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Authors: Earlene Fowler

Seven Sisters

BOOK: Seven Sisters
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Seven Sisters
Fowler, Earlene
Penguin (2001)

SUMMARY:
While trying to unravel a feuding family's tragic past, Benni Harper, an ex-cowgirl who is now a quilter and folk art expert, uncovers a shocking pattern of tragedy--and stitches a hodgepodge of clues into a very disturbing design.

Seven Sisters
Fowler, Earlene
Penguin (2001)

SUMMARY:
While trying to unravel a feuding family's tragic past, Benni Harper, an ex-cowgirl who is now a quilter and folk art expert, uncovers a shocking pattern of tragedy--and stitches a hodgepodge of clues into a very disturbing design.

Seven Sisters,
a challenging pattern that features a single six-pointed star surrounded by six identical stars, was most likely inspired by an observation of nature—the Seven Sisters is a loose grouping of stars in the constellation Taurus. Although the stars in the cluster appear to be close together, they are, in fact, quite far apart.

Praise for Earlene Fowler’s BENNI HARPER MYSTERIES

SEVEN SISTERS

“Fowler’s regular characters all show significant growth; the mystery itself is satisfying both as a puzzle . . . and as a story about secrets buried in a family’s past.”


Booklist

“As in all of Earlene’s previous books, in addition to the mystery there are numerous other threads cleverly interwoven in the plot . . . enjoyable . . . well-written.”


San Luis Obispo (CA) Magazine

“Benni is feisty, caring, loving, and one heck of a part-time sleuth . . . a not-to-be-missed view into the worlds of crime and the elite.”


Rendezvous

MARINER’S COMPASS

Winner of the Agatha Award for Best Novel

“Captivating . . . [an] excellent addition to a notable series.”


Publishers Weekly
(starred review)

“Fowler’s plots can be as outrageous as Ellery Queen’s, her turf is Ross Macdonald’s, and her tone is heir to Grafton and Paretsky . . . [She is] an up-and-comer worth watching.”


Nashville Scene

“Fowler’s best work to date . . .
Mariner’s Compass
points the way to quality reading for the heart, mind, and soul.”


Ventura County (CA) Star

DOVE IN THE WINDOW

Nominated for an Agatha Award for Best Novel

“Excellent . . . While the characters are perhaps the most vivid feature, setting nearly edges them out. Best of all is Benni’s sharp, sassy voice.”


Booknews

“Fowler writes beautifully about the picturesque Central Coast, ranching, and local cuisine.”


Booklist

GOOSE IN THE POND

Nominated for an Agatha Award for Best Novel

“Engaging.”


Booklist

“Brilliantly crafted romantic suspense . . . waiting to be devoured by the reader.”


The Mystery Zone

“A fast, fun read that jumps into the action right from the get-go.”


San Luis Obispo (CA) Telegram-Tribune

KANSAS TROUBLES

Nominated for an Agatha Award for Best Novel

“Mayhem, murder, chaos, and romance . . . well-paced mystery ... fun reading.”


The Derby (KS) Daily Reporter

“Fowler’s story about a sassy ex-cowgirl and quilter who loves to solve crimes . . . is a lot of fun to read. Fowler has a deft touch.”


The Wichita Eagle

IRISH CHAIN

“A terrific whodunit! The dialogue is intelligent and witty, the characters intensely human, and the tantalizing puzzle keeps the pages turning.”

—Jean Hager author of
Bride and Doom

“A blue-ribbon cozy . . . This well-textured sequel to
Fool’s Puzzle
. . . intricately blends social history and modern mystery.”


Publishers Weekly

FOOL’S PUZZLE

Nominated for an Agatha Award for Best First Mystery

“Characters come to full three-dimensional life, and her plot is satisfyingly complex.”


The Jackson (MS) Clarion-Ledger

“Breezy, humorous dialogue of the first order.”


Chicago Sun-Times

“I loved
Fool’s Puzzle
.... [Earlene Fowler] made me laugh out loud on one page and brought tears to my eyes the next.... I can’t wait to read more.”

