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Outfoxed ("Sister" Jane, #1)
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Outfoxed ("Sister" Jane #1)

3.79 of 5 stars 3.79  ·  rating details  ·  1,008 ratings  ·  69 reviews
The author of the classic "Rubyfruit Jungle" and the bestselling Sneaky Pie Brown mysteries offers an original look into the pristine world of Virginia foxhunting. "Outfoxed" is a mystery that features a captivating cast of Southerners and their unforgettable animal counterparts.
Hardcover, 416 pages
Published January 4th 2000 by Ballantine Books (first published 2000)
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I think that this book deserves constant love and praise as well as a pedastal to follow it around so it is always being worshipped. Yes, people, it is that good! Rita Mae Brown is a fantastic writer and her characters are so realistically flawed that you can imagine them as clearly as you can imagine your best friends. The relationships between the characters are full of the raw human emotion that exists in real life and the challenges that these characters face are heartbreaking. The beautiful ...more
BOTTOM LINE: This first "Jane Arnold, Master of Jefferson Hunt, rural Virginia" novel is a truly fantastical cosy, but definitely not for those who do not enjoy talking animals, as there is a superfluity of them here. However, the plot - and characters are very well-done, and there's a nice leavening of humor throughout. Comfortable cosy, albeit annoying at times.

Hunt season is coming on, and The Jefferson Hunt is readying horses, dogs, and people for Opening Hunt. Unfortunately someone plans to
I've admired Rita Mae Brown for many years but had never read any of her "Sister Jane" mysteries until recently. I was hesitant the first time I picked one up at the library when I realized the series is largely centered around American Foxhunting - a sport I know zip about! - and that, in addition to the human characters, there is an entire cast of various animal characters as well. About midway through that first book, however, the concept began to grow on me. The characters, both animal and h ...more
I picked this book up from the shelf available at a vacation rental. A blurb on the back cover says this is a "snappy" book. It is anything but, in reality. It takes almost two hundred pages to get to the crime. The Crime. 200.

This is supposed to be a murder mystery.

The actual climax of the book is barely a blip. Then the protagonist sends the murderer off to think about what she's done after she is revealed. Really?

The detail about hunting is mildly interesting, but the package it's wrapped
Jane, also known as Sister, now 70 years old is the matriarch of the fox and hound set in Virginia, must contend with all of the petty behavior of the selfish members of the locals. She must aslo keep the local rid-raff, criminals and thieves from destroying the age old life styles of the rich and infamous. It isn't easy. Especially when most of the wealthy feel that they are entitled to do anything they want, and the not so wealthy feel exactly the same way.
But Sister has it Ll under control...
Pamela Mclaren
A hunt club prepares for the opening fox hunt with training for the young hounds and for less experienced riders. As the hunt master nears 70, she has to consider what she can do to ensure the future of the club, and two men, both outsiders to Virginia, angle for the title of assistant master. One has money but frequently alienates everyone he comes into contact with; the other is friendlier but couldn't support the club financially. Both hate the other and as they angle to get the title, the ri ...more
I was a bit nervous about starting this book. Not a book I would normally read. But I was impressed. The heroine is smart, mature and sophisticated. The author's details on the foxhunt are great. I actually really liked seeing the story not just from a human perspective, but from the animals perspective as well. The book did start out a bit slow, but I am hoping that the second book will be better.
First in the "Sister" Jane fox hunting set in Virginia mystery series. Hunt master "Sister" Jane Arnold has her hands full in this mystery with a murder, heated rivalry between two over becoming joint masters that is splitting the hunt club, and various relationship problems. As in her other series, Brown has animal characters that play a prominent role in the story. A very enjoyable read.
I fell in love with "Sister" Jane and the hunt club so much, I tried to talk my husband into buying a 30 (or so) acre farm in Virginia. And we live in Southern California. It didn't work - I still live in Los Angeles. So I have to get my hunt club thrills vicariously and the "Sister" Jane series have been just the ticket.
Monique Marshall
Thus began my Sister Jane addiction. Being into foxhunting it was a joy to finally find a novel (a whole series!) dedicated to our sport. I found Sister Jane to be quite endearing and lovable and was sad when I'd finished the series.
Sanya Weathers
If you don't mind talking animals, or you don't mind them but you want them to be more low key and less human than they are in Brown's other cosy series, this could be your mystery.

