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A bad day for sorry by Sophie Littlefield
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A bad day for sorry (edition 2009)

by Sophie Littlefield

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225None51,512 (3.35)24
Member:sjmccreary
Title:A bad day for sorry
Authors:Sophie Littlefield
Info:New York : Minotaur Books, c2009.
Collections:Your library
Rating:***1/2
Tags:Fiction, Missouri, domestic violence, mystery

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A Bad Day for Sorry by Sophie Littlefield

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» See also 24 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 21 (next | show all)
If you’ve followed my reviews for a while you will know that the books I am drawn to do not normally have people carrying guns on the cover. I have been trying to read more mysteries lately though, and I liked that this one had a bit of suspense and a dash of humor. Most important of all though – it entertained me without scaring me.

I saw the author speak at the Tucson Festival of Books and she talked about how things change in the way people treat you when you reach a certain age. After a very bad day, she couldn’t take it anymore and decided to write about someone acting out on those frustrations as a way of coping. She wanted to write about someone who was like an average real person: middle-aged, out of shape and single after surviving a very bad marriage.

Then again, Stella Hardesty, being a fictional character, can get away without things that would get a real person into a lot of trouble. She’s hard as nails and has no problem with vigilante justice, which isn’t that surprising considering how she snapped one day and clubbed her husband over the head, killing him after years of mistreatment. Now she takes justice into her own hands and teaches lessons to other bad husbands and boyfriends. She doesn’t want to kill or maim, but she’s not above putting the fear of God into these miserable men, and her techniques are not always legal.

The author said that she had a hard time selling the story at first because she was told that people don’t want to read about characters like hers; that skinny, leggy, busty, tall blonde bombshells the ideal characters. She persisted though, and her book, A Bad Day for Sorry, ended up being an Edgar Finalist for Best First Novel.

What did I think of it? Well, it was definitely a fun and entertaining story. I read most of it on my flight back from Tucson. It’s an unusual mix of humor and mystery coupled with the more serious side of the vigilante justice. It’s definitely not a book for kids. Some of the language and topics are graphic, although nothing is really over the top. I think I’m more sensitive than most to violent details or psychological suspense (I can’t stand CSI-type shows or horror flicks), and so I was pleased that this book had enough going on to keep me worried about the characters, but not so much that I was terrified.

This was a good light read and a fun way to pass the time while on an airplane. I plan to read the next book in the series in order to get a better feel for the author’s writing. This type of mystery is not something I’d want to read all of the time, but would be fun as an occasional indulgence. ( )
  akreese | May 16, 2013 |
Gritty and ebullient, A BAD DAY FOR SORRY creates a menopausal super hero that I couldn't help but root for. Stella Hardesty definitely carries flavors of Stephanie Plum (complete with cute cop), but Stella faces a much darker, realistic set of consequences. I particularly enjoyed the peak under Stella's cape, where she learns not only about her own business, but also about what others are capable of.

( )
  Capnrandm | Apr 15, 2013 |
If you’ve followed my reviews for a while you will know that the books I am drawn to do not normally have people carrying guns on the cover. I have been trying to read more mysteries lately though, and I liked that this one had a bit of suspense and a dash of humor. Most important of all though – it entertained me without scaring me.

I saw the author speak at the Tucson Festival of Books and she talked about how things change in the way people treat you when you reach a certain age. After a very bad day, she couldn’t take it anymore and decided to write about someone acting out on those frustrations as a way of coping. She wanted to write about someone who was like an average real person: middle-aged, out of shape and single after surviving a very bad marriage.

Then again, Stella Hardesty, being a fictional character, can get away without things that would get a real person into a lot of trouble. She’s hard as nails and has no problem with vigilante justice, which isn’t that surprising considering how she snapped one day and clubbed her husband over the head, killing him after years of mistreatment. Now she takes justice into her own hands and teaches lessons to other bad husbands and boyfriends. She doesn’t want to kill or maim, but she’s not above putting the fear of God into these miserable men, and her techniques are not always legal.

The author said that she had a hard time selling the story at first because she was told that people don’t want to read about characters like hers; that skinny, leggy, busty, tall blonde bombshells the ideal characters. She persisted though, and her book, A Bad Day for Sorry, ended up being an Edgar Finalist for Best First Novel.

