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Santa Clawed

(Mrs. Murphy #17)

3.76  ·  Rating details ·  2,142 ratings  ·  188 reviews
As Harry well knows, there's hardly a place on earth cozier than Crozet, Virginia, at Christmastime. Snowflakes, carolers, it's all picture-perfect until Harry and her husband, Fair, find the tree they've chosen grimly decorated with a corpse. The tree farm is run by the Brothers of Love, a semimonastic organization whose members live atop the scenic Blue Ridge Mountains. ...more
Paperback, 261 pages
Published November 24th 2009 by Bantam (first published 2008)
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Mary Beistline Yes I have read a number of Sister Jane's books and enjoy them immensely.
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Average rating 3.76  · 
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 ·  2,142 ratings  ·  188 reviews

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Start your review of Santa Clawed (Mrs. Murphy, #17)
Not quite 4 stars. It's been a while since I read a book in this series, though I have, and have read, quite a few of them, before this #17. Seems like Pewter is more of a PITA than I remember - she gets a new bowl with "DIVA" on it - and there was less chat from Mrs Murphy. However, this is Tee Tucker's book in which to shine: she helps save Harry, and runs a long, long way back and forth up the hills behind the Haristeen farm to do so.
Always enjoy visiting Mrs. Murphy, Pewter and Tucker.
Feb 01, 2010 rated it liked it
It took me a ridiculously long time to read this book. That's because I started it somewhere not here, and then left it there, and then couldn't finish reading it (obviously.)

So the reason why "Santa Clawed" (OMG don't you just love the titles?) showed up on my "currently reading" list for nearly five months or so is not that Brown suddenly started to write deep, thought-provoking, hard-to-read social studies, but only disorganisation in my part.

No, Brown still writes funny, fluffy, easy-to-read
Helga Cohen
Dec 31, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, holiday
Santa Clawed is part of the Mrs Murphy mystery series by Rita Mae Brown. I just love how she intertwines her pet cats, Mrs Murphy and Pewter and dog, Tucker a Corgi in her books to help solve mysteries. This story takes place in Crozet, Virginia at Christmastime.

Mary Minor,"Harry" Haristeen goes to a Christmas tree lot run by the Brothers of Love, to buy a tree. The brothers live in a monastery on top of the Blue Ridge Parkway. Harry goes to the lot and finds one of the brothers, Christopher,
Mrs Murphy, Pewter and Tucker

This one of the best Mrs Murphy's book I have read as the are the MC's set against the background of Crozet and Harry's farm. The animals were normal except for talking to each other. It is Christmas time and the Brothers of have a Christmas tree lot to raise money for their programs. One of the Monks is found with throat cut on the lot. Harry begins wondered why. Mrs Murphy, Pewter and Tucker help Harry solve the murders.
Katie Anna
Dec 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
By far the best Sneaky Pie Brown book Ive read! Current issues even now. Fun read and honestly, I didnt see the killer coming. Nothing puts you in the Holiday spirit like a Christmas Sneaky Pie Brown mystery! ...more
Pearl Drolet
Jun 23, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
We are accustomed to talking about "summer reads," those light but compelling novels we have in hand on planes or at the beach, gulping down a few chapters on vacation or sunning at the park. In winter we like to turn to serious books, thick tomes to lose ourselves in, ideally sitting before a warm fire, snuggled in a favorite chair. But the holidays are times of rest and travel as much as the summer is, and snowy and cold days call for fun and well-written books as much as hot and humid days ...more
Dec 28, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: christmas, cat
This is another Christmas book where the author makes no attempt to introduce you to the characters. The assumption is that you have read at least some of the previous 16 books and already know the characters. I have never read any of this series and simply picked it up because it was a Christmas murder mystery and I like cats. I am about 70 pages in and about ready to give up due to not really understanding who everyone is.

