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Cold Flat Junction (Emma Graham, #2)
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Cold Flat Junction (Emma Graham #2)

3.81  ·  Rating Details ·  1,076 Ratings  ·  75 Reviews
Martha Grimes's Hotel Paradise was hailed by Booklist as "superb...beyond of the year's best." Now, Grimes returns to the same small town, intertwining the threads of one young girl's unexplained death with another young girl's attempt at making sense of her own life.
Paperback, 448 pages
Published February 1st 2002 by NAL (first published 2000)
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(showing 1-30 of 1,618)
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Sep 16, 2016 Holly rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2016
*4.5 stars
Oct 25, 2014 Julia rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery
I had really liked the first book in this series, Hotel Paradise, and the second is yet another romp with our 12 year old heroine, Emma Graham. As she continues her delving into the 40 year old mystery of another young girl's death, the bodies begin to pile up--and so do her new friends.

This book lets us continue to enjoy her quirky tribe of "assistants", Ulub and Ubb, who can't be understood without the help of Mr. Root to interpret. Emma bounces between her great-aunt Aurora's demands at the h
Feb 13, 2012 Melee rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
Before there was Flavia de Luce, there was Emma Graham...

Emma Graham only preceded Flavia by about a decade, but the two are rather similar (in my mind, at least). They're both precocious preteens who are given a little too much free reign in their small towns to get into all sorts of trouble. Emma's personality is less abrasive, though, making her more lovable; and she shows vulnerability more often and sooner than Flavia.

For some reason, it took me 8 months after reading Hotel Paradise to read
Kelsey Hanson
Dec 11, 2015 Kelsey Hanson rated it really liked it
I still really enjoy this series but this sequel was not quite as good as its predecessor. Still the scenery and writing style of this series is pretty enchanting. I do feel that Emma lost some of her charm from the first one and comes across as more of a Nancy Drew wannabe. Still a large part of the mystery is revealed but there's still enough left to figure out that makes you want to keep reading the series. This series had a bit more "filler" than the other one as well and moved a bit slower, ...more
Aug 03, 2009 Micah rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I liked Hotel Paradise, the first book in this series, because it was less a conventional murder mystery than a portrait of the town in which it was set. The sequel, however, was a disappointment. Cold Flat Junction turns the main character, Emma -- previously an inquisitive kid who blended into the background of her hometown and whose flaws the narrative acknowledged -- into a coddled Plucky Girl Detective stereotype whom no one in the story is allowed to criticize (even legitimately) without b ...more
Ivonne Rovira
Jun 06, 2012 Ivonne Rovira rated it it was amazing
Cold Flat Junction is the conclusion of the mystery/coming-of-age tale begun in Martha Grimes' magnificent Hotel Paradise (Emma Graham Mysteries. (Be sure to read Hotel Paradise first!)

It's set in an indeterminate time (there's a mention of nouvelle cuisine and the United Nations on the one hand, yet the novel is riddled with train travel, small-town drugstores with soda fountains, a McCrory's, records and horsehair sofas) in an indeterminate place (somewhere on the Eastern Seaboard north of Mar
Feb 24, 2011 Emily rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The prequel to this book, Hotel Paradise, is one of my favorite, read-over-and-over books. Unfortunately, it seems Grimes hadn't even read it recently before writing this. The first few chapters contradict previous events so many times I wanted to scream in frustration. It also seems to have lost the dreamlike, meandering quality I liked so much, as the 12-year-old narrator seems to have matured the 10 years or so that passed between the writing of the two novels, and is now looking back on the ...more
Sep 06, 2014 Laura rated it really liked it
I really love the world of Emma Graham. She reminds a little of myself when I would spend summers at my grandma's restaurant in a small town in the Midwest. I was always reading, daydreaming, wandering around town, and sometimes making up my own little mysteries. Of course, for Emma the mysteries are real enough and she's much more outgoing than I ever was. But, the world Martha Grimes has created for Emma to inhabit is so real to me. I enjoy her Richard Jury books, but I've found that I enjoy E ...more
Valerie K
Dec 18, 2010 Valerie K rated it really liked it
Not quite as fabulous as the first in the series (at least the first half or so that is how I felt) but still pretty darn great. Near the beginning I caught an actual mistake that has to do with Shirl and the Angel Pie, but I won't get into it - my delight in being a smartypants by finding it almost outweighs its being there. Plus I didn't find any others. Anyhow, once I got past all the recapping (as you may know from others of my reviews I get a tad bit annoyed by recapping), and the story got ...more
Sharon Holford
Dec 06, 2011 Sharon Holford rated it it was amazing

