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This year, all Melanie wants for Christmas is a dull moment--but she's not going to get it. Between her eight-year-old son, her teaching job, her show dog, and now the mysterious death of her son's bus driver, she's got her hands full.
Murder's on the ticket when intrepid poodle breeder Melanie Travis travels to Maryland for a world-famous dog show--where the competition isn't the only thing that's cutthroat. "Doggedly endearing."--"Publishers Weekly."
When her dog Faith is accepted into the prestigious program at Winston Pumpernill Nursing Home, Melanie Travis gets more than she bargains for when their first outing to this residence full of senior pet lovers results in murder.
Win, Place. . .Or Die. The apparent heart attack that killed kennel owner Max Turnbull has left seven pups in mourning, and his wife Peg suspecting foul play. But the only evidence is their missing prize pooch--a pedigreed poodle named Beau. Enter Melanie Travis. With her young son happily ensconced in day damp, the thirty-something teacher and single mother is talked into investigating her uncle's death--unofficially, of course. Posing as a poodle breeder in search of the perfect stud, Melanie hounds Connecticut's elite canine competitions, and finds an ally in fellow breeder Sam Driver. But her affection cools when she's put on the scent of Sam's questionable past. . .and hot on the trail of a poodle-hating neighbor and one elusive murderer who isn't ready to come to heel. For, as Melanie soon discovers, in a championship dog-eat-dog world, the instinct for survival, and winning, can prove fatal.
“If you like dogs, you’ll love Laurien Berenson’s Melanie Travis mysteries!” —Joanne Fluke, New York Times bestselling author Ever wonder what Melanie and Aunt Peg were up to before solving murders? Let’s step back in time, when college-aged Melanie and her indomitable Aunt Peg were little more than strangers… It’s Christmas in Connecticut, and Peg Turnbull can’t wait to spend her favorite holiday cozying up to husband Max and their clan of pedigree Poodles in Greenwich. But Peg’s spirits drop when the family of Max’s estranged brother Michael invites the pair over for Christmas dinner. Could her in-laws want to settle the long-standing feud over Nana’s will? Peg isn’t expecting any miracles, but it’s been ages since Peg last saw her niece and nephew. Little Melanie must be out of pigtails by now… When they arrive at the Turnbull’s, Peg is not just surprised by how much Melanie has grown up. The family has spared no expense in preparing for the festivities—unusual, considering Michael blew his inheritance after years of financial troubles. Peg suspects there’s an awful secret tucked beneath her brother-in-law’s ostentatious good cheer, and she’s determined to get to the bottom of it. Once she does, someone’s ending up in the doghouse…
When her fiancT Sam's ex-wife, Sheila Vaughn, the new co-publisher of Woof!, a gossipy trade magazine for the dog show world, turns up dead, strangled with a leather dog leash, Melanie Travis embarks on her own investigation into the crime, which could reveal the dark secrets of a number of important dog show exhibitors. Reprint.
When her course at Connecticut's classiest dog obedience school is interrupted by a murder, amateur sleuth Melanie Travis, accompanied by companion Sam Driver, enters the championship circuit and discovers a wealth of suspects. Reprint.
When a fellow dog-handler mysteriously vanishes and a body is found, Melanie Travis finds herself confronted with a wealth of suspects, from a disgruntled dog groomer to a bitter ex-boyfriend, and as she digs deeper to catch a killer, her ex-husband arrives, further complicating matters. Reprint.
While a mysterious stalker terrorizes her life, Melanie Travis also deals with the amorous advances of both her ex-husband and ex-fiance, and sets out to find a missing Dachshund puppy, the victim of a divorced couple's tug-of-war. Reprint.
As the dog days of summer turn to the playful nip of autumn's chill, Melanie Travis is ready for a little relaxation. Her Aunt Peg has the perfect solution--a five-day symposium for dog show judges in Pennsylvania's idyllic Pocono Mountains. While Peg and Melanie's sister-in-law Bertie welcome the opportunity to socialize with the dog world's elite, the very pregnant Melanie embraces the chance to simply unwind. But when renowned judge Charles Evans delivers a keynote address that irritates many of the attendees, the symposium's agenda takes a deadly turn. For later that evening, Charles is found floating face-down in the outdoor hot tub. With few clues to go on, the police are baffled. But Melanie decides to take matters into her own hands, suspecting that a cold-blooded murderer may lurk among her fellow dog-lovers. . . "This canine cozy is absorbing enough to delight even cat lovers." --Publishers Weekly "The mystery keeps the book rolling along, but it's the entertaining relationships Melanie has with her family that keep the reader involved." --Romantic Times