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- KurzbeschreibungAs Harry well knows, there's hardly a place on earth cozier than Crozet, Virginia, at Christmastime. Snowflakes, carolers, it's all picture-perfect until Harry and her husband, Fair, find the tree they've chosen grimly decorated with a corpse. The tree farm is run by the Brothers of Love, a semimonastic organization whose members live atop the scenic Blue Ridge Mountains. 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 will be her last.
- AutorRita Mae Brown,Sneaky Pie Brown
- IllustratorMichael Gellatly
- SerieMrs. Haristeen & Mrs. Murphy
- VerlagBantam Dell
- Seiten288 Seiten
- Gewicht136 g
- LeseprobeChapter One<br>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.<br>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.<br>Tucker, the corgi, jumped up to catch it. As she did, the snowball chilled her teeth, so she dropped it.<br>"Dumb!" Pewter, the portly gray cat, laughed.<br>"I knew it would do that, but if she throws a ball, I have to catch it. That's my job," Tucker defended herself.<br>Harry decided to sprint the last two hundred yards to warm up.<br>The tiger cat, Mrs. Murphy, shot past her. The shoveled walkway was covered with inches of fresh snow but easily negotiable.<br>Pewter, hating to be outdone, couldn't get around Harry so she leapt onto the snow, where she promptly sank.<br>Tucker, trotting on the path, called out, "Dumb."<br>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.<br>Tucker growled, stooped to whirl around.<br>Harry commanded over her shoulder, "That's enough, you two."<br>"You're lucky she saved your fat rear end." Pewter flattened her ears to look extra mean.<br>"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.<br>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
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