Santa Clawed (Mrs. Murphy Series #17) [NOOK Book]

Overview

New York Times bestselling authors Rita Mae Brown and her feline partner, Sneaky Pie Brown, are back for the holidays in a new mystery featuring Mary Minor “Harry” Haristeen, the sleuthing cats Mrs. Murphy and Pewter, and corgi Tee Tucker. Can they save the season from a killjoy who’s decided to gift the festive little town…with murder?

As Harry well knows, there’s hardly a place on earth cozier than Crozet, Virginia, at Christmastime. The ...
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Santa Clawed (Mrs. Murphy Series #17)

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Overview

New York Times bestselling authors Rita Mae Brown and her feline partner, Sneaky Pie Brown, are back for the holidays in a new mystery featuring Mary Minor “Harry” Haristeen, the sleuthing cats Mrs. Murphy and Pewter, and corgi Tee Tucker. Can they save the season from a killjoy who’s decided to gift the festive little town…with murder?

As Harry well knows, there’s hardly a place on earth cozier than Crozet, Virginia, at Christmastime. The snowflakes drifting lazily down, the soft glow of the winter light, the sound of old carols in the streets…even cats Mrs. Murphy and Pewter get into the spirit batting ornaments and climbing the holiday tree. In fact, it’s this year’s tree that Harry and her husband, Fair, have gone to fetch when they find the one they’ve chosen grimly decorated with a dead body.

The tree farm is run by The Brothers of Love, a semimonastic organization that tends to AIDS patients. The brothers live in a monastery atop the scenic Blue Ridge Mountains. Harry is surprised to find an old high-school friend associated with The Brothers of Love. Christopher Hewitt wasn’t a bad man, but good works weren’t exactly one of his priorities. But then, if even Scrooge could turn over a new leaf, certainly Chris could. And after the scandal that all but destroyed his life, there were probably few in Crozet who needed the gift of a second chance more.

Harry knows she shouldn’t take it personally, but it was her tree that someone left the corpse under. Now, as the season grows merrier, a murderer is growing bolder. One by one, prominent men of Crozet are being crossed off Christmas shopping lists and added to the morgue. And if Harry and her four-legged helpers aren’t very good—and very careful—this Christmas may be her last.


From the Hardcover edition.
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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
Usually, Yuletide season in Crozet, Virginia (population: 2,820) resembles a Norman Rockwell tableau or a scene in a Jimmy Stewart film. This year, however, a homicidal "secret Santa" has decided to leave dead bodies under Mary "Harry" Haristeen's Christmas tree. Harry has no choice but to solve the killings. To sniff out the guilty, she once again calls on her trusty feline assistants, Mrs. Murphy and Pewter. Super snooping corgi Tee Tucker also comes bounding to the rescue. A brisk Christmas caper.
Publishers Weekly

Brown is perhaps the only known novelist who collaborates with her cat, Sneaky Pie, but if their writing is any indication of their inherent talent, then the relationship should be celebrated. The pair's 17th novel finds Harry and friends Mrs. Murphy, Pewter and Tee Tucker involved in a holiday investigation in which an old friend is the prime suspect. For newcomers to this popular series, the catch is that the supporting characters are, you guessed it, talking animals. Kate Forbes gives a solid performance, creating interesting and original voices for each character, both human and animal. Her voice flows well, drenched in a certain storybook charm that manages to entertain an adult audience. A Bantam hardcover (Reviews, Sept. 15). (Nov.)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Library Journal

The 16th entry in the Mrs. Murphy mystery series (Puss 'n Cahoots) is the first holiday offering from Brown. Regulars "Harry" Haristeen and her sleuthing cats, Mrs. Murphy and Pewter, seek out a murderer when a dead body appears under the Christmas tree. For all mystery collections and essential for series fans.


—Rebecca Vnuk
Kirkus Reviews

The holiday spirit takes it on the chin when a series of murders blemish picture-perfect Crozet, Va.

