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The Accidental Florist Mass Market Paperback – Nov 27 2007

3.0 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Avon; Reprint edition (Nov. 27 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 006052846X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060528461
  • Product Dimensions: 10.6 x 1.4 x 17.1 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 113 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #817,077 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

At the start of Agatha-winner Churchill's middling 16th cozy to feature Chicago-area amateur sleuth Jane Jeffry (after 2004's A Midsummer Night's Scream), Jane and her best friend, Shelley, decide to take a class on women's safety at the urging of Jane's long-time beau, Mel. Before the course is concluded, their teacher, Miss Welbourne, is murdered by a blow to the head. Jane's personal life overshadows the search for the killer: she and Mel decide to get married, so there's a wedding to plan, a house addition to design and an annoying almost-mother-in-law to handle. The domestic escapades make for enjoyable reading, and the safety tips Jane and Shelley learn are also helpful to the reader. But the plot is a little thin and much of the dialogue rings a false note. The book's most literary aspect is the wordplay of the title. (Mar.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

About the Author

Jill Churchill has won the Agatha and Macavity Mystery Readers awards and was nominated for an Anthony Award for her bestselling Jane Jeffry series. She is also the author of the highly acclaimed Grace and Favor mysteries and lives in the Midwest.

Customer Reviews

3.0 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Don't waste your time reading this book. There is no mystery, no motive and the title doesn't even make sense. The murder is accidental to whatever plot there is and Mel solves it in half a page towards the end. The "story" is about Jane and Mel getting married, her dog dying, Thelma having a stroke and dying and Mel's mother interfering in the second "fake" wedding. I realised 2/3 of the way through there is NO MYSTERY and it's just about the wedding/s. When I finished, I felt ripped off and that I had wasted my time reading it. If you must read it because you like the series, borrow it from the library. Don't waste your money on buying a copy. I can't believe this was published; Jill Churchill really phoned this one in. There's also a lot of repetition, some conversations are repeated three times! It feels as if the author wrote the first half, the editor wrote the next quarter and then the author wrote the final quarter. I can't believe an author can get away with writing something as poor as this, even if she is an established author. It's so hypocritical, because it's hard for new authors to get published even if their book is one of the best.
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Format: Hardcover
She did it again. Jill Churchill, an admirably incorrigible author, repeated what she did in BELL, BOOK, AND SCANDAL, # 14 in her Jane Jeffry series. In THE ACCIDENTAL FLORIST, # 16 in the series, Churchill stretched a toe out of the confines of the mystery genre, entertaining and intriguing this reader more than she would have if she had stayed within staid boundaries.

I wonder, though: Does this type of breakout appeal to me only because I've written novels, which allows me to identify with Churchill's creeping beyond containers of her craft, especially when making the first cracks in a long revered egg shell incorporates more of her author life into established appeals of Jane and Shelley? This time, the daily-life-and-work-of-an-author was inserted into the story with bravo perfection, in my copy of the book with a lusciously-fluffy, lemon-souffle aura, cat and bouquet included.

It's true that the author is expanding a recent trend in this series, a trend which has placed the murder and its resolution by amateur sleuth-hood on the back burners of subplot stews, so far back, in fact, that the murder and its investigation didn't take its usual active space in the story. Somewhat because of that fact, I enjoyed THE ACCIDENTAL FLORIST even more than I've enjoyed each of the prior 15 books.

Churchill is such a subtle genius at flowing undercurrents of cultural issues, that she's able to keep me above those undertows, at a level of an easy-flowing, craved type of reading entertainment. She accomplishes this through a narrative style of such natural grace that I doubt even Santa Clause could see the insights intended, until the final page is turned and cerebral spotlights are surged, and lighten up the cerebellum-gestalt of plot machinations.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
Not much mystery; a lot of personal interaction with problematic relatives and descriptions of menus, recipes and daily routines which we all can relate to, but look for more in a mystery book.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 1.5 out of 5 stars 127 reviews
17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing July 17 2007
By drebbles - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
With an almost empty nest and after years of dating police detective Mel Van Dyne, Jane Jeffrey decides it's time they get married. Jane is determined to have the wedding she wants even if it means battling with her late husband's mother Thelma and her soon to be mother-in-law Addie. While Jane easily deals with Addie by setting ground rules and refusing to let them be broken, she has a harder time dealing with Thelma who is becoming increasingly nasty and doing her best to try and take away the money Jane inherited from her late husband. When she's not dealing with Thelma and Addie, Jane is preparing to write her next book and also overseeing the addition of an office for Mel onto her house. Also, Mel wants Jane and her best friend Shelly Nowack to take a women's safety class. Jane and Shelley agree and learn some useful tips until their instructor is murdered. Now Jane really has her hands full as she adds helping Mel solve the murder to her long list of things to do.

