JA Continues to Read Mystery Writer, Margaret Maron

The Jane Austen Book club is reading Margaret Maron this year. She's a North Carolina native whose first novel, "Bootlegger's Daughter" won every major mystery award for best first novel. That book was the first to feature Deborah Knott, whose colorful Daddy was a bootlegger. Deborah is an attorney who decides to take a stand against "mean-minded judicial pettiness" and take on the Old Boy's Club by running for a retiring judge's seat. For June we discussed "Rituals of the Season" -- which deals with the Judge's wedding and a murder- and "Winter's Child" --with the horrifying news that the Judge's stepson has been kidnapped and his mother murdered. Both are fascinating reads, rich in detail about North Carolina. June's discussion will be on "Hard Row" only, to give some of our readers time to catch up.

We will be reading all her books this year, hopefully ending with her newest out in November, "Buzzard Table.". Her books explore her extensive family and often take place in different parts of North Carolina as Judge Knott is asked to fill in other jurisdictions. They are very enjoyable - not quite a cozy, but not thrillers either. They are deeply rooted in place and populated with interesting characters. Join us at 6:00 pm in the Carnegie Building, 244 W. Michigan. We are actively looking for new members so don't be shy. Our July meeting is on Monday, July 9th.  Please consider joining us - even if you haven't read the books, we are a fun group of readers with extensive, far-ranging tastes.