Mary Minor "Harry" Haristeen and her equine vet husband Fair are happily shopping for a Christmas tree when they discover a monk with his throat slit. The Brothers of Love, who support themselves by selling trees, do good works in the area. But many of their members are ex-cons. Surely they have some enemies from the past. Brother Christopher, for instance, was a schoolmate of Harry and Fair who lost millions for investors in an insider-trading scheme. Perhaps the most bizarre aspect of the crime is the obol found under Christopher's tongue. One of three stolen from a local coin dealer, it was the customary payment to Charon to transfer souls across the river Styx. Harry, who along with her garrulous pets is a veteran of genteel homicide (The Purrfect Murder, 2008, etc.), can't keep her nose out of this latest puzzle. When another Brother, an ex-jockey, is found dead in the same fashion, the animals must pitch in again to keep their mother out of trouble. A local physician is the recipient of the third obol, but Harry's discovery of a chest full of money almost makes her the final victim.

Brown's legion of pet-smitten fans will no doubt overlook the preachiness of her latest in their eagerness to spend more quality time among her fearless feline and clever canine sleuths.

Agent: Wendy Weil/Wendy Weil Agency

From the Publisher
“As feline collaborators go, you couldn’t ask for better than Sneaky Pie Brown.”—New York Times Book Review

"An easy, enjoyable read ... Rita Mae and Sneaky Pie have written another winner in the Mrs. Murphy Mystery series." —Albuquerque Journal

“Reading a Mrs. Murphy mystery is like eating a potato chip. You always go back for one more…A deserving bestselling series.”—Midwest Book Review

“[Rita Mae Brown is] a master of the cozy cat genre.”—Publishers Weekly

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780553905922
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 11/4/2008
  • Series: Mrs. Murphy Series , #17
  • Sold by: Random House
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 256
  • Sales rank: 70,200
  • File size: 2 MB

Meet the Author

Rita Mae Brown is the bestselling author of several books. An Emmy-nominated screenwriter and a poet, she lives in Afton, Virginia.

Sneaky Pie Brown, a tiger cat born somewhere in Albemarle County, Virginia, was discovered by Rita Mae Brown at her local SPCA. They have collaborated on fourteen previous Mrs. Murphy mysteries: Sour Puss; Wish You Were Here; Rest in Pieces; Murder at Monticello; Pay Dirt; Murder, She Meowed; Murder on the Prowl; Cat on the Scent; Pawing Through the Past; Claws and Effect; Catch as Cat Can; The Tail of the Tip-Off; Whisker of Evil; and Cat’s Eyewitness, in addition to Sneaky Pie’s Cookbook for Mystery Lovers.


From the Hardcover edition.
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Read an Excerpt

Chapter One


St. Luke's, a beautiful stone church on the outskirts of Crozet, Virginia, appeared even more stunning than usual given the fresh snow on the rooftops, the windowsills of the parish office, and the pastor's living quarters across the now-white quad. Plumes of smoke rose from the great hall, which formed one side of the quad, and smoke spiraled from the parish office. The church was built in 1803, and it was clear that those early Lutherans needed many fireplaces. Over the centuries the buildings had been wired, vented, and plumbed. The modern conveniences served to enhance comfort. The structures had to last for centuries and no doubt would endure more improvements over ensuing centuries.

As Harry Haristeen walked across the large quad to the great hall, her two cats and corgi behind her, she wondered if people today could build as securely as our forefathers did. Seemed like things were built to fall apart. Grateful that she lived in an old farmhouse built about the same time as the church, she paused on her way to the work party long enough to make a snowball and throw it up in the air.

Tucker, the corgi, jumped up to catch it. As she did, the snowball chilled her teeth, so she dropped it.

"Dumb!" Pewter, the portly gray cat, laughed.

"I knew it would do that, but if she throws a ball, I have to catch it. That's my job," Tucker defended herself.

Harry decided to sprint the last two hundred yards to warm up.

The tiger cat, Mrs. Murphy, shot past her. The shoveled walkway was covered with inches of fresh snow but easily negotiable.

Pewter, hating to be outdone, couldn't get around Harry so she leapt onto the snow, where she promptly sank.

Tucker, trotting on the path, called out, "Dumb."

A snow triangle like a coolie hat on her head did not cool down Pewter's temper. She shook off the snow hat, plowed onto the path. Running right up to Tucker's butt, she reached out and gave the dog a terrific swat.

Tucker growled, stooped to whirl around.

Harry commanded over her shoulder, "That's enough, you two."

"You're lucky she saved your fat rear end." Pewter flattened her ears to look extra mean.

"Ooh la." The dog now ignored the cat, which was far more upsetting than a knock-down/drag-out to Pewter, who felt the world revolved around her.

