This is the second book in the series and I can't wait to read #3. Helen and her friends at the wonderful 50s Florida apt bldg are a hoot...the man-hater with the parrot on her shoulder, the invisible pot-smoker, the 6-toed cat name Thumbs, Cal the Canadian...the plot is almost secondary to the characters and the dialogue. However, the mystery is well-plotted with just enough twists. A fast fun read.
I love the writings of Elaine Viets. Her books are crafty, witty, and the plots are twisting and elusive and keep you guessing till the end. I especially like the conversations and smart remarks she has in her head when she answers someone but never speaks these thoughts out loud. Once I pick her books up I can't put them down till I'm done with the book. Not a bad one in the bunch.
The second in the dead end job mysteries and once again Helen has a dead end job where she finds herself deep into mystery and murder. I gave this book a solid B on my personal rating scale and although I do like Helen and will continue reading her books I still find her evading the law and working under the table to avoid paying allimony in Florida just feels a little far fetched.
Helen this time has a job at a bookstore. Her boss, a very ookie man named Page Turner (the humor is really not as bad as this ready made joke by the way) gets himself dead and Helen's friend Peggy gets framed for the murder. Of course Helen has to help out Peggy and between her and her landlady (the comic relief of the book) Margery they get Peggy out of a sticky situation. Over all this book was not bad and I will continue reading the series.
First of all I love the name of the book store owner - Page Turner. Isn't that great? We learn a bit more about Peggy, one of the other residents, at the Coronado so the characters are being fleshed out a bit more. Can't wait to find out more about Margery, the owner of the Coronado. THAT should be an interesting tale.
Helen is sort of an unlikely heroine. She is unsure of herself in her new life. Trying to keep a low profile since she is "on the lam", she takes all these dead end jobs, working under the table. Florida is a perfect setting for this series. In this book she needs to track down a killer before Peggy, unjustly accused, goes to prison for life - or worse.
I'm really enjoying this series about Helen Hawthorne and her dead-end jobs. The second in the series, this book is set in a bookstore and stars an outstanding cast of characters, including the rich jerk boss (Page Turner, after whom the store is named), the regular client who reads all day long in the same chair each day, the hopeful self-publishers looking to score a reading, and of course the unforgettable Madame Muffy--a psychic who dresses in khaki.
Though Helen must endure the indignities of a low-paid job, she's also in a unique spot where she can help her friend and fellow Coronado resident, Peggy, after she's accused of murder. She's not a trained professional, so she fumbles the case on a few notable occasions, but just like Columbo, she always gets her man--or woman!
A particularly funny book for anyone who's self-published, though I think the times are changing enough that certain bookstores are less cruel to those of us who do! Highly recommended.
This book is part of a very enjoyable series. The main character, Helen, is very "real" and easy to identify with yet her story if far out enough to make it humorous. The mystery may be a little predictable but it is still a very fun read.
Another great cozy myestery with Helen Hawthorn, this time working in Page Turner's bookstore in Florida. Once making a six-figure salary, Helen is on the run from her ex and taking jobs with much lower salaries! Just enough humor to keep me smiling and turning pages to meet warm fuzzy characters and friends. I love these Dead End mysteries!
One of the things I am enjoying about this series is seeing what dead end job Helen finds herself working with each book. In this one, I was pleased to see she is working at a bookstore, though I wouldn't consider that in and of itself a dead end job, but for Helen, it is when her boss, the owner of the store, is murdered and her friend becomes the prime suspect.
The story isn't heavy on the mystery and it doesn't take long for the reader to figure out who the culprit could be. The journey getting to that final destination is quite entertaining as the various neurotic and bizarre characters come out of the woodwork.
As long as the reader goes in expecting the predictable, this will be an interesting and entertaining read.
I enjoyed this second installment better than the first. Helen is still living at her apartments when she wakes up one night to mounds of a termite invasion. Forced to flee her apartment for 3 days, the residents return to find Helens boss Page Turner, dead in her neighbors bed with a knife in his back. All fingers point to Peggy as the killer, and she is promptly arrested and set for a trial.
