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Murder 101

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English Professor Alison Bergeron is not having a very good day. Her car has been stolen so she has to walk to the train station to get to her office at St. Thomas, a college in the Bronx, New York. When she arrived she finds two homicide detectives waiting for her. The good news is that they found her car; the bad news is that in the trunk was the body of one of the stude English Professor Alison Bergeron is not having a very good day. Her car has been stolen so she has to walk to the train station to get to her office at St. Thomas, a college in the Bronx, New York. When she arrived she finds two homicide detectives waiting for her. The good news is that they found her car; the bad news is that in the trunk was the body of one of the students in her Shakespeare seminar. Trying to get her name off of the handsome Detective Crawford’s suspect list turns out to be just one of her problems. Alison has to bail her ex out of jail; deal with the victim’s distraught parents, classmates of hers when she was a student at St. Thomas; and grade those Shakespeare exams, which seem to be getting a lot of attention for a boring old stack of reports. And in the meantime, who would want to kill college student Kathy Miceli?


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English Professor Alison Bergeron is not having a very good day. Her car has been stolen so she has to walk to the train station to get to her office at St. Thomas, a college in the Bronx, New York. When she arrived she finds two homicide detectives waiting for her. The good news is that they found her car; the bad news is that in the trunk was the body of one of the stude English Professor Alison Bergeron is not having a very good day. Her car has been stolen so she has to walk to the train station to get to her office at St. Thomas, a college in the Bronx, New York. When she arrived she finds two homicide detectives waiting for her. The good news is that they found her car; the bad news is that in the trunk was the body of one of the students in her Shakespeare seminar. Trying to get her name off of the handsome Detective Crawford’s suspect list turns out to be just one of her problems. Alison has to bail her ex out of jail; deal with the victim’s distraught parents, classmates of hers when she was a student at St. Thomas; and grade those Shakespeare exams, which seem to be getting a lot of attention for a boring old stack of reports. And in the meantime, who would want to kill college student Kathy Miceli?

30 review for Murder 101

  1. 5 out of 5

    Meredith Galman

    Stupid heroine, unprofessional cop. Author clearly has no clue about what working in academia is like. I still want to know what kind of course a Joyce scholar and a biology professor would be team-teaching.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie Graves

    This was seriously bad, and I only finished it out of a desire to be done with it. (I have this thing about giving up on books--I've only not finished two in my life. Come to think of it, it would probably have been just fine if this had joined that list...) First, I enjoy mysteries as a sort of brain-in-neutral endeavor, and I am not very good at guessing whodunnit before the big reveal. However, this book was so poorly constructed that it was glaringly obvious to even me long before the protago This was seriously bad, and I only finished it out of a desire to be done with it. (I have this thing about giving up on books--I've only not finished two in my life. Come to think of it, it would probably have been just fine if this had joined that list...) First, I enjoy mysteries as a sort of brain-in-neutral endeavor, and I am not very good at guessing whodunnit before the big reveal. However, this book was so poorly constructed that it was glaringly obvious to even me long before the protagonist figured it out. The big problem with that is that the protagonist, Alison, is supposed to be a PhD, a professor of literature at a private college in New York. You don't get to that point being so utterly daft as the character is written. Also, as a professor, Alison admits to loathing the Shakespeare class she is teaching, and generally doesn't seem to enjoy literature at all. Also, her best friend--the whimsical, rich, beautiful sidekick archetype--is a totally selfish bitch. And Alison is sooooo distraught at her ex-husband's philandering, even though they are divorced; she continues whining about it throughout the book. And--oh!--he is also a professor at the same college, and teaches biology. Yet they co-teach a class? What? What the hell kind of class would an english prof and a biology prof teach together? I seriously doubt that the author knows much about how academia actually works. I would have been better off watching some terrible reality TV than reading this. Ca va.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Jaimie

    So I ended up really enjoying this story. It started out kind of slow and I didn't know if it was going to be something I would get into but I don't know if that is because I was making assumptions as to how the story would go. Alison turned out to be a very likable character - at first I thought she was going to be cookie cutter mystery lead - you know clumsy, signature drink (martini) and blabbers on when nervous - and while she was all those things she had more going for her that made me like So I ended up really enjoying this story. It started out kind of slow and I didn't know if it was going to be something I would get into but I don't know if that is because I was making assumptions as to how the story would go. Alison turned out to be a very likable character - at first I thought she was going to be cookie cutter mystery lead - you know clumsy, signature drink (martini) and blabbers on when nervous - and while she was all those things she had more going for her that made me like her a lot. This ended up a four star cozy for me although in the beginning it seemed more like 2.5 - 3 so I am just averaging it out at 3.5.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Mary Bird

