Bell, Book, and Scandal Hardcover – Large Print, Feb 2004
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“Jane Jeffrey is irresistible!” (Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine )
“Churchill delivers a satisfying plot laced with subtle humor and some enjoyable gothic flourishes.” (Publishers Weekly )
“Churchill is the master of the suburban mystery.” (Tulsa World ) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
About the Author
In addition to her popular Grace & Favor mystery series, Jill Churchill is the author of the bestselling Jane Jeffry mystery series. She is the recipient of both the Agatha Award and the Macavity Mystery Readers Award. Churchill lives in the Midwest.--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title. See all Product Description
Top Customer Reviews
I was quite disappointed to see the setting as a mystery writers convention - ranks right up there with using a murder mystery "party" for me. But, I stuck with it although it soon became apparent that what I was reading was a thinly-disguised nonfiction work on how to get one's book published. I got the imperssion that the author had always intended to write such a piece and decided to kill two birds in one project by inserting her own persona (if you will) as Felicity to get her message to aspiring writers through, as well as fulfilling the next Jane Jeffry contractual obligation. As far as that goes, the advice she gives seems quite sound; however, I thought she made it seem too easy even though the editor with whom Jane meets stresses that nothing is definite yet.
If Ms. Churchill is reading this, something about Shelley seemed inconsistent: on the one hand she is frugal/cheap, yet she also comes across as a shop-a-holic?
I've read other mysteries where the protagionist has been put into an ad-hoc group setting outside of the usual environment. It just doesn't seem to work in most cases. Next time, I'd like to see Jane on her own without relying on Shelley as much. Maybe on vacation with Mel? Or have Shelley out of town at the time a murder breaks - available for consultation by phone as a sounding board at most? We never really see Jane's family much -involve them! Just give her a stake in the action next time.
P.S. I was hoping Felicity was the culprit as she seemed too-good-to-be-true to me. Also, I didn't get the title - was expecting something about witchcraft, etc.
The dialog was stilted, the characters were one-dimentional and the writing style so different from Churchill's usual, that it was hard to believe she had actually written it. I agree with a previous reviewer that Jane is very out-of-character when she prepares for a night with Mel. Their relationship was very realistic for older adults. Now Mel seems like an old shoe--use him when there is nothing better and then he disappears. Actually, both Jane and Shelley were like two strangers in this book. I enjoyed their easy friendship and it was lacking.
Most of all, the shoddy research bothered me. Anyone who has read (or seen) Sherlock Holmes stories knows that his rag-tag group of street urchins was called the Baker Street Irregulars. Churchill mistakenly calls them the Bow Street Runners, not once but twice. All it would have taken was a quick trip to Google to discover that they were the early form of the London CID and were adult constables, not children. Wait for the next book!
Most recent customer reviews
In the past Jill Churchill has written humorous, cozy mysteries, starring Jane Jeffry and Shelley Nowack. Read morePublished on May 15 2004
I too have enjoyed Churchill's other Jane Jeffry mysteries but this one was awful. The plot was dull, the characters unbelievable and the incessant trips to shop, buy books, and... Read morePublished on May 8 2004 by bossl
Tissue-thin plot, no character development, smarmy dialogue, sloppy writing, improbable circumstances. Is it significant that I fell asleep while reading this book? Read morePublished on April 9 2004
As Jill Churchill herself says in Bell, Book and Scandal, "Every writer writes a bad book sooner or later." Whoops, it's your turn Ms. Churchill. Read morePublished on April 2 2004 by la plume d'une femme
Do not buy this book if you are a fan of the author's previous books in the Jane Jeffry series. This one is awful. Read morePublished on March 7 2004
Do not buy this book if you are a fan of the author's previous books in the Jane Jeffry series. This one is awful. Read morePublished on March 7 2004 by barnkeeper45
I love Jill Churchill and her Jane Jeffrey mysteries. All are well written, well plotted and just a joy to read...Until now. Read morePublished on Feb. 11 2004 by Jennifer Calfa Groh
One of the things I have enjoyed most in the earlier Jane Jeffry mysteries is the never ending supply of Mom-things that Jane attends to - the car pools, cleaning, cooking,... Read morePublished on Feb. 3 2004 by Diana Martin
Wow, was I disappointed with this one. I can't tell if Jill Churchill let someone else help write it, or if maybe she's got a new editor or something who missed a lot of the... Read morePublished on Jan. 31 2004