—Edgar
®
Award-winning author Margaret Maron

Berkley Prime Crime Books by Earlene Fowler

THE SADDLEMAKER’S WIFE

The Benni Harper Mysteries

FOOL’S PUZZLE
IRISH CHAIN
KANSAS TROUBLES
GOOSE IN THE POND
DOVE IN THE WINDOW
MARINER’S COMPASS
SEVEN SISTERS
ARKANSAS TRAVELER
STEPS TO THE ALTAR
SUNSHINE AND SHADOW
BROKEN DISHES
DELECTABLE MOUNTAINS
TUMBLING BLOCKS

THE BERKLEY PUBLISHING GROUP
Published by the Penguin Group
Penguin Group (USA) Inc.
375 Hudson Street, New York, New York 10014, USA
Penguin Group (Canada), 90 Eglinton Avenue East, Suite 700, Toronto, Ontario M4P 2Y3, Canada
(a division of Pearson Penguin Canada Inc.)
Penguin Books Ltd., 80 Strand, London WC2R ORL, England
Penguin Group Ireland, 25 St. Stephen’s Green, Dublin 2, Ireland (a division of Penguin Books Ltd.)
Penguin Group (Australia), 250 Camberwell Road, Camberwell, Victoria 3124, Australia
(a division of Pearson Australia Group Pty. Ltd.)
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(a division of Pearson New Zealand Ltd.)
Penguin Books (South Africa) (Pty.) Ltd., 24 Sturdee Avenue, Rosebank, Johannesburg 2196,
South Africa

Penguin Books Ltd., Registered Offices: 80 Strand, London WC2R ORL, England

This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, events, or locales is entirely coincidental. The publisher does not have any control over and does not assume any responsibility for author or third-party websites or their content.

SEVEN SISTERS

A Berkley Prime Crime Book/ published by arrangement with the author

Copyright © 2000 by Earlene Fowler.

The Edgar
®
name is a registered service mark of the Mystery Writers of America, Inc.

All rights reserved.
No part of this book may be reproduced, scanned, or distributed in any printed or electronic form
without permission. Please do not participate in or encourage piracy of copyrighted materials in
violation of the author’s rights. Purchase only authorized editions.
For information address: The Berkley Publishing Group,
a division of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.,
375 Hudson Street, New York, New York 10014.

Visit our website at
www.penguin.com

eISBN : 978-1-101-50125-2

BERKLEY® PRIME CRIME
PRIME CRIME Books are published by The Berkley Publishing Group,
a division of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.,
375 Hudson Street, New York, New York 10014.
The name BERKLEY PRIME CRIME and the BERKLEY PRIME CRIME design
are trademarks belonging to Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

http://us.penguingroup.com

For

Debra Jackson, my wonderful baby sister
and the real quilter in the family

and

Helen May,
dear friend and one of the most
courageous women I know

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

I never forget that books and lives are not written completely alone. Some of the people below have helped me with gifts of information and technical advice, some with personal support and friendship, many with touches of both. To each of them I extend my gratitude and also confess that any mistakes in the manuscript are mine alone:

O, Lord, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!

Clare Bazley—for your precious friendship, insightful comments and for the great information on quarter horses, and

Tom Bazley—for giving me one of the best lines in this book.

Tina Davis—for your special friendship and cheerful, giving spirit.

Karen Gray, deputy district attorney, San Luis Obispo—for sound legal advice, and research help above and beyond the call of duty (with an extra thanks for being such a tremendous friend).

Jo Ellen Heil—for your Spirit-filled friendship, your graceful suppport, and your prayers, I truly give thanks.

Christine “Nini” Hill, the Queen of everything—for a friendship that defies description: No one makes me laugh like you do.

Steve Himmelrich, detective, San Luis Obispo Sheriff’s department.

Robert A. Jakucs, retired LAPD detective, Pacific Division.

Lynda Kay, M.D.—for expert medical advice.

Dean James and Donna Houston Murray—much treasured writing buddies.

Jo-Ann Mapson—beloved friend, writer, and shopping partner.

Mike and Magaline Messina and Lisa Marrone, fire captain, Department of Forestry—for showing me the Carrizo Plains.

Pam Munns, officer, California Highway Patrol, and Janice Mangan, officer, San Luis Obispo Police Department—for generously sharing your life and experiences.

Judith Palais, my ever remarkable editor, and Deborah Schneider, my wonderful agent.

My husband, Allen—who proves to me every day that love isn’t only someplace that you fall, but something that you do.

SEVEN SISTERS

The Seven Sisters quilt pattern, like many others, was most likely designed from an observation of nature. The Seven Sisters, or Pleiades, is a fairly loose grouping of stars in the constellation Taurus. Although seven stars can be seen with the naked eye, binoculars or telescopes reveal it actually consists of several hundred more. The quilt pattern itself, a single six-pointed star surrounded by six identical stars, has been seen as early as 1845. It became popular again during the Depression era, when hand-piecing difficult and challenging patterns was popular. It is also known as Seven Stars, Evening Star, and Seven Stars in a Cluster. An interesting phenomenon of the Seven Sisters star cluster is though they appear to be close together, they are, in fact, quite far apart.

BOOK: Seven Sisters
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ads

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