    Eh. I didn't dislike it, per se, but it was kind of a strange piece. The cop doesn't act much like a cop, the professor doesn't act much like a professor, and the best friend is a seriously horrible human being. Most of the time I felt like I was reading a romance instead of a mystery (the mystery was probably the least interesting part). It was oddly put together. Also, I could do without quite so much vomit and crying.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Una Tiers

    An interesting theft opens the book, but the dialogue is so weak, it distracted me. Please don't tell me you dialed the phone or disconnected the call over and over again. Some unique parts, but it was too long, too many similar clues were investigated.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Carmen

    Alison Bergeron is living through a rough patch. Her lying and cheating husband is gone but not out of her life. Her car has been stolen, only to turn up with the body of a missing student in the trunk. She's the number one suspect on the list and put under scrutiny from detective sexy. Alison is certainly living through a hellish rough patch. This book is absolutely amazing. I love Alison and her shenanigans. She's such a realistic protagonist that I wish she was real so that we could be friends Alison Bergeron is living through a rough patch. Her lying and cheating husband is gone but not out of her life. Her car has been stolen, only to turn up with the body of a missing student in the trunk. She's the number one suspect on the list and put under scrutiny from detective sexy. Alison is certainly living through a hellish rough patch. This book is absolutely amazing. I love Alison and her shenanigans. She's such a realistic protagonist that I wish she was real so that we could be friends. I really liked that she didn't spend the entire book investigating. There was a little investigating, but not enough to make it seem like she was going to transform into an amateur sleuth. It was something different. I also love that the romance plot didn't go overboard or take away from the characters as people. The characters are hilarious. I like banter that goes on between them throughout the book. Alison's best friend Max is a ball. I hope we see more of her in the next installment. Not to sound lame, but I knew it was a good sign when Max was wearing my new go-to lipstick. There were a few slow patches but they ended pretty quickly. Overall, I love this book and I will definitely be continuing the series.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Melanie

    Not really your typical cozy mystery, as it mostly didn’t feel like the heroine was actively trying to solve the murder, things just kept happening to her peripherally. There were a few times she tried and then kind of gave up. She did eat a lot and describe a lot of her outfits in great detail... 😆 I did enjoy the writing a lot - it was light and funny, with good relationship-building. This series should be really fun now that I’ve got the lay of the land.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Linda

    I'm so sad that it took me forever to start this series. I really enjoyed this book. It was smart and funny. I liked the characters and can't wait to see what happens next. Alison was very likeable and I love how all her knowledge about cops came from TV until she found herself involved in a homicide investigation. Lots of fun and I won't wait nearly as long to read book 2.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Hannah