What did I think of it? Well, it was definitely a fun and entertaining story. I read most of it on my flight back from Tucson. It’s an unusual mix of humor and mystery coupled with the more serious side of the vigilante justice. It’s definitely not a book for kids. Some of the language and topics are graphic, although nothing is really over the top. I think I’m more sensitive than most to violent details or psychological suspense (I can’t stand CSI-type shows or horror flicks), and so I was pleased that this book had enough going on to keep me worried about the characters, but not so much that I was terrified.

This was a good light read and a fun way to pass the time while on an airplane. I plan to read the next book in the series in order to get a better feel for the author’s writing. This type of mystery is not something I’d want to read all of the time, but would be fun as an occasional indulgence. ( )
  akreese | Mar 27, 2012 |
Avenging angels in books come in a few different forms, but usually they are super hot young things either male or female. They are highly educated and have top of the line clothes. Well, not in Bad Day for Sorry. Bad Day for Sorry is not a typical adventure or thriller book. The main character is a fifty year old widow who owns a sewing notions shop and runs a side business of helping women safely leave abusive relationships. Stella, the main character, has a drinking issue but attempts to control it and has re-defined her body. Formerly overweight and out of shape, she now can run 10 miles and regularly lifts weights. She has trained herself to shoot a gun and owns a suitcase full of torture toys.

Despite Stella's reinvention of her body and her life, she has an image of herself that often clashes with how others perceive her. Stella remembers being physically abused and shamed in public. She remembers being soft and thinks of herself as unappealing. But young people look up to her as a heroine, bad man fear her, and men her age are interested in her. This contradiction in perception of self versus the outside perception of herself makes Stella an interesting character to be with for the course of the story.

The subject matter is dark – women and children are in a vulnerable situation. They often have nowhere else to turn due to their financial situation and the limited protection that the law can provide. The violence and the poverty of their situation is not sugar coated. People end up with life altering injuries and scars. Having read a few books by her, I can safely say that Ms. Littliefield knows how to write about people who are down on their luck, who may be just trying to survive and who live in small rural areas.

So we have dark, gritty and real but on top of that this book is funny. Stella is hilarious, her observations as to people's behavior and choices are funny and she has created an interesting group of side characters. This is a fun book to read. Fun, but with substance.

It took me way too long to read this book, I just wasn't interested in the main character or the subject matter. I couldn't imagine how it would be fun to read about. I was wrong and I should have started earlier. I think this is Littlefield's best work I have read, I enjoyed it more than Aftertime and more than Banished. If you are interested in the audio version, that is what I listened to and I thought the narration was fantastic. ( )
  ReginaR | Mar 11, 2012 |
I wanted to like this mystery/thriller more than I did. The main character, a 50ish woman whose main line of work consists of taking on domestically violent men, was a joy to read about, but the writing just didn't quite hold up. Still, I'm going to read the sequel and see if it grows on me. ( )
  mbg0312 | Feb 14, 2012 |
Showing 1-5 of 21 (next | show all)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0312643233, Paperback)

Winner of the Anthony Award for Best First Novel!

Stella Hardesty dispatched her abusive husband with a wrench shortly before her fiftieth birthday. A few years later, she’s so busy delivering home-style justice, helping other women deal with their own abusive husbands and boyfriends, that she’s barely got time to run her sewing shop. Since Stella works outside of the law, she’s free to do whatever it takes to be convincing—as long as she keeps her distance from the handsome devil of a local sheriff, Goat Jones.

When young mother Chrissy Shaw asks Stella for help with her no-good, husband Roy Dean, it looks like just another standard job. But then Chrissy’s two-year-old son is taken, and Stella finds herself up against a much more formidable enemy.

A Bad Day for Sorry won an Anthony Award for Best First Novel and an RT Book Award for Best First Mystery. It was also shortlisted for Edgar, Barry, Crimespree, and Macavity Awards, and it was named to lists of the year's best mystery debuts by the Chicago Sun-Times and South Florida Sun-Sentinel.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:49:52 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

An abuse survivor who helps battered women escape from their abusive husbands, Stella Hardesty assists a woman whose ne'er-do-well husband has run off with their two-year-old, a situation for which Stella must risk her own life to recover the boy.

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