I have finished the 155th book for the book challenge. It was The Litter Of The Law: A Mrs. Murphy Mystery by Rita Mae and Sneaky Pie Brown.
Harry and Fair are out driving with the animals on an October evening when the animals become rowdy. They stop the car to let the animals run for a bit and see a scarecrow in the field. The animals immediately are attracted to the scarecrow. But it isn’t a scarecrow; it is a dead man dressed as a scarecrow. He has been shot through the heart. It turns out that the dead man is a young accountant from Farmville named Joshua Hill. No one seems to know him and his computer is missing.
Plans are being made for the scary Halloween hayride. Hester is selling tickets. She is telling Tazio that she wants Tazio to continue her quest to renovate the Random Row schoolhouse if she (Hester) is not around. Tazio thinks this is strange but agrees.
Buddy has been asked by Wesley to sell 100 of his acres closest to the schoolhouse to him for development. Buddy refuses. Neil also puts pressure on him and also puts pressure on him to use his fertilizers.
Susan and Harry are out driving and see the stand advertising the hayride. There is a witch advertising it. That is strange. They get out to investigate. They find that it is a dead Hester. She has been shot through the heart. At Hester’s funeral, at her home, Harry sees a photo of Hester and Joshua Hill. She looks for a connection. It seems that both were members of Indian tribes. Hester had asked Hill to do some research for her but they cannot find the research. They have Hester’s computer but it doesn’t tell them much.
Harry decides to search Hester’s fruit and vegetable stand and her tractor looking for the research. She finds the research hidden under the mat in the tractor. It is a print out of the land surrounding the Random Row schoolhouse and shows the land that could be designated Indian land. Some of it is Buddy’s land and it is also the Random Row schoolhouse. Could Buddy or Wesley or Neil be the killer?
Sheriff Rick and Coop and Harry and Fair are on high alert during the hayride. They expect trouble. And at the end of the ride, trouble comes. Buddy is playing the Frankenstein monster and a Count Dracula attacks him. Buddy is chased into the field and is stabbed. Then Count Dracula grabs Tazio and races off with her on a dirt bike. Harry runs after them and they wreck and Harry shoots Count Dracula. It is Wesley and Neil is also running after them. He is captured and arrested. Wesley and Neil are the murderers of Joshua Hill and Hester.
Buddy is willing to sell his land to the Indian tribes and Random Row will be renovated as a museum. This will be a legacy to the Indian tribes.
I enjoyed this book. The animals are a large part of the story here and also played a large part in the capture of the criminals. I like how the animals talk throughout the story. Pewter and Tucker are at each other’s throats in the story and it’s why Harry and Fair had to stop the car and let them out and find the dead man. Harry is into everything and generally has her hand on everything in Crozet. This was a great mystery for Halloween.