    Murder 101 is a decent, quick cozy read (of the lighter, chick lit-ish variety rather than your traditional type). I liked certain aspects of it and wasn't fond of others, so I found myself floating between a critical mindset and pure enjoyment while I read it. In the end, I think I'm more or less on the fence. Firstly, for the things I liked. I (mostly) liked the romance between Alison and Detective Crawford, which took up a great deal of time in this book - more so than the actual mystery, I th Murder 101 is a decent, quick cozy read (of the lighter, chick lit-ish variety rather than your traditional type). I liked certain aspects of it and wasn't fond of others, so I found myself floating between a critical mindset and pure enjoyment while I read it. In the end, I think I'm more or less on the fence. Firstly, for the things I liked. I (mostly) liked the romance between Alison and Detective Crawford, which took up a great deal of time in this book - more so than the actual mystery, I thought. You need the ability to suspend belief a bit in order to accept the way Detective Crawford was acting around Alison, but once you get past that it becomes more enjoyable. I liked Detective Crawford (again, most of the time) as well; he's not as naggy and controlling as so many of these hunky detective characters are, despite what Alison might say about him. There's something shy and traditional about him, which I thought was refreshing. And finally, I liked Alison at times. She frustrated me more often than not because she was just so ridiculous at the beginning; by about a third through the book, she had cried a total of 5-6 times and vomitted from distress twice. It's downright silly. She redeemed herself towards the end when she fought like a hellcat to excape her kidnappers, however, which improved my feelings towards her. Hurrah! Secondly, the things I didn't like. Alison is supposed to be a top English professor who completed her doctorate in the minimum number of years, but this is not always reflected in Maggie Barbieri's writing. I remember at least one scene that went something like this, "I woke up and swung my legs off the bed. I pulled out my clogs and then looked at the box sitting beside it. I picked it up and opened it to take out the new pair of mules that I had bought..." It's not verbatim, but that's the general way it went, and I must admit I winced. Very, very clunky. The mystery part is also very weak. Right at the beginning of the book we're already introduced to the problem at hand; the dead body of a student was found in Alison's car. Aside from doing one or two stupid things (like breaking into a dorm room), Alison spends her time alternatively crying because she's upset or hanging out with Detective Crawford. It's completely inaccurate to class her an amateur sleuth, because she doesn't do ANY sleuthing whatsoever. No clues are even laid out nor does there seem to be any progress in the case other than the detectives taking various people in for questioning - it's only in the last few chapters that everything takes a sudden turn and the case literally falls into Alison's lap. This last one bothered me most of all; there is a sudden twist in the relationship developments right at the end of the book, and if it was part of the story progression I could have accepted it, but because it's introduced so suddenly out of the blue, it feels like a badly disguised gimmick to make me pick up Book 2. I really don't like it when plot points are introduced just for the sake of it. (view spoiler)[For those wondering, Detective Crawford turns out to have a wife even though he had answered "No" when Alison asked earlier - they have separated for 6 years, but he had never signed the papers for annulment because he thought it was silly. In his defense, he didn't think it'd become a problem as he didn't have any designs on Alison (or anyone) at that point, but the fact is that he lied and Alison had to find out for herself when she met the wife at the hospital. An idiotic thing to do and it really, really annoys me. (hide spoiler)] The only thing I can say is that... at least it worked? I'm forced to read the next book, if only to find out how Crawford will redeem himself.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Deanna

    I went to a used book store, actually looking for a different author - which they had none of. I saw a bunch of Maggie Barbieri's books, I was hesitant. There had to be a reason why there were a lot of her books on the shelf. Right? I picked up "Murder 101", opened it up to the first page and read "Your ass looks great in that dress." I was hooked. I continued to read it, standing there in front of her other books and knew I had it get it. I read the book in three days. It was that good. Not only I went to a used book store, actually looking for a different author - which they had none of. I saw a bunch of Maggie Barbieri's books, I was hesitant. There had to be a reason why there were a lot of her books on the shelf. Right? I picked up "Murder 101", opened it up to the first page and read "Your ass looks great in that dress." I was hooked. I continued to read it, standing there in front of her other books and knew I had it get it. I read the book in three days. It was that good. Not only did I find a great book, but I found a remarkable and talented author that is now my absolute favorite. Tomorrow, I'm going back to that used book store and buying up all her other books... Thank you Maggie Barbieri!!!

  11. 5 out of 5

    Melissa

    I got to the end and wished the book had been better. I liked the characters of Alison and the policeman Crawford, and the setting of the Catholic university was great. I'm no detective, but I found the solution to the mystery was completely obvious a long way back, and it annoys me when characters do things they really shouldn't and then bad things happen as a result. The writing (and the jokes) was also quite repetitive. However, I will give Book #2 a chance :)

  12. 5 out of 5

    Hmr28

    I LOVE this entire series. Can't wait for Physical Education due out this month. I actually pre-buy this series as soon as I see it up at Barnes and noble for my Nook. Alison is sooo funny, the relationship is great, and the mystery's are very good as well. All around a solid 5 for every book in the series, and that doesn't happen often!

