A Hiss before Dying (Mrs. Murphy Series #26)

A Hiss before Dying (Mrs. Murphy Series #26)

by Rita Mae Brown

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Rita Mae Brown and her feline co-author Sneaky Pie Brown are back chasing mystery with their unique circle of Southern sleuths. And though the changing colors of fall are a beauty to behold, this year the scattered leaves hide a grim surprise. 

“As feline collaborators go, you couldn’t ask for better than Sneaky Pie Brown.”—The New York Times Book Review 

Autumn is in the air in the Blue Ridge Mountain community of Crozet, Virginia—and all the traditions of the changing seasons are under way. Mary Minor “Harry” Haristeen cleans her cupboards, her husband, Fair, prepares the horses for the shorter days ahead, and the clamorous barking of beagles signals the annual rabbit chase through the central Virginia hills. But the last thing the local beaglers and their hounds expect to flush out is a dead body. 

Disturbingly, it’s the second corpse to turn up, after that of a missing truck driver too disfigured to identify. The deaths seem unrelated—until Harry picks up a trail of clues dating back to the state’s post-Revolutionary past.

The echoes of the Shot Heard Round the World pale in comparison to the dangerous shootout Harry narrowly escapes unscathed. Next time, it may be the killer who gets lucky. But not if Harry’s furry friends Mrs. Murphy, Pewter, and Tucker can help it. Lending their sharp-nosed talents to the hunt, they’ll help their mistress keep more lives from being lost—and right an injustice buried since the early days of America’s independence.

Praise for A Hiss Before Dying

“Clearly the cat’s meow.”Library Journal

“Thoroughly delightful!”—Red Carpet Crash

“An air of mystery, a touch of history and that undeniable voice . . . Sneaky Pie Brown is back on the prowl.”Daily Progress

“The staccato conversation style of the contemporary chapters contrasts nicely with the more fluid prose of those set in the eighteenth century. Brown’s signature asides—on such subjects as local and national politics, traditional art, race, God, and just about anything else that strikes her fancy—give readers plenty to think about.”Publishers Weekly

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780553392517
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 04/24/2018
Series: Mrs. Murphy Series , #26
Pages: 448
Sales rank: 91,454
Product dimensions: 4.10(w) x 6.90(h) x 1.30(d)

About the Author

Rita Mae Brown is the bestselling author of the Sneaky Pie Brown series; the Sister Jane series; the Runnymede novels, including Six of One and Cakewalk; A Nose for Justice and Murder Unleashed; Rubyfruit Jungle; and In Her Day, as well as many other works of fiction and nonfiction. An Emmy-nominated screenwriter and a poet, Brown lives in Afton, Virginia, and is a Master of Foxhounds.

Sneaky Pie Brown, a tiger cat born somewhere in Albemarle County, Virginia, was discovered by Rita Mae Brown at her local SPCA. They have collaborated on numerous Mrs. Murphy mysteries—in addition to Sneaky Pie’s Cookbook for Mystery Lovers and Sneaky Pie for President.

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chapter 1

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A Hiss Before Dying (Mrs. Murphy Series #26) 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 7 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great ending. Last people you would ever suspect.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I live book to book, this book didn't fulfill its normal routine for a rich story. It seemed like something you put out to make a publishing deadline.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved the historical flashbacks! Hope she keeps writing in this fashion! Did miss the fox hunting , prime season for it in this book.....of couse there is alway her other series to satisfy that craving!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Love the juxtaposition of the 18th Century and the 21st. The characters have become old friends. Friends I enjoy catching with their lives. The stories entwine in a way to add richness to both.
Delphimo More than 1 year ago
Sneaky Pie' s editing shows that cats can make mistakes, such as the sentence "an elderly men". In whole the book presented many facets of life in Virginia through the eyes of animals and the people. I love the adage the "idle hands do the Devil's work." The lack of a centralized currency shows one of the many problems facing the "new" United States. No matter what, greed and cunning dominate the quest to control. I felt that the animals talked too often, and I missed hearing from their humans. I enjoyed the alternating chapters set in current times and in 1786. The illustrations by Michael Gellatly enhanced the story.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This installment in the Murphy series was a bit lame in comparison to previous stories. The plot was pokay but it never really took off and captured more than a superficial interest on my part. In some ways, the double stories going on simultaneously was good but it mostly just slowed the book down. It would have been better to write two full-length novels rather than splitting the interest of both author and reader. Hope future novels will be more thought-out. Stephanie Clanahan
NWBookLover More than 1 year ago
I have read all of the Sneaky Pie mysteries and, overall, have enjoyed every one - some more than others. I still do enjoy the characters of the present day mysteries - Harry and all of her friends, family and assorted pets. Yes, I also like learning American history. However, I am not really enjoying her new formula with these last books, that of two stories alternating chapters. Honestly, I want one or the other. It's confusing and, as a reader of her stories from the very first book, those are the stories I want to read. Having said that, I will add that this mystery can be read as a stand alone and both periods are good mysteries. I just would rather she would write either contemporary or historical mysteries.