The Winter of Her Discontent (Rosie Winter Series #2)

( 5 )

Overview

It's tough shooting for stardom when there's a war on. But Rosie's got enough pluck for two: she's willing to stumble around in a Broadway dance chorus that she has no right to be a part of, in a musical that's got "flop" written all over it. And all the while, she's worrying about her missing-in-action soldier boyfriend, who hasn't written in months. Lately, she's also been keeping bad company with her mob-muscle pal, Al, who's dabbling in a host of shady money-making enterprises in this time of shortages and ...

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The Winter of Her Discontent

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Overview

It's tough shooting for stardom when there's a war on. But Rosie's got enough pluck for two: she's willing to stumble around in a Broadway dance chorus that she has no right to be a part of, in a musical that's got "flop" written all over it. And all the while, she's worrying about her missing-in-action soldier boyfriend, who hasn't written in months. Lately, she's also been keeping bad company with her mob-muscle pal, Al, who's dabbling in a host of shady money-making enterprises in this time of shortages and rationing. But despite his illicit line of work, Al's no killer. When the cops finger him for his girlfriend's murder, Rosie and Jayne, her close compatriot/fellow castmate, set out to clear big Al's name, and plunge into an intricate backstage drama featuring a bevy of suspiciously well-dressed wannabe starlets. But the plot could soon be taking another lethal turn, bringing a final curtain down on Rosie, Jayne, and all their good intentions.

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Editorial Reviews

Rhys Bowen
“Perfectly captures the feel, sights and sounds of New York in the 1940s.”
Booklist
“Haines capably combines homefront ambience (rationing, worries over soldier boyfriends)with plenty of backstage drama....and Rosie and Jane make a winning team of fiesty homefronters...”
Booklist
“Haines capably combines homefront ambience (rationing, worries over soldier boyfriends)with plenty of backstage drama....and Rosie and Jane make a winning team of fiesty homefronters...”
Publishers Weekly

Haines serves up hefty portions of medium-rare WWII home-front nostalgia, wartime slang and theater lore in her second Rosie Winter mystery (after 2007's The War Against Miss Winter). In March 1943, aspiring Broadway actress Rosie has her problems: she broke up with her sailor boyfriend, Jack, just before he shipped out and now he's missing in action; she's stuck with best friend Jayne in a cheap Manhattan rooming house with backstabbing theatrical aspirants; her petty gangster buddy Al's in the hoosegow for a murder Rosie's sure he didn't do; and beef rationing looms as a cruel April Fool's joke. Haines makes the girls' physical and emotional hungers both vivid and poignant as they desperately try to keep smiling, but her bitter tale about wartime sacrifices inevitably producing corruption is riddled with inaccuracies (e.g., U.S.A.A.F. officers wore olive drab, not dress blues; corporal isn't a navy rank). Still, Haines brings home the painful price the "greatest generation" paid more gallantly than anyone then knew. (July)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Kirkus Reviews
A hapless dancer and consummate sleuth survives meatless Tuesdays during World War II. Although her gams aren't as graceful as her roommate Jayne's, Rosie Winter is accepted along with Jayne for the chorus of Walter Friday's new production, Goin' South. Many mishaps await between rehearsals and opening night. Paulette, one of the leading ladies, is murdered, and Al, a mobster gofer for Jayne's sweetie Tony B., confesses and is jailed. Sets crash. And the stench of carnage arises from the theater basement, where the play's backer, Vinnie "the Butcher" Garvaggio, comes and goes at odd hours. To prove their pal Al is innocent despite his confession, Rosie and Jayne investigate and are soon awash in Paulette's dead husbands, fiance and new boyfriend, as well as the amorous soldiers they fend off at the Stage Door Canteen. They must deal with jealous actresses also living at the Shaw House and black market meals in which horse substitutes for steer. Eventually the play opens and swiftly closes; Al gets out of jail; and the gals begin to look for new jobs and new boyfriends. A breezy look back at the '40s, complete with starlets in short skirts and mobsters smoking Cuban cigars. Rosie's debut needs a better last act, but she deserves another crack at stardom.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780061139802
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 6/24/2008
  • Series: Rosie Winter Series , #2
  • Pages: 336
  • Sales rank: 570,321
  • Product dimensions: 5.20 (w) x 7.90 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Kathryn Miller Haines is an actor, mystery writer, award-winning playwright, and artistic director of a Pittsburgh-based theater company.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 5 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 8 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 18, 2008

    Fantastic Read!

    I really loved Kathryn Miller Haines first book, The War Against Miss Winter, and have been waiting for her next one in the Rosie Winter Series and I must say it was well worth the wait!!! Once I started reading The Winter of Her Discontent, I couldn't put it down. The plot twists and turns and builds the excitement of this outstanding mystery novel. I love the characters the author has created--Rosie, Jayne and Al. I feel like I am in 1940's New York City with them. ENJOY!!! Now, how long will I have to wait for the next book????

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    entertaining WW II era amateur sleuth

    In 1943, wannabe Broadway actress Rosie Winter feels guilt and remorse as she just broke up with her boyfriend, sailor Jack, who is reported missing at sea. She and her roommate at Shaw House Jayne obtain work on the theatrical production of Goin¿ South, but Rosie fears the role will kill her career before it begins because she is part of the dance chorus and knows she can¿t dance still it is work. --- However, as opening night looms, Rosie feels good she has not been fired (so far). Someone kills one of the stars Paulette shockingly Rosie¿s friend Al, the small time thug who works for Jayne¿s boyfriend Tony as an elbow breaker, confesses. Rosie does not believe Al committed the crime, so sets out to prove he is innocent even while dealing with beefless nights and starlets, as broke as she, live lives of luxury. --- Although the final dance number seems somewhat anticlimactic, THE WINTER OF HER DISCONTENT is an entertaining WW II era New York tale. The amateur sleuth elements and the danger to Rosie and Jayne come late as the story line focuses on how the war impact people at home who sacrifice (some in strange ways like the black market repast industry that surfaces) to support the cause. Fans will enjoy this period piece in which the tidbits supersede the whodunit (see THE WAR AGAINST MISS WINTER for her previous home front WW II experience). --- Harriet Klausner

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