  13. 4 out of 5

    sarah

    Well, this was not very good. There were a few clever lines, but overall I did not think the writing was particularly compelling. The characters (especially the main character) were one-dimensional and some felt comically exaggerated. The mystery was frustrating in that there was a piece of evidence mentioned throughout the book that I suspected would solve the case, but the main character kept on putting it off and putting it off in a sort of un-subtle way. Despite this, the book had sort of gr Well, this was not very good. There were a few clever lines, but overall I did not think the writing was particularly compelling. The characters (especially the main character) were one-dimensional and some felt comically exaggerated. The mystery was frustrating in that there was a piece of evidence mentioned throughout the book that I suspected would solve the case, but the main character kept on putting it off and putting it off in a sort of un-subtle way. Despite this, the book had sort of grown on me by the time I reached the climax, but the climax itself was so anticlimactic and the suspense and action therein were not well written; I lost what goodwill I had. Finally, I was frustrated with the ending. The main character was hung up on a "lie" that was really an issue of semantics. It felt like a manufactured reason to get in the way of a romance I already found to be boring. (The romance, for being a major subplot, was so flat. I found their interactions to be so, just, un-romantic. I didn't feel like their relationship *evolved*, more than referencing a few inside jokes.)

  14. 5 out of 5

    Jamie

    This author was suggested in my recommended reading section. I am so happy that it was. I was totally hooked after the first chapter. Summary: English professor Alison Bergeron is recently divorced and works alongside her ex-husband most days at a private college, St. Thomas. With finalizing her divorce, Alison has been having a bad time of it, and it's only about to get worse. Unfortunately, her shitty old car was stolen so she's forced to walk everywhere, and most recent a visit from two New Yor This author was suggested in my recommended reading section. I am so happy that it was. I was totally hooked after the first chapter. Summary: English professor Alison Bergeron is recently divorced and works alongside her ex-husband most days at a private college, St. Thomas. With finalizing her divorce, Alison has been having a bad time of it, and it's only about to get worse. Unfortunately, her shitty old car was stolen so she's forced to walk everywhere, and most recent a visit from two New York City detectives. They have found her car, the bad news is it contains the dead body of one of her female students in the trunk. Alison doesn't handle this news well. She is violently ill due to stress and faints dead away. She wakes up to having been labeled a prime suspect in the murder, but with no evidence supporting this. Enlisting the help of her best friend, the spunky, sexy, rich, Max, Alison reluctantly stumbles along trying to clear her name. This is not best because Alison has put herself in the sights of a murderer, and she ends up getting caught by hottie Detective Bobby Crawford. Their mutual attraction for each other complicates an already complicated murder case. Alison must hurry to find the killer before things unravel while dealing with the sexy detective, her cheating ex-husband, actually teaching her classes, pushy students, and most importantly, an angry mob boss father. The style of writing was great, the storyline was believable and entertaining. I loved the romance between Alison and Detective Crawford. I love romance, so having it mixed with a good mystery was heaven. Alison was funny, smart, and not the usual heroine. She was super tough or charge into the investigation. She just kind of stumbled her way in, and did it with normal human characteristics (i.e. vomiting, fainting, crying). It was refreshing to have a heroine that didn't know everything. I felt Detective Crawford was a bit weird at first because of the way he acted, but knowing that he had a crush on Alison explained away some of that behavior. My only complaint was the grammar and spelling errors. Ironically, the book is about an English professor, but there were quite a few words missing, misspelled, or the entirely wrong word to begin with. Nothing that took too much away from the story, so I still award it 4.5 stars. I will definitely be reading more in this series. <3

  15. 5 out of 5

    Allison (The Allure of Books)

    These are very quick reads - I read them all over the course of a couple of afternoons. They don't really have any depth or emotional content - but they do settle very nicely into the cozy mystery/romance niche. If you're a fan of those types of books (think Stephanie Plum) than these are definitely worth taking a look at. I say they don't have any emotional depth - but what I mean is that the author doesn't do a very good job of making you feel the characters. She has to settle for just telling These are very quick reads - I read them all over the course of a couple of afternoons. They don't really have any depth or emotional content - but they do settle very nicely into the cozy mystery/romance niche. If you're a fan of those types of books (think Stephanie Plum) than these are definitely worth taking a look at. I say they don't have any emotional depth - but what I mean is that the author doesn't do a very good job of making you feel the characters. She has to settle for just telling us. Throughout the first book, I read the words describing the increasing romantic feelings between the main characters, Alison and Crawford, but I never felt the chemistry vibes. As the series progressed and I got used to their characters, I appreciated their relationship more. The same goes for all the characters - when they're introduced in the first book they all feel a little stale or just "on the page" (if that makes sense)...but if you stick with the books you become used to them and it makes the reading much more enjoyable. One thing the author, without a doubt, does get right is the humor. I absolutely love Alison's character and the way she interacts with everyone. She is a real piece of work. She transitions throughout the books: she is originally very nervous and weak-minded...but give her a couple of books and there isn't much she is willing to back down from. But regardless - she is always hilarious. The mysteries are pretty engaging for the most part. The least enjoyable for me was definitely book three, Quick Study. The best part of the books, for me, is learning more about the characters. Barbieri might not be the most accomplished writer, but even though she isn't good at bringing emotions to life - she found a way to hook me in anyway! I'm definitely looking forward to seeing where life takes Alison and Crawford next! So, even though this series doesn't, by any means, top my favorites list - I think they're worth reading if you enjoy the genre. For the most part, Barbieri does the mixed bag mystery/romance/humor genre proud!

