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Duck the Halls

(Meg Langslow #16)

really liked it 4.00  ·  Rating details ·  2,590 ratings  ·  309 reviews
A new side-splitting Meg Langslow mystery from award–winning, New York Times bestselling author of Six Geese A Slaying, just in time for the holidays

The brilliantly funny and talented Donna Andrews delivers another winner in the acclaimed avian-themed series that mystery readers have come to love. A few nights before Christmas, Meg is awakened when Michael is summoned to
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published October 22nd 2013 by Minotaur Books
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Sandie Herron As with any series, the reading experience is richer knowing the backstory. However, a good author, like Donna Andrews, will fill you in on what you…moreAs with any series, the reading experience is richer knowing the backstory. However, a good author, like Donna Andrews, will fill you in on what you need to know to understand the current book. So it's not crucial to have read the series until now to enjoy this book.(less)

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really liked it Average rating 4.00  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,590 ratings  ·  309 reviews

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Start your review of Duck the Halls (Meg Langslow, #16)
Dec 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
Duck the Halls by Donna Andrews is a 2013 Minotaur publication.

This holiday edition of the long running Meg Langslow series is centered around a string of criminal mischief incidents at several local churches. The damage done by these invasions has forced the churches, which are of differing denominations, to help each other out so their Christmas pageant show can go on.

Meg, who is helping Robyn, a new minister who happens to be both young and female, with her scheduling issues. In the process,
Jan 11, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: cozy-mystery
Book Reaction (not a full review)

I think this book may have jinxed me.

The story starts with an unknown prankster leaving a cage full of skunks in the Baptist church.

On two of the nights that I listened to the audiobook on the way home from work, I nearly ran right into a skunk. I am deathly afraid of skunks.

As with the rest of the book, the story is charming, with a boatload of wacky characters and a protagonist who is both sympathetic and humorous. I love visiting Donna Andrews' Caerphilly
Mark Baker
Jan 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mystery, 2013
With the town churches being overrun by a series of pranks, Meg is called in to organize a schedule so all the Christmas concerts and services can still go on as planned. But who is behind the pranks? And why have things escalated to murder?

This is a second Christmas entry in the Meg series, and it was purely delightful. I finished it on Christmas Eve, and it helped put me in the Christmas spirit, yes even with murder involved.

Read my full review at Carstairs Considers.
A 3.5 for me because the ending kind of went flat. Quite a few cute parts and funny characters but I think if I knew them better it would have been a more enjoyable read. Comming in in the middle of a series can be tricky that way. A well rounded story about what starts out as harmless pranks turns into a murder investigation. A small town, family and church oriented Christmas story. Skunks and bunnies and snakes, Oh No! Believable characters and good narration kept it going for me.
Carol Stanley-Snow
Jun 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I LOVED THIS BOOK!!! And i love the author. Such a talent. She must have a wicked sense of humor because her characters are too funny. And, the situations are just belly laugh good!!

SheriC (PM)
A very cute, very light holiday mystery that starts with a series of silly pranks where a person or persons unknown are filling various places of worship with animals – skunks, snakes, ducks, etc – that eventually turns dark, and then someone is dead and it’s not a joke to anyone. Our protagonist isn’t a professional detective or sleuth for hire. As far as I can tell, she’s just an unashamedly nosy mom. But then, this is book #16 in the Meg Langslow series and there is probably a whole lot more ...more
Westminster Library
Michael and Rob have just completed their volunteer fireman training. On their first call-out, Meg follows as she is concerned with their safety. This is only the first event in the assault on the community churches, from pranks to murder. Meg's organizational skills, once again, put her in the forefront of this mystery.

Find Duck the Halls at Westminster Public Library today!

And if you are in search of new books to read, try our services, What Do I Read Next. Our library staff are standing by
 Readaholic Jenn
Nov 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this book and hope the rest of the series is as funny and cozy as this one.
Lara Thoms
Sep 14, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Duck the Halls is a cleverly written Christmas story filled with humor and suspense. The story begins with a call that there were skunks found in the choir loft of a nearby church. Who wouldn't love a story that begins with a bunch of skunks? The author manages to keep the story light and fun while still including a murder mystery. I must say that this is one of the most fun holiday stories I have ever read.
Kathy Davie
Dec 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: funny, mystery
Sixteenth in the Meg Langslow humorous mystery series based in Caerphilly, Virginia, and revolving around the village blacksmith and her extended family.

My Take
A sweetly easy mystery with a focus on merry and not-so-merry pranksters and the goodwill and cooperation of truly Christian people as they help each other out. I do love this example of true Christianity with people of different denominations helping each other out so beautifully. Exactly how it should be.