I absolutely loved this story. Ms. Grimes has such a way of telling stories with children that are not childish. The heroine in this one is smart and yet vulnerable. This is her second story and the best. The first one left us wanting to know what happened and this one answers all our questions. I love Mr. Root and the Wood brothers, ULB and UBB - Ulub and Ubub. The two brothers cannot talk in the normal way, but they are a wonderful part of the story. While it is unlikely that a sheriff would
Jan 11, 2013 Janet rated it really liked it
Shelves: mysteries
I struggled to get into this book. This is my first of the Emma Graham series and I couldn't tell where she was going. The imaginary world of this 12 year old girl running in parallel with her detective work was a little hard to follow. She was rather intrepid for a 12 year old, who seemed to have plenty of money for cabs to get around, had no qualms about hanging out with adults and investigating in dark woods accompanied by older men. Her mother and her brother seemed to be there but only as p ...more
In Hotel Paradise Emma Graham was trying to solve the case of a murder of Mary-Evelyn, a 12-year-old girl. This time Mary-Evelyn's death is connected with more recent crime - murder of Fern Queen. Fern was a daughter of Ben Queen and Rose Devereau, Mary-Evelyn's aunt. Ben is a suspect as he went out of jail days before Fern was murdered. Beside investigation Emma has to deal with small town relations and expectations. Emma doesn't use a kick-the-door method which isn't working in her town. Good ...more
Apr 07, 2011 Lynne-marie added it
Recommends it for: Everyone
Books are said to be driven by two of their four elements: character, plot, pace, plot and atmosphere. This book is all about atmosphere (in spades) and the character of twelve year old Emma Grimes who is changing and growing before our very eyes, but not her essence, which is as fixed as, say, a mule (to speak Emma-country language.) Wonderful and full characterization of other actors across Emma's stage come all from her eyes and are fascinating indeed. The intriguing mystery, one of which onl ...more
Beth Favini
May 28, 2011 Beth Favini rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this chapter in the Emma Graham saga...Martha Grimes writes convincingly as the precocious 12 year old...absolutely love the surrounding characters and situations, especially the implied relationship between the Sheriff and Maud, and love Aurora Paradise. Cold Flat Junction, however, was not as delightful as Hotel was overly long and I was actually ready to bail before the end, but was happy I stuck with it--the ending was pretty satisfying. I picked up the third i ...more
Aug 31, 2009 Jen rated it liked it
The is the second in a series, and I read the third, Belle Ruin, not found on GoodReads. The first one, Hotel Paradise, sounds from the title to be some kind of cheap romance novel, but it's far from that. I was entertained by the imagination of 12-year-old Emma, whose viewpoint the books are written. She's naive but cleverly smart, shy and bold at the same time as she tries to solve a decades-old kidnapping and disappearance of a young girl. Seems as though there are still some loose ends to ti ...more
Rogue Reader
Jun 15, 2016 Rogue Reader rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Don't know where Hotel Paradise is located but Indiana is as good a place as any considering the lostness of the place, the insular feel and the kindness of its community. I love the naivete of the first person pov of the narrator, a 12 year old girl, an outsider who is so observant, and so loves words. Found the first and can't wait to continue the story!
Susan Ferguson
Sep 09, 2013 Susan Ferguson rated it really liked it
Shelves: re-read, nook-owned, 2013
This is the second in the Emma Graham series and winds up the first mystery ...and Emma enjoys herself way too much at the end...but I guess she deserves the fun.
Waiting for the third to come out in ebook. I read the 4th book some time back, but I'm not sure I got it figured out. I was having trouble making it all come together. Probably been too long since I'd read the others.