Helen knows in her heart Peggy is innocent, so she decides to do some sleuthing of her own. During the process, the bookstore she works at turns to a shambles and all the empoyees' jobs are at stake.
Even though this book is a little long for my tastes, it was well fleshed out. I was able to guess the killer early on, but unable to guess the means and motive. I do plan on continuing the series, in hopes Helen will meet at least one decent guy along the way. It will be interesting to read about all her wacked out jobs and the crazys she encounters.
I just love this series! Helen and her trials are a pure delight. Despite the easily idenfiable murderer the great characters with enough intrigue in both the mystery and characters will keep you coming back for more. I've read this series out of order so I'm looking forward to getting back on track and seeing what happens next. 2nd in the series.
Once on the fast track to success, Helen Hawthorne is going nowhere faster. Forced to trade in her chic life for a shaby one, she's now on the run, jumping from city to city and dead-end job to dead-end job, tryingto stay one step aheard of her past....
Helen has a new job "off the books" at Page Turners bookstore in Fort Lauderdale. It's run by Page Turner 111, who happens to be neither well-read nor well-liked. When his money troubles surface, it seems the store's long life may be over-but it's Page's life that's cut short instead. He had plenty of enemies, including an unhappy wife and unfortunate employees. But it is his unforgiving lover-Helen's wacky neighbor-police are ready to throw the book at. To save her friend, Helen will have to read between the lines...and uncover the truth about a clever killer.
Helen Hawthorne was once on the fast track to success, but now going nowhere fast. This dead end job is in a bookstore where the owner gets killed. Helen has to read between the lines to find the truth about a clever killer. Good read!
It got one star because I actually skipped to the end to see who did it. But this has to be one of the worst written books I have ever read. I actually threw it in the trash when I was done. A highschooler could write a better book. If you would like to read a good mystery try books by Kathy Reichs, Laura Childs, Cleo Coyle, or JoAnna Carl.
The second entry in Elaine Viet's Dead End Job mysteries, a good followup to "Shop 'till you Drop".
From the back cover:
Once on the fast track to success, Helen Hawthorne is going nowhere fast. Forced to trade in her chic life for a shabby one, she's now on the run, jumping from city to city and dead end job to dead end job, trying to stay one step ahead of her past....
Helen has a new job "off the books" at Page Turners bookstore in Fort Lauderdale. It's Run by Page Turner III, who happens to be neither well-read nor well-likes. When his money troubles surface, it seems the store's long life may be over- but it's Page's life that is cut short instead. He had plenty of enemies, including an unhappy wife and unfortunate employees. But it is his unforgiving lover - Helen's wacky neighbor- police are ready to throw the book at. To save her friend, Helen will have to read between the lines...and uncover the truth about a clever killer.
Book Description: "Helen has a new job "off the books" at Page Turners bookstore in Fort Lauderdale...until the owner is murdered. But since the arrogant Page Turner III had so many enemies, Helen will have to read between the lines to uncover the truth about a clever killer."
Helen has a new job, selling books. The pay and boss are not great but is it worth it to kill him. When her good friend is blamed for the murder it is up to Helen to find out who really did it before her past catches up with her.
The writing is OK. This is an easy read. I do wonder if she keeps on killing off her bosses at dead end jobs nobody is going to want to hire her.
A Dead-End Job Mystery
1. Shop Till You Drop (2003)
2. Murder Between the Covers (2003)
3. Dying to Call You (2004)
4. Just Murdered (2005)
5. Murder Unleashed (2006)
6. Murder with Reservations (2007)
7. Clubbed to Death (2008)
8. Killer Cuts (2009)
9. Half-Price Homicide (2010)
10. Pumped for Murder (2011)
11. Final Sail (2012)
12. Board Stiff (2013)
13. Catnapped! (2014)
14. Checked Out (2015)