Miss Julias School Of Beauty Hardcover – Mar 22 2005
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Abbotsville, North Carolina's arbiter of all things proper, Miss Julia, and her friend Sam are finally married--or are they? Something is not quite right about their spur-of-the-moment nuptials at the Wedding Ring Chapel near Dollywood. The fact that she may have been living with Sam without being legally wed sends the normally unflappable Miss Julia into a tailspin, but that's not all she has to contend with. Her late first husband's erstwhile mistress, Hazel Marie, whom Miss Julia now thinks of as family, is organizing a beauty pageant to raise money for the sheriff department's canine unit and enlists Miss Julia's help. Also on the pageant committee is Etta Mae Wiggins, who once set her cap for Sam. Housekeeper Lillian and Sam's man James are feuding over who is the better cook. And LuAnne Conover is planning a big surprise reception for the supposed newlyweds at the country club. Fun for series fans, although a few of Ross' characters teeter dangerously close to being stereotypes. Mary Ellen Quinn
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About the Author
Ann B. Ross holds a doctorate in English from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and has taught literature at the University of North Carolina, Asheville.
Watch an interview with Ann B. Ross:
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
That's only the minor storyline here. The big news is that Hazel Marie is planning a local beauty contest, and to that end she enlists the help of Miss Julia and her nemesis, Etta Mae Wiggins. The six contestants must be taught how to walk, talk, dress, and make themselves appealing to the audience and the three judges. Hazel Marie and Etta Mae do most of the work with the girls, so no formal School of Beauty exists. But to Miss Julia's credit, she takes the most needy contestant under her wing and does pretty well with her. And the pageant is a success.
Other readers may think this episode is somehow lacking, but I laughed out loud more than once at Miss Julia's observations and succinct assessments. Her constant appraisal of everything that comes her way is one of her endearing qualities. She *does* need to calm down where Sam is concerned and simply trust that he is indeed a good man who is hopelessly devoted to her. Perhaps time will tell in that respect.
An entertaining read with memorable characters.
The premise of "School of Beauty" is that Hazel Marie is organizing a beauty pagent to help raise funds for the sheriff's department. Miss Julia is brought in to help the contestants with deportment. The second story line is that the validity of Julia's and Sam's marriage is called into question when it surfaces that the minister who performed the ceremony in Pigeon Forge, TN might not be authorized by the state to officiate. Of course, this causes problems for our ever proper Miss Julia as she goes into full panic mode about "living in sin" (another far-fetched notion...I mean, we are in the 21st century and no one will sew a scarlet A to her blouse). All I can say is, God bless Sam for putting up with her.
All in all, it was a good book, but the character of Miss Julia isn't continuing to evolve into the strong, independent woman I hoped she'd be. She still cares too much about what others think and still allows their opinions to dictate her actions.