BN.com Gift Guide

There Was a Little Girl (An E.J. Pugh Mystery)

Overview

NO GOOD DEED GOES UNPUNISHED

Romance novelist, harried mom, and sometimes sleuth, E.J. Pugh has a habit of being in the wrong place at the right time. This time she.s on hand to pull a suicidal teenager from a freezing Texas river. The distraught young girl, Brenna, has good reasons for wanting to end it all, since she comes from the worst horror of a family since Charles Manson.s. And a good Samaritan act has propped E.J. into the middle of ...

See more details below
Available through our Marketplace sellers.
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (15) from $1.99   
  • Used (15) from $1.99   
Close
Sort by
Page 1 of 2
Showing 1 – 10 of 15 (2 pages)
Note: Marketplace items are not eligible for any BN.com coupons and promotions
$1.99
Seller since 2008

Feedback rating:

(16222)

Condition:

New — never opened or used in original packaging.

Like New — packaging may have been opened. A "Like New" item is suitable to give as a gift.

Very Good — may have minor signs of wear on packaging but item works perfectly and has no damage.

Good — item is in good condition but packaging may have signs of shelf wear/aging or torn packaging. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Acceptable — item is in working order but may show signs of wear such as scratches or torn packaging. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Used — An item that has been opened and may show signs of wear. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Refurbished — A used item that has been renewed or updated and verified to be in proper working condition. Not necessarily completed by the original manufacturer.

Very Good
Avon Books (Mm), 03/01/1998, Mass Market Paperback, Very Good condition.

Ships from: Frederick, MD

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
$1.99
Seller since 2006

Feedback rating:

(60901)

Condition: Good
Shows some signs of wear, and may have some markings on the inside. 100% Money Back Guarantee. Shipped to over one million happy customers. Your purchase benefits world literacy!

Ships from: Mishawaka, IN

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
$1.99
Seller since 2009

Feedback rating:

(23955)

Condition: Acceptable
Our feedback rating says it all: Five star service and fast delivery! We have shipped four million items to happy customers, and have one MILLION unique items ready to ship today!

Ships from: Toledo, OH

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
$1.99
Seller since 2009

Feedback rating:

(11073)

Condition: Acceptable
A tradition of southern quality and service. All books guaranteed at the Atlanta Book Company. Our mailers are 100% recyclable.

Ships from: Atlanta, GA

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
$1.99
Seller since 2009

Feedback rating:

(6927)

Condition: Very Good
Nice condition with minor indications of previous handling. Book selection as BIG as Texas.

Ships from: Dallas, TX

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
$1.99
Seller since 2009

Feedback rating:

(1246)

Condition: Good
Good book, great price! We ship daily via USPS. Buy with the best! BN

Ships from: Toledo, OH

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
$1.99
Seller since 2009

Feedback rating:

(1246)

Condition: Acceptable
A used copy at a fantastic price. We ship daily via USPS. Buy with the best! BN

Ships from: Toledo, OH

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
$1.99
Seller since 2009

Feedback rating:

(1246)

Condition: Acceptable
A used copy at a fantastic price. We ship daily via USPS. Buy with the best! BN

Ships from: Toledo, OH

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
$1.99
Seller since 2007

Feedback rating:

(3073)

Condition: Good
1998 Mass Market Paperback Good Mass Market Paperback-

Ships from: San Jose, CA

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
$1.99
Seller since 2009

Feedback rating:

(23955)

Condition: Good
Our feedback rating says it all: Five star service and fast delivery! We have shipped four million items to happy customers, and have one MILLION unique items ready to ship today!

Ships from: Toledo, OH

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
Page 1 of 2
Showing 1 – 10 of 15 (2 pages)
Close
Sort by
Sending request ...