Upon entering the great hall, Harry inhaled the fragrance of oak burning in the two fireplaces, one at either end. The aroma of a well-tended fire added to winter's allure. Harry loved all the seasons. Winter's purity appealed to her. She loved being able to see the spine of the land, loved popping into a friend's house for a hot chocolate or serving the same. Born and raised here, she was buoyed up by close friendships. People might feel alienated in big cities, but she couldn't imagine that emotion. Tied to the land, the people and animals that inhabited it, Harry knew she was a lucky soul.

"Look at those hardworking women," she called out as she removed her coat, hat, gloves, and scarf.

Alicia Palmer and BoomBoom Craycroft, both great beauties, moved a long table near the eastern fireplace. The large room cost so much to heat that the thermostat stayed at fifty-two. The fireplaces helped considerably. Sitting near one kept one's fingers from stiffening, and they'd need their fingers today.

Alicia, a former movie star, now in her fifties, was in charge of decorations for the Christmas party, which was little more than a week away. Each season St. Luke's hosted a large party that brought parishioners and neighbors together in a relaxed setting. Reverend Herb Jones, the pastor, constantly came up with ways to strengthen the community.

Susan Tucker, Harry's best friend from cradle days, and the breeder of Tucker, put grapevines on the table.

Racquel Deeds and Jean Keelo, two former sorority sisters from Miami University in Ohio, laid out gorgeous dried magnolia grand flora blossoms along with the large, shiny dark-green leaves.

BoomBoom brought bay leaves and gold-beaded strands.

Harry carried dried red roses along with strands of cranberries.

Once the women settled down at the table to make wreaths, the cats and dog volunteered to help.

Mrs. Murphy, on the table, played with the gold beads. "Aren't these the same kind of beads that men throw to women at Mardi Gras if the women expose their glories?"

"Sure won't be flashing anything in this weather." Tucker, on the floor, laughed.

Pewter batted around a lovely red rosebud. "I will never understand why humans pitch a fit and fall in it if someone shows their breasts or if a man shows his equipment. I mean, everybody has them."

"Genesis. Remember when the angel comes to the Garden of Eden after Adam eats the apple and Adam and Eve realize they are naked?" Mrs. Murphy read over Harry's shoulder, not that Harry knew the cat could fathom it.

"Ha. Adam was taking money under the table from the garment industry." Pewter swept her tail over the table, knocking rosebuds on the floor.

"If you don't behave, missy, you're going on the floor," Harry chided Pewter.

"If you give me treats, I'll be an angel."

"Liar, liar, your pants are on fire," Mrs. Murphy sassed.

That fast, Pewter charged the tiger cat, the gold beads entangled between them. The two boxed. Harry stood up, separating the cats to save the beads.

Off the table, the two chased each other around the room.

"Anyone bring Valium for cats?" asked BoomBoom.

"Remind me next time to stock up," Harry replied.

Racquel and Jean had married best friends, and both couples had moved to Crozet when Bryson Deeds took a slot in the cardiology department at the University of Virginia hospital. He'd gone on to become one of the leading cardiologists in the country. Bill Keelo, his best friend, specialized in tax law. He, too, flourished. Both men earned very good money, and their wives reflected being well-tended. Of the two, Racquel was obsessed with her looks and appearing young.

While both wives were very attractive, any woman paled next to Alicia or BoomBoom. The funny thing was, neither of these great beauties fussed over themselves all that much, which only made them more alluring.

Harry, good-looking but not drop-dead gorgeous, lived in jeans. Since she farmed, this was as it should be, but every now and then Alicia, BoomBoom, and Susan would gang up on her and drag her to stores to find dresses. It took three of them to make her do it.

Although Racquel and Jean had not grown up with everyone, they had lived in Crozet for twenty years, fitting right in.

"You know, this really is lovely." Susan held up a wreath of magnolia leaves, white magnolia blossoms, red rosebuds, and gold beads wrapped diagonally around the wreath.

"This looks pretty good, too. A little more plain, perhaps." Harry held up the bay leaf wreath with cranberries wrapped around it, set off with large pale-green bows and speckled with tiny gold stars.

"The odor. That's what makes the bay leaf wreaths so special." Jean adored the fragrance.

"What are we going to do with the grapevines?" Susan was twisting some, now pliable from being soaked in water, into lovely wreaths.

