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When a reclusive local artist is murdered, her assistant Suzy, a Japanese American woman, becomes the prime suspect. This is the third title (after Miss Dimple Rallies to the Cause) in this engaging series set in rural Georgia during World War II. (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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This WWII-era Georgia mystery begins with a missing sick child. First-grade teacher Miss Dimple finds the child in a winter storm and takes her to shelter at the cabin of a reclusive artist. When the artist is found murdered soon afterwards, Miss Dimple does not believe, as everyone else in the small town does, that the artist's Asian companion, Suzy, is the killer. Suzy, whose Japanese family members are being held in an American internment camp, worries about the chances of anyone believing in her innocence. Miss Dimple and her friends hide Suzy and begin asking questions, which puts them in serious danger. There is plenty of period detail, with Miss Dimple's fellow teacher sleuths discussing rationing and writing to overseas fiances. The wartime setting will appeal to a wide range of readers. The strong female characters of all ages are similar in manner to those in Tracy Kiely's Elizabeth Parker mysteries, despite that series being set in a different era.--Alessio, Amy Copyright 2010 Booklist
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In Ballard's quietly engaging third mystery set during WWII (after 2011's Miss Dimple Rallies to the Cause), Miss Dimple Kilpatrick, first-grade teacher at Elderberry (Ga.) grammar school, is quickly able to track a child lost in the woods to a remote farmhouse where she's being well cared for by reclusive artist Mae Martha Hawthorne and Mae's Asian companion, Suzy. Several days later, someone bludgeons Mae to death, and Mae's paintings, which have been increasing in value, disappear. Suspicion in the xenophobic town immediately falls on the missing Suzy, who's Japanese and named Suzu Amaya. Miss Dimple, practical and resolute, enlists the aid of two other primary school teachers to find Suzy, the canvases, and the murderer. They bungle their way through copious misadventures, putting themselves at grave risk. While a little too sweetly nostalgic and filled with stock characters, the book retains some bite and a few surprises. Agent: Laura Langlie, Laura Langlie Agency. (Jan.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.