Melanie Cooper and Angie DeLaura are finally living out their dream as the proud owners of the Fairy Tale Cupcakes bakery. But their first big client is a nightmare. She's a bridezilla who wants 500 custom cupcakes for her wedding.
When Mel stumbles upon the bride-to-be dead-by-cupcake, she becomes the prime suspect. To save themselves and their business, the ladies need to find the real murderer, before the cupcake killer ices someone else.
Can a vet detective catch a killer who's hopping mad?
Veterinarian and amateur sleuth Jessica Popper races down the rabbit hole and into a vintage case of passion and betrayal in Long Island's elite wine country in…
Hare Today, Dead Tomorrow
It's harvest time, but this season's crop includes chardonnay, merlot…and murder. The victim is heir to one of the North Fork's most prestigious wineries–and if the crime isn't shocking enough, the prime suspect is one of Jessie's closest friends!
Between managing her menagerie of pets, including Lou, the one-eyed Dalmatian, her tailless Westie, Max, and a tiger kitten who thinks she's queen of the jungle, commitment-phobic Jess struggles to adjust to a new addition to her household: live-in boyfriend Nick Burby. But even that proves easy compared to the challenge of catching a killer who's left nothing behind but a "hare"–a stuffed bunny rabbit. To clear her friend's name, Jess must maneuver through a warren of bizarre twists and more suspects than a bunny has offspring–and she'll need her own lucky rabbit's foot to avoid becoming this killer's next victim…
"Five paws up for Cynthia Baxter's Reigning Cats and Dogs series!"—Carolyn Hart
"People who love cats...have a friend in Rita Mae Brown," declares The New York Times Book Review. And nowhere is it more obvious than in this, her sixth deliciously witty foray into detective fiction written with the paws-on help of collaborator Sneaky Pie Brown, and starring that irrepressible crime-solving tiger cat, Mrs. Murphy.
As the principal of St. Elizabeth's, an exclusive private school that caters to Crozet, Virginia's, best families, Roscoe Fletcher has proven himself to be a highly effective and vastly popular administrator. So when his obituary appears in the local paper, everyone in town is upset. Yet nothing compares to the shock they feel when they discover that Roscoe Fletcher isn't dead at all. Someone has stooped to putting a phony obituary in the newspaper. But is it a sick joke or a sinister warning?
Only Mrs. Murphy, the canny tiger cat, senses the pure malice behind the act. And when a second false obit appears, this time of a Hollywood has-been who is Roscoe Fletcher's best friend, Mrs. Murphy invites her friends, the corgi Tee Tucker, and fat cat Pewter, to do a bit of sleuthing. It's obvious to this shrewd puss that two phony death notices add up to deadly trouble. And her theory is borne out when one of the men is fiendishly murdered.
"Harry" Haristeen, in her position as Crozet's postmistress, is the first to hear all the theories on whodunit—starting with the man's jealous wife. Then a second bloody homicide follows, and a third. People are dropping like flies in Crozet and no one seems to know why.
Fearlessly exploring all the places where humans never think to go, Mrs. Murphy manages to untangle the knots of passion, duplicity, and greed that have sent someone into a killing frenzy. Yet knowing the truth isn't enough. Mrs. Murphy must somehow lead Harry, her favorite human, down a trail that is perilous...to a killer who is deadly...and a climax that mystery lovers will relish.
Surf’s up . . . and so are the stakes when veterinarian and amateur sleuth Jessica Popper escapes to the land of hula, hibiscus, and geckos for a professional conference. The last time she and boyfriend Nick Burby touched down on the island of Hawaii, Nick caused a volcanic eruption when he unexpectedly popped The Question to commitment-phobic Jess. But this trip proves just as dangerous when Jess befriends an ambitious young reporter whose body later washes up on the sand . . . and someone thinks Jess holds the clue to the killer’s motive.
There’s no end of suspects among the exotic flora and fauna, from the victim’s journalistic rivals and a mystery boyfriend to an eccentric beachcomber and a governor’s aide with ties to a controversial biotech firm bringing progress to paradise. One of them is a killer with the chameleon-like ability to stay hidden—and if Jessica doesn’t uncover hula-dunnit in time, she’ll be saying aloha . . . permanently.
Miss Cora Felton, the eccentric amateur detective better known as the Puzzle Lady, likes nothing better than to solve a good mystery–and this time she’s got a killer on her hands. What isn’t puzzling is why critics agree that “Cora is emerging as a lovable and unique sleuth” (Chicago Sun-Times) in “a fun series for mystery fans and cruciverbalists” (USA Today).
Bakerhaven, Connecticut, seems like the ideal place to host a charity crossword-puzzle tournament–after all, the town is home to Cora Felton, the beloved puzzle columnist known as the Puzzle Lady. A slew of celebrity contestants are on the way. And the locals have been invited to challenge the veteran puzzlers head-on. But soon the town’s attention is fixated on something far more controversial than crosswords...when the body of the town tart is discovered lying dead on her kitchen floor. Before anyone can stop her, Cora is hot on the trail of the truth, interviewing nosy neighbors, digging up dirt, and drawing out a lonely recluse who just may hold the key to cracking the crime. But will she solve the case before the contest comes to a deadly end? Cora once again proves that sleuthing spells S-U-S-P-E-N-S-E–up, across, and down!
When it comes to murder this sleuth isn't pussyfootin' around...
