Biggie and the Poisoned Politician

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9780312142858: Biggie and the Poisoned Politician

Biggie Weatherford, an eccentric and wealthy grandmother from the tiny East Texas town of Job's Crossing, takes on city hall to halt a proposed garbage dump next to her ancestral graveyard, only to turn detective to solve the poisoning murder of the local mayor. A first novel.

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From Kirkus Reviews:

A debut novel, Texas-set, that pulls out all the stops in the down-home, good ol' boys, southern-fried chicken pantheon. The white hat here isn't the local sheriff but Mrs. Fiona Wooten Weatherford, the richest landowner in Job's Crossing, known to all as Biggie and as grandma to almost 12-year-old J.R., who narrates. Biggie's household consists of J.R.; maid-supercook Willie Mae; and Willie Mae's ex-con husband Rosebud, now gardener-handyman. A recent addition, in the garage apartment, is 50ish Wade Crabtree, who sells burial insurance. It's the explosion of Mr. Crabtree's car, in Biggie's driveway, that signals that all is not well in Job's Crossing. No one is hurt, and Police Chief Travis Trotter is too busy wooing county clerk Jimmie Sue Jarvis (whose fascination for J.R. is the sixth toe on her left foot) to give it much focus. Then Biggie's attention, which should be concentrated on the upcoming Pioneer Days parade, is diverted by a new landfill being dug--in full view of the Wooten cemetery--by the order of Mayor Osbert Gribbons. There are also rumors of digging leases on local farms being sought by outside mining interests. All of that fades temporarily, however, when the mayor dies of poison while eating his favorite angel cake with whipped cream at Mr. Popolus's Owl Cafe, and Biggie resolves to find out who did it and why. Unabashedly folksy, with a parade of mouthwatering meals, y`all accents, and a plot in tatters, but Bell's first outing is also fresh, funny, and loaded with southern charm. -- Copyright ©1996, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

From Publishers Weekly:

Murder, kidnapping, fraud and other skullduggery come to a small East Texas town and usher a young boy toward maturity in this entertaining debut mystery. The narrator, J.R., is living with his eccentric grandmother, Biggie Weatherford, grand dame of Job's Crossing, when routine life is disturbed by strange events. The car belonging to Biggie's boarder, Mr. Crabtree, explodes in the driveway; the town makes plans for a sanitation landfill next to Biggie's family farm; and the mayor dies under mysterious circumstances after a meeting to plan the town's Pioneer Days. Biggie decides to investigate and is aided by J.R.; her maid, Willie Mae, who knows voodoo; and Willie Mae's wise, ne'er-do-well husband, Rosebud Robichaux. A motorcyclist wheels into town and another man dies before Biggie can put a finger on the scheming murderer amidst the carnival atmosphere of the town festival. Bell's characters, led by Biggie, a rural Auntie Mame, are painted in broad brush strokes, but their warmth and humor, equally outsized, enliven this country mystery.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Bell, Nancy
Published by St Martins Pr (1996)
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