The Shortest Day by Jane Langton

The Shortest Day by Jane Langton

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Homer investigates the violent deaths of a beautiful stage manager’s admirers 

Each year, the beautiful Sarah Bailey marks the winter solstice by organizing a pageant of drama and song for the citizens of Harvard University. Last year, the star of the show was Henry Shady, an Appalachian folk singer whose homespun charm won the eye of every young woman in Cambridge. On the eve of this year’s Revels, the singer is struck down in the street by an SUV driven by Sarah’s husband. The police dismiss it as a freak accident, but Mary Kelly, who witnessed the singer’s death, is not so sure. 

Her husband, Harvard professor and sometime sleuth Homer, dismisses her suspicion. But when more of the revelers suffer untimely deaths, Homer sees a pattern. Winter has gripped Cambridge, and Sarah’s husband may have been seized with murderous jealousy.


“[An] enormously appealing . . . colorful and absorbing tale.” —Publishers Weekly

“A cheering mystery . . . a way to get through the longest night of the year.” —The New York Times Book Review

“Langton’s description of the stick-wielding Morris dancers is so vivid that readers can almost hear the sticks clashing.” —Boston Sunday Herald

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