I finally decided to stop trying to figure out who everyone was and
Christie Brumley
This book was recommended by my bestie and it took me a little bit to get into but after I did I couldn't stop. It's very different from my typical choice but nothing wrong with reading variety. I recommend to anyone looking for a change in reading scenery. Good quick read
Nov 16, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cozy-mystery
Santa Clawed was an enjoyable cozy mystery. But I have read so many of her Harry Haristeen and Mrs. Murphy mysteries that they are all beginning now to be very similar plot lines.
I have read every Mrs Murphy book and I SO looked forward to this one..but it just wasn't as good as the rest. Especially the early ones. But I read it, nonetheless.
Aug 01, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This Christmas-themed cozy mystery is a lot of fun to read. Rita Mae and Sneaky Pie Brown deliver a story about a monk trying to repent for the sins of his past life, Brother Christopher, who meets a grisly end when he is murdered on the Christmas tree farm run by his order, the Brothers of Love. Harry, the human protagonist in the Mrs. Murphy series, and her husband Fair find his body, and Harry becomes wrapped up in solving the crime.
We get to learn more about Deputy Cynthia Cooper in this
Nov 26, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Im done with this series. The last 2 books Ive read by Brown have been an intense disappointment.

What got me was this paragraph:

Brother Morris, head of the Brothers of Love, was so filled with the milk of human kindness that he almost mooed. Would have been a big moo, too, since Brother Morris tipped the scales at 310 pounds. Now forty-eight, he attracted devotees due to his own story. Once a major tenor in opera, specializing in German roles, he had fallen from grace. Given his weight, it was a
Aug 17, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It is almost Christmas in Crozet (and everywhere else, for that matter), and Harry is so looking forward to picking up the perfect tree that she has chosen...but there's a problem. A very dead problem, propped against the tree like a macabre gift. Yes, one of the Brothers of Love, the monastic order that runs the tree farm, has been murdered. And he isn't the last! ANOTHER monk is found dead not long after. But who would murder a monk, and why? As Harry tries to ferret out some reason to murder ...more
Jan 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, favorites, mystery
Brown kept me guessing to the last couple of pages! Though I had some ideas I was not able to solve this Christmas mystery. The book is shorter than the typical Mrs. Murphy mystery novel which it perfect to read during the busy holiday season, not to mention the subject matter of course. Rita Mae Brown never ceases to entertain the reader while offering a relaxing escape, and Santa Clawed is no different. She does an excellent job of narrating from the animals, mainly her pets, when appropriate. ...more
Michelle Adamo #emptynestreader
Santa Clawed is book #17 of the Mrs. Murphy series. It is a murder mystery that mixes the human world with the very real world (and human-esque thoughts) of pets. This is my first Mrs. Murphy book (although I have loved other books by Rita Mae Brown including, Rubyfruit Jungle). It is a fast read and a lighthearted murder mystery with a surprising end. An enjoyable whodunit for the season. ⭐⭐⭐

#santaclawed #ritamaebrown #sneakypiebrown #mrsmurphymystery #adoptdontshop #bantampublishers #fiction
Peter Butler
Oct 01, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Rita Mae Brown and Sneaky Pie Brown make a great team as they write their series of mysteries starring Mary Minor Harry Haristeen and her cat, Mrs. Murphy. Their books are relaxing, challenging and fun.
In Santa Clawed, it is Christmastime when all should be peace with the world. So, Harry and her family go to pick out a Christmas tree, only to find a monk from the local monastery under the tree they want with his throat slit in a nasty smile. But hes not the last monk to die. Who could have
Nov 16, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018
TITLE: Santa Clawed
WHY I CHOSE THIS BOOK: It met my reading challenge criteria being connected to the book before it, The Tragedy of Z, same genre, mystery
REVIEW: This was cute enough. Anthropomorphic animals are always cute enough. The mystery was standard, if melodramatic. A lot of issues (AIDS, homosexuality, economic deception, charity, infidelity, prostitution) touched on but with no real depth. It does have a certain amount of wit and humor, but not in abundance.
Dec 22, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I always enjoy Mrs. Murphy books, and I read this one now because of the Christmas theme. I found it a bit disappointing. The writing was the same, with some great descriptions, but this was one of the surprise ending mysteries. There weren't enough clues in the main story to figure it all out, so everything had to be loaded in at the end. I like trying to figure things out, so this isn't my favorite.
Diane  Sugars
Dec 29, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Oh dear! I don't even know what to say about this book besides it was basically horrible! This is the first one in this series that I have read, and there is no doubt that I will not read any more of the series. I am pleased that I bought this at a used book sale and did not spend much money on it because trudging through this poorly written, somewhat vulgar in places book, was not enjoyable at all!
Cats 274
Oct 13, 2019 rated it did not like it
Well, I really, REALLY like cats. And dogs. I adore them. And a book with cats and dogs in my mind can't be all bad.