While I used to enjoy Jill Churchill's Jane Jeffrey series, it's gone down hill the last few books and "The Accidental florist" is no better. The writing is clunky and the dialogue awkward. One example of this is when Churchill has Jane, who has been dating Mel for years, tell Mel exactly how much money she has and how her husband died, something she should have told him years ago. There are continuity errors like when Mel says he is taking the day off to attend a meeting with Jane and a few pages later Jane checks to make sure he has the next day off to attend the meeting. Later on Churchill has Jane running out to buy litter boxes for her cats saying she didn't have any, even though in an earlier chapter Jane had cleaned their litter boxes! Ironically enough, Churchill stresses how carefully Jane researches her books before writing them, perhaps Churchill should do the same. While I found some of the advice Jane and Shelley got during their safety class to be useful, after a while it felt like filler for the book as did the many details of the building of Mel's office. The mystery plot line is poorly done and written - Mel does all the investigating (and most of that is off-page) instead of Jane and Shelley. And the recurring gag of Shelley's husband not being seen in the books wears too thin in this book when he misses Jane and Mel's wedding for the flimsiest of excuses.

"The Accidental Florist" has some touches that reminded me of what I used to like about the series - little things like Jane's sneaking a cigarette when she felt stressed; a touching moment involving her dog; interesting glimpses into the world of book writing, publishing, and promotion; and Mel and Jane's decision to forego wedding gifts and having money sent to various charities instead (one of the few times in the book that Jane was likable). But these were only brief glimpses that make it even sadder to realize how good the series used to be and how much it's gone down hill.
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars Aug. 7 2016
By miket - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Great reading - keeps you wanting to get to the end to see "who did it!"
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Simply Awful June 5 2007
By D. Seibert - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought this book without reading any reviews of it. Wish I had taken the time to check them out. Things that just drive me crazy...she is taking the contractor down to the basement and thinks she is so glad she emptied the kitty litter boxes that morning. Then a chapter later she goes shopping for kitty litter boxes and wonders if the cats can get used to using them again because they've become outdoor cats a lot of the time. How can a writer be so sloppy with these kinds of things. Also, I couldn't care less about swatches, mothers-in-law, etc. This was to be a wasn't. I won't buy another of her books. It was badly written and choppy...I only finished it because I have a thing about not finishing books.
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Insipid April 24 2007
By Christine H. Randall - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Used to love the series, not this book. No mystery. Boring. Insipid. Nice to know Jane has enough money to throw around and indulge herself. Potentially emotional events (death of dog, mother-in-law, her weddings) treated as though they didn't matter. And how many people know contractors who enjoy having day-to-day supervision by the homeowner? Or weddings for 300-400 people that can be put together in 3 weeks?
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Where was the sleuthing? Feb. 22 2008
By Alice L. Ramirez - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
The series is fun when Jane and Shelley are doing the sleuthing. I have been a fan of this series and looked forward to The Accidental Florist.

Alas! This one was all about the wedding. Nice that Mel is making an honest woman of her, of course. Nice that evil Thelma kicked off and that Jane stood up to Mel's problem mother. But, dang it, I wanted a whodunit not a romance novel! The only sleuthing was done by Mel and his new partner with maybe a few leads inspired by Jane's questions. The series is more fun when the two ladies are actively involved and interacting with all the suspects. I don't even know WHY the killers did in the old lady. Probably money, but more on motive would have been much better. ANYTHING on motive would have been better! Jill needs to get a grip! This one was a turkey. The only good part was the revisiting of likable characters.

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