Southern Discomfort (Deborah Knott Series #2)

Southern Discomfort (Deborah Knott Series #2)

4.2 5
by Margaret Maron, C. J. Critt
     
 

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Deborah Knott may have lost the district election, but a bigoted judge's sudden death - and some old-fashioned political horse trading - have won her a governor's appointment. True to Southern form, her swearing-in is followed by a raucous reception that brings out every elderly aunt and cousin in the county. Unfortunately, Lu Bingham, the force behind WomanAid, is

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Overview

Deborah Knott may have lost the district election, but a bigoted judge's sudden death - and some old-fashioned political horse trading - have won her a governor's appointment. True to Southern form, her swearing-in is followed by a raucous reception that brings out every elderly aunt and cousin in the county. Unfortunately, Lu Bingham, the force behind WomanAid, is at the reception, too. Not only has she come to collect the leftovers for her daycare center, but she's also there to collect on one of Deborah's more extravagant campaign promises. Before Deborah can say, "If elected..". she is committed to putting her muscle where her mouth was, spending weekends with an all-woman crew as the group attempts to build its first house for a needy single mom. Old stereotypes die hard. Herman Knott, one of Deborah's numerous brothers, has to be hectored and cajoled before he'll give reluctant permission for his daughter and novice electrician Annie Sue to wire the house. Nor does it help that the county building inspector is a swaggering chauvinist nit-picker who's more interested in scoring with the young women than scoring their work. Chaos erupts before the house is even half-finished. On the same rainy summer night that Herman collapses on the side of the road from an apparent heart attack, Annie Sue is found battered and half-naked in the deserted structure. Has she been raped? Who left her in that condition? And whose blood is that on Deborah's own hammer? Dwight Bryant, an old childhood friend (and a bit of a good ol' boy), is a modern and efficient police detective, but it is Deborah who must judge whether dark secrets in her own family have led to murder. And if so, reveal the darkermore troubling reasons why.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
New lady judge Deborah Knott ( Bootlegger's Daughter ) threads her way through the intricacies of district court in a small North Carolina town where familial connections abound. Murder rears its ugly head only after shared family stories and relationships establish a stylistic context. Employing her intimate knowledge of the place, Knott discovers who assaulted her teenage niece and killed a randy building inspector inside an unfinished WomenAid house. Cleverly told, with a homey atmosphere, this is ripe for a sequel.
Emily Melton
Deborah Knott has just become a District Court judge in Colleton County, North Carolina, and her kinfolk are mighty proud of her. But now that she's on the bench, she has to remember those campaign promises she made--like agreeing to help WomenAid, a vociferous group of local do-gooders, build a house for a needy family. Before the house is completed, though, things start to go wrong: Annie Sue, Deborah's teenage niece who's helping with the project, is viciously attacked at the building site; Carver Bannerman, a handsome, unscrupulous building inspector, seduces one of Annie Sue's best friends and is later found murdered; and Annie Sue's father is hospitalized after developing a mysterious illness. Of course, it's up to Deborah, with the help of local lawman and sometime-sweetheart Dwight Bryant, to make sense of the bizarre events. Maron's written a thriller that simply oozes southern charm and atmosphere. The clever plot is full of surprises--a good blend of menace, poignancy, and humor. But perhaps Maron's real strength is her refreshing heroine, who doesn't mind admitting she wears a size fourteen dress and who approaches life with humor, determination, and good sense. An excellent choice for all mystery collections.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781436102254
Publisher:
Recorded Books, LLC
Publication date:
05/22/2002
Series:
Deborah Knott Series, #2

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Southern Discomfort 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is the second in the Deborah Knott series. I enjoyed it as much as I did the first one. Deborah gets sworn in as Judge. She goes through a very nervous first week. On the next weekend she has agreeded to help on a house for battered womern. The house is being build by all women. Things don't go right as her neice, Annie Sue, is found at the house with clothes torn and off and maybe raped. The attacker is found dead at the same house. Deborah has picked up the hammer that was used to kill him, therefore her fingerprints are on the murder weapon. Who did kill him? Annie Sue, Deborah, some of Deborah's brothers, Annie Sue's father? As the story progresses, Herman, Annie Sue's father is taken to hospital with arsenic poisoning. Arsenic is also found in the dead boys blood. How is this possible? The ending is very good. I could just feel and see the people in the story. Margaret Maron has done a good job with what I call a light mystery. If you want horror and gore try Patricia Cornwell or John Sanford. This one is humorous, shows close family ties and all around very good.
cate-k More than 1 year ago
I love the Deborah Knott novels br Margaret Maron, she never disappoints, I know and like Judge Knott and her large extended family, and it is always fun to find out what everybody is up to and how the murder will tie in.
Anonymous 11 days ago
No crime was committed until halfway the book, Pages of extranuous 'flavour' After enjoying the first in the series I was terribly disappointed
Marged04 More than 1 year ago
This was my 2nd of Ms Maron's books, and it was wonderful! I lived in SC for years, and it was refreshing to hear phrases that made me laugh and reminded me of youthful times.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Love all her books and the personal growth Deborah Knott shows.