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Letter From Home

by Carolyn G. Hart

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244582,173 (3.41)16
"World-renowned journalist G. G. Gilman does her best not to think of the past. But one day she gets a letter - sent from the small Oklahoma town where she grew up - that brings it all back. Memories of people she had once known and loved dearly - and of the sultry summer when her life changed forever..." "In the summer of 1944, Gretchen Gilman was working as a reporter at the local newspaper. Her assignments weren't very exciting - she mostly wrote about local boys just back from the war - but it was a good opportunity for a young woman with talent and ambition to spare. Gretchen knew better than anyone what people in town were talking about. And that summer they were talking about Faye Tatum." "Just hours after Faye was found dead in her own living room, the speculation began. Murdered, people said, by her jealous husband - just back from the war - who hadn't been seen since the night of her death. A woman, they whispered, who got what she deserved. Shouldn't have been dancing down at the bar - and with a different man every night. Just imagine! What kind of example is that for her daughter? It seemed like the gossip would never stop..." "But Gretchen knew a different Faye - the talented artist, the devoted mother, the kind, fun-loving neighbor. She knew the circumstances of Faye's life and death were much different than people imagined - and she was determined to uncover the truth once and for all. Even if it meant writing a story that would haunt her for the rest of her life."--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

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Showing 5 of 5
This book was a very quick read. The story was satisfying and although I knew there would be a twist to come near the end, I did not guess what the twist would be. She did a thorough job in descriptions of many of the books characters. I would have rated it even higher except I thought she fell short in being true to the young teenagers' voices. It felt a little off in that regard to me. ( )
  Brauer11431 | Apr 16, 2019 |
This story is told in retrospect by the main character, Gretchen Gilman. Now in her 60's, Gretchen recalls events leading up to, and following, a fateful day during the summer of 1944. It's the story of the murder of artist Faye Tatum and Gretchen's recollection of its impact on her life and the community at large. Gretchen was friends with Faye's daughter, Barb. Sgt Clyde Tatum, Faye's husband, was nearing the end of his furlough before his unit shipped out. He was not in the house the night Faye was murdered. Or was he? Gretchen gives us a suspenseful tour through the town, and a glimpse into the lives of its inhabitants, as she recalls her attempts to find Faye's murderer.

Hart is a very sneaky writer. This book contained an early clue that just wouldn't go away. Then as I got further into the story, the motive became apparent as well. From that point, I started looking for how and when she would work the angle in.

I enjoyed Hart's attention to detail by her references to historical events of the era such as Pearl Harbor and "Pearl Buck's new book," which, for the record, could have been either The Promise or China Flight — both released in 1943. I also enjoyed reading about the innerworkings of a newspaper. Even the story of how the Victory Café (the restaurant owned by Gretchen's grandmother) got its name fits the era — and the community.

This was a fascinating and pleasurable read. Now I have to decide whether I like figuring out the murderer myself or the suspense of not knowing until it's revealed by the author. But since this was my first time reading Hart, and since I'm on a quest for Midwest writings and authors, I'll revisit her works. Cozy readers will enjoy reading [a] Letter from Home. ( )
  sacredstacks | Apr 28, 2010 |
I found it a very good read, well written and a pleasant surprise. I found this one to be one of Hart's better books. ( )
  LadyToni | Sep 3, 2009 |
A wonderful cozy, well written and not too taxing on the brain. ( )
  quzy | Dec 30, 2008 |
This book was one of the "Editor's Choice" books in the Mystery Guild a
couple of months ago. One of those times when I didn't get the postcard
filled out and mailed back in time to stop those automatic shipments, so I
figured, wotthehell, I'd just keep it and read it. I mean, it made Editor's
Choice, so it must be good, right?

Wrong. This book was almost juvenile and the only reason I finished it was
because I'd paid for the damn thing and I wanted to get my money's worth. ( )
1 vote madamejeanie | Sep 22, 2008 |
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"World-renowned journalist G. G. Gilman does her best not to think of the past. But one day she gets a letter - sent from the small Oklahoma town where she grew up - that brings it all back. Memories of people she had once known and loved dearly - and of the sultry summer when her life changed forever..." "In the summer of 1944, Gretchen Gilman was working as a reporter at the local newspaper. Her assignments weren't very exciting - she mostly wrote about local boys just back from the war - but it was a good opportunity for a young woman with talent and ambition to spare. Gretchen knew better than anyone what people in town were talking about. And that summer they were talking about Faye Tatum." "Just hours after Faye was found dead in her own living room, the speculation began. Murdered, people said, by her jealous husband - just back from the war - who hadn't been seen since the night of her death. A woman, they whispered, who got what she deserved. Shouldn't have been dancing down at the bar - and with a different man every night. Just imagine! What kind of example is that for her daughter? It seemed like the gossip would never stop..." "But Gretchen knew a different Faye - the talented artist, the devoted mother, the kind, fun-loving neighbor. She knew the circumstances of Faye's life and death were much different than people imagined - and she was determined to uncover the truth once and for all. Even if it meant writing a story that would haunt her for the rest of her life."--BOOK JACKET.

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