SANTA CLAWED by Rita Mae Brown


Email this review


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.

Pub Date: Nov. 4th, 2008
ISBN: 978-0-553-80706-6
Page count: 256pp
Publisher: Bantam
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15th, 2008


MysteryA HISS BEFORE DYING by Rita Mae Brown
by Rita Mae Brown
FictionCAKEWALK by Rita Mae Brown
by Rita Mae Brown
MysteryTHE LITTER OF THE LAW by Rita Mae Brown
by Rita Mae Brown