Chow Down

Chow Down

4.0 7
by Laurien Berenson
     
 

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If Melanie Travis was planning on a quiet family summer with her Standard Poodle Faith, son Davey, and new husband Sam, her plans are about to turn upside down. An unexpected competition, a trip to New York, and--oh yes, a murder--later, Melanie finds herself in a choke collar of deceit and corruption.

When she receives the letter from the Champions Dog Food…  See more details below

Overview

If Melanie Travis was planning on a quiet family summer with her Standard Poodle Faith, son Davey, and new husband Sam, her plans are about to turn upside down. An unexpected competition, a trip to New York, and--oh yes, a murder--later, Melanie finds herself in a choke collar of deceit and corruption.

When she receives the letter from the Champions Dog Food Company informing her that Faith has been selected as a finalist in the "All Dogs Are Champions" contest, Melanie is mystified--until she discovers it was Davey who entered Faith in the contest.

At the reception where they meet the other finalists, Melanie immediately picks up the scent that this pack is a bone's throw away from a major dog fight. And when Larry Kim, one of the finalists, dies in a suspicious fall, something smells rotten to Melanie. With the final decision for a winner drawing near and the competition getting downright ferocious, Melanie and Faith will have to watch their backs--because Melanie's digging may well unearth a barking-mad killer who'll do anything to win.

"Enjoyable…plenty of twists and turns for a tight suspenseful package." --Publishers Weekly

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In Berenson's enjoyable 13th dog-themed cozy (after 2005's Raining Cats and Dogs), Melanie Travis's standard poodle, Faith, is a finalist in a contest sponsored by Champions Dog Food company, which is in search of the next "spokesdog" for a new dog food. Though Melanie and her new husband, Sam, have no modeling ambitions for Faith-her nine-year-old son, Davey, entered the pooch without her knowing-the other finalists' competitive owners are lured by the promise of a $100,000 contract. What begins as a matter of grooming and carriage becomes the stuff of life and death when Larry Kim, the handler of a Yorkshire terrier, plunges to his death down a stairwell. Once again, Melanie, a Greenwich, Conn., teacher, sets about carefully piecing together the clues to solve the crime. Berenson creatively combines a multitude of red herrings with plenty of twists and turns for a tight suspenseful package. (Sept.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
A breeder gets wound up tighter than her poodle's topknot when murder disrupts six pooches' bids to become top dog in a kibble contest. Melanie Travis (Hot Dog, 2002, etc.) is shocked at the letter from Champions Dog Food congratulating her on her prizewinning standard poodle Faith's selection as finalist in their "All Dogs are Champions" contest-until she learns that her nine-year-old son Davey, bored with waiting for Mel and her hunky new husband Sam to produce a sibling for him to play with, filled out the online application himself. And once Doug Allen, Champions' VP of marketing, reminds her that the application is a binding contract to compete, Faith must join energetic Bill and Allison Redding's spaniel,Ginger; washed-up soap star Ben O'Donnell's boxer, Brando; formidable dowager Dorothy Foyle's Scottish terrier, MacDuff; and Larry and Lisa Kim's Yorkie, Yoda, in a series of increasingly outlandish publicity stunts cooked up by Champions' PR director Simone Dorsey and ad director Chris Hovick. As the contestants develop questionable alliances with each other and with the Champions staff, the whirl of receptions and public appearances leaves Melanie barely enough time to show Eve, Faith's offspring, in the final competition of her championship, and even less to hunt for clues when Larry Kim is killed in a fall and Lisa mysteriously disappears. Although there's some question as to who'll become the Champions spokesdog, Melanie's success in solving the murder is never in doubt.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781617731440
Publisher:
Kensington
Publication date:
08/01/2007
Series:
A Melanie Travis Mystery , #13
Sold by:
Penguin Random House Publisher Services
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
304
Sales rank:
63,593
File size:
944 KB

Meet the Author

Laurien Berenson is an Agatha and Macavity nominee, winner of the Romantic Times Reviewers' Choice Award, and four-time winner of the Maxwell Award, presented by the Dog Writers Association of America. She and her husband live on a farm in Kentucky surrounded by dogs and horses. Readers can visit her website at: www.LaurienBerenson.com.

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Chow Down (Melanie Travis Series #13) 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 7 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Another wonderful book in this series. I am reading them all. Melanie's life is always interesting. This is a wonderful time in her life as she is newly married and trying to have another child. The characters that she meets when her son enters their poodle Faith in a dog food promotional contest are well developed through the book. The mystery is interesting to the end as always. Don't stop writing, Lauren! I'm ready for the next book!
KathyAR More than 1 year ago
As always Laurien Berenson trips through dogshows and murder with great glee. A really fun read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Enjoyed reading this installment of the series. Quick and easy read which kept my attention throughout the novel. Figured out the culprit two-thirds through the read.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Styck on processing any one else have this problem with the under three dollar books thiis is the fourth this month babuska from sparta
Guest More than 1 year ago
It is summer vacation and Melanie Travis has the season off since she works at a school in Connecticut. She intends to relax and spend time with her husband of four months Sam in their new home that used to belong to her ex-husband. They¿re trying for a baby which has become news to family and friends and makes Melanie feel pressured. The real pressure comes in the form of a letter stating that her poodle Faith is one of five contestants in the Chow Down contests sponsored by Champions Food Dog Company.-------------- She finds out that her son Davy entered Faith in the contest and by the terms of the contest Melanie can¿t withdraw Faith. During the first meeting of the contestants, one of them falls down the stairs, his dog, Yoda, a Yorkshire terrier falling into Melanie¿s arms. She hears yelling on the staircase but nobody is there and the police believe the death was an accident. Melanie is sure it is murder and between events dealing with the competition, she questions the contestants and the company people, hoping to find a clue that will point to the killer.----------------- A Lauren Berenson mystery is always fun to read because the characters add something special to the storyline. This mystery is difficult to solve because nobody has a clear cut motive and Melanie has no idea who was on the steps with the victim. CHOW DOWN is a charming who-done-it and the glimpse into the heroine¿s personal life is just icing on the cake.-------------------- Harriet Klausner