The older I get, the more I delight in female leads over the age of seventy who still have it, in all possible ways of "it."

It is important to note that in this book, the author's gift for evoking a vanishing time/place is strong enough to make you weep for the passing... even while you celebrate the death of the odi
I first heard about Outfoxed on the Rita Mae Brown Yahoo! Club list, how for the first time ever she had written a mystery story that did not incorporate her famous feline detective, Mrs. Murphy. Truthfully, I was elated, and not because I don`t like the Mrs. Murphy series (I do like the books), but I thought it would nice for once to read something different from Ms. Brown, and I admit I found the foxhunting tack appealing. Since I live in the Tidewater area of Virginia, about two to three hour ...more
A book recommended by my mother. I wasn't sure if I was going to read it, so it sat on my shelf probably for a year, maybe even longer. I finally decided to give it a try or to get rid of it; it had been hanging around long enough. At first, the book simply baffled me. My mother had said it was a murder mystery. Usually it doesn't take too long to get into the murder and whodunit, but in this book, it wasn't until page 198 that we get to the murder/whodunit aspect. The preceding 197 pages is ded ...more
First I must admit that the only mysteries I have ever read have been written by Dick Francis and Rita Mae Brown......obviously I need to have my mysteries sugared up with equines before I'm willing to try it.

Having hunted with the Blue Ridge as a guest in the late '90's, I have to say that I find all aspects of fox hunting to be utterly fascinating. I have participated in many equestrian pursuits, racing, dressage, and showing, but after my fox hunting experience I have no desire any more to sh
Lisa C
I was really hoping to like this series so that I'd have a new audiobook series to listen to (but this first one was not available as an audio). Unfortunately, it was just too disappointing to continue past the 4th chapter.

The details about foxhunting in Virginia were rich and interesting, but not particularly well explained. Even harder for me, was the premise that just about everyone in the story (and by implied extension, real life) has affairs. I suppose it was going to be a major part of th
Sherrill Watson
This book had more plot turns than Sister's property! I was confused by the "Sister," thinking her a nun; didn't realize this is part of a series. I used to ride, and am familiar with fox hunting, but didn't realize there are hunters in the United States. A couple of the other Brown series weren't that good, but I'll seek her out at the library.

Good book.

Very quick but unusual read from the author of Rubyfruit Jungle. No lovely lesbians in this book though. Outfoxed is a mystery set in fox hunting Virginia, told from the point of view of several hunters, the hounds, the horses, and the foxes. With just enough sex, drugs, and violence to keep it out of the running to be the next Disney flick.

A murder mystery where the murder doesn't happen until about 2/3 of the way through, muddled characterizations, unresolved (but supposedly tied up) plotlines
It felt like it was part of a series where I missed a helluvalot of character development, but no, turns out this was the first book in the series. It was pretty dull; I'm not interested at all in the fox-hunting society and its ins and outs and concerns, and the placid writing didn't help much by filling the pages with uninteresting characters. The talking animals were very trite and childishly anthropomorphisized (is that a word??) as well. Okay, maybe not childishly...the Rats of Nimh books w ...more
Unique setting based around the modern foxhunting lifestyle.

I like the addition of the animals' point of view of what was happening in the story.
I was hesitant to read this book, having enjoyed the Mrs. Murphy series so much, but I thought I'd give it a try. There is more action with the human characters and much discussion of foxhunting -- a world I know nothing about -- but there were still very many animal characters who al had voices and it was a great Rita Mae Brown mystery romp. Definitely a vacation type read, but very enjoyable. I am excited to get to know the characters more in the rest of the series. I may even figure out the f ...more
This book was OK, it was set in the back drop of fox hunting in VA. I learned a lot about the equestrian sport. The book was a murder mystery and it was fair. The plot took a long time to establish, but there were not many twists and turns to it and the ending was not terribly surprising.

