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Murderers and Nerdy Girls Work Late (Nerdy Girls Murder Mysteries) (Volume 1) Paperback – August 9, 2013
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From Kirkus Reviews
Debut author Boero’s auspicious beginning to a planned mystery series features a law school student with prosopagnosia. Liz Howe suffers from a rare condition that prevents her from recognizing faces, but her other senses are highly attuned to compensate. When she discovers the body of a partner in the stairwell of the law office where she’s working as a summer associate, Liz impresses the investigating detective with her observations. Despite her prosopagnosia, Liz can detect that Detective James Paperelli is lust-worthy. While the young female amateur sleuth crushing on the unavailable detective isn’t an original plot device in the world of cozy mysteries, Boero makes it fresh by having James welcome Liz’s assistance rather than warning her away. Acting as an informant for Paperelli, Liz enlists firm partner and her boss, Janice Harrington, to help her infiltrate the firm’s inner workings. Liz, with her self-proclaimed nerdiness, diagnosed neurological condition and conventional concerns about her appearance, is a believable, sympathetic protagonist, although readers may wonder how she has time to study, research her academic articles, work part time and embark on a self-improvement program. James, on the other hand, with his designer clothing and unending kindness, is almost too good to be true, save one uncharacteristic and troubling emotional outburst. Boero offers unique, memorable settings in St. Louis, Mo., and Marshfield, Wis., the second of which greatly informs Liz’s personality (and makes Wisconsin seem like a desirable place to live). Despite a few instances where the action slows and a slightly pat resolution, Boero’s book will appeal to fans of mysteries and chick lit. While Liz emphasizes her self-identified shortcomings—seemingly de rigueur for women of this age group—her academic achievements and pursuit by four eligible males suggest otherwise. Still, her fresh voice makes up for a few clichéd aspects of the novel. Kept afloat by a plucky heroine, like a yuppie version of Stephanie Plum.
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Top customer reviews
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It's not classic literature, but the main character is interesting and the story flowed nicely, with a few plot twists. A previous reviewer mentioned that this book reads like a romance novel. I'd call this one a "romantic mystery", so if hard-boiled thrillers are your thing, this book won't fit that bill.
Liz, the amateur detective, is a law student working part time at a large legal firm in St. Louis. (But she’s originally from Marshfield, WI, she talks about her hometown frequently, and she even visits so the Wisconsin connection is definitely there.) Like the fictional detective Adrian Monk, her weakness is also her strength. Liz has a rare neurological condition called proposopagnosia, also known as face blindness. To hide this, Liz has worked hard on honing her observational skills and making the most of her other senses to help her identify the people in her life.
When Liz stumbles across the body of the head of the law firm in a deserted stairwell late at night she finds herself thrown into the mystery. One of the detectives recognizes her unique memory for detail and asks for Liz’s help. Liz is more than happy to try solving the puzzle. And spending time with the handsome, intelligent detective is no detriment.
This is a good quality book that was published by the author through Amazon. There is no doubt that the author is talented and can tell a good story. There were bits that felt a bit slow and the ending seemed a little rushed. I think a good editor would have smoothed things out and put a real shine on this diamond in the rough. The characters were well developed, and the settings, both St. Louis and Marshfield, had a real presence in the book. It was written with easy humor in a chick lit style. I do feel that some of the legal points in the mystery could have been better explained, but all of my complaints are minor. Murderers and Nerdy Girls Work Late is definitely worth reading and Lisa Boero is definitely an author to watch.
Most recent customer reviews
I live in Marshfield, WI and I could live this story.Read more