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  • 31 of 33 copies available at Bibliomation. (Show)
  • 1 of 1 copy available at Rowayton Library.
Location Call Number / Copy Notes Barcode Shelving Location Status Due Date
Rowayton Library MYS COO (Text to phone) 33625122832616 Adult Mystery Available -

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General Note:
Includes reading group guide and a conversation with the author.
Summary, etc.: "Clementine Lakefield leads a simple life in her retirement community in Sun City, South Carolina. But while she plays cards, substitute teaches, and has learned to text with her niece and nephew, Clemmie is not who she says she is. Behind her carefree facade, she is hiding a lifetime of secrets. When Clemmie's curmudgeonly neighbor goes missing, Clemmie suddenly finds herself at the center of a dangerous conspiracy..."--
Subject: Retired teachers Fiction
Older women Fiction
Missing persons Fiction
Glass sculpture Fiction
South Carolina Fiction
Genre: Detective and mystery fiction.
Mystery fiction.

Syndetic Solutions - Publishers Weekly Review for ISBN Number 9781728205120
Before She Was Helen : A Novel
Before She Was Helen : A Novel
by Cooney, Caroline
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Publishers Weekly Review

Before She Was Helen : A Novel

Publishers Weekly


(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Clemmie Lakefield, the heroine of this solid mystery from YA author Cooney (The Face on the Milk Carton), is known as Helen Stephens, a semi-retired teacher, at Sun City, the South Carolina retirement community she has made her home. Quiet and pleasant, if a bit dull, Clemmie is the perfect neighbor . When Dom Spesante, the dour occupant of the adjacent townhouse, fails to respond to Clemmie's daily text, she goes next door to check on him. Dom is nowhere to be found, but Clemmie stumbles on a beautiful glass sculpture. One neighborly act and a photo posted to social media ignite a series of events that threaten to upend Clemmie's charade as Helen. For 50 years, Clemmie has kept a terrible secret, but now with a robbery, the discovery of a body, and her fingerprints in a place they don't belong, Clemmie's lies are in danger of unraveling. Cooney offers frightening reminiscences of innocence destroyed while gently skewering the foibles of the aging and the young. Never mind the slightly contrived ending. Boomers and millennials alike will be satisfied. Agent: Kerry D'Agostino, Curtis Brown. (May)

Syndetic Solutions - BookList Review for ISBN Number 9781728205120
Before She Was Helen : A Novel
Before She Was Helen : A Novel
by Cooney, Caroline
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BookList Review

Before She Was Helen : A Novel

Booklist


From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.

You'd pass Clemmie on the street and never notice her. She's seventysomething, a spinster, and a semiretired Latin teacher. She lives in a vanilla-bland retirement community and plays a lot of cards. So why is she distressed when someone forwards her a newspaper cutting headlined, "Cold Case Reopened"? Well, she's fresh from a busybody moment snooping on neighbors and has found and photographed a gorgeous sculpture. She sends the photo to her nephew. She shouldn't have. He posts it on the internet and the sculpture is identified as stolen. And her prints are on it. The police are about to get interested. That's why the news about fresh inquiries into a 40-year-old murder is so upsetting. Then a dead body is found next door. Clemmie must turn senior sleuth to keep past and present crimes from coming down on her. She's great at it, faking to perfection a silly-old-senile-me act. Adding a note of hilarity to the proceedings, she's more Columbo than Miss Marple, and she wasn't always Clemmie. Back when, the boys called her Betty Boop. A fine mystery from a highly regarded YA author.

Syndetic Solutions - Library Journal Review for ISBN Number 9781728205120
Before She Was Helen : A Novel
Before She Was Helen : A Novel
by Cooney, Caroline
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Library Journal Review

Before She Was Helen : A Novel

Library Journal


(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

This terrific suspense tale from best-selling YA author Cooney has a relatable heroine living anonymously in a South Carolina retirement village. Clemmie has been living under an assumed name for 50-plus years. When she goes to check on a nasty neighbor, she finds a beautiful object and sends photos to her grand-niece and nephew, who promptly post it online--and unwittingly put her in jeopardy. Suddenly she's the target of a deadly drug dealer, her double identity could be exposed, and her fingerprints are all over a murder scene. Worse, a cold case involving the murder of her long-ago rapist and stalker, a beloved basketball coach at her high school, is being reopened. Must she run away and make a new life again, or can she continue her dull but safe life in Sun City? The details of the identical "villas" and their decidedly nonidentical residents are spot-on, as are observations about how we live now vs. then. Clemmie and the other residents are fully fleshed characters, not a cutesy oldster in the bunch. How each of them, including Clemmie, deal with disruptions in their placid lives is hilarious and familiar. VERDICT Perfect for fans of domestic suspense and believable, mature characters, and anybody who likes a solid twisty story. [See Prepub Alert, 10/21/19.]--Liz French, Library Journal

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