Murder in Ordinary Time, by Sister Carol Anne O'Marie

>> Wednesday, August 06, 2003

Rereads and more rereads. I noticed this one, Murder in Ordinary Time, by Sister Carol Anne O'Marie, when I rearranged my bookshelves not too long ago.

Just one bite of that irresistible Christmas cookie and Christina Kelly, Channel 5's leading investigative reporter, was on the air--dead. The odor of bitter almond told Sister May Helen the cause of the death: cyanide. Somewhere in the studio was the wily killer, a person everyone knew....

Had Christina's investigations led her to her dead end? Or was the fatal cookie meant for someone else: the notorious womanizer; the hard-drinking floor manager with something to hide; or perhaps Wicked Wendy, who certainly fit her nickname? Or was the intended victim the intrepid nun herself?
This was an enjoyable cozy mystery, though the mystery itself was a little to easy to solve (and I'm not too good at this). A B.

I loved Sister Mary Helen. She was one smart lady; nosy, but kind-hearteadly so. She had a very wry voice, and I loved her observations and comments on her surroundings, especially because she was wonderfully tolerant, not a word I usually associate with elderly Roman Catholic nuns (all this stems from traumatic cathecism classes, I'll write about them some other time).

MIOT was very atmospheric. It was set in San Francisco, and it's obvious the author has a great fondness for the city. The description was never boring, but there was a lot of it and it was almost like being there.

Now for the problems. First, the dialogue sounded off. The worst was the dialogue between Detective Kate and her husband, but it wasn't the only one. Even the scenes between Sister Mary Helen and her friend, Sister Eileen sounded strange.

Also, it was too easy to guess what had happened and even exactly who had done it.

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