In about 2006 I read and very much enjoyed a book about a group of friends at university in England (Oxford? Cambridge? Not sure). I remember a lot about the book but cannot remember the author or title. I’ve been scouring the internet which is where I found you. Please help!
There are four main characters: Brother, Sister (possibly named Maggie), Sister’s boyfriend (these three are British), and one American girl.
The book starts with the American character planning for a party to which Brother is invited. The American character is pregnant. The other characters are not invited. The rest of the book is the backstory about what happened between these four people at university.
The Sister and American girl meet at university. The American girl thinks the sister is really cool. The Brother really likes the American girl, but it’s unrequited. She has a strained relationship with her family including a family member who calls and reports her so that she gets strip searched by the airport security agents on her way back to the states for Christmas (or something like that). The security agent that searches her makes a comment about her breasts looking like fried eggs.
Somehow the Sister dies. Car accident?
The Brother despises the Sister’s boyfriend. And years later when sister’s boyfriend appears on some type of reality show where the citizens of England can call in and vote for their favorite contestant, he spends his entire lunch break every day calling in to vote for the opponent so he doesn’t win the reality show.
Brother and American girl see each other at the party. He has a terrible new haircut and it’s awkward seeing each other because of all the history between them including sister’s death.
Ok – please help me get this out of my brain! Thank you in advance!
Trying to find a mystery, printed (in paperback) before 1984. A small town sheriff is faced with a baffling murder. Spoiler alert! It turns out that a well-to-do brother and sister are rather more than that…and want it kept unknown. I believe the story is set in Montana or Idaho, but can’t be certain.
Looking for a book about a teenage girl who lives alone with her father. Her brother was killed when he fell off their horse and she refuses to touch the horse anymore, only going into the barn to feed the horse. She lives in the mountains somewhere, they still have a communal phone line, which she uses to order clothes while her father is away on his sales route.
There is a new family in town, maybe the new mayor or teacher, someone important, there is a parade or celebration of some sort where she sees the young boy be given a piece of candy by an elderly woman that the town thinks is kind of crazy.
Shortly after that the boy is kidnapped. There is an abandoned homestead behind her land and a couple moves in. The man does work for her. She starts to wonder about the couple, goes to investigate and finds the young boy. She then devises a way to get the boy back. She uses the horse because she has no way to get into town without the horse. Describes her home as a shotgun house.
The book I vaguely remember had something to do with a child or maybe siblings going to spend the summer with an elderly aunt (I think) who was living on a lake where most of the houses were abandoned. It had once been a vibrant summer community ca. 1900 (I think), but was now mostly deserted sans aunt’s household. There may or may not have been a mystery component to it. I think I read it around 4th grade maybe ca. 1977?
I hope I’m not blending info from several books, but here goes:
I read the Braille version of this book—probably about 200 pages in print—in the early 1970’s. I don’t remember the title, and am on the hunt for books I read as a young person—to re-visit them through older eyes. The protagonist may have been named Kathy Hughes or had a friend by that name. She solves a mystery using library newsreels. There may have been a male co-sleuth. Finally, the book may have featured an elderly character in a wheelchair, Mrs. Smallett. Alas, that is all I can remember!
Looking for metafictional short story that’s an homage to classic noir (probably published in the last 10 years or so) in which a PI is hired by a pulp fiction publisher to write stories. I think the PI only deals with a woman (secretary?) at first, they pay him a lot of money for his writing, and then maybe he eventually meets the publisher and there’s a twist ending that goes poorly for the PI. The tone was winkingly hardboiled (first-person narrator like classic PI stories). I have exhausted every possible Google keyword variation I can think of, and am just hoping someone in your network may have read this! I seem to think it was in a short story collection with different authors doing takes on mystery stories (similar to an anthology called Tiny Crimes), but could be wrong about that.
Romantic suspense or mystery, 1960s-1970s? Could be paperback. Young British woman goes to African plantation, murder. She goes home. Police inspector arrives at door. She may have been poor relation. African servants may play role.
I was sure this was a Tuppence & Tommy book (Christie), but it's not -- and I just finished reading all her books again. No luck; it's not one of hers! This mystery hinges on the time it takes (used to take) to dial a phone number -- the way a 9 on a rotary phone took longer to rotate back, when you dialed, than, say, a 2 would. Someone heard a number being dialed in the next room, at the beginning of the book, and realizes much later the reported phone number had to have been a lie -- didn't fit the sounds actually heard. I read this book around 1975, and it was old then. Thank you!!
When I was in about 3rd to 6th grade in the early 1970s, my favorite book in my NJ public school library was a hardcover chapter book about kids on summer vacation, possibly in upstate New York, who get involved in some kind of mystery involving a neighboring house they call the Chateau. I think a diamond necklace came into it, and I’m pretty sure the children of one family joined forces with a boy from another family (maybe living in the Chateau?) to solve the mystery. Either Chateau or Diamond Necklace might have been in the title, but I’ve had no luck Googling for it. It was an old-fashioned story at the time, probably could have been written any time from the late 1930s to the mid 60s. There were illustrations, but a limited number, and I think they might have been listed by caption after the table of contents. I think it was the first time I had heard of a “Porte cochere”, which I had to look up. I think the binding was red, and may have had an imprint illustration of a country house on the cover — but I could be making that up!
I loved it and probably read it four or five times, but these scraps are all I can remember! I’d dearly love to find a copy.