Monday, December 7, 2015

Claws & Effect ~ Another Rita Mae Brown Junction

I spent a quiet weekend taking book number nine in Rita Mae Brown’s Mrs. Murphy series down.  And I enjoyed every minute of the cozy experience.  However, I feel as if I’ll be repeating myself talking about these books and series.  Nonetheless, I’ll try.
So what’s happening in Crozet, Virginia in book number nine?  For starters we’ve moved into the winter season; Brown rotates seasons throughout each book.  Even so, the residents of Crozet are suffering from something like seasonal depression.  To keep entertained, they whisper faux concern for bickering hospital staff members.  Particularly the hospital's plant manager and a doctor who've found themselves in a shove match inside the local post office.  What could be the issue?  And how wonderful it is for gossip during this freezing season?  Well, the townsfolk will chew over the reason among one another–for entertainment.  Until the plant manager turns up dead in the hospital's boiler room.  A boiler room rumored to contain a secret passage to the Underground Railroad from the Civil War.  And one in which operating and manufacturing secrets appear kept out of sight.  
With so many secrets abound, Harry and her canine/feline sleuthing duo investigates.  Of course with unsolicited service.  As more murders pop up, and the killer threatens Harry’s life, the clock races to catch the town's killer.  But now Harry will need to work with the police to remain safe while luring out the culprit.
As always, I just can’t get enough of this fluffy series.  I’ve often wondered what has drawn me most.  Is it the cozy, small-town atmosphere?  Or maybe it's Harry herself?  I love how she's amateurish, rugged and discerning.  She has an observational sense of recognizing the nature of her friends and neighbors.  As well as who has the potential to murder.  Or is it the treat–or hook of the series–of a cat and dog sleuth?
Ah, hell.  It’s a blend of all those elements, and the sometimes referenced humor as well.  And Brown does interject her thoughts and narrations on certain topics, but I’m hardly distracted enough to slip out of her stories.  Hardly!  So what if she wallows on and on about fox hunting during certain segments?  Besides, the horses and foxes expressing their grievances "live" make up for any commentaries.
Lastly, this is out of the blue, but I kind of dislike Mrs. Murphy gets more credit than her canine counterpart, Tee Tucker.  Why is the series named Mrs. Murphy Mysteries when Tee Tucker (and another cat named Pewter) are just as present?
Anyway, on to book ten!  The cozy mystery fun never stops.

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