  16. 4 out of 5

    Lyndsay

    Recomended to me by goodreads based on my reading history. Spoiler at end I have read several ameture detective novels. It is standard in the first books to set up character background and explain relationships. The mystery is usaully easy to sleuth out and mediocre. In this novel the set up was a good start. The body of a college girl with mob cinnections is found in her stolen car. She is a suspect. Then the author couldn't decide how to move the story along. I liked the heroine Alison when she' Recomended to me by goodreads based on my reading history. Spoiler at end I have read several ameture detective novels. It is standard in the first books to set up character background and explain relationships. The mystery is usaully easy to sleuth out and mediocre. In this novel the set up was a good start. The body of a college girl with mob cinnections is found in her stolen car. She is a suspect. Then the author couldn't decide how to move the story along. I liked the heroine Alison when she's not being an emotional diaster either crying, or puking from stress. She gets abducted twice. For a woman with a doctorate she is stupid. She doesn't actually do any sleuthing. People come to her and reveal clues, like somebody tells her about the victims boyfriends drug ring. And she solves the case while grading the killees paper in fromt of them and then gets killer to confess with a detective present. Ao if you can forgive the weakness in the murder plot the story was great in that when the geroime wasn't being stupid or overly emotional she was sarcastic enough to make me like her and root for the nerd. I will probably read the next one. After a pilot in a new series just needs you to come back once more. Its the second book that can kill any potential Ok what I wish was in the novel. Alison is an English liy professor. The referenxe macbeth brut why not draw upon great crime novelist. I'm sure she's read them. I would have liked her to try and solve the cte with only her mind. Like poirot and his grey cells or holms and his power of deduction. They merely observe and sort through facts. Now that would have made this a 4 star read. 5 if shad a stronger stomach. Who did it ? (view spoiler)[ the roommate, fiona, in a moment of blind anger she shoved kathy who fell amd hit her head. Fiona gers her lover and cousin to dispose of body using alis car. Fiona wa shaving an affair with victims boyfriend and is caught Also detective crawford turns out to be married but separated. Alison ends things till he is officially divorced (hide spoiler)]

  17. 5 out of 5

    Diane Morasco

    Maggie Barbieri's debut has a nice blend of mystery, romance & humor. Alison Bergeron is a charming character that is not written in the stale, rehashed, cutesy cookie cutter fashion so many writer's try too hard to create. Maggie Barbieri made it a point not to veer in the opposite direction & make Alison Bergeron a bumbling amateur who just "happens" to stumble upon the "body". Alison has smarts & is just a regular woman going through the day to day trials & tribulations on this roller coaster we Maggie Barbieri's debut has a nice blend of mystery, romance & humor. Alison Bergeron is a charming character that is not written in the stale, rehashed, cutesy cookie cutter fashion so many writer's try too hard to create. Maggie Barbieri made it a point not to veer in the opposite direction & make Alison Bergeron a bumbling amateur who just "happens" to stumble upon the "body". Alison has smarts & is just a regular woman going through the day to day trials & tribulations on this roller coaster we call life. Alison actually has emotions... get this she actually expresses them! Shocking, huh, to have a female protagonist cry, faint and throw up. Definitely no botox Barbie here or wannabe Stephanie Plum. Kudos x's 2 to Maggie. Heck, let me toss in a NYC whistle. Alison actually has human foibles. Bobby Crawford is not your typical in your face pompas, overexaggerated, bloated New York police detective. He is a down-to-earth pleasurable hero. Bravo, Ms. Barbieri. Alison's best friend, Max is a fun, spunky friend you'd want to call your own. Love her. Maggie Barbieri pulled no punches creating Alison's philandering ex-husband, Ray. He doesn't fall into the cliche category no matter how much his tail wags @ other fillies. Toss in a nutty stoner student, a mafioso dad & you have a cast of zany enjoyable characters. Ms. Barbieri does a fantastic job weaving in an amateur & professional texture to the investigation. I must admit, I was hooked. I found this academic whodunit to be delightful. I was ticked when I was interrupted while reading it. Grrr... Murder 101 is definitely one for fans of all mysteries.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Emmie

