Customer Reviews for

Broken Dishes (Benni Harper Series #11)

Average Rating 4.5
( 9 )
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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 21, 2006

    Is this the beginning?

    I agreed with the other reviewers about the entire Gabe-Benni-Hud thing it's gone one way too long! But the main thing that redeemed this book was the four Georgia cousins: will we see them again in future, and will one of them prove to be Hud's downfall?

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 18, 2004

    SATISFYING AND EXCITING

    If mysteries can be warm, satisfying, and exciting, Earlene Fowler does it with her Benni Harper series. For those who haven't met Benni yet, she's quite a protagonist; she's a cowgirl, a quilter, a sometimes detective, and the happily married wife of handsome San Celina , CA Police chief Gabe Ortiz. Beginning with the cowgirl part, Benni lives on a ranch on California's Central Coast. Moving on to the quilter, Agatha Award winner Fowler has titled this book, the 11th in her series, 'Broken Dishes,' which is also the name of a quilt pattern. Described as a simple pattern made up of triangles 'arranged in a four-patch square,' it achieves the effect of broken dishes by placing the square at different angles. Now, while the quilt pattern may be simple the problems faced by a ranch familiarly known as Broken Dishes are not. This is a 5,000 acre spread once owned by Joe Darnell, Benni's father's best friend. Joe had mortgaged the ranch to the hilt, wishing to save land that had been in his family for half a century. His idea was to turn the place into a dude ranch. But, then Joe had a heart attack and died. Now, the ranch is in the hands of his daughter, Shawna, and her husband, Johnny. Unfortunately, it looks like the dude ranch may become a dud unless something turns business around - Benni to the rescue. Her idea is to lure customers with the promise of real Western hospitality, home cooking, hunting, fishing, trail rides, barbecues, and rodeos. Good plan and all goes well until the first guests discover a skeleton in a poorly made grave. Of course, someone's been dead and buried for quite a while. Nonetheless, it's up to Benni to keep the guests happy and feeling safe. Her nemesis, 'Hud' Hudson shows up and it's discovered that the late whoever was murdered. To complicate matters further there are whispers that a well known travel writer is among the guests. None of this will look well in print. Fowler fans know that she stitches a well connected plot with both surprises and fun along the way. 'Broken Dishes' may well win this author one more Agatha.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 18, 2004

    I want more!

    I have read all of Earlene Fowler's books starring Benni Harper and as usual I can't seem to put the book down until I have it finished. I love the fact that Earlene combines mystery, history, food and quilting and sets the scene in the west with ranchers and horses. Although the characters from Earlene's other books seem to have minor parts I kept wondering what book is Hud going to reappear again!?!?! Will Dove send her duck after Hud?

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 14, 2004

    'It's time to send Hud packing!'

    I'm a great fan of the Benni Harper series. It's one of the best mystery series around. However, I was disappointed with this book. Benni, of course, was great, but the mystery was kind of nonexistent. And Benni's husband, Gabe, was barely present, and when he was there, he was merely a shadow of himself. Also, wasn't anyone else bothered by Deputy Sheriff 'Hud' Hudson's blatant attempts to destroy Benni's marriage by trying to seduce her to commit adultery --a kind of in your face to Gabe. Please, Earlene, send Hud packing and get back to Gabe and the rest of the wonderful characters you created (Dove, Elvira, Sam, etc.), who had only cameo roles here.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 9, 2004

    ANOTHER SLAM DUNK FOR FOWLER!!

    Earlene has done it again with Broken Dishes!Benni Harper, her family and friends are helping a young couple get their dude ranch off to a good start with helping out for the first guests. Naturally, things happen that gets Benni involved with another investigation. When someone from the sheriff's office responds to a call about some human bones found on the property, you got it, Ford Hudson himself! Where does she get these names anyway. We also meet Kitty Katz and Bunny Hopp no less! You will crack ribs laughing at Socrates one minute and shedding tears the next! I read this book through in one day and enjoyed every minute! Who is Socrates.. read the book!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 2, 2004

    Teriffic mystery

    In San Celina, California, Shawna Darnell Abbott and her husband Johnny turn the Broken Dis Ranch into a guest ranch in the hope that they can make enough profit to avoid bankruptcy and consequently lose the family spread. Benni Harper and her grandmother help the young couple during the first few weeks of the new operation.................. A dog finds a bone on a trail that a guest identifies as human remains. Benni investigates and soon discovers a grave that appears to have been recently dug up. Benni¿s nemesis Police detective Hudson arrives and learns that the buried individual was a murder victim. Someone releases a prize bull that is about to be sold and arson burns down a barn. Benni tries to uncover the identity of the culprit, but the motive is decades old........................... BROKEN DISHES is an exciting combination of a police procedural and an amateur sleuth tale that make for a delightful combination that works and works well. The mystery is cleverly interwoven into a story line that focuses on two individuals trying to save their ranch. Fans will hope the Abbots succeed in this difficult venture that has been made more complicated by the homicides. Earlene Fowler is a grandmaster of characterization starting with Benni and continuing with a strong secondary cast who bring some comic relief to the terse tale................... Harriet Klausner

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 19, 2009

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 15, 2010

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 2, 2010

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