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- KurzbeschreibungMary Minor "Harry" Haristeen's beloved, tart-tongued neighbor Aunt Tally is about to turn the big 1-0-0, and the alumnae association of Tally's alma mater is throwing a big fund-raising bash in her honor. The plan is to celebrate Tally's centennial and recoup some much-needed school revenue lost in the cratered economy, but when a killer blizzard bears down and a board member goes missing, it falls to Harry and her menagerie of mystery solvers to track down the truth behind what is rapidly becoming a perfect storm of embezzlement, political corruption, and the kind of long-smoldering enmity that can explode into murder. Does the key lie in a forty-year-old unsolved death? If so, Harry and her four-legged friends better find it or-even at a hundred years old-Aunt Tally may outlive them all.
- AutorRita Mae Brown
- IllustratorMichael Gellatly
- SerieBantam Books
- VerlagRandom House LCC US
- Seiten320 Seiten
- Gewicht157 g
- LeseprobeChapter One
Alone figure walked along a shoveled- off bricklaid path. The dormant gardens glimmered with frost. The skies seemed low enough to touch.
Aunt Tally, two weeks away from her one- hundredth birthday, called her Gordon setter, Doodles.
As the young dog joyfully returned to his master, Aunt Tally leaned on her silver- headed cane, the head being in the graceful shape of a hound. Apart from having to use that cane-thanks to the usual involuntary dismounts all horsewomen take-she betrayed few signs of her advanced years. Had you seen her peering at the ground as she walked along, you would have pegged her at eighty, perhaps.
"More snow coming." She squinted at the sky this March 11, Wednesday.
Doodles, who had sharper senses, replied, "Before sundown." Aunt Tally stroked the dog's head upon hearing the little yodel. Tightening her cashmere scarf, she continued on.
A deep rumble alerted Doodles, who recognized the motor's signature sound as well as the sound of the tires. Identifying a vehicle by its tire sound and motor is easy for dogs. Humans can't do it. Doodles wagged her tail as she bounded up to the front of the house, where Marilyn "Big Mim" Sanburne, Tally's niece, had parked her brand-new Dodge half- ton.
The two walked to the back of the house to join Tally.
Big Mim, teasingly called "The Queen of Crozet," was a formidable woman. However, even Big Mim could be backed off by the small, lean Tally.
"What are you doing out here? It's 24°F."
"Checking for my crocus. A shoot here and a shoot there and I get to thinking about the redbuds."
Big Mim put one gloved hand on her hip. "Redbuds aren't going to be in full flower until about April fifteenth. You know that."
"Of course I do. That doesn't mean I can't check them." She tapped her cane on the old brick. "I'm longing for spring. By this time of the year I've had enough."
"You really will have enough if you don't come in out of the cold. You'll catch your death."
"It's not a baseball," the old woman replied.
"You know what I mean," Big Mim said, sounding tolerant. "Are you ready to go, or do you need anything from the house?"
"Just need to put up the dog." Aunt Tally walked to the back door, opened it, and Doodles scooted in, happy for the warmth.
"Purse?" Big Mim raised an eyebrow.
"My wallet's in my coat pocket. Purses are a pain. Even if I find one that slings just right over my shoulder, sooner or later it drops down. Hard to carry a purse with a cane."
"Guess it is." Big Mim walked to the passenger side of her blue truck and opened the door for Tally, who climbed in unassisted
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