"Well, I thought we could put one big bow on the bottom and tie in the wooden carved figures from that plastic carton." Alicia pointed to the carton.

Susan asked, "Want me to do that now?"

Alicia answered, "No, let's make the wreaths for the outside doors. By that time we should be able to handle the two huge wreaths for in here."

"How huge?" Harry wondered.

"Three feet in diameter," Alicia replied.

"That is huge." Harry was surprised.

"It will take two of us to make each one, then hang them over each fireplace, but they will look spectacular." Alicia felt confident about that.

One of the outside doors opened. Rushing in were the three Lutheran cats, Cazenovia, Elocution, and Lucy Fur, followed by Herb Jones, wearing no coat.

"Rev, you'll catch your death." Harry called him Rev.

"Oh, I just ran over from the office." He glanced at the few finished wreaths and the pile of materials on the table as the cats, now five in number, roared through the great hall. "These are so pretty."

"Thought about adding walnuts, but I don't think they'd last long." BoomBoom pointed to the grapevine wreaths. "Alicia's come up with other ideas. She's the boss."

"I'm grateful to you girls for doing this." Herb smiled at them. "Do you all need anything? Food? Drink?"

"Brought it," Jean replied. "Dip into either of those coolers. You'll be happy."

Rarely able to resist food, Herb flipped up both lids. "Are those your famous turkey and cranberry sandwiches?"

"The same," Jean replied.

Herb picked out one, as well as a Coca-Cola. "I'm going to eat and run. Actually, I'll eat in the office. Oh, Racquel, how's Aunt Phillipa doing?"

"Thank God for the Brothers of Love Hospice. Her mind remains clear, but I doubt she'll make it to spring. Emphysema takes you down." Racquel looked up at him.

Jean added, "The brothers have been wonderful. Apart from the work they do with the dying, it's inspirational to learn each monk's history. Everyone is there to atone for some wrongdoing."

Racquel said, "Atoning twice. Some have been in jail."

"Do you really think a leopard can change his spots?" Harry, ever the questioner, said.

Herb replied in a deep voice, "Some can and some can't. I doubt it's easy, and as I recall most of them were first corrupted by greed or lust."

"Women and song pushed them on the path," Susan good-naturedly suggested.

Herb turned to leave, noticing the cats carrying on like sin. "Jean, a turkey sandwich, if you have an extra, might settle these hellions down."

"Brought plenty. Would you like another?"

"No, this is fine." He left to dash back across the quad.

Alicia rose to throw more logs onto the fire, the fireplace being quite large to accommodate the big room. "Harry, I'd like to think people can change."

"I would, too, but it seems to me that some corruptions are more easily overcome than others." Harry selected a deep-red rosebud.

"Sex. That's harder to fix than greed. Or should I say lust?" Racquel said.

"Really? I think money trumps everything in our culture," Susan replied.

"I don't think so." Racquel offered her argument in the best sense of the word. "Lust is irrational. The desire for money is rational."

"But aren't the seven deadly sins all irrational? I mean, when it gets to that level of an obsession." BoomBoom, like most people among friends, didn't mind taking a bit of grammatical license.

Important as good grammar can be, it can also be stultifying in free-flowing conversation.

"Okay. How do you know when it's reached the level of obsession?" Harry liked to talk about ideas, not people.

"Maybe it's different for each person," Jean offered.

BoomBoom, whose husband died young, had entered into a string of affairs with men, one of whom was Fair Haristeen, D.V.M., Harry's husband. They were separated at the time, and Harry subsequently divorced him. He worked on himself, kept after her for years once he recognized his error, and finally won her back. Nothing happens in a vacuum. Harry had to realize that she contributed to his wandering by focusing on whatever tasks presented themselves to her. She could have focused on him a little more. She was learning.

"Wouldn't a sign be if you knew you should slow down but you speeded up?" The corgi added canine conversation to this topic.

Just then, led by Mrs. Murphy, the cats leapt onto the table, running from end to end. Grapevines hit the floor; rosebuds skidded off the table. BoomBoom quickly secured the magnolia blossoms, as they were more fragile. Beads clattered.

"I'm sorry. I should never have brought these monsters," Harry apologized.

"Oh, the Rev's cats would have done the honors." BoomBoom, an animal lover, laughed.
What was a little cleanup compared to watching animals love life?