Overview

NO GOOD DEED GOES UNPUNISHED

Romance novelist, harried mom, and sometimes sleuth, E.J. Pugh has a habit of being in the wrong place at the right time. This time she.s on hand to pull a suicidal teenager from a freezing Texas river. The distraught young girl, Brenna, has good reasons for wanting to end it all, since she comes from the worst horror of a family since Charles Manson.s. And a good Samaritan act has propped E.J. into the middle of the dysfunctional mess.

Then comes the news that makes E.J..s blood run-cold: the girl.s mother has been murdered, and Brenna stands accused of the crime, E.J. feels certain the frightened teen is innocent, and the determined crime solver is making it her business to save a troubled child.s life one more time. . .even at the risk of losing her own.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
E.J. Pugh is the first one to admit she's no Martha Stewart. What she is, is a sometime romance writer and an emotionally over-extended wife and mother. She's also a woman who can't walk away from trouble. In this fourth installment of her series (after Home Again, Home Again), E.J. jumps into a freezing Texas river to rescue a suicidal teen named Brenna. As young lives go, Brenna's is lousy and getting worse fast. Her mother, free after a nine-year term for the death of Brenna's baby brother, is hell-bent on hauling her daughter off to live with her abusive stepfather. But E.J.'s not about to let that happen. With the help of family counselor, Josh Morgan, a Herman Munster-type with a mega-watt smile and a troubled past, E.J. gives Brenna a fresh start. For the first time, things are looking up for Brenna...until her mother and stepfather are murdered and she becomes the prime suspect. Cooper, who spikes her first-person narrative with humor, witty wordplay and the occasional philosophical insight, produces not just a smart, fast-paced mystery, but a thoughtful, touching tale as well. (Mar.)
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780380794683
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 3/28/1998
  • Series: E.J. Pugh Mystery Series
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Pages: 224
  • Product dimensions: 4.20 (w) x 6.82 (h) x 0.62 (d)

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One


The sun glinted off the waters of the Colorado--River--- (the Texas Colorado River--not to be confused with that other Colorado River in that other state) when I noticed something out of whack.

The bluish brown water, the beige sandy banks of the river, the green and brown of the trees, and the white of the bridge made the pink of the party dress stand out like a roach in a Tupperware drawer. I slowed the car and pulled to the side of the bridge. There was a girl standing on the other side--the wrong side--of the railing, her body facing the water below, her arms behind her hanging on to the bridge rail. The pink party dress was stained and her abundance of dark hair was in day-after disarray--some still pinned up in its formerly fancy do, other strands hanging limply around her face.

I got out of the car and walked slowly toward the girl poised on the bridge. In one hand holding on to the bridge rail were a pair of cheap gold-and-silver sandal-type party shoes. She turned her face toward me, and I could see she was no more than fifteen or sixteen years old. Mascara strained her face in streaks, and too much blush pocked her face in splotches.

She was smaller than me, maybe five-five to my five eleven, and thin. From the bodice of the outdated pink party dress I could see the edges of Kleenex peeking through.

"Hi,'' I said, doing my perky cheerleader greeting.

"Go away!" she screamed.

Okay, I thought, so we're not going to play perky cheerleader.

"I mean it! Stay away from me!" she shouted.

I stopped on the road, putting my hands up in front of me like a traffic cop. "Don't," I said. "Please."

"Go away! Leave mealone!"

I took a quick gulp of air. "I'm E.J.," I said, trying to make my voice as neutral as possible. "What's your name?"

It had been thirteen years since my training as a volunteer for Houston's Crisis Hotline, but it was a little like riding a bicycle--the procedures were coming back to me in flashes. Keep your voice calm. Say your name and ask theirs.

"Get away!"

"I'm not coming any closer, I promise,'' I said, standing my ground. "I just want to talk to you.'' Be firm yet gentle.

''I don't want to talk! Go away!"

"Please," I said. "It can't be that bad--" Don't belittle their feelings--oops.

"How the hell do you know how bad it is?"

"Please just talk to me. Maybe I can help." Be their friend--their lifeline.

