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    PAWING THROUGH THE PAST by Rita Mae Brown and Sneaky Pie Brown

    Bantam Books, May 2000

    Harry is enjoying preparing for her twenty year class reunion despite having to work with Boom Boom. She has only positive memories of her Senior year but it becomes apparent that not everyone felt the same way. One after another, the members of the class are murdered.

    Harry has problems of her own. She hasn't been able to forgive her ex-husband Fair or Boom Boom for their betrayl back when Harry and Fair were married but Fair is intent on wooing her and winning her back. Boom Boom may not have turned over a new leaf, but she does show streaks of intelligence that don't let Harry think of her as a complete bimbo no matter how much she would like to.

    With Harry emotionally invested in herself, she doesn't have the time or energy to investigate who is behind the killings--and risks getting caught up in them herself. Her animals (Mrs. Murphy and Pewter, the cats, and Tucker, the Welsh corgi) don't waste time with this emotions and are able to turn up dead bodies, murder weapons, and missing vehicles.

    PAWING THROUGH THE PAST maintains a light style with engaging and likable characters (both human and animal). Although Harry and her friends are surrounded by danger and a twenty-year old tragedy, they are able to face their lives with humor and friendship. The animals are the stars of the mystery (as is typical in the Mrs. Murphy Mystery series), but Harry and her near-relationship with Fair adds to the human appeal.

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    Three Stars

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