Murder Most Howl: A Paws & Claws Mystery

BOOK: Murder Most Howl: A Paws & Claws Mystery
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Praise for the
New York Times
bestselling Paws & Claws Mysteries

The Ghost and Mrs. Mewer

“[A] hit! [Davis] has created a pet owner’s utopia in her series . . . An intriguing mystery that keeps you guessing right up to the end . . . Absolutely fabulous.”

—Open Book Society

“Engaging and entertaining . . . [Davis] always writes a delightfully charming tale that is hard to put down . . . I tend to forsake chores to get to the end of her stories.”

—Dru’s Book Musings

“If such a town as Wagtail really existed I would move there in a heartbeat . . . Atmospheric and chilling . . . [A] wonderful story filled with fur and frights!”

—Melissa’s Mochas, Mysteries & Meows

“[A] beautifully written, cleverly crafted mystery sure to please pet-lovers and fair-play-mystery fans alike. The swift pace, engaging narration, and strong sense of place make it very easy to lose yourself in
The Ghost and Mrs. Mewer
.”

—Smitten by Books

Murder, She Barked

“Krista Davis has created another charming series with a unique setting, an engaging heroine in Holly Miller and her furry sidekick, Trixie, and a wonderfully quirky supporting cast of characters—two- and four-legged. I’m looking forward to my next visit to the Sugar Maple Inn.”

—Sofie Kelly,
New York Times
bestselling author of the Magical Cats Mysteries

“Krista Davis has penned a doggone great new mystery series featuring witty, spirited Holly Miller and her endearing canine sidekick, Trixie. The adorable, pet-friendly setting of Wagtail Mountain will appeal to animal lovers and mystery lovers alike, and the intriguing plot twists will keep you guessing to the very last page.”

—Kate Carlisle,
New York Times
bestselling author of the Bibliophile Mysteries

“Krista Davis has created a town that any pet would love—as much as their owners do. And they won’t let a little thing like murder spoil their enjoyment.”

—Sheila Connolly,
New York Times
bestselling author of the County Cork Mysteries, Museum Mysteries, and Orchard Mysteries

“A charming blend of small-town eccentrics and big-city greed,
Murder, She Barked
touches all the bases of the cozy mystery—including a bit of romance—and does so with style.”

—Richmond Times-Dispatch

“Well-written dialogue, fun characters, and romantic complications that never go as the characters—or the readers—expect . . . Readers will enjoy this skillfully plotted mystery and its biting humor.”

—Kings River Life Magazine

“[A] fun, fast-paced read. The plotting is top-notch, and I love the quirky characters. I could not put this book down. The story will keep you guessing until you find out whodunit. The author has plenty of dogs . . . I mean red herrings to keep you turning those pages. I am looking forward to reading more books in this delightful new series.”

—MyShelf.com

Berkley Prime Crime titles by Krista Davis

Domestic Diva Mysteries

THE DIVA RUNS OUT OF THYME

THE DIVA TAKES THE CAKE

THE DIVA PAINTS THE TOWN

THE DIVA COOKS A GOOSE

THE DIVA HAUNTS THE HOUSE

THE DIVA DIGS UP THE DIRT

THE DIVA FROSTS A CUPCAKE

THE DIVA WRAPS IT UP

THE DIVA STEALS A CHOCOLATE KISS

Paws & Claws Mysteries

MURDER, SHE BARKED

THE GHOST AND MRS. MEWER

MURDER MOST HOWL

An imprint of Penguin Random House LLC

375 Hudson Street, New York, New York 10014

MURDER MOST HOWL

A Berkley Prime Crime Book / published by arrangement with the author

Copyright © 2015 by Cristina Ryplansky.

Excerpt from
The Diva Serves High Tea
by Krista Davis copyright © 2015 by Cristina Ryplansky.

Penguin supports copyright. Copyright fuels creativity, encourages diverse voices, promotes free speech, and creates a vibrant culture. Thank you for buying an authorized edition of this book and for complying with copyright laws by not reproducing, scanning, or distributing any part of it in any form without permission. You are supporting writers and allowing Penguin to continue to publish books for every reader.