Lucky for Meg, both Michael and
Jan 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: light-mystery
This is probably my favorite Donna Andrews books in the Meg series (so far). What could possibly be be more trying than Skunks in the New Life Baptist Choir loft, boa constrictor at the Christmas Choir Concert, ducks in the Catholic church, a body in the Episcopalian church. Christmas is Caerphilly is quite the holiday!
Jul 17, 2019 rated it liked it
finished 2019-07- 17
Dec 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
4 Stars
Lots of laughs in this cozy mystery!
Quite enjoyable series .. I hope to catch up with the ones I have missed by end of 2018.
Dec 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction, mom-rw, mystery
If you like Jan Karon's Mitford series - this is the cozy mystery for you!
Another enjoyable cozy set in Caerphilly, this one at Christmas! Lots of fun, and a good mystery!
Dec 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019
Enjoying this series during the holidays.
Nov 28, 2018 added it
A spoof for sure, but light and enjoyable reading.
Mary Ann
Jun 25, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Duck the Halls Michael and Rob have joined the Caerphilly VFD and a week before Christmas, they get called out to a problem at the Baptist church, where the Chief of Police and his family attend church. What is found there are a dozen irate skunks who have sprayed the caretaker and the whole church. After that, Meg is asked to help organize all the churches and their activities for Christmas so that there is enough space to accommodate all the special activities of all the different churches. As ...more
Heather Schmitt
Jun 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I NEVER say this about the boatload of mystery series that I read - this series keeps getting better and better with each progressive book! I was worried that after the twins were born , Meg would disappear into mommydom, but it's refreshing to see that while she is a mom, she doesn't lose the part of her that made us faithful readers continue to follow her exploits. That is not to say she ignores the twins: husband Michael is a wonderful,hands-on father, and it's nice to see a wonderful ...more
Nov 27, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery
Definitely one of her better books and it suited me to be reading a Christmas story this time of year.
As much as I enjoyed the mystery (and it was probable), I enjoyed the details of family and small town life, too.
I do wonder about Caerphilly - it seems to have a higher per capita murder rate than any place in the country!

Also, Meg has a gem in Michael - does she EVER take care of thier sons for longer than half an hour?

It was funny, I laughed out loud at the live nativity, and good and made
Oct 25, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery
This series is always a fun romp through the family crazy tree...and the Langslows don't let you down in this one. Another fun story, with an interesting twist. Yes, there are some "familiar" pieces to the story here, but let's face it, this is why we read a series. If you're a fan, you won't be disappointed. If you're new to the series, it will make you go back to the beginning to meet all the fun and crazy people in Meg's life.
Sep 24, 2014 rated it liked it
Someone is pulling nasty pranks at local churches just before the busy Christmas services. First pranks is a cage full of skunks left in the choir loft. Then a whole group of ducks being locked in the sanctuary of another church. Meg is called upon to help organize where the different churchs could hold their practices and services and finally of course there is a body involved.
Sep 25, 2014 rated it really liked it
This is such a fun series! I really like the huge cast of characters and the dynamics of a big family that is very involved in each others lives. This one had just the right amount of absurdity thrown in.
May 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Appropriate for: age 13+
You will like this book if you like: Mysteries, funny mysteries

Another great installment in the series full of Christmas cheer and lots of animals. No swear words (yay!)
Mar 21, 2014 rated it it was amazing
this is one of my very favorite series. It started with The Revenge of the Wrought Iron Flamingos and has continued through many of the bird families. Meg and her various cast of characters never fail to amuse and solve the murders.
Apr 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sandie Herron
Jan 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: humorous mystery lovers, those who enjoy Christmas mysteries
Recommended to Sandie by: following author
Meg and Michael Langslow are enjoying the Christmas holidays with their over-large family. Michael has become a volunteer fireman for Caerphilly so when a call goes out in the middle of the night, he and Meg’s brother Rob, who still lives with them, must answer. They find that a whole lot of skunks have been delivered to the choir loft at New Life Baptist Church just before the annual Christmas concert and services. Extricating them requires breathing gear, equipment from a moving company, and ...more
Jan 11, 2019 rated it it was ok
I'm giving this 2.5 stars.

I picked up this book at Half Price Books because I wanted a light, entertaining Christmas book.

While the cover calls this book "side-spitting," I would hardly call it that. It was, however, a mildly amusing read about strange goings-on during the Yuletide season. Some pranksters are putting critters that don't belong there in various churches and (apparently??) local busybody Meg Langslow helps sort out the ensuing crisis. I say apparently because the author doesn't
Aug 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
As Duck the Halls by Donna Andrews opens, the New Life Baptist Church has been skunked! With just a week to go before Christmas, the night before the New Life Baptist Choir’s famous Christmas concert someone has left a cage of a dozen skunks in the choir loft. With the largest church in Caerphilly unusable for the next several days, all the churches in town jump in to help by offering their facilities. As the most organized person in town, Meg gets enlisted to plan the schedule of where each ...more
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Madison Mega-Mara...: #6 - Duck the Halls 1 5 Jan 21, 2014 07:51AM  

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Donna Andrews was born in Yorktown, Virginia, the setting of Murder with Peacocks and Revenge of the Wrought Iron Flamingos, and now lives and works in Reston, Virginia. When not writing fiction, Andrews is a self-confessed nerd, rarely found away from her computer, unless she's messing in the garden

Other books in the series

Meg Langslow (1 - 10 of 26 books)
  • Murder With Peacocks (Meg Langslow, #1)
  • Murder With Puffins (Meg Langslow, #2)
  • Revenge of the Wrought-Iron Flamingos (Meg Langslow, #3)
  • Crouching Buzzard, Leaping Loon (Meg Langslow, #4)
  • We'll Always Have Parrots (Meg Langslow, #5)
  • Owls Well That Ends Well (Meg Langslow, #6)
  • No Nest for the Wicket (Meg Langslow, #7)
  • The Penguin Who Knew Too Much (Meg Langslow, #8)
  • Cockatiels at Seven (Meg Langslow, #9)
  • Six Geese A-Slaying (Meg Langslow, #10)