"We would not. We're Christian cats," Lucy Fur protested, prudently jumping off the table.

"Ha." Pewter jumped off, too. "Lucy Fur, you're the most Christian at dinnertime."

"You should talk, lard-ass." Cazenovia, the long-haired calico, now chased Pewter.

"May I?" Harry got up and opened the cooler.

"Under the circumstances, I think it imperative." Jean smiled.

Once the torn-up sandwich was on the floor, paper towels underneath, the cats settled down. Tucker received half a sandwich, too. Water was put out for them.

The great hall boasted a kitchen good enough for a fancy restaurant; it had running water, a Sub-Zero refrigerator, a big Viking stove, and other items to delight a chef.
Back at the table, Harry plopped down.

"Those sandwiches smell good." Susan's remark encouraged the ladies to take a food break.

"You mentioned that Aunt Phillipa's mind is clear. How is she taking this?" Alicia asked Racquel.

"With fortitude. She's eighty-six. She's ready to go. Fighting to breathe robs any delight one might harbor. But she amazes me. So do the brothers. I didn't think I'd much like them hovering about, but they've been good. Well, Christopher Hewitt isn't too good. Brother Morris," she mentioned the prior, "says he has to do some hospice work. Mostly Christopher runs the Christmas tree farm. He knows how to make money. Bryson is there more than I am, so Aunt Phillipa receives lots of attention. He has two elderly patients there, as well."

BoomBoom, who'd gone to high school with Christopher, as did Harry, Fair, and Susan, said, "I haven't seen Christopher since he joined the brotherhood. Not that we were bosom buddies before."
"Heard he became a brother after he got out of jail in Arizona. Money led him down the garden path. I am going over to the Christmas tree farm later, and maybe he'll be there." Harry was looking forward to picking out a tree.

Susan spoke to Alicia, Racquel, and Jean, who did not go to Crozet High School. "Christopher was a year behind Harry and me. He was handsome. And he was always elected treasurer of whatever group he was in."

"Good training." BoomBoom laughed.

"That comes back to my question," said Harry. "Can a leopard change his spots? I don't know all of the details, but Christopher was a stockbroker, became involved in insider trading, losing millions of clients' money. I just wonder."

"Well, I changed my spots." BoomBoom laughed again, at herself this time.

"Oh, you were never that bad." Susan liked her school chum, although she sided with Harry during the affair, which was natural.

"Bad enough." Harry laughed, too. "But isn't it funny how things turn out? All three of us have grown closer."

BoomBoom became serious. "The truth is I didn't know what love was until I met Alicia. I was running on empty and running from man to man."

"You sweet thing," Alicia said.

From the Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 44 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(28)

4 Star

(8)

3 Star

(6)

2 Star

(1)

1 Star

(1)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 44 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 4, 2008

    Team Brown provides another enjoyable Harry and her PUSS `N CAHOOTS anthropomorphic whodunit

    With the Christmas holidays arriving soon, life seems comfy in Crozet, Virginia a place where all sorts of animals talk to each across species lines. The only ones who don¿t understand the inter-animal communication system are the dumb humans. Although Mary Minor ¿Harry¿ Haristeen thinks she can sometimes comprehend what her pets are saying especially her two cats Mrs. Murphy and Pewter, and to a lesser degree her corgi Tee Tucker.---------------- Harry and her husband Fair are looking for a Christmas tree at a farm run by The Brothers of Love, a group dedicated to helping AIDS patients at their hospice. When they reach the monks¿ tree farm near the Blue Ridge Mountains, Harry and Fair are stunned to find the dead body of Brother Christopher, who joined the monastery soon after he left jail. He was sent there for insider trading bilking clients for millions. When a second monk is found murdered, his throat slashed similar in a way to Christopher¿s death with a coin also in his mouth, the police know they are dealing with a cold blooded killer. Harry and her animal caretakers investigate only to find her caught in a web by a predator willing to make the Yuletide season blood red.--------------- Obviously similar to previous tales in the long running saga, anyone who appreciates a pick me up filled with humor and murder will want to read SANTA CLAWED. Although Harry and Fair remarried they are still honeymooning while finding corpses decorating trees. The animals do what they do best one claw make that clue at a time while trying to keep their meddling beloved owner safe from her actions that place her in danger. The mystery is fun as the killer is in plain sight but difficult to identify. Team Brown provides another enjoyable Harry and her PUSS `N CAHOOTS anthropomorphic whodunit.------------------ Harriet Klausner

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 10, 2012

    Recommended for reading --

    Interesting how the story unfolds. Mrs. Murphy and Pewter are very fun characters and I do enjoy their patter and fights. The mystery keeps you guessing and does not leave you hanging. Love Harry and Fair.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 18, 2010

    This is a good book to sit down and relax with.

