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Girl Waits With Gun by Amy Stewart

Girl Waits With Gun

by Amy Stewart

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Kopp Sisters (1)

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7807511,816 (3.81)125



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Constance Kopp and her two sisters (Norma and Fluerette) live quiet, isolated lives on their small farm in New Jersey. Their peaceful life comes to an abrupt halt when their buggy is struck and overturned by an automobile while on a routine trip into Paterson. Constance, a tall and formidable woman, politely demands the contact information for the driver (Henry Kaufman) before forcing the issue with her considerable presence and mails him a line-item invoice for the damage done to their buggy. Kaufman’s refusal to acknowledge or pay the invoice prompts her to visit his place of business, and she pins him against the wall when he threatens Fleurette. So begins his campaign of threats and intimidation against the sisters, which only fortifies Constance’s determination to bring him to justice despite considerable odds. This story, which takes place in 1915 and 1916 in New Jersey is based on actual people and events. It unites compelling characters, a plot with escalating stakes (threats, family secrets, and scandal!), and an implicit commentary on expectations held by society for women at the time. I found myself intrigued by the feisty and unconventional Kopp sisters. The audiobook is also excellent. Fans of historical fiction and series such as the Phryne Fisher series by Kerry Greenwood, the Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes mysteries by Laurie R. King, the Molly Murphy series by Rhys Bowen, and the Gaslight Mysteries by Victoria Thompson are likely to enjoy this book.

Rachel H. / Marathon County Public Library
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( )
  mcpl.wausau | Sep 25, 2017 |
Part of me wishes I had picked up this book after I had written my doctoral dissertation. The book intrigued me because of its background. The protagonist, Constance Kopp, is based on a real individual. Kopp existed and was one of the first female deputy sheriffs in the U.S. Stewart's historical fiction brings the oversized, smart, unconventional Kopp to life. Unfortunately, because I was distracted, I feel I missed the enjoyment of the book. I did not have the attention span to enjoy the wit of dialogue and the hilarity of the pigeons. The book was a distraction for me...although it was a welcomed and much needed distraction. I do not think my reading did the book justice.

However, another part of me is thankful I picked up this book at such a personally overwhelming time. I doubt I could have slept at night without taking a cherished half hour losing myself in a few pages of the Kopp sisters' adventures and with their independence and moxie. Without a little fiction, my mind would race with data, literature, and methodology. While my enjoyment may have been tempered, the book's enjoyable prose certainly was not lost on me. I relished the distraction the book brought me. The writing is smart and fast-paced. The story left me wanting to know more about Kopp and her family. I cannot wait for the next book. I wonder if it will be out in time for our family vacation to Hawaii? How glorious to sit on the beach, dissertation completed, reveling in the adventures of a woman ahead of her time. ( )
  Christina_E_Mitchell | Sep 9, 2017 |
This one got better as I read it. The events around the gangsters' harassment and kidnapping of Lucy's child were a lot more interesting than the seduction of the Singer man and Fleurette's parents and the sisters' life on the farm. In fact, a lot of the sister life description seems destined to fill in a future story in the series - the pigeons, circus or acting life, etc.

It was when Constance starting thinking creatively to trap Kaufman and find Lucy's baby that the story got interesting. And I liked how her thinking shifted when Norma challenged her to get a job and contribute financially. That Norma had saved her and set her up at the farm...now it was her turn.

So I could have put this down for good about halfway through....but then it started to get more interesting and I was happy to finish it. ( )
  BeckiMarsh | Jun 19, 2017 |
Girl Waits With Gun is a humorous, fast-paced mystery set in 1914 New Jersey with a pistol-carrying female protagonist, a great puzzle, and excellent historical details. The lead character, Constance Kopp, is based on the first female sheriff in the United States. Constance is tall, “past her prime”, and unconcerned with men or domestic matters. When she and her two younger sisters have their buggy destroyed by wealthy factory owner Henry Kaufman's motorcar, Constance only asks for him to give her enough money to replace the buggy. When Kaufman refuses, Constance takes matters into her own hands and starts investigating Kaufman. She quickly discovers that he may be connected to other crimes. Since this is the first in a series, the fun is just beginning! ( )
1 vote ktoonen | Apr 26, 2017 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I am familiar with Amy Stewart's writing from her non-fiction books, The Drunken Botanist and Wicked Plants, so I wasn't sure what to expect when I first picked up her first novel. In Girl Waits With Gun, what I discovered was an engaging and entertaining novel based on real people and a real event.

Set a century ago, the story is based on a real person, Constance Kopp and her two sisters, and a buggy vs car traffic accident. The buggy was driven by an unsavory character who refused to pay for the damages to Constance's car, but the ladies don't back off, despite his threats and attempts at intimidation.

The story is fun, fast-paced, and filled with historical detail. There is also a little bit of mystery and family secrets/drama thrown in. ( )
  UnderMyAppleTree | Apr 24, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 77 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (2 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Amy Stewartprimary authorall editionscalculated
Tierney, JimCover designer and artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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"I got a revolver to protect us," said Miss Constance, "and I soon had use for it."

-New York Times, June 3, 1915
To John Birgel and Dennis O'Dell
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Our troubles began in the summer of 1914, the year I turned thirty-five.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0544409914, Hardcover)

From the New York Times best-selling author of The Drunken Botanist comes an enthralling novel based on the forgotten true story of one of the nation’s first female deputy sheriffs.

Constance Kopp doesn’t quite fit the mold. She towers over most men, has no interest in marriage or domestic affairs, and has been isolated from the world since a family secret sent her and her sisters into hiding fifteen years ago. One day a belligerent and powerful silk factory owner runs down their buggy, and a dispute over damages turns into a war of bricks, bullets, and threats as he unleashes his gang on their family farm. When the sheriff enlists her help in convicting the men, Constance is forced to confront her past and defend her family — and she does it in a way that few women of 1914 would have dared. 
“A smart, romping adventure, featuring some of the most memorable and powerful female characters I've seen in print for a long time. I loved every page as I followed the Kopp sisters through a too-good-to-be-true (but mostly true!) tale of violence, courage, stubbornness, and resourcefulness.” — Elizabeth Gilbert

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 23 Mar 2015 10:48:55 -0400)

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