The Importance of Being Ernestine: An Ellie Haskell Mystery, Book 10

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Viking, 2002 - Fiction - 248 pages
3 Reviews
"The Importance of Being Ernestine" brings one of Dorothy Cannell's splendidly dotty characters to front stage. Ellie Haskell has had her ups and downs with housekeeper Mrs. Malloy, but she misses her when the corpulent, caustic cleaning lady starts moonlighting in a private detective's office-nosing into his files as she dusts them. But when she summons Ellie there one evening for a woman-to-woman chat laced with her boss's bourbon and unfiltered cigarettes, they hardly expect the belated arrival of his afternoon client.
Lady Krumley, a hawk-nosed matriarch clad in modish mourning sixty years out of date, tells them a tale that goes back thirty years-to when she wrongfully dismissed her parlor maid, Flossie, secretly in the family way by the undergardener. Flossie died of tuberculosis soon after childbirth while striving to support herself and her child, Ernestine-but not before vowing vengeance from beyond the grave on the rich Krumleys at Moultty Towers. Now, family members have started meeting with fatal accidents. . . . Ernestine, Lady Krumley fears, is carrying out her mother's dying curse.
Can Ellie and Mrs. Malloy, the newly formed but unlikely detective duo, find Ernestine and prevent more Krumleys from crumbling in the churchyard without killing each other first?

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User Review  - phyllis2779 - LibraryThing

I didn't like this as much as the first Ellie Haskell book I read. Maybe too much Mrs. Malloy who came across as too stereotyped as an uneducated but bossy charwoman. It reminded me of the ... Read full review

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User Review  - CathyWoolbright - LibraryThing

Still reading, but I dont' know if this is in keeping with the play of which the title is a play on words, but I keep finding similes used for the proper word in sentences, but not in spoken sentences ... Read full review

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About the author (2002)

Dorothy Cannell was born in Nottingham, England and moved to the United States when she was twenty. Her first Ellie Haskell novel, The Thin Woman, was selected as one of the 100 Favorite Mysteries of the Twentieth Century by the Independent Mystery Booksellers Association. Besides the Ellie Haskell Mysteries series, her other novels include God Save the Queen!, Naked Came the Farmer, The Sunken Sailor, and Sea Glass Summer. She is also a contributor to the popular Sisters in Crime anthologies.

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