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review 2018-03-22 03:54
Miss Kopp's Midnight Confessions (Kopp Sisters Novel, #3)
Miss Kopp's Midnight Confessions - Amy Stewart

This was my favorite of the three thus far, and oddly, it's because there really wasn't any single plot that stretched from beginning to end.  In fact, it's a stretch to call it a mystery.


Some background for those unfamiliar with the books:  This series is based on the life of Constance Kopp, one of the first female deputy sheriffs in the United States, and the first to be granted a shield, gun, authority to apprehend, and be paid the same wage as her male counterparts (likely the last one too, on that score).   Amy Stewart uses historically accurate events and characters, with as many details as she can find, then fictionalises the spaces in between.  At the end of each book, she includes a detailed accounting of what is factual and what is fictional, along with a detailed list of notes and sources.


While the first two books had, more or less, a single story line as the focus, ...Midnight Confessions is more a collection of smaller stories, each centered on a real person and event, that Stewart has woven together into a cohesive narrative.  


All of these smaller stories have a single theme: the very real vulnerabilities women had, and the rights they didn't.  We're all vaguely aware that society really frowned upon "loose morals" – a state unique to women, as men weren't expected to have any morals – and we've all made jokes about the "morality police", but when you read about a woman over 18 who is arrested because she left home to move into a strict, all-female boarding house to work in a powder factory so she could contribute to the war effort...well we've certainly come a long way in 100 years.  Waywardness this was called - and guess who brought the charges against her?  Her mother. 


Anyway, there are a few characters in this book that all have to face this lack of agency, whether they deserve the charges against them or not. (Deserve, as in guilty or innocent of the charges, not morally deserving.)  All of their stories play out over the course of the book, but there's no sense of tension or climax. Some might find that disappointing, but it worked really well for me; it kept the pace snappy, and I didn't feel like Stewart was manufacturing drama for the sake of drama.  I was able to enjoy and appreciate these women's stories on their own merit; if she'd tried to twist them and manipulate them to create some fictional plot, I doubt I'd have liked the book half as much.


She ends the book with an election year just beginning and an inevitable shake-up in the local politics.  I'm looking forward to the next book, scheduled for September, to see what happens to Constance and Sheriff Heath.


This book works for the Kill Your Darlings game card COD:  shot with an arrow.  It's written by an American woman.

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text 2018-03-22 03:34
Reading progress update: I've read 24%.
The Man in the Brown Suit - Agatha Christie

‘You’re to have No. 28 on the port side,’ said the steward. ‘A very good cabin, sir.’

‘I am afraid that I must insist. No. 17 was the cabin promised to me.’

We had come to an impasse. Each one of us was determined not to give way. Strictly speaking, I, at any rate, might have retired from the contest and eased matters by offering to accept Cabin 28. So long as I did not have 13 it was immaterial to me what other cabin I had. But my blood was up. I had not the least intention of being the first to give way.

And I disliked Chichester. He had false teeth that clicked when he ate. Many men have been hated for less.

I'm really enjoying this one. Anne Beddingfeld seems like a heroine that I wish Christie had written another story for. 


I only hope that she doesn't do anything completely daft by the end of the book that would spoil my current image of her.

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text 2018-03-22 01:41
Reading progress update: I've read 97 out of 224 pages.
One, Two, Buckle My Shoe - Agatha Christie

it's very enjoyable--this whole idea of the suspect pool consisting mainly of whoever went into and out of the building where the deceased (suicide? a murder?) dentist's office is located, on that fateful day. Poirot was there too, though, so...once again...tough luck for any murderer hoping to get away with it. a few thoughts: I wonder why India keeps cropping up, from various angles. I'm wondering if I should focus mainly on the people who were actually known to be in the building right around the time of death...or did someone from earlier come back?? I wonder if Blunt is the key to the whole thing (he's the one with the political background that could endanger him...and yet, he's not the one who died). 


I've also got my eye on the alternate titles that have been used for this novel: An Overdose of Death, and The Patriotic Murders (plural). I'm far enough along to know why the older Fontana edition featured a gun prominently on the cover...but the edition I have features poison and a syringe, front and center. 


the hoax-telegram angle showed up in a Freeman Wills Crofts novel I read not too long ago, and if that is anything to go by and draw from...that telegram is not some innocent prank. that at least I'm pretty sure of. anyway--fully expect to wrap this up tomorrow, and I hope the solution is a nifty one. I know this isn't a particularly famous Christie novel, but I would still love to be flabbergasted at the end. maybe not Roger Ackroyd-level flabbergasted, but still...

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text 2018-03-21 21:09
Reading progress update: I've read 127 out of 384 pages.
My Husband's Wife: A Novel - Jane Corry

All caught up with updates. This book is boring. You still don't know what occurred between Lily and her dead brother Daniel. She apparently was a virgin prior to her marriage and isn't having sex with her husband and itscausingit issues. She alsonowa obsessed with a potential murderer whose case she's working on. 


Carla's story---still don't care. 

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text 2018-03-21 20:34
Reading progress update: I've read 51 out of 384 pages.
My Husband's Wife: A Novel - Jane Corry

I am not liking the dual POVs. We have Lily (a lawyer working an appeals case) and Carla (a 9 year old dealing with her mother and her special friendship with a man named Larry).

Lilly feels off to me in some weird way. I don't like the interactions between her and her has to be full of crap client. I also wonder would you even be working an appeals case if the client refuses to tell you about new evidence and is making up clues for you to solve? She is newly married to a man named Ed and seems to be doubting he loves her as much as he did his ex girlfriend. Due to her size (size 14) she wonders if he really is as happy with her as he says he is.

Nothing on Carla much besides I am bored with her POV.

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