From Publishers Weekly
Agatha-finalist Dobson's sixth mystery to feature English professor Karen Pelletier (after 2003's The Maltese Manuscript
) earns a passing grade. Karen is up for the sole open tenure spot in her department at Massachusetts's Enfield College, but the department chairman is championing her underqualified Native American colleague, Joe Lone Wolf, which sends Karen into a dither. She also worries about her boyfriend's deployment to Iraq and her daughter's jaunt to Nepal. After someone slips Joe a fatal overdose of what may be peyote, she becomes the prime murder suspect. Plenty of other suspects emerge from the stereotypical cast of faculty and students, as Dobson trots out a plague of academic bugaboos, including drugs, false credentials, plagiarism, faculty in-fighting and hate crimes. When Karen stops dithering and starts playing detective, things heat up quickly. (Jan.)
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Professor Karen Pelletier is preparing to fulfill her dream of a tenured position in the English department of Enfield College, a prestigious New England institution. As she assembles her dossier, she learns that her rival for the chair, Native American professor Joseph Lone Wolf, has died of a peyote overdose. His minority status gave him an advantage and puts Karen at the top of the suspect list. A homicide detective with a grudge against her cop boyfriend, Lieutenant Charlie Piotroski, who is away serving in the National Guard in Iraq, makes sure that she stays on the A-list. Meanwhile, the petty squabbles of academia rage as the politically correct chair of the department and the Distinguished Visiting Professor of Whiteness Studies argue over the course list, and two of Karen’s favorite students, a Muslim woman and a coal-miner’s son, get caught up in the squabble. Dobson, who teaches at Fordham University, provides an amusing and accurate view of academia with her au courant plot and colorful characters. --Barbara Bibel