanging on for dear life through all the twists and turns of the plot - eventually I just settled down and enjoyed the ride.
Wakefield has an amazing talent for bringing action and characters to life by mere verbal descriptions. They’re so vivid that at the end of her books I always feel as if I’ve “read” a movie. She leads the readers to strongly visualize her words and I wouldn’t be surprised if the books end up as movie scripts.
I couldn’t put this one down – read it through twice and resoundingly enjoyed it both times. The first time I read it in one sitting at breakneck speed to keep up with the action; then I had to read it again to see what I’d missed.
Oh, and besides the action, Wakefield solves a few mysteries on the way – wouldn’t everyone like to know where DB Cooper ended up?
If you’re looking for a book with good, clean action and fun, peopled by zany characters and animals, including a dolphin who thinks Catt’s his girlfriend, this is the book for you.