Ballantine, Dec 2002, 24.95, 352 pp.
There is a small little town in Virginia that is quite quaint and magical, a place where the animals understand and speak to one another. The most influential people in town belong to the Jefferson Hunt Club, an organization where humans, horses and hounds combine to flush out the foxes. One day while walking the horses and hounds, the hound master “Sister” Jane Arnold sees an old horse that died in his sleep on After All farm.
Sister organizes the horse's burial but before it can be put in the ground, the body of a woman wearing a sapphire ring is dug up. The body is that of Nola, the daughter of Tedi and Edward Bancroft. The young woman disappeared one day in 1981. Also vanishing at the same time as Nola was Guy Ramy, her boyfriend and the sheriff's son. his body as shortly found later. Sister, with the help of some friends, both human and animal, are able to solve the decades old murders and bring peace to two grieving families.
Fans of the Mrs. Murphy series are going to love HOTSPUR, an enchanting tale where the animals delight the reader with their ready wit, common sense and love for their humans. Sister is a memorable heroine who knows how to guide the members of the Jefferson Hunt Club in the direction she wants them to go. Reader will want to finish this book in one sitting so they can find out who the killer is and what the motive was.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner