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Devils Claw Mass Market Paperback – Jul 12 2001


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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Avon; Reprint edition (July 12 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0380792494
  • ISBN-13: 978-0380792498
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 10.8 x 17.1 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 431 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #2,091,856 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

From Amazon

A missing teenager and an octogenarian found dead of apparently natural causes are pretty run-of-the-mill cases in Bisbee, Arizona, where Sheriff Joanna Brady is focusing on the last-minute details of her upcoming wedding. In this latest outing in Judith Jance's Brady series, the connection between the two events is a thin one. In the author's capable hands, however, it's enough to drive this well-plotted mystery to a credible conclusion.

Fifteen-year-old Lucy Ridder dreads her mother's release from prison, eight years after she was convicted of killing Lucy's beloved father. Lucy is aware that her mother's priority is not a family reunion but the retrieval of a mysterious diskette entrusted to Lucy by her dad shortly before his death. After inadvertently witnessing her mother's brutal slaying by a stranger who's also hot after the diskette, Lucy vanishes. It takes most of the novel for Joanna to figure out that Lucy's disappearance is tied to her mother's murder, and for good reasons. Besides the distraction of her pending nuptials, the sheriff has been accused of killing her elderly, beloved neighbor for financial gain. Because the reader knows the truth of both situations very early in the game, Joanna's delayed awareness doesn't pack as much wallop as it might. The greater mystery is whether she'll strangle her wedding-obsessed mother before she and her too-good-to-be-true fiancé make it to the altar. --Jane Adams --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

Southwestern mysteries continue to grow in popularity, with Jance's series, set in southern Arizona, one of the strongest entries in the subgenre. The new novel to feature Sheriff Joanna Brady opens at the entrance to a desert canyon called the Cochise Stronghold, where Sandra Ridder, who is part Apache, is trying to retrieve an item she buried eight years ago, before going to prison for killing her husband. The next day hikers find her corpse, while Sandra's 15-year-old daughter, Lucinda, and the girl's pet red-tailed hawk go missing. Could Lucinda, who seems to be a troubled loner, have killed her mother as revenge for her father's murder? Joanna starts to investigate shortly before she's to be married. Then Clayton Rhodes, the neighbor who helps feed Joanna's animals, dies suddenly, and unexpectedly bequeaths his ranch to her. Clayton's estranged daughter feels she should have inherited the property. Unreasonably and viciously, she blames Joanna for exerting undue influence over her father. The tangled threads of Joanna's personal life come close to overwhelming her professional one, and she has to exercise all of her time management skills to keep the murder inquiry on track. Her fianc?, Butch Dixon, comes off as way too perfect to be human, but his parents, in an amusing touch, are seriously dysfunctional. Sometimes the dialogue is stiff, but generally this is a solid installment in a worthy series. The Arizona desert, as usual in Jance's mysteries, plays an unforgettable part in this atmospheric tale. Mystery Guild dual main selection. (July)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Lucy waited until she knew her grandmother was asleep before she left the house and quietly wheeled her bike out of the shed. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
J.A. Jance writes with such a fluid style that I glide right thru her novels. Her books are easy to read and comprehend. I particularly enjoy the Joanna Brady series.
In "Devil's Claw" there are plenty of suspects to go around, a couple of running subplots and an ever growing cast of regulars.
J.A. Jance does a great job of filling in the background of the continuing characters...enough info to set their place and position for first time readers of the series; but not so much that familiar readers are bored or insulted with the data.
It's a pleasure to observe how the characters develop and grow as the series progresses. The scenic setting of Southern Arizona is always well done...you can almost see those great sunsets.
Plotting, character evolvement, red herrings all give the reader plenty of times to solve things along with Sheriff Brady.
J.A. Jance does a great job balancing the whodunit aspect with Sheriff Brady's personal life without detracting from the main plot. The reader also gets a good view of the "unglamorous" aspect of the sheriff's job...meetings, personel problems, budgets, civic speaking engagements and the like.
This is just a wonderful series, and "Devil's Claw" is a welcome addition to the Joanna brady legacy.
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Format: Hardcover
In Bisbee, Arizona (Cochise County) Sheriff Joanna Brady, is an up-to-date female version of Tombstone's Wyatt Earp, with a touch of Marge (the sheriff in Fargo) thrown in. Also a soon to be bride, a single mom, a widow, former Tupperware saleslady, poker player, not to mention a clever crime stopper - the down-to-earth Sheriff Brady wears a great number of different hats in this book and has a level headed approach to everything. In the days prior to her upcoming wedding, with her excessively domineering mother and future husband handling all the details, Sheriff Brady handles a couple of murders and a missing teenager plus the loss of her neighbor and helper. In between all the murder, mayhem, and malicious, mean characters; she works in mama duties, Sunday church, a wedding shower, in-laws (past and future), and deals with sensitive personnel issues. The mothers of the bride and groom are almost scarier than the villains in this fast paced thriller. You'll want to behave in Cochise County or this sheriff could sic her mama on you! Somehow I failed to "get" the significance of the devil's claw, but what the heck, it had an enjoyable read. Characterization is admirable but did get a bit confusing toward the end; I would have gladly swapped a sub-plot or two for a bit more of the setting, maybe even a desert sunrise or sunset? This is a fun and spirited story and this reader is delighted to learn it is part of a series.
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By Dawn Dowdle on Aug. 29 2000
Format: Hardcover
J. A. Jance's Joanna Brady series is one of my absolute favorites. Probably helps that I got to have lunch (one on one) with J. A. Jance last year.
Joanna Brady is a Sheriff in Arizona. She is also a widow and single mom. I like the way J. A. Jance has developed Joanna's 12 year old daughter. She has gone through a lot but yet isn't an obnoxious child, nor is she a wimp. Joanna has gone through a lot as well. In this book she is to marry Butch. Her neighbor and friend Clayton dies. He used to help her feed her animals after Joanna's husband was killed by drug dealers (in a previous book). She always has a lot to deal with -- running the Sheriff's Dept., taking care of her daughter, keeping peace with her mother (a full-time job), getting to know Butch (in the past books), and trying to solve various murders and crimes.
Lucy has run away because her mother is getting out of prison. Her mother killed her father and Lucy has been living with her grandmother. She doesn't want to see her mother so she and her red-tailed hawk Big Red run away.
I normally don't like books where it isn't told in first person, but this is one series that it works well for.
I really enjoy this series and am always waiting for the next installment.
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Format: Hardcover
At the beginning of the book, the eighth installment of the Sheriff Joanna Brady series, Joanna, a card-carrying member of the "women who do too much" club, is balancing her job, motherhood while preparing for her upcoming marriage to Butch Dixon. But she is thrown for a loop when her much loved neighbor and handyman, Clayton, is found dead and an Indian girl is missing and a suspect in the murder of her mother, recently released from prison. Meanwhile Joanna's personal life is in an uproar with a mother who is micromanaging her wedding, new inlaws-to-be who seem more impossible than her mother and her 12 year-old daughter who vacillates between wanting to be treated like an adult and thinking she will be forgotten after the marriage. Clayton's daughter, Reba, arrives for the funeral accusing Joanna of murdering her father after she learns Joanna is to inherit Clayton's ranch. Reba extracts a very personal revenge against Joanna.
Joanna becomes much more human in her reaction to these adversities, abandoning her superwoman mantle. She comes to terms with what is really important for her while providing a very entertaining and engaging story. You care what happens to these characters who are so real it seems you know them. I highly recommend this book and am looking forward to the next installment in what may be my favorite mystery series.
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