She laughed and snorted at the same time, tears streaming down her face. I was worried the tears were blinding her and she'd reach out to wipe them away. If she did that, she would surely fall.

"I'm E.J.--" Repeat your name when necessary.

"I don't care who you are!"

"I want to help you." Show your concern without pushing.

"I'm way past helping,_ she whined. _Nobody can help me anymore!''

"Please let me try," I said, shuffling slowly toward her.

"Get back!" she shouted.

I stopped in my tracks. "I won't move any closer, I promise," I said, knowing it was a promise I would break in a heartbeat. Lie, cheat, steal. Just keep them alive. "Just let me talk to you."

The girl sighed heavily. "Please tell my grandma I love her," she said, then let go of the railing.

In the two years I'd worked as a Hotline volunteer, I'd never lost one. Maybe it wasn't like riding a bicycle after all.

I stood transfixed; the scene before me moved like a film in slow motion. The gold-and-silver sandals dangled for a while from one finger, then escaped, the sun glinting off the metallic splendor as they fell, along with the girl's body, into the waters of the Colorado.

I knew the river at this section. We'd had rain lately, and this was a deep section. The bridge was no higher, really, than the high board at the local swimming pool. If she could swim, she'd make it.

Her body hit with a small splash, and she was under. The currents were strong here. I ran to the other side of the bridge. Her head popped up, and she screamed, "I can't swim!"

Well, shit! I thought. I stripped off my down jacket and my Reeboks, climbed the side of the railing and jumped, not giving much thought to what I was doing. Which was probably a good thing. Thought might have stopped me. This move had definitely not been in the Hotline handbook.

The water was icy--so cold I felt the goose bumps rising all over my body and felt my teeth begin to chatter. Swim, I told myself. Swim fast.

She was in front of me, head bobbing in and out of the water, spitting the water out of her mouth as she tried to scream. Obviously not a lot of thought had gone into her plan either.

In four long strokes, with the help of the current and her inability to swim, I caught up with her. She grabbed my hair and tried to climb on top of my head, pushing me under the water. Luckily I had weight and knowledge on my side. I grabbed her, slapped her sharply in the face, said, "Be still!" and pulled her to the bank of the river in a fairly easy lifeguard move I'd learned in Girl Scouts twenty-five years before.

I yanked her up the bank, and we both lay there panting, exhausted and freezing.

Finally, she said, "Who the hell are you and why are you butting into my life?"

"I'm E.J. Pugh and I'm not butting into your life, honey, I'm butting into your death."

She rolled away from me and started to rise. Too tired to get up and follow her if she ran I just grabbed the soaked party dress and pulled. She plopped down beside me.

"Let go!" she said.

I shook my head, too exhausted to do much more. "Where did you think you were going?"

"I'm cold," she whined. "I dunno. Just away from here." She began to cry, large choking sobs that racked her thin body.

We were both lying on the ground, the girl's back to me. I moved to her, putting my arms around her and hugging her, hoping some of my own body heat would reach her.

I'm not a professional shrink. I'm not even much of an amateur one. But I am a mom--how good a mom my children might debate. I could only do what I knew worked with my kids. I held her and began to sing softly in her ear. I'm about as good a singer as I am a shrink, but she began to calm down.

We lay that way for what felt like hours, but was probably not more than ten or fifteen minutes.

"Why are you doing this?" she finally asked.

"Because I don_t want you to die," I said.

''You don't even know me!''

"What difference does that make?'' I asked her.

Releasing her, although still holding her hand, I sat up, and said, ''I have to call someone for you.''

She shook her head. "No one to call,'' she said.

_I think I should take you to the emergency room, let them look you over."

She tried to pull out of my grip. "No!" she said.

"I'll stay with you," I said. "I won't let anything happen to you."

She was silent for a moment, and then she said, "Promise?"

This was a promise I had no intention of breaking.

Copyright ) 1998 by Susan Rogers Cooper

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)