Irish Chain (Benni Harper, #2)
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Irish Chain (Benni Harper #2)

3.94 of 5 stars 3.94  ·  rating details  ·  1,463 ratings  ·  67 reviews
Meet Benni Harper...a spirited ex-cowgirl, quilter, and folk-art expert who's staking out her own corner of the contemporary American West. She's got an eye for murderous designs--and a talent for piecing together the most complex and cold-blooded crimes.

Benni's taking time from her job at the folk-art museum to sponsor a "senior prom" at San Celina's retirement home. Dur...more
Mass Market Paperback, 309 pages
Published February 1st 1996 by Berkley (first published March 1995)
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The Long Winter by Laura Ingalls WilderThe Sugar Camp Quilt by Jennifer ChiaveriniThe Runaway Quilt by Jennifer ChiaveriniThe Union Quilters by Jennifer ChiaveriniThe Persian Pickle Club by Sandra Dallas
Quilt on the Cover
12th out of 142 books — 20 voters
Murder With Peacocks by Donna AndrewsThe No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency by Alexander McCall SmithThe Alienist by Caleb CarrThe Black Echo by Michael ConnellyThe Thin Woman by Dorothy Cannell
Best Mysteries from the 1990s
78th out of 182 books — 24 voters

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Two residents of a nursing home found dead in a room. Benni Harper gets involved because she discovers the bodies. Her boyfriend is in charge of the investigation and constantly warns her not to get involved. Of course, she doesn't listen.
Benni begins asking questions. At the same time, an old flame is back in town, and he's one of the prime suspects and Benni finds herself quarreling with her boyfriend and spending too much time with the old flame causing some confused feelings. In the midst o...more
Not as good as the first, but possibly because the motive for murder was (IMHO) pretty weak. I did still enjoy the character of Benni and I like her boyfriend Ortiz, but the characters use Spanish in the weirdest way. It's almost like the author doesn't think Hispanic characters are authentic if they don't use a palabra of Spanish at least every chapter. And it is really peeving me that the story is set in "San Celina" which is obviously SLO for anyone who has lived in California for any length...more
Nach dem Unfalltod ihres Mannes muss Benni Harper neu anfangen und verlässt die Ranch der Familie ihres Mannes um als Leiterin eines Heimatkundemuseums in dem Ort San Celina in Kalifornien. Bereits im ersten Band war sie in Morde in ihrem Museum verwickelt und hat dadurch Gabe Ortiz, den attraktiven Polizeichef kennengelernt, der derzeit nur vertretungsweise den Posten übernommen hat. In diesem Folgeband nun kämpft Benni an zwei Fronten: Zum einen ist sie mit einer neuen Ausstellung beschäftigt...more
This is the second book in this particular series, following on from Fool's Puzzle, and once again, our protagonist is Benni Harper, recently widowed and now running a small folk art museum and artist's cooperative. In Irish Chain, Benni becomes involved in the history of her small town, when two senior citizens are murdered in a local nursing home and there's apparently more to the past than meets the eye.

Interestingly enough, there seems to be a link with the treatment of Japanese immigrants d...more
Lori Limberger
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
This second outing finds Benni setting up a new display at the museum, finding bodies, and maneuvering through her new relationship with Gabe Ortiz, the acting Chief of Police, although Gabe is quite the interesting literary character. Benni is trying to negotiate dating after a being widowed and finding it difficult. She's vulnerable and sometimes naive, but always endearing as she tries to find her footing in her scuffed cowboy boots. This adventure has an interesting subplot as she conducts o...more
May 23, 2010 Robin rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2010
I think I received this one as a freebie from the publisher many moons ago when I worked in a bookstore (they were promoting one of the later books in the series). I probably would have read it a long time ago except that it is the second in the series, and I have a hang-up about starting in media res, so-to-speak. I finally just plucked it off my shelf on a whim. Despite being the second in the series, I didn't feel like I was missing anything of vital importance relating to the characters or s...more
The second book in this series is better than the first. I actually cried several times while reading this book. It has been one year since Benni Harper's husband was killed in a vehicle accident. The local temporary sheriff, Gabriel Ortiz, is not only trying to help Benni through the grief, but trying to keep her safe while she gets involved in a double mystery. And then there's her high-school crush who comes to town because it was his grandfather that was murdered. Eventually everyone has to...more
I read this book while working at Murder Ink and loved it enough to practically fight my co-worker to be able to review it in the store's catalog. Despite that love, over the years since I completely forgot what the book was about. I'm also puzzled as to why I loved it that much.