I did enjoy the aspect of the book where the animals were given voices. I am always putting to words what I think my animals are thinking so it was a pleasant read to see someone else doing the same.

Jul 25, 2007 Belinda rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: cool people.
Shelves: braincandy, mystery
One of my favorite brain-candy reads of the last few years. It's rare to find a book centered around an equestrian lifestyle that actually KNOWS what it's talking about, and RMB, as a MFH herself, KNOWS. And she puts together a cracking good story, with a decent murder mystery to boot.

Also? Talking horses. (All right, the animals are minor characters, and only talk to each OTHER, but still. The TBs refer to the WBs as "dumb-bloods" and things like that. It's fantastic.)
Becky Galambos
Original - Read from March 16 to 17, 2012 - Good book, wish the glossary of foxhunting terms was at the FRONT, as I didn't find it until I finished the book. Will definitely continue the series.

Update - reread 2014 - this time I photocopied the foxhunting terms to refer to, and having read whole series have more of an idea what I am reading. Much more enjoyable that way!
This was recommended to me by one of my work colleagues. It's a murder mystery set in the Virginia countryside within the world of fox hunting - never fear; they don't kill the foxes during the hunt. Loved learning some of the jargon (whipper-in, tally ho and early cubbing) and other details about the hierarchy, the required attire, and, of course, the lovely hounds!
Judy Cherry
I love Rita Mae Brown and her foxhunting series is fabulous. With foxes, owls, horses, hounds talking it takes some getting used to, but you quickly love the humor of the animals.

The heroine of this series is a 70's something Master of the Foxhounds! Just fabulous lady with a healthy love of life and an active sex life, too! All done with humor, compassion and taste.
Susan Miller
Thoroughly enjoyed this story. I like getting the view point of the humans and animals. An interesting murder adventure in the midst of a foxhunt. I have yet to get a chance to try foxhunting, but would love to give it a go. I was pleased to learn some foxhunting history that is woven in the story. The well established characters will have me reading the next novel.
I like this Sister Jane series much better than her better known Mrs. Murphy mystery series. Features septuagenarian Jane, her world of Virginia hill country and fox hunting, based on real life RMB's own world. About 7 in series to date. Cozy mysteries, lots of detail about land and people and dogs and foxes.
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It was good. I've read several of the Sneaky-Pie Brown mystery series so at first I wasn't sure I would like different characters. However there was the same depth of character and personalization of the animals as her other books. I enjoyed the mystery and was a little surprised at who done it!
Barb Foerst
This is the first in the Sister Jane series of Rita Mae Brown. The background is foxhunting in Virginia and the characters in the local fox club. Club politics come to a head and a murder occurs during a hunt. I like Rita Mae Brown's writing and enjoy the animals who also come to life.
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Rita Mae Brown is a prolific American writer, most known for her mysteries and other novels (Rubyfruit Jungle). She is also an Emmy-nominated screenwriter.
More about Rita Mae Brown...

Other Books in the Series

"Sister" Jane (9 books)
  • Hotspur ("Sister" Jane, #2)
  • Full Cry ("Sister" Jane, #3)
  • The Hunt Ball
  • The Hounds and the Fury ("Sister" Jane, #5)
  • The Tell-tale Horse ("Sister" Jane, #6)
  • Hounded to Death ("Sister" Jane, #7)
  • Fox Tracks: A Novel
  • Let Sleeping Dogs Lie (Sister" Jane, #9)
Rubyfruit Jungle Wish You Were Here (Mrs. Murphy, #1) Murder at Monticello (Mrs. Murphy #3) Murder, She Meowed (Mrs. Murphy, #5) Rest in Pieces (Mrs. Murphy #2)

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