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Awarded a fellowship at St. Martha's College, Cambridge, Robert Amiss finds the campus torn by controversy over how to spend a large bequest, in the midst of which the leader of one faction, Dame Maud Buckbarrow, turns up dead
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Dr Ruth Dudley Edwards was born and brought up in Dublin, Ireland. Since she graduated she has lived in England, where she has been a teacher, a Cambridge postgraduate student, a marketing executive, a civil servant and, finally, a freelance writer, journalist and broadcaster.An historian and prize-winning biographer, her recent non-fiction includes the authorized history of The Economist, a portrait of the British Foreign Office and a book about the newspaper world of the mid-twentieth century. She uses her knowledge of the British establishment in her satirical crime novels: targets so far include the civil service, gentlemen's clubs, Cambridge colleges, the House of Lords, the Church of England, publishing, literary prizes and - always - political correctness. She has three times been short-listed for awards from the Crime Writers' Association.From Publishers Weekly:
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.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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