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A Bel Barrett Mystery

By Jane Isenberg

Avon, December 2005, paperback ($6.99)
ISBN: 0060577533

Reviewed by Cherie Jung

From talking with several bookstore owners, this series seems to be one you either love or hate, depending upon how you feel about menopause. This is the first book I've read in the series so I can't really address that question. In HOT WIRED Bel Barrett is post-menopausal, if that helps any former readers reconsider their stance on the series. If you haven't read the series for awhile, maybe it's time to try it again.

From my own reading, I enjoyed the main character, Bel, who is a fifty-something-year-old community college professor settling in with a new husband. The grown kids are out of the house and on their own. But then, I'm a fifty-something person myself and I enjoy reading mysteries with women of that age. We can't all be in our thirties forever, but then again, we're not all Miss Marple's age yet either! I enjoy a protagonist who is spunky, or sassy, or plucky...whatever the current buzz word is. Someone with a sense of humor. Someone who has a bit of common sense but is still brave enough and smart enough to be able to take on the bad guys and win.

An angry ex-student, a website, and a dead body leave Bel the prime suspect in a murder case. As is usual for this type of mystery, the police are quite content having a prime suspect. It's in Bel's own best interest that she tries to unravel the clues and expose a killer, if she can. Otherwise, the police will leave her name on top of their list.

This is the eighth book in the Bel Barrett series. We have three reviews of previous books in the series. Please click on the title(s) below to read the review(s).

I'm looking forward to reading other books from this series.

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