Veterinarian and amateur sleuth Jessica Popper takes center stage in the cast of an up-and-coming Long Island playwright’s last production—and the fur flies as Jess finds the theater world littered with clues to Simon Wainwright’s murder. Was the killer the actress who’s a real glamour-puss? Or her rival for Simon’s affections, a disheveled costume designer who looks like something the cat dragged in? Or how about the fat-cat Broadway producers?
Jessie’s no scaredy-cat when she’s on the prowl, but she loses her cool when her future in-laws and their monstrous Maltese descend on the tiny cottage she shares with fiancé Nick Burby, Lou the one-eyed Dalmatian, rambunctious Westie Max, and the rest of her menagerie. Between coping with the “Invasion of the Burbarians” and playing cat and mouse with a killer, Jess could use nine lives herself. But curiosity killed the cat—will that be Jessie’s fate by the time the curtain falls?
When Benny Southstreet, a small-time hustler with a big-time gift for constructing crosswords, accuses Cora of stealing one of his creations, it’s clearly a case of mistaken identity…until Cora’s own attorney files a plagiarism suit against her. To add to the enigma, when Benny is found dead, the police charge Cora with his murder!
At the heart of the matter is the not-so-little white lie Cora has been living for years: assuming the grandmotherly public face of her publicity-shy niece Sherry, who designs crossword puzzles and publishes them under Cora’s name—aka the Puzzle Lady. It turns out that Sherry’s and Benny’s cruciverbalist paths had recently crossed, resulting in the current incriminating conundrum.
As if Sherry’s wedding engagement jitters and a nasty battle over missing antique chairs weren’t enough to deal with, now Cora has to solve the ultimate mystery: how to keep the secret of her identity without losing her life. Because not only does all evidence point to Cora, but someone seems to want her dead. It looks like a riddle with no answer. Luckily for Cora and Sherry, that’s their favorite kind!
The Chicago Sun-Times crowns Parnell Hall’s Puzzle Lady mysteries “a joy for lovers of both crosswords and frothy crime detection...Cora Felton is a lovable and unique sleuth.” Now the crime-solving powers of the inimitable Cora and her clever niece, Sherry Carter, are put to the ultimate test as they square off against a yuletide killer who hides within the white-and-black shadows of an acrostic....
A Puzzle In A Pear Tree
’Tis the season to be jolly, but Cora Felton, shanghaied into “The Twelve Days of Christmas” as a most reluctant maid-a-milking, has every right to feel like a grinch. When someone steals the partridge from the pear tree and replaces it with a cryptic puzzle she has no hope of solving, it’s almost more than the Puzzle Lady can bear. But then smug crossword creator Harvey Beerbaum solves the acrostic, and it turns out to be a poem promising the death of an actress. This is more like it! Could the threat be aimed at Cora and her thespian debut? Or at Sherry, one of the ladies-dancing? Or at Sherry’s nemesis, the pageant’s predatory lead, Becky Baldwin?
Cora and Sherry barely have time for a mystery, what with trimming Christmas trees and buying Christmas presents, but rehearsals go on, under police protection--until a killer strikes elsewhere in a most unexpected manner.Ordinarily Cora Felton would be delighted to have two murders to solve. But this time she finds herself vying with a visiting Scotland Yard inspector who appears to have an all-too-personal stake in solving the crimes. Cora does too when her own niece becomes a prime suspect and the murderer strikes again.
Is someone trying to shut down the Christmas pageant? Cora would be only too happy if that were the case, but she fears the secrets lie deeper. Now she is interviewing witnesses, breaking into motel rooms, finding evidence, planting evidence, and having a merry old time. In fact, she would be perfectly happy--if this wasn’t turning out to be a Christmas to die for!
Mrs. Murphy digs into Virginia history—and gets her paws on a killer.
The most popular citizen of Virginia has been dead for nearly 170 years. That hasn't stopped the good people of tiny Crozet, Virginia, from taking pride in every aspect of Thomas Jefferson's life. But when an archaeological dig of the slave quarters at Jefferson's home, Monticello, uncovers a shocking secret, emotions in Crozet run high—dangerously high.
The stunning discovery at Monticello hints a hidden passions and age-old scandals. As postmistress Mary Minor "Harry" Haristeen and some of Crozet's Very Best People try to learn the identity of a centuries-old skeleton—and the reason behind the murder—Harry's tiger cat, Mrs. Murphy, and her canine and feline friends attempt to sniff out a modern-day killer. Mrs. Murphy and corgi Tee Tucker will stick their paws into the darker mysteries of human nature to solve murders old and new—before curiosity can kill the cat—and Harry Haristeen.
Curiosity just might be the death of Mrs. Murphy--and her human companion, Mary Minor "Harry" Haristeen. Small towns are like families: Everyone lives very close together. . .and everyone keeps secrets. Crozet, Virginia, is a typical small town-until its secrets explode into murder. Crozet's thirty-something post-mistress, Mary Minor "Harry" Haristeen, has a tiger cat (Mrs. Murphy) and a Welsh Corgi (Tucker), a pending divorce, and a bad habit of reading postcards not addressed to her. When Crozet's citizens start turning up murdered, Harry remembers that each received a card with a tombstone on the front and the message "Wish you were here" on the back. Intent on protecting their human friend, Mrs. Murphy and Tucker begin to scent out clues. Meanwhile, Harry is conducting her own investigation, unaware her pets are one step ahead of her. If only Mrs. Murphy could alert her somehow, Harry could uncover the culprit before the murder occurs--and before Harry finds herself on the killer's mailing list.
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