BERKLEY® PRIME CRIME and the PRIME CRIME design are trademarks of Penguin Random House LLC.

For more information, visit
penguin.com
.

eBook ISBN: 978-1-101-59310-3

PUBLISHING HISTORY

Berkley Prime Crime mass-market edition / December 2015

Cover illustration by Mary Ann Lasher.

Cover design by Diana Kolsky.

Cover logo by Alpimages/Shutterstock.

This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.

PUBLISHER’S NOTE: The recipes contained in this book are to be followed exactly as written. The publisher is not responsible for your specific health or allergy needs that may require medical supervision. The publisher is not responsible for any adverse reactions to the recipes contained in this book.

Version_1

For Dr. Jonel Nightingale, DVM, and Kyle Monger, veterinary assistant, who went above and beyond to save the life of my beloved Mochie

Acknowledgments

One of the problems with writing mysteries set in a wonderful place like Wagtail is the high number of homicides that must occur in such a lovely town—an issue affectionately known as the Cabot Cove Syndrome. I considered moving this story forward in time to help solve that problem but found too many things remained unanswered from the previous books. Did Oma ever take her cruise? Did Holmes get married? What happened with Ben? In the end, I decided to move the calendar only slightly. After all, these are mysteries, and a murder or two are part of a mystery. I beg your forbearance on this subject since we all know that a town as delightful as Wagtail would surely have no murders at all.

Several of the animals in this book are modeled after real dogs and cats. With heartfelt apologies for omitting a mention in the acknowledgments in
The Ghost and Mrs. Mewer
, I have to thank Paige Bennett for allowing me to use her sweet Yorkshire terrier, GloryB, who, as it turned out, now lives in Wagtail and also makes an appearance in this book. Funny Ella Mae is modeled after Sue Ross’s min pin and rat terrier mix, whom she describes as ten pounds of terror. And Leo is based on a real cat by the same name, who belonged to Amy McClung. At an auction benefiting the Thomas Jefferson Center for the Protection of Free Expression, Amy won the opportunity to have the pet of her choice in one of my books. When Amy sent along the information about Leo, I was taken by her loving memories of him. I hope I have done justice to this kitty who was such a vivid character in real life. Thanks to Josh Wheeler, director of the Thomas Jefferson Center, for making the arrangements.

Special thanks go to Betsy Strickland for naming the book club The Thursday Night Cloak and Dagger Club! As always, I appreciate the support and encouragement of my friends, online and off.

I am so grateful for the eagle eye of my editor, Sandra Harding. Over the years, I have learned to always take her sage advice. Sadly, this is the last book Sandy will edit for me, as she has moved on. I am blessed to have had Sandy as my editor and thank her from the bottom of my heart for everything she has done for me.

Very special thanks to my new editor, Julie Mianecki, who stepped in without missing a beat. I look forward to writing more books with Julie.

My delightful agent, Jessica Faust, wears many hats on my behalf: business manager; negotiator; advisor; contract interpreter; and the one I love the most, friend.

Most of all, I have to thank my readers. I cherish every note and message. I feel like I have gotten to know so many of you. And for each one of you who has reached out to me in some way, I know there are more who also dream of a place like Wagtail.

Contents

Praise for the
New York Times
bestselling Paws & Claws Mysteries

Berkley Prime Crime titles by Krista Davis

Title Page

Copyright

Dedication

Acknowledgments

Epigraph

Cast

Chapter One

Chapter Two

Chapter Three

Chapter Four

Chapter Five

Chapter Six

Chapter Seven

Chapter Eight

Chapter Nine

Chapter Ten

Chapter Eleven

Chapter Twelve

Chapter Thirteen

Chapter Fourteen

Chapter Fifteen

Chapter Sixteen

Chapter Seventeen

BOOK: Murder Most Howl: A Paws & Claws Mystery
7.88Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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