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Dear Miss Demeanor [Mass Market Paperback]

Joan Hess
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Dec 15 1990 Claire Malloy Mysteries
The scandals mount in Farberville, Arkansas when a respected teacher is fired for pilfering petty cash and suggestive letters are sent to the local advice columnist. Murder of the high school principal is absolutely the last straw, and Claire Malloy, in her third outing in this acclaimed mystery series, gets a notion to do some detecting. But the killer is still out there and has some unfinished business....
"Hess's books are funny, acerbic, touching, terrific."
Elizabeth Peters

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Review

"Hess's books are funny, acerbic, touching, terrific." --Elizabeth Peters

"Joan Hess is one very funny woman." --Susan Dunlap

"Joan Hess is the funniest mystery writer to come down the pipe since England's incomparable Pamela Branch. And oh, how well Joan writes." --Carolyn G. Hart
--This text refers to an alternate Mass Market Paperback edition.

From the Publisher

"Hess's books are funny, acerbic, touching, terrific." -Elizabeth Peters --This text refers to an alternate Mass Market Paperback edition.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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First Sentence
Caron and Inez skittered into the Book Depot like bumper cars gone berserk. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
4.1 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Witty sleuthing in small-town US Nov. 2 2003
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Book Depot owner Claire Malloy, the recreational sleuth of Faberville, is urged by her daughter Caron to investigate the dismissal of an elderly spinster journalism-teacher at Faberville High: Miss Parchester, the daughter of a former judge of the Supreme Court, was accused of embezzling petty cash from the journalism-fund of Faberville High.
Suddenly the ghastly prinicipal of Fabervile High as well as the nasty janitor/custodian are poisoned and naturally old Miss Parchester seems to be the culprit. However, several of the teaching staff seem to have a motif to quieten the principal and/or the janitor.
Substituting in teaching Claire does her bit of sleuthing in order to solve the crimes.
As I have mentioned before, this book is not a thriller. Claire Malloy is a witty person, however, and has to cope with raising a teenage daughter mostly always speaking in capital letters and therefore is nearly incessantly involed in "adolescent melodrama" (p. 3). Yet another funny tidbit is Claire's relationship to local CID-boss Peter Rosen who seems to be a hunk, but a bit clumsy when it comes to investigating.
Result: The right book, if you want to spend an afternoon chuckling in front of the fireplace or in the garden.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Light and mild Oct. 17 2001
Format:Mass Market Paperback
A high school principal and janitor are poisoned with cynanide. The scene is Farberville and Claire Molloy the bookstore owner is the detective. Nobel Prize prose it's not. It's written in an almost old-fashioned style with lots of cliches and weak jokes (as you can see from sample pages on this WEB site) but I think this is deliberate attempt to create the cosy atmosphere (If it really is deliberate then I should have given an extra star). No sex or violence. It's light bland entertainment and the victims' deaths are no tragedy. Clues are placed that should enable you to figure whodunnit. The plot is clever enough and the suspects likely enough to keep you turning the pages. Not quite up to Agatha Christie, but in that style. The only ethnic diversity is that Molloy's policeman boy friend is called Rosen and comes from New York. Some curious anachronisms. There are references to jitterbugging and back street abortions but also to the high school class of 1990 and to the 60's "fifteen years ago" (Roe v Wade was 1973). Suspend critical judgement and relax and enjoy.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A great beach book Aug. 26 2000
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
When the journalism teacher at Faberville High School is accused of pilfering petty cash and suspended from work, Claire Malloy finds herself pushed into substitute teaching while trying to clear the teacher's name. The principal is poisoned and all clues point to the dear journalism teacher. Then a second body turns up. Claire works to clear the journalism teacher's name before having to chaperone the school's dreaded Friday night home coming dance. While the characters could have been better developed, this does not detract from the story. Antics at Farberville High rival the best soap opera plot, motives abound and humor prevails - all adding up to a page turning, fun mystery.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Dear Miss Demeanor Feb. 4 2002
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This book was saucy and I enjoyed it very much. Until the ending. I was left feeling as though it wasn't finished. But there wasn't any conclusion concerning Miss Dort, and Miss hart's fickle boyfriend. Miss Dort, helped the now dead principle with a crime, and I feel that before the book ended, they both should have been dealth with. So although I liked the book, I certainly didn't like the ending, it didn't solve anything. I hope in one of her future books she will take care of this. anna cook
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