Thief in Retreat: A Sister Agatha Mystery Hardcover – Large Print, Mar 2005
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From Publishers Weekly
Extern nun Sister Agatha looks into some odd doings at the Retreat, an upscale New Mexico resort that was once the Monastery of Saint John in the Pines, in her divine second outing from the prolific Thurlos (after 2002's Bad Faith). The disappearance and reappearance of a number of religious statues and artwork that were allowed to remain at the Retreat after the sale of the old monastery prompt Archbishop Miera to call in the curator of the local college's museum. Enter Sister Agatha, her Harley and Pax, her white German shepherd. Sister Agatha and the curator join forces with Sheriff Tom Green, a close friend from the sister's previous life, who's out of his own jurisdiction but on hand to aid in the growing investigation. Suspects that include the local sheriff and an assemblage of mystery writers, plus a resident ghost that haunts the Retreat's halls and even has Sister Agatha wondering about unrest in the afterlife, keep this cozy humming. Readers will cheer as Sister Agatha puts God first and follows His lead.
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“Enough twists and turns and ghosts to keep it fresh.”—New Orleans Times Picayune
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He wants her to go to the retreat; a former monastery where religious folk art belonging to the archdiocese is on display. Someone is stealing some of the artifacts and replacing them with forgeries. The Archbishop wants Sister Agatha to recover the church property and catch the thief. Driving her motorcycle and having her guard dog Pax sitting in the sidecar, she goes to the retreat. Almost immediately she finds the murdered body of the art professor who was testing two objects to determine their authenticity. While Sister Agatha is there, more objects go missing, the handyman vanishes and Sister Agatha sees the `ghost' that is haunting the halls at the inn. At her wit's end, Sister Agatha baits a trap and hopes that the killer and thief fall for it.
Aimee and David Thurlo have written an exciting amateur sleuth novel showcasing a nun who is deeply religious yet is a witty, inquisitive and a brilliant crime solver. A convention of mystery writers is staying at the retreat, giving readers, an insiders' look at the world of writing and getting published. The mystery is well crafted, the characters are brilliantly developed and the storyline is so fascinating it is impossible to put THIEF IN RETREAT down until the audience finds out who killer is.