    Synopsis: Safely away from the chaos of Manhattan, St. Thomas, a small college on the banks of the Hudson River in the Bronx, is supposed to be tranquil, bucolic, and serene. Unfortunately, English professor Alison Bergeron has found it to be anything but. Recently divorced from a fellow professor and even more recently without a car---it was stolen---she has been hoofing it to school. One Friday evening, two NYPD homicide detectives drop by her office. The good news is that they found her beat-u Synopsis: Safely away from the chaos of Manhattan, St. Thomas, a small college on the banks of the Hudson River in the Bronx, is supposed to be tranquil, bucolic, and serene. Unfortunately, English professor Alison Bergeron has found it to be anything but. Recently divorced from a fellow professor and even more recently without a car---it was stolen---she has been hoofing it to school. One Friday evening, two NYPD homicide detectives drop by her office. The good news is that they found her beat-up Volvo; the bad news is that the body of one of the students in her Shakespeare seminar was in the trunk. Not only are Alison's chances of getting the car back bleak, but suddenly she's the primary suspect on a list that includes, among others, the murdered student's drug-dealing boyfriend, Vince, and the girl's father's business rivals (he's head of an old Italian family . . .). Accused of a crime that she didn't commit, Alison enlists her best friend, Max's, emotional support and services as an amateur sleuth. Their fumbling efforts to clear Alison's name could land her in even hotter water with Detective Bobby Crawford, the handsome investigating officer (and former altar boy)---not to mention the nuns at St. Thomas. . . . Maggie Barbieri's charming professor and down-to-earth detective make an unlikely but lovable team in her delightful debut mystery. My review: This book was enjoyable, although it did tend to drag. The plot was clever, but the heroine was a bit of a washout ( she was not vomiting on the detective's shoes, she was crying) I will read the second book in the series, just to see of Alison's character shows any growth.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

    The front cover screams chicklit. The inner flap promises me a comedic murder mystery, with nuns. I love nuns, so I pick it up. What we actually end up with is closer to the (admittedly honest) advertising on the cover and sorely lacking in nuns. Set in a small catholic college just outside New York City, Alison is an English professor with a sassy best friend, annoying ex-husband (also a professor at the college,) and the dead body of a student in the trunk of her car. Alison is implicated in th The front cover screams chicklit. The inner flap promises me a comedic murder mystery, with nuns. I love nuns, so I pick it up. What we actually end up with is closer to the (admittedly honest) advertising on the cover and sorely lacking in nuns. Set in a small catholic college just outside New York City, Alison is an English professor with a sassy best friend, annoying ex-husband (also a professor at the college,) and the dead body of a student in the trunk of her car. Alison is implicated in the student's demise and seems to be the prime suspect. And, like, the cop on the case is wicked cute. The plot is suitably twisty, though underdeveloped, (among other things, the student is the daughter of former classmates of Alison's, and the father is reputed to have mob ties, something that never really gets utilized to it’s full potential.) The way that the hunky cop, Crawford, takes every opportunity to put a move on Alison is distracting as well. I kept wanting to shake him and yell, "It's 'Serve and Protect!' Not 'Self Serve!'" It was a little creepy. What kind of cop hits on his suspects? The most frustrating thing for me is that it would make a good mystery novel with elements of chicklit. I like the stronger focus on relationships, but I don’t look for them to be dominant which is what happened here. Readable but not particularly memorable, and totally set up for a sequel.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Julie Akeman