    I have been reading Rita Mae Brown for about 15 years now and I love all of her books. Her writing style is conversational and easy to follow. I appreciate several of the characters who are cats and dogs (and possum, owl, and snake). I am an avid animal lover and the author really seems to capture what these guys are thinking.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 20, 2010

    Worst in the series

    This book is not as good as others in her series. I found this one to be a bit preachy - all about God and the morals of mankind - rather than focusing on the mystery and the animals. There is no advancement of the characters - so this book safe to skip.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 8, 2008

    More of the same

    This book was a disappointment. Ms. Brown needs to shake things up a bit with her normal cast of characters and the plots of her books. She repeats herself; from book to book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 18, 2013

    Braveheart & Greenleaf & Darkshaft

    A soft blanket of snow had covered the prarie and forests of HorseClan, enveloping their territory in a thick layer of silence. A small shape could be seen traveling through the snow, a tiny black and silver dot...
    Braveheart shoved his way through the cold white snow, flakes falling on his nose and silver-tipped ears. The trail wasn't that hard to follow, and he could see that he was slowly gaining on the russet-colored figure he was tracking...
    The silver and black tom let out a yowl, and the two cats up ahead froze and turned around. One was an elderly russet furred tom with long tangled fur, while the other was a nimble silvery white warrior—barely visable in the snow.
    "Wait up!" Braveheart yowled again, making his way along the path Darkshaft and Greenleaf had trodden. He halted beside the white tom and the elder, breathless and cold.
    "Where are you going, in this weather?" The silver-marked warrior asked, sea-green eyes gleaming with suspicion. He had long wondered where his friends had snuck off to without a warning, leaving the territory only to sneak back practicly unnoticed...
    "We're leaving," Greenleaf meowed calmly, keeping his quiet voice even. Braveheart stared into his dark green eyes, and saw only the faintest trace of regret there.
    "Why?" The silver and black tom said, not understanding.
    "There's nothing left for us here," Darkshaft muttered, shaking his russet coat.
    "It's time for us to make our leave and journey once again in search of a new home," Greenleaf added.
    Braveheart shook his head, looking at his silver paws. "You can't do this. And what about Whitefoot? Your kits?"
    "Midnightstrike is coming with us," the silver-flecked tom replied. "After I drop Darkshaft off, I'm coming back for him. And Whitefoot will know where to find me, if she comes back."
    "What about me?" The black warrior meowed.
    "I was proud to have been your brother," Greenleaf said. "But we both know that is something I have to do."
    "Then I guess this is the end," Braveheart sighed.
    "Not the end. A beginning. It's time for you to start over again Braveheart. You can't grieve forever," the white warrior said.
    "Farewell, my friend," he meowed.
    "You're a warrior of HorseClan," Greenleaf meowed. "My heart shall always be drawn to the forest, and to the sea, until the ends of my days. Your heart has a calling too, however distant and unreachable it may seem."
    "Your home is here," Darkshaft said. "While we won't rest unless our paws are set on a journey."
    "Goodbye," they said together, than left Braveheart alone in the snow. The silver and black tom turned, and began to trudge back home.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 22, 2012

    Spiritwhisper

    She stalked a rabbit and killed it with an experts killing bite. Not caring to take time to see if anycat had followed her and seen her perform her perfected killing bite, as it crushes the spine and injures the victim servely. She sat down and piled her prey, a rabbit and mouse. She sharpened her claws on a rock and pulled burrs out of her fur absent mindedly.~Hunting, Spiritwhisper

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2012

    To thunderheart

    If you are a tom you may join, but if your not, Velvetstar will not let you join... and this isnt Horseclan camp... its the hunting grounds

