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Sweet Death, Kind Death (1983)

av Amanda Cross

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygOmnämnanden
326659,861 (3.36)12
"If by some cruel oversight you haven't discovered Amanda Cross, you have an uncommon pleasure in store for you." THE NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW When Clare College's resident eccentric Patrice Umphelby is found drowned in the campus lake, it's called a suicide. But the college president grows suspicious and calls in noted professor/detective Kate Fansler to research the matter. Ingratiating herself with her academic colleagues to learn more about Patrice's life, Kate digs up the evidence she needs to understand her death....… (mer)
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» Se även 12 omnämnanden

engelska (5)  franska (1)  Alla språk (6)
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Kate Fansler is so appealing as a protagonist. Smart, opinionated, sure. ( )
  SusanKrzywicki | Jan 29, 2017 |
rabck from Bumma's book distribution; lovely cozy mystery. Clare College Professor Patrice committed suicide - or did she? Almost a year after her death, the college president asks Kate to investigate, under the guise of serving on a task force about offering gender studies at this all girls college. References to lots of literature to explain people's actions (the author was really a college professor), which had me scurrying to Wikipedia - and learning a lot! Was it or wasn't it strings out to the last page, with the who dun it being a surprise. ( )
  nancynova | Aug 13, 2016 |
I don't know what to think of this book now. I enjoyed it at the time, even if I didn't always agree with it, but after the author committed suicide in a manner consistent with some of the views expressed here, I haven't been able to look at this book. ( )
  particle_p | Apr 1, 2013 |
Patrice Umphelby s'est-elle vraiment suicidée ? Bien sûr, elle proférait des théories peu habituelles sur la mort et revendiquait le droit de choisir sa fin, mais de là à passer à l'acte... Universitaire reconnue, romancière à succès, Patrice dérangeait. Son dynamisme, son courage et sa force de vie faisaient de l'ombre aux théoriciens qui mettent la femme d'un certain âge sur une voie de garage. Face aux rumeurs persistantes, l'université de Patrice fait appel à Kate Fansler, femme accomplie et indépendante, professeur de littérature, également connue dans le milieu universitaire pour ses talents de détective.

Avec, en toile de fond, une réflexion novatrice sur la place des femmes dans l'université et dans la société, cette nouvelle enquête de Kate Fansler offre une solide intrigue et une galerie de portraits pour le moins inquiétants.
  vdb | Jan 9, 2012 |
Here's what I like in a mystery: well-developed characters, suspense, and a complex plot that requires the sleuth to prove their skill or intellect.

What was missing from this mystery: all the above.

At first I was encouraged by the English teacher-as-sleuth, the opening quotes in each chapter from woman authors like Stevie Smith, Virginia Woolf, and Toni Morrison, and a the literary discussion around the edges of the plot. The mystery was pretty standard stuff: a female professor is found dead on the campus of a women's college, and it's deemed a suicide until information comes to light making murder a possibility.

Kate Fansler, the aforementioned English teacher, is called in to investigate. Why? I'm not sure. She had a tenuous connection to the victim, Patrice Umphelby, having met her once while waiting for a delayed flight. Kate is also connected to two men writing Patrice's biography, who have put their project on hold until the circumstances of her death are known. The college brings Kate on board, ostensibly to take part in an academic task force, but really to give her free rein to talk to anyone on staff as part of her investigation.

And talk she does. Most of the "action" involves Kate attending meetings or cocktail parties, and inquiring about Patrice. People are clearly divided -- love her or hate her -- and they make their opinions known. Two camps emerge, Kate tramps around New York and New England consuming Laphroig whiskey, and then, ta da! With ten pages to go she explains what happened, everyone is very thankful, the end.

This was all way too simple for me. Yes, it was murder, not suicide. Surprise, someone who hated Patrice did it. I could have guessed that early on, but dismissed the notion, expecting the plot to be more complex. There was no suspense involved in nabbing the perpetrator -- there was only Kate, quaffing another whiskey, basking in the admiration of those who should have been able to figure this out for themselves.

This is the seventh book in a series, and maybe I've missed something by not reading the back story. But I'm probably not going to find out. ( )
  lauralkeet | Dec 24, 2011 |
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Why do I think of Death
As a friend?
It is because he is a scatterer,
He scatters the human frame
The nerviness and the great pain,
Throws it on the fresh fresh air
And now it is nowhere.
Only sweet death does this,
Sweet Death, kind Death,
Of all the gods you are best.

Stevie Smith
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For David Hadas/To mark a quarter-century of conversations about death and life
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The New York City memorial service for Patrice Umphelby (for she had, of course, had a funeral service at Clare College many months earlier), was attended by Kate Fansler and several hundred other people, all of whom found it uniquely moving.
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"If by some cruel oversight you haven't discovered Amanda Cross, you have an uncommon pleasure in store for you." THE NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW When Clare College's resident eccentric Patrice Umphelby is found drowned in the campus lake, it's called a suicide. But the college president grows suspicious and calls in noted professor/detective Kate Fansler to research the matter. Ingratiating herself with her academic colleagues to learn more about Patrice's life, Kate digs up the evidence she needs to understand her death....

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