Matricide at St Martha's

Ruth Dudley Edwards, Author
Ruth Dudley Edwards, Author St. Martin's Press $19.95 (222p) ISBN 978-0-312-13122-7
Paperback - 308 pages - 978-0-7862-0400-7
Analog Audio Cassette - 978-0-7540-0435-6
Compact Disc - 978-0-7540-5329-3
Paperback - 242 pages - 978-1-890208-92-9
Open Ebook - 260 pages - 978-1-61595-061-4
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This sixth outing for former civil servant and amateur sleuth Robert Amiss finds him installed in a one-year fellowship at threadbare St. Martha's Women's College, Cambridge, thanks to rough, tough Ida ``Jack'' Troutbeck, the college bursar and an old friend. Arguing over a recent multimillion-dollar bequest, the faculty is divided into three camps, crudely labeled by Jack as ``Virgins, Dykes and Old Women.'' The first, the academics loyal to the presiding Mistress, are under attack by the Dykes, who, led by two women professors, want the money used for a Gender and Ethnic Studies Center. The Old Women are men, including a wimpy embroidery expert and a cleric, desiring nothing more than updated, cushy quarters. High feelings and hot words escalate. The Mistress is murdered, bringing the police, who are under the bumbling direction of a Bible-quoting ignoramus inspector totally at sea in this milieu. A second killing occurs before the inspector, with some quiet guidance from Amiss, makes an almost perfunctory arrest. Detection and suspense take a back seat to Edwards's (Clubbed to Death) acidly witty send-up of feminists, dumb cops and all matters politically correct. (May)
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