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Showing 1-10 of 37 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 48 reviews
on January 9, 2013
Lyris Pembrooke inherits Hammersleigh House, a big old Victorian mansion, and immediately sets to making it a bit more palatable by removing some of the animal trophy heads adorning the place. While relocating one of the heads to the tower room, she makes a grisly discovery: the body of a long missing child. So begins her quest to solve a decades old mystery.

This is a great whodunit, laced with a healthy dose of humor, a bit of the occult, a little romance and a lot of good writing. From her travails with Conklin, the butler who insists on addressing her as Madame, to dealing with an ex-husband who has a penchant for being unreasonable, to putting together a family reunion for hundreds of people, to her conflicted feelings about hunky police chief Marc Allaire, Lyris manages to deal with every situation, if not with aplomb, then at least with self deprecating wit.

There is never a lag in the action, making this hard to put down. If you like your mysteries served up with a bit of cheekiness, then this is the book for you!
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on July 24, 2012
Techinically, this is a well-written book. The writing flows smoothly and there are no glaring editorial or fomatting errors. I have to say that I identified pretty strongly with Lyris, the protagonist. Same age, some of the same insecurities, and holy cow, I think she was living through the same heat wave/drought that I was living in while reading this book. It was uncanny to find the weather patterns in a book so closely following real life this summer. The story never built into a feeling of pure suspense, and the romance was more hinted at than explored depely. Mostly, I think it's a story about family and connections to the past and building foundations for the future. I loved how well some of the supporting characters were fleshed out - especially the butler. I would look forward to meeting these characters again if the author continues this as a series.
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on April 20, 2013
I enjoyed reading this book, but at times it seemed to me that something was missing. I wish I could describe it better for others but I'm not sure how. It was a very interesting story line, but I think at times I think it was a little blah. Lyris Pembrooke recently inherits a family mansion/museum and gets thrown at her the responsibility of hosting the family reunion. She also finds a 68 year old corpse hidden in a hidden closet and this gets real interesting because she knows exactly who the corpse is, even though it is way before her time. Lyris goes through a lot in the short time that this book covers, but she manages to keep it together for the most part. I wish though at the end there could have been a conversion chart because the story does take place in Canada because I'm not familiar with Celsius or kilometers. Other than that, it was a very good book.
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on January 26, 2013
Actually, I didn't put it down for very long. I got this book for free and was amazed at how good it was. Many reviewers have given summaries of the story, so I'll just say that this was a multi-faceted plot with all story lines going on simultaneously. From abused women to a baby's body found in the house and add a little romance, this story has something for everyone.

The character development is excellent which is a good thing because there are a great many characters. The reader isn't floundering around the book trying to remember who is who which is a credit to the author. The story contains twists, turns and the gets better with every page. I highly recommend this book and can't wait for the next one.
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on September 12, 2012
I loved the charater in this story, shes a cross between currious george, nancey drew and calamity jane! If it could be be stepped in, she did, if your foot could be inserted in to mouth, she did! She was also hilariously funny!

I thought I had the mystery solved several times... Only to change my mind again later on in the book. Tho I did guess some of it there where a whole lot of surprises at the end of the book!

Well written and very entertaining. This was an easy fun read and I enjoyed it very much.
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on February 10, 2013
I found Ms. Ferris' tale to be a charming respite to my typical, male dominated shoot 'em up weekend reads. There was a bit of everything to like about Cheat the Hangman, it's an excellent mystery woven with a little of the supernatural, but not enough to classify it as 'just another ghost story'. The characters were very rich and believable, the house around which most of the action takes place is a magnificent (and beautifully detailed) Victorian mansion/museum passed down for generations in Southern Canada--along with it's secrets dating back to WWII. I'll certainly be looking for more from Gloria Ferris and the Pembrooke family!
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on October 6, 2012
Definitely worth reading. Ferris has written an unusual story situated in a place and time far removed from today's way of thinking and reacting to crime and punishment.The story unravels in a timely and logical way, as Ferris keeps the reader's interest through just enough detail to intrigue. A fine use of language as well as realistic characterization is also commendable.
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on January 13, 2013
When I first read the description for this book I was concerned that it would turn out to be one of those improbable ghost stories. By the end of the first chapter, however, I knew this was one book I'd have trouble putting down! This is a beautifully crafted story with believable characters that you actually want to spend time with. I'm a night reader and I found myself unwilling to go to sleep before reading 'just one more chapter'. Bravo to Ms. Ferris for a funny, believable 'ghost' story that ended on just the right note!
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on July 14, 2013
I thought the book was well written. I enjoyed all the characters. The story line was interesting and intriguing to keep me glued to the pages and always wanting to know what happens next. The only thing I though could have been better is if Colkin would have turned out to actually be Aunt Clem's old lover, the one that died (or I guess allegedly died) over seas. Also, after finishing up the book, I did not understand the title. The title just does not fit the book at all.
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on November 11, 2014
A fun read, with personable characters, and a lively plot. The plot points were not at all subtle, and the whole book is a little creaky- so many different elements trying to adhere into a novel, some more successful than others. The four stars are the average of many different criteria. Read this if you're in the mood for a quirky little book,
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