This book and Hotel Paradise cover just a few weeks in the life of Emma Graham, age 12. This one starts a week after the
Mary Helene
Jan 30, 2010 Mary Helene rated it really liked it
Shelves: mysteries
Mystery? I suppose. I love the ruminations on Time - peeled back, stretched to the breaking - set in lush - or lonely - descriptions. Then there's silence, like this sentence set in the middle of a rich passage on pg. 82, talking of young girl's terror: "If a cone had dropped on velvet needles, if a star had laid a silver track across the sky, if the dead had turned in their graves - I swear, I would have heard it, that's how silent it all was."
And it's funny. The perfect book for a rainy day.
Jun 15, 2009 Kimberly rated it it was amazing
I love this series, the first books by Martha Grimes I have read. Hotel Paradise drew me in, and I cannot wait to find the third so I can finish the story. Emma is my favorite young heroine, surpassing the old fave, Scout from To Kill a Mockingbird. Grime's descriptions of anything from vegetation to food to personality quirks are fabulous. In-depth but not overly wordy. I would recommend these books to anyone who likes to read.
Dec 14, 2011 Starry rated it it was amazing
I'm rereading this series (and thrilled to see that another has been added to it since my last reading of it). There's something about the tone of these books that I find gripping. I like the narrator voice (12-year-old Emma Graham) and the small town characters and the mysteries, but it's the dreamy/timeless/nostalgic/mournful tone that sucks me into these stories and that separates this series from other "cozy" mysteries.
Jan 19, 2012 Maria rated it really liked it
The special point about this book was the young heroine which draw me into her personal life of a child, showing me her world through her eyes.
This story took me by surprise as I knew not one book of Martha Grimes (and have never after that read one of her that I felt so intensily intruding into my own life when reading it).
Maybe the plot is not too complicated but the juvenile heroine makes up for everything.
Sep 27, 2014 Sarah rated it really liked it
Shelves: re-read
A bit more plot and less atmosphere than Hotel Paradise which I rate as an astonishingly good book, but still terrific. Really difficult to put down towards the end - leaving you with the dilemma of wanting to read on, yet not wanting to finish the book too quickly. Really looking forward to Belle Ruin which I have not read yet but and my copy has arrived just in time from America.
Aug 27, 2014 Teresa rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery-thriller
I thought I knew this author, but I discovered a complely new side to her offers. It's nothing like the Richard Jury novels that I've come to know, but reminds me more of A Curious Case of the Dog in the Nighttime (or whatever that long title is). It's told from the perspective of a 12-year-old girl who is part Nancy Drew, part Doogie Hauser, and part Blossom.
Jul 24, 2016 Bobbie rated it really liked it
I am enjoying this series of 12 year old Emma Graham and her small town. I'm not sure I liked this one quite as well as the first but I waited awhile between them so had forgotten some of the first. This one has a lot of humor and I can't remember if I laughed so much in the first. I will definitely not wait so long for the third book.
Aug 04, 2014 Marge rated it liked it
I liked the second Emma Graham book better and just want to reach into the book and hug 12-year-old Emma and tell her how special she is as she goes above solving an old drowning mystery.
Feb 18, 2015 Harry rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery
Great detective novel from of the view of a 12 year old tomboy. I was skeptical but Grimes is a good writer and really had me believing in little Emma. I will read more Grimes.
Kris Moser
Mar 26, 2016 Kris Moser rated it it was amazing
I loved this book, the colorful descriptions and interesting characters made it come alive.
I've had this book for years and just found it. I couldn't get into the pace of it at first but eventually learned how to read it. I ended up enjoying it and realized it was the second in a series. I think I'll go back and read "Hotel Paradise", the first one. However, it continues to annoy me that publishers allow books to be printed with errors in the narrative. Is Dwayne's last name Hayden or Hicks? Martha has given him both surnames. Can't this be easily checked?

Now, I wonder what other book
May 29, 2015 Jean rated it really liked it
Enjoyed this very much
May 12, 2012 Betsy rated it it was ok
I have never finished a book in which I have skipped so may pages. Specifically, I skipped a great number of pages in which the main character is doing nothing but eating, and talking about eating. The food thing was cute in the first book, since the narrator is a young girl who's mother is the best cook for miles around, but the second book spends entirely too much time with the narrator talking about eating - the same things she's been eating for two novels. There is something to be said for t ...more
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Martha Grimes is an American author of detective fiction.

She was born May 2 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to D.W., a city solicitor, and to June, who owned the Mountain Lake Hotel in Western Maryland where Martha and her brother spent much of their childhood. Grimes earned her B.A. and M.A. at the University of Maryland. She has taught at the University of Iowa, Frostburg State University, and Montg
More about Martha Grimes...

Other Books in the Series

Emma Graham (4 books)
  • Hotel Paradise (Emma Graham #1)
  • Belle Ruin (Emma Graham, #3)
  • Fadeaway Girl (Emma Graham, #4)

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