    Why is it that the main protagonist has to be in love with a detective who is semi married. OK I noticed this in another series, Scrapbooking series, main person was in love with a detective who was married, although in Murder 101 the guy explained why he was still married, the scrapbook mystery they guy had a wife that was mentally unhinged and was a nurse and even tried to hurt the main person. Good series, for the first book it was pretty good. Pretty good humor with the attraction there, I p Why is it that the main protagonist has to be in love with a detective who is semi married. OK I noticed this in another series, Scrapbooking series, main person was in love with a detective who was married, although in Murder 101 the guy explained why he was still married, the scrapbook mystery they guy had a wife that was mentally unhinged and was a nurse and even tried to hurt the main person. Good series, for the first book it was pretty good. Pretty good humor with the attraction there, I pretty much figured it out so for me it was an easy mystery. I love the characters, a fun read to relax to. I love the setting, small Catholic College. OK I've never been a Catholic but these places can be quite beautiful in architecture really so I had a nice picture in my mind how that place looks. A great cozy mystery with a great lesson...never wear great looking shoes when you have a looooooong walk ahead of you.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer

    Mystery? English professor? I'm there. Though once again a book featuring an English professor never shows her spending all nighters reading and commenting on student essays, I didn't mind too much. This was a light fluffy read, introducing college professor, Alison Bergeron, dealing with her first murder investigation. One of Alison's students, Kathy, daughter of a mob boss, not only ends up murdered but stuffed into the trunk of Alison's aging Volvo. This brings a pair of homicide detectives to Mystery? English professor? I'm there. Though once again a book featuring an English professor never shows her spending all nighters reading and commenting on student essays, I didn't mind too much. This was a light fluffy read, introducing college professor, Alison Bergeron, dealing with her first murder investigation. One of Alison's students, Kathy, daughter of a mob boss, not only ends up murdered but stuffed into the trunk of Alison's aging Volvo. This brings a pair of homicide detectives to Alison's door and into her life. There are no end of suspects including Alision's philandering ex-husband and Kathy's drug-dealing boyfriend but Alison finds herself being pulled into the case against her will (but spending time with one of the detectives, Bobby Crawford, is a plus). Not great literature here but a perfectly fun read for the holidays.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

    Well, I think I'd give this a not quite "it's okay" rating.... I found it to be really slow-going at first (regarding moving the mystery plot along), and the more I read, the more I disliked the main character, Alison Bergeron. Her attitude/lack of intelligence (she has a PhD?) created a not-so-likeable character that made me start to skim pages. (And why, on page 46, does Max [main character's friend] start the car a second time while driving [after having started the car a first time just a fe Well, I think I'd give this a not quite "it's okay" rating.... I found it to be really slow-going at first (regarding moving the mystery plot along), and the more I read, the more I disliked the main character, Alison Bergeron. Her attitude/lack of intelligence (she has a PhD?) created a not-so-likeable character that made me start to skim pages. (And why, on page 46, does Max [main character's friend] start the car a second time while driving [after having started the car a first time just a few sentences earlier]?) All that said, I still might read the next in the series, in hopes it gets better (if the first book of a series is not that great, I like to give the series a second chance, just to be as fair as can be [unless the first really stinks]).

  23. 4 out of 5

    Lindsay

    This book was pretty decent. It wasn't anything super wonderful, actually kind of makes me want to take a break from mysteries because they are all the same. Recently single girl somehow gets caught up in a murder, meets a hot detective/cop (because they are always hot), and they fall in love. Geez. Allison is a teacher at a university and one day the cops show up at her office and inform her that her that the dead body of one of her students was found dead in her recently stolen car. For once sh This book was pretty decent. It wasn't anything super wonderful, actually kind of makes me want to take a break from mysteries because they are all the same. Recently single girl somehow gets caught up in a murder, meets a hot detective/cop (because they are always hot), and they fall in love. Geez. Allison is a teacher at a university and one day the cops show up at her office and inform her that her that the dead body of one of her students was found dead in her recently stolen car. For once she doesn't try to solve the murder on her own like most main characters usually do, but she does get herself in sticky situations. Which annoys me. But its a fast read and I'll probably check out the next one in the series.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Shonna Froebel

    This fast-moving mystery centers around Alison Bergeron, a literature professor at a small Catholic college in New York City. First Alison's old Volvo is stolen from the college parking lot. Then two NYPD homicide detectives show up to grill her. Her car has been found with the body of one of her students inside. Alison is supported by her old school friend Max, yet still keeps getting into hot water. One of the detectives, Bobby Crawford, thinks she is an innocent victim, and tries to give her s This fast-moving mystery centers around Alison Bergeron, a literature professor at a small Catholic college in New York City. First Alison's old Volvo is stolen from the college parking lot. Then two NYPD homicide detectives show up to grill her. Her car has been found with the body of one of her students inside. Alison is supported by her old school friend Max, yet still keeps getting into hot water. One of the detectives, Bobby Crawford, thinks she is an innocent victim, and tries to give her support when he can, but not even he can keep her out of trouble. Alison comes across as smart, too-nice (especially to those who don't deserve it), and a bit of a klutz. I can relate! This is the first in a series, and I'll have to hunt out the others.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