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 25, 2012

    Dapplesong

    Dapplesong wlks in. She sniffs the air. There are two rabbits. Big and fat. She lowers down into a familiar crouch and arefully starts to stalk it. She leaps out and nips it neck as quick as the wind. She silently buries it and pinpoints the other rabbits postion. It is as big and fat a the other rabbit was. Dapplesong steps on a twig. SNAP. The rabbit perks it ears up and starts to run. Dapplesong quickly catch up and jump on it. The rabbit tries to turn but Dapplesong grabs it. She nips uts small neck. Dapplesong turns ti the buried rabbit and unearths it. The calco warrior looks at hr two pieces of prey. She is hungry. "The clan must be fed first" Dalesong reminds herself "I will fully stock the pile first then hunt for myself. We will not be hungry this Leaf-bare". Dapplesong grabs her two rabbits and begins to pad back to HorseClan's camp....

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 30, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    FUN SERIES

    This entire series is just fun to read and caters to the mystery lover and those that have pets.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 20, 2010

    About as good as the last few -

    I like Mrs Murphy, Pewter,Tucker and the other animals. The rest of the characters are a little ho-hum. The last three or four books in the series haven't been as good as what the series started out being. A few things that I didn't understand were: (1) In chapter 15, the Christmas party at St. Lukes Church. They have a bar serving alcohol in a church. Maybe it's because I'm from the bible belt and was raised to respect the church but that just seems soooo wrong in so may ways! (2) Harry gets hurt and is taken to the hospital in an ambulance. in Chapter 22 it says "Since it was December 23, the staff at the hospital functioned at skeleton level." What kind of hospital all but shuts down over the holidays? Especially over the holidays??? Later in chapter 22, "The ambluance crawled on the way back to the farm......Fair sat next to Harry, as Cooper followed in her squad car." Oh come on, since when do Ambulances do taxi service??? And why didn't Cooper, one of Harry's best friends and neighbor just give them a ride home since she was going that way any way? (3) We learned early on in the book that the monks took vows of poverty and that "A monks living quarters is traditionally called a "cell" and these,while spare, did have heat and running water. No luxuries..." I was just wondering why in Chapter 24 Brother George and Brother Luther are talking on a cell phone? Maybe not a luxury but doesn't exactly rank in there with heat and running water.
    I'll probably buy the next one in the series, like I said, I like the animals!!!

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  • Posted February 14, 2010

    An enjoyable fast read for the holiday season.

    A bit more serious and risque for this author, however every bit as enjoyable as the rest of her series. As usual Harry finds herself deep in trouble and the rescue scene enabled by her beloved pets and husband in this book is marvelous.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 13, 2010

    Santa Clawed

    This is a nice easy read for mystery fans and for animal lovers alike.
    I love all of Rita Mae Brown's books with Mrs. Murphy and her other
    animal friends.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 23, 2010

    Santa Clawed really dug in.

    Another treasure from Rita Mae and Sneaky Pie. A great way to relax during the holidays.

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  • Posted January 16, 2010

    Great Characters

    I love animals and mysteries are top of my list favorites so this book was wonderful and very entertaining, as well as, a fast read. I recommend it to all.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 9, 2010

    Very good read

    I thoroghly enjoyed the book, and couldn't put ity down.

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  • Posted May 4, 2009

    As usual Rita Mae is the best. I will never get tired of her animal characters or their insight into humans.

    Classic Rita Mae and Sneaky Pie series. I devoured it in a day and a half and wanted more, as always. I love this town, these people, and especially the critters. Rita Mae has written about much more serious subjects, but her mystery series, including the Sister series, are just plain enjoyable. She has a great sense of humor. About half way through the series I could no longer wait for the books to come out in paperback, so I started ordering them in hardback edition. I have read them, let's say, more than once because it's like going to visit friends. If you like mysteries and animals and lovely people who care about each other then grab one and enjoy.

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  • Posted February 16, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Cat detectives

    Enjoyful writing and reading, leave it to a cat and her friends to get involved in crimes, do the investigations and solve them, all the while the humans think they are doing it, so they have their little spats and disagreements and question each other, but in the end they are still friends

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 9, 2009

    Mrs. Murphy Series

    I love cats and mysteries, and was absolutely thrilled to find such a wonderful series that fulfilled both. I await each new book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 23, 2008

    Another great chapter in the lives of Harry and friends!

    I enjoy each new Mrs. Murphy Mystery and "Santa Clawed" was no exception! I've never had Christmas in Crozet before so it was especially enjoyable! I highly recommend this book.

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