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Fadeaway Girl    by Martha Grimes Amazon.com order for
Fadeaway Girl
by Martha Grimes
Order:  USA  Can
New American Library, 2012 (2011)
Hardcover, Softcover, CD, e-Book
* *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

I made the mistake of not reading the previous novel in Martha Grimes' Belle Ruin series. Some of the plot was carried over and subsumed in the very delightful Fadeaway Girl. That being said, I had no trouble keeping the story straight in my mind.

Twelve year-old Emma is a burgeoning newspaper reporter who lives in a small town and has convinced the editor of the local publication, the Conservative, to run a continuing story of hers. Now she must write this story that requires she probe into past doings in the small community where her mother runs the decaying Paradise Hotel.

Unfortunately, those past doings revolve around several murders and an attempted murder of Emma herself! Twenty years ago, a baby was kidnapped and never seen again. Or was it ever really seen? And what does it have to do with today? As Emma asks her questions, old gossip emerges from the depths of those twenty years and it's beginning to look as though new gossip might trigger another murder.

I fell in love with precocious Emma. She looks at the world around her with a mature, suspicious eye. Meets her obligations, almost always on time. Aunt Aurora is a fanciful delight. Will and Mill are seldom seen but provide diversion when needed. The doughnut indulging cop is stereotypical enough so you want to slap him alongside his head. Delbert the taxi driver refuses to shut up and we don't find out why the taxi company never sends Axel to transport Emma.

As always, Martha Grimes has provided us with some good reading in Fadeaway Girl.

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