    My four-sentence or less take on the plot: Ally is a professor at a Catholic University and is very much in the style of Stephanie Plum--which I mean as a huge compliment. The books are all charming and fun and I totally recommend them (all of them--this is a review for the entire series!) Rating: 10 What worked: Everything. I loved this book. The writing was really solid, the plot was funny, she's awkward without being annoying, and I loved the side characters. What didn't: I liked the whole thin My four-sentence or less take on the plot: Ally is a professor at a Catholic University and is very much in the style of Stephanie Plum--which I mean as a huge compliment. The books are all charming and fun and I totally recommend them (all of them--this is a review for the entire series!) Rating: 10 What worked: Everything. I loved this book. The writing was really solid, the plot was funny, she's awkward without being annoying, and I loved the side characters. What didn't: I liked the whole thing--I especially like that this book is not religious even though it takes place in a Catholic university. Extras: None but I'm not sure what there would really be

  26. 5 out of 5

    Charissa Wilkinson

    Overview: Alison’s problems have gotten so much more extensive than having to grade her students’ papers, or dealing with her unrepentant cheater of an ex-husband. It turns out her stolen car was found, with the body of one of her students inside. Can she clear her name before the police lock her up, or Kathy’s parents decide to handle things their way? Likes: Father Kevin and Sister Mary were cool. I liked how Wyatt handled the investigation, and Max seems to worry a lot about Alison. Dislikes: Overview: Alison’s problems have gotten so much more extensive than having to grade her students’ papers, or dealing with her unrepentant cheater of an ex-husband. It turns out her stolen car was found, with the body of one of her students inside. Can she clear her name before the police lock her up, or Kathy’s parents decide to handle things their way? Likes: Father Kevin and Sister Mary were cool. I liked how Wyatt handled the investigation, and Max seems to worry a lot about Alison. Dislikes: Let’s face it, a bad ending has ruined many a book. In this case, all the fun I had during the story was ruined by the last few chapters. Conclusion: The book was okay. Enjoy it if you can.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Sommer Marsden

    I loved this book. There was nothing at all I didn't like about it! I have been off the mystery bandwagon for a while now, barring some gritty darker crime books. But something about this book drew me in so I gave it a shot. Boy, am I glad I did. Loved Alison, loved the premise, adored the writing, the tone and the style and as for Crawford...hey, can I get his number? I'm raring for book #2 since Barbieri left me hanging and nosy at the end of book 1. Highly recommended for mystery fans who like I loved this book. There was nothing at all I didn't like about it! I have been off the mystery bandwagon for a while now, barring some gritty darker crime books. But something about this book drew me in so I gave it a shot. Boy, am I glad I did. Loved Alison, loved the premise, adored the writing, the tone and the style and as for Crawford...hey, can I get his number? I'm raring for book #2 since Barbieri left me hanging and nosy at the end of book 1. Highly recommended for mystery fans who like humor with their crime.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Moondance

    "Your ass looks great in that dress." Alison Bergeron is having a bad week. Her divorce is final, someone stole her car and one of her students is found dead in the trunk of that car when it is located. Enter two NY detectives, one of which Alison falls for. This is a easy quick read with plenty of humor, madcap abductions and a little romance. The twist at the end was unexpected. I need to read the next book to see where it is going.

  29. 5 out of 5

    JoAnne

    Cute read, cozy mystery. Main character Alison, a college professor in NY, always in the thick of things especially the murder of a student whose dead body is found in her stolen car. Her and one of the lead detectives, Crawford, have chemistry and seem to get each other but there are a few surprises along the way. Looking forward to reading the next book in the series since the epilogue definitely didn't provide closure!

  30. 5 out of 5

    Becky

    A funny, well-written protagonist and characters captures me every time. I enjoyed Allison's literary profession and the fact she was a book nerd. All of the characters were entertaining and added to the story. The romance between here and Crawford was also well crafted. Was it a literary masterpiece? No, it was a good mystery meets slight chick lit, and that was what I needed to bump me back into reading.

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