It wasn't bad -- in fact, it was rather enjoyable. Benni Harper is an interesting character, and I love the quilting theme in her books. Benni's relationship with police chief Gabriel Ortiz is interesting and unique amon...more
When the blurbs indicate that a book is both a western and a mystery, I get prepared for a rather mediocre story and characters, but I was happily surprised with the books in this series that I've read. The characters were interesting and well drawn out, and the plots were intriguing as well as amusing. Also, just because the stories take place in the west with ranches and deserts nearby, that doesn't mean it is a western, which generally contains a whole bunch of stereotypical cowboy, black hat...more
So far I have not been overly impressed with the relationship between Benni and Gabe. She seems very much like a loose cannon who doesn't take into account the trouble she can get herself and others into just by being stubborn and doing the opposite of what she is asked to do. I have a feeling this is going to be a theme throughout the rest of the series and I have seen it with other series as well. I guess if they all played it safe, then the main character would not find themselves in the trou...more
Nancy Anderson
#2 in series. Benni and Gabe marry at the end of the book.
Characters are great...and a good mystery.
Better than the first but still not great, I'm wondering if she keeps getting better though.
Love Benni Harper!
Beth Revers
Lots going on in this fast paced mystery. Benni must tangle with a murderer, a conflicted minister, and old flame, her current boyfriend, a senior (citizen) prom, researching and writing history, and more too numerous to list. Very fast paced, and well put together. Fun too!
I liked Irish Chain much better than the first book in the Benni Harper series (Fool's Puzzle). This was a better-than-average cozy mystery, with a result that really did surprise me. It had the additional benefit of an unusually meaty topic - that being the relocation of American citizens of Japanese descent during WWII.

I'm still relatively new to the cozy mystery genre, but this is one of the best in the category that I've read.
I really struggled partway through this one. I know a lot of people love Benni, but I'm finding her a little too stubborn for her own good. Which is sad because I think there are a lot of great characters in this series, especially Dove. And Gabe.

Also, I don't understand why they suddenly got married given all of the problems they have just dating each other. A marriage certificate doesn't make that go away.
Fowler, Earlene - 2nd in Benni Harper series

Investigating the death of the San Celina Senior Citizen Prom king, museum curator Benni Harper goes against the wishes of her police chief boyfriend and uncovers the victim's fifty-year-old affiliation with a World War II Japanese blackmailing ring.

Definitely light, "hobby" mystery but quite enjoyable.
Sep 02, 2012 Andree rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2012
I liked it, but not as much as the first one.

Really, everyone just irritated me in this one, at some point or another. I don't really have more of a review than that. It was engaging, but just a bit off for me.

Also, Katie, I thought you said the relationship development was slower in this series. I beg to differ.
One of the first Benni Harper books. I've read all but the last few and really like them. I love how the characters have evolved over the series and how each one is individual reads, but it doesn't hurt to have read the previous ones. Benni is a likeable character and I love her relationship with her family and her boyfriend.
Catherine Woodman
this is the first of this series that I read, and it is one of my favorite quilt patterns. This continues to go well. The writing is not at a high caliber but it is pleasant. I like the quilt references, and Benni Harper is good--sometimes I find her a little annoying but she is largely a good character
❂ Jennifer (reviews on BookLikes)
I found this to be a very enjoyable read - I loved the story line delving into the WWII issues with Japanese-Americans. I didn't see where the plot was going until the end and was quite surprised by the murderer. Outstanding character development as well. Looking forward to the next one, Kansas Troubles.
Eehh! I wasn't really thrilled with it but it wasn't horrible either. The beginning was a drag but then toward the end it moved a little better. The characters were okay. I really can't pick out something that I hated about it but it just didn't grab me. I thought the quilting tie in was very weak.
This is the second book in the Benni Harper mystery series. Benni has become involved with Gabe, the Chief of Police. When she again discovers a body, the sparks begin to fly between them. Although I enjoyed this one, the plot was a little weak and the mystery itself was pretty dull.
Kitty Tomlinson
Investigating the death of the San Celina Senior Citizen Prom king, museum curator Benni Harper goes against the wishes of her police chief boyfriend and uncovers the victim's fifty-year-old affiliation with a World War II Japanese blackmailing ring.
I really liked this one better than the first. I loved the character development and I loved the way she interspersed some of the history in there too. I totally did not see it resolving the way it did, which is an aspect of reading mysteries that I love.
Second Benni Harper book. Fast armchair read. Really liked it--altho not sure if I'm following the love story quite right. but I'm good to stay with the series one more time. Liked this books focus on the japanese-american's stories during ww 2.
Jun 20, 2012 Mama rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2012
Don't let the title fool you, it's not about quilts. They may mention quilt here or there, but the book (series) is murder mystey. VERY well written. Strong, sassy female lead character. Ver fun read.

I highly recommend the Benni Harper Mystries!!!!!
For a murder mystery it had some spunk but I only read mysteries on the advice of my tow friends...I am going to change to another venue for a while I just don't want to read about death of any kind right now....I am too busy growing flowers!
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Earlene Fowler was raised in La Puente, California, by a Southern mother and a Western father. She lives in Southern California with her husband, Allen, a purple pickup truck, and many pairs of cowboy boots. She is currently working on the next Benni Harper mystery.

* Benni Harper Mysteries
* Love Mercy Johnson Mystery
More about Earlene Fowler...
Fool's Puzzle (Benni Harper, #1) Kansas Troubles (Benni Harper, #3) Sunshine and Shadow (Benni Harper, #10) Goose in the Pond (Benni Harper, #4) Mariner's Compass (Benni Harper, #6)

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