© Tor Seidler, illustration © Brett Helquist.

If you can suspend your disbelief long enough to accept a society of New York City rats that act more like people than animals, and live in the underground pipes and the docks of the city, you might find this book entertaining. It’s a sequel to “A Rat’s Tale,” which I reviewed previously. The title character was the love interest of the first book’s heroine, Isabel until she was swept off her feet by Montague, a classic artistic loner who won Isabel’s heart almost without meaning to. Here Randal is looking to assuage his hurt pride and perhaps get a bit of revenge on the happy couple, leading him down a dark path. Soon everyone knows of Randal’s enmity, and when Isabel and Monty are almost caught in a suspicious fire, Randal has to flee, a fugitive, even though he didn’t do it.

Meanwhile, Monty’s cousin Maggie, newly arrived from exotic Africa, is exploring the city, and she and Randal get tangled in more ways than one. The plot of this romantic comedy of sorts rolls right along, with entertaining characters and incidents, some more believable than others, but all good fun. Not a classic along the lines of “A Cricket in Times Square,” but recommended.

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