At least I thought so before I read Santa Clawed.

I am really, really sorry, as the author managed to come up with a potentially good story and completely destroyed it with terrible writing style.

Nancy Cruse
My first read for this series...being a cat lover I looked forward to it but it just could not keep my interest. Usually I finish books in spite of that but I could not even manage that this time, Maybe I should go back and try her earlier books in this series so I can learn more about the characters first!
Jan 03, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a fast read and as you read the bookisn't long enough. I loved the holiday theme. You will have many twists and turns, that will keep your interest. You won't want to put it down. The series is good. I love Miss Murphy and the Corgi's relationship. I enjoyed this series. Kate Forbes does a good job with narration. The storyline was well developed and the characters interesting.
Dec 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Greed, homophobia and thievery

Its not all love and kindness at the Brothers of Love monastery near Crozet. Two monks have been cruelly murdered but why did they have to hurt Harry in the process? The killer is cunning and sneaky and red herrings cloud the who what and why until the end.
Peggy Christensen
This book was set in Crozet, Virginia, near my old stomping grounds of
Charlottesville. A light, comfortable easy read with a plot about murdered
brothers of a religious order in the mountains nearby.
Simple fair with good friends in Virginia. Love these books, but note that I can only read one or two a year because I feel they follow a similar line of story telling one book to the next. I will continue to read them though because it feels like going home to visit with close friends.
Deborah Fenton
Dec 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was the first book I've read in the Mrs. Murphy series. Excellent read! I enjoy Rita Mae Brown's writing because I adore animals and the dialogue she creates between them is what I would imagine they would say. The plot was interesting and I enjoy the human characters too.
Marjorie R. Huse
A very good book

Just like always, this Mrs Murphy story had it all. Love those critters. They are always right there for Harry, their Mom. And Cooper finally caught the bad guys, and the bad girl. Very good story. Well worthwhile reading.
Sep 12, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, cats, dogs
Obviously set during Christmas time return to the monastery-related. Once again Mrs. Murphy and Tucker as well as Pewter to a lesser extent save the day in more ways than one. Surprise ending. Recommended.
Dec 24, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mysteries
I know not everyone enjoys animals who talk, at least among themselves, but I enjoy them more than most of the people in the books.
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Madison Mega-Mara...: #102 - Santa Clawed 1 2 Jun 02, 2016 04:30PM  

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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.

Brown was born illegitimate in Hanover, Pennsylvania. She was raised by her biological mother's female cousin and the cousin's husband in York, Pennsylvania and later in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida.

Starting in the fall of 1962, Brown attended the

Other books in the series

Mrs. Murphy (1 - 10 of 30 books)
  • Wish You Were Here (Mrs. Murphy, #1)
  • Rest in Pieces (Mrs. Murphy #2)
  • Murder at Monticello (Mrs. Murphy #3)
  • Pay Dirt (Mrs. Murphy, #4)
  • Murder, She Meowed (Mrs. Murphy, #5)
  • Murder on the Prowl (Mrs. Murphy, #6)
  • Cat on the Scent (Mrs. Murphy #7)
  • Pawing Through the Past (Mrs. Murphy, #8)
  • Claws and Effect (Mrs. Murphy, #9)
  • Catch as Cat Can  (Mrs. Murphy, #10)

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