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"If you like dogs, you'll love Laurien Berenson's Melanie Travis mysteries!" - Joanne Fluke, New York Times bestselling author

Melanie Travis needs a little peace from her busy life this Christmas. But the usual holiday hubbub is a joy compared to the killer surprise she finds tucked underneath the tree . . .

With a demanding teaching job at Connecticut's elite Howard Academy and five poodles scampering around the house, Melanie barely has energy for the upcoming Christmas rush. But she unwraps an unexpected challenge when her brother and ex-husband, elated by the recent success of their country café, make a spontaneous bid on a dilapidated pine tree farm. Although the ten-acre lot had been a popular seasonal destination while the original owner was still alive, it'll take some sprucing up - and a small miracle or two - before the neglected place is in shape for December.

Unfortunately, the impromptu business venture goes cold when the group discovers a purebred Maltese whimpering in the snow-covered grove - right beside a dead body. Pete, a squatter who camped out on the land, apparently met his end after a fallen fir tree branch knocked him on the head. But as Melanie and Aunt Peg investigate Pete's history and the terrible habit that cost him everything, it's clear his death was no accident. Now, Melanie must run through a flurry of likely suspects and muzzle a dogged murderer in time - or she'll be next on someone's deadly list.



About the Author

Laurien Berenson

I can't remember a time when I wasn't writing something. I always wanted to tell stories and I'm incredibly grateful that now there are people who want to read them. I think of the Melanie Travis mystery series as the saga of a woman's life--with complications. And dogs. And love. And lots of laughter. We should all be so lucky.

Laurien Berenson is an Agatha and Macavity Award nominee, winner of the Romantic Times Reviewers' Choice Award, and a four time winner of the Maxwell Award, presented by the Dog Writers Association of America. She and her husband live on a farm in Kentucky surrounded by dogs and horses. She can be reached at her website: www.laurienberenson.com



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