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The Ragman's Memory  (Joe Gunther #7)
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The Ragman's Memory (Joe Gunther #7)

3.95 of 5 stars 3.95  ·  rating details  ·  345 ratings  ·  25 reviews
It begins with an abandoned bird's nest; a nest made of hair -- human hair. Who is the victim? And what was the cause of death? A trail of grisly clues leads Lt. Joe Gunther to discover the identity in question: a teenage girl from the wrong side of the tracks. Then comes a rash of strange mysteries. Sudden disappearance. Unexplained death. Ghastly murder. Searching for th ...more
Published April 2012 by Gere Donovan Press (first published 1995)
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PROTAGONIST: Lieut. Joe Gunther
SETTING: Brattleboro, Vermont
SERIES: #7 of 25
RATING: 3.25
WHY: It begins with the discovery of human hair in a bird's nest, followed by a series of bizarre deaths. The small Brattleboro, Vermont, police force under the leadership of Joe Gunther, faces lots of challenges in investigating so many cases. I like the character of Gunther a lot; he shows deep compassion for all whom he encounters. Unfortunately, several of the other main characters--Willy Kunkle, Sammie,
In this Joe Gunther novel, the discovery of human hair in a bird’s nest leads to an investigation into corrupt selectmen, blackmail, and wrongdoing on the part of two of Brattleboro’s wealthiest and most powerful figures. And of course, other murders follow.

After last year’s boring entry The Dark Root, this book is a bit of a redemption for Gunther. The characterization and the dialogue are as always top-notch. Mayor’s attention to detail is strong as ever, but the detail makes the atmosphere st
I am obsessively plowing through this guy's output. They are police procedurals set in and around Brattleboro, Vt. This one is particularly good. A couple are clunkers, like "Occam's (Mammy-Tammy) Razor," which I am wishing would just end already.

The hero is Joe Gunther, a Brattleboro cop (and later a leading force in the fictional and rather ominous-sounding Vermont Bureau of Investigation). He's hooked up with a high-maintenance power woman, but Mayor doesn't beat it to death. The side charact
John Lucy
It's a detective novel, so who cares about writing? Well, I do. Good writing could make a detective novel better, and bad writing can make a detective novel distracting. Unfortunately, having read another one of Mayor's Joe Gunther stories, I'm disappointed by the writing. Some of the phrases and scenes that occur here also occur, almost word for word, in St. Albans Fire. Mayor is also overly dependent on dialogue, which is a problem because the characters often say things to one another that th ...more
Last year Amazon offered most of the earl entries in this series as part of the Kindle Daily Deal, and I leaped at the chance to stock up on this reliable and intriguing look at life in Brattleboro, New Hampshire. Archer Mayor's cop is a good guy to have around when I'm sick or stuck in an airport.

The Ragman reference is to survivors of the Battle of the Bulge:

"In the end, after the Americans had gained the upper hand and were pushing the German bulge back to the border, they started finding pe

What a terrific story with so much insight into the life of "street people" as well as those so damaged by war trauma that they never recover. Archer Mayor is a great story teller as well as user of the English language. His capacity to describe scenes in such richness as they truly come alive to all one's senses is truly a gift!

I have come late to this series but am so glad there are so many more books to read.
1996, #7 Lt. Joe Gunther, Brattleboro, Vermont; police procedural.

What do a rag, a bone, and a hank of hair have to do with corruption in the building trades and nasty goings-on by The Powers That Be (financially) in Brattleboro? Mayor beautifully weaves together several odd deaths, a bird’s nest, a lost bum with rabies and a lot of money, a love affair gone bad, a young girl just looking to get away from it all, a reclusive millionaire and his nasty brother, and a WW2 vet who never left 1945 an
Satisfying but not the best in the series. Too many unrelated stories that weren't tied together in a good way.
This seventh entry in the Joe Gunther series was ok. The first murder victim found was a very intriguing case, then the second - also very intriguing. But then, somehow, things started to lose coherence. It took quite a leap of faith to believe Joe Gunther would connect all these murders and solve them.

As usual, things come together very quickly in the end. Too quickly.

The saving grace for this novel is Archer Mayor's writing style. Really good dialogue, excellent first-person narrator, very, v
Best from Archer Mayor so far (I think).
Barely a three star. I like Joe Gunther. He is one of the few policemen in books who actually does his job within the law and gets along with his boss. My problem was that this Archer Mayor book had 5 storylines which came together at the end but 5 story lines seems like too many for the author to handle well. The characters were confusing and the plot lines were set aside too long at times as a new story started. Good idea, not so well executed.
Mayor, Archer - 7th in Joe Gunther series

Vermont homicide detective Joe Gunther faces the most confusing case investigation of his career, one involving buried memories and new-found desire.

This wasn't as exciting as Dark Root, but it was still a very good police procedural. I hope to see many more books from him.
Lynne Thomas
I love finding Treasures! With Archer Mayor & his "Joe Gunther Series", that is what I've found. A writers treasure! I'm now reading book 8 in the series & enjoying this series immensely! Besides the excellent writing, I'm enjoying watching a Town evolve over the course of a decade plus!
David Beck
I like Mayor's work and this is a lot better than the previous book in this series. It still struggles with having to many story lines going at once. The are way to many threads of investigation going as well as some frankly bizarre and unlikely events in the story.
Jennifer Warnix
As always Archer Mayor delivers. I've enjoyed the first 8 booksin the Joe Gunther series and will continue to read them. If you like a good mystery suspense thriller these are the books for you!
I read a lot of mysteries, and I've read quite a few since this one, but I remember that I found it relatively entertaining and interesting; if my memory was better I MIGHT have given it 4 stars.
Loved it. I have become a big fan of Archer Mayor's Joe Gunther series. I love a good mystery and the first 7 have been very good.
All Archer Mayor's Joe Gunther series mystery books are page turners. As soon as I finished one I began another.
Rebecca Boehringer
Another good read from Archer Mayor. I like his style and the stories from Vermont I find interesting.
Ray Charbonneau
One of a series of police procedurals set in Brattleboro VT. Good look at small town cops and crimes.
Another solid does he do this book after book?
Murders around a convention center construction site.
M Glover
good sense of place, great sense of snow.
One of his best. Truely enjoyed.
Darin marked it as to-read
Mar 21, 2015
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Over the years, Archer Mayor has been photographer, teacher, historian, scholarly editor, feature writer, travel writer, lab technician, political advance man, medical illustrator, newspaper writer, history researcher, publications consultant, constable, and EMT/firefighter. He is also half Argentine, speaks two languages, and has lived in several countries on two continents.

All of which makes mak
More about Archer Mayor...

Other Books in the Series

Joe Gunther (1 - 10 of 25 books)
  • Open Season (Joe Gunther #1)
  • Borderlines (Joe Gunther #2)
  • Scent of Evil (Joe Gunther #3)
  • The Skeleton's Knee (Joe Gunther #4)
  • Fruits of the Poisonous Tree (Joe Gunther #5)
  • The Dark Root  (Joe Gunther #6)
  • Bellows Falls (Joe Gunther #8)
  • The Disposable Man (Joe Gunther #9)
  • Occam's Razor (Joe Gunther #10)
  • The Marble Mask (Joe Gunther #11)
Open Season (Joe Gunther #1) Borderlines (Joe Gunther #2) The Skeleton's Knee (Joe Gunther #4) Scent of Evil (Joe Gunther #3) Tag Man (Joe Gunther #22)

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