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Dangerous Admissions: Secrets of a Closet Sleuth (Closet Sleuth #1)
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Dangerous Admissions: Secrets of a Closet Sleuth (Closet Sleuth #1)

3.0 of 5 stars 3.00  ·  rating details  ·  234 ratings  ·  61 reviews
Miranda "Rannie" Bookman—43, divorced mother of two, with a recent love life consisting of a long string of embarrassingly brief encounters—is beginning to feel like a dangling participle: connected to nothing. Her career as a copyeditor is down the toilet (she makes one little slip—a missing "l" from the last word in the title of the Nancy Drew classic The Secret of the O ...more
Paperback, 353 pages
Published July 31st 2007 by William Morrow Paperbacks
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Wow, I had a very different reaction to this book than did most people on Goodreads, it seems.

Perhaps it's because I read this book on Kindle, so I wasn't influenced by the cover or the blurb. It seems that the book's packaging promises a light, fluffy chick lit read. And that's not what the book delivers. To begin, the heroine is past chick lit heroine age - refreshing so. Rannie Bookman (I see what you did with the name there, author) is a divorced, underemployed mother of a college age daught
Jane O'Connor is very well known as the author of the wildly popular Fancy Nancy series of children books. About 6 years ago, she debuted her first adult mystery novel - Dangerous Admissions (Secrets of a Closet Sleuth) about Rannie Bookman, a 43 year old divorced mom, who is working at an exclusive prep school, when the chief of admissions, Mr. Tut, is murdered. O'Connor's latest book, in this same series - "Almost True Confessions" was very favorably reviewed in the New York Times, but I hate ...more
I read about 50 pages. I have an English degree, so I know a lot of people who like to pick on other people's grammar. And I absolutely hate it. I would rather read some bad grammar than bad writing. I couldn't relate to any of the characters and I found the obscene language unnecessary. I don't mind using profanity when it's right for a character, but in this case it just seemed gratuitous. And for a book about a woman written by a woman, there was too much that I found kind of offensive to wom ...more
Ugh, it was a horrible book. I finished reading it months ago and I am still regretting the time I spent getting to the end of the book. Since it was a murder mystery, I wanted to know "who done it." The murderer and motive are plausible (at least within the framework of the story), but uninspiring. The characters were people I would expect to find on Gossip Girl (from the perspective of someone who does not watch the show and has only Googled it to Wikipedia.) The saving grace of the book is th ...more
Hmm. Despite the hot pink on the cover and the fluffy blurb, something about this book made me think it still might be good when I picked it up, but now I have no idea what that something was. I read the beginning, then I was bored, so I read the ending, and I was still bored, but I thought it would make sense if I read the middle, so I skimmed the whole middle only to find out, nope, I was still bored. Maybe there were witty things in there or something but I just wasn't feeling it. Good thing ...more
Ashley FL
I imagine the editorial meeting on this book went something like:

Editor: This is a great little cozy mystery you've got here, Jane!

Jane: Thanks!

Editor: We know you are used to writing books for toddlers, but we gotta tell you . . .

[uncomfortable silence]

Editor: Well, have you ever watched "Gossip Girl"? Because that show is really hot right now. Could you take this cozy mystery and add in some "Gossip Girl"?

Jane: Er, I guess so.
I took me a long time to finish this book. Because I just wanted interested in it. It was boring...until about 3/4 of the way through.

So...why didn't I like the book?
1. Well it wasn't what I expected. I expected some fun chick lit - some light mystery with some romance thrown in. No...not so. Instead I got a pretty heavy read with murder, serial killers, another murder, drugs, and unnecessary self-pleasuring scenes. (Yuck.)

2. The main character was a copy editor. And she kept correcting everyone
Jobiska (Cindy)
I picked this up yesterday on the $1 shelf at Borders. It was definitely worth more...I enjoyed the pace, the characters, the mystery (enough hints to let the reader not feel frustrated, but not totally obvious). The NYC setting was detailed in just the right amount.

I did, however, find it very ironically amusing that a book with a copy editor protagonist who winces at poor grammar, typos, and other errors, contained some glaring errors (as well as a few sentences i'd rewrite to be less jarring
When I read recently that there was a mystery series featuring a copy editor as the sleuth, I was intrigued. Having been married to a copy editor for many years with a chance to observe his powers of deduction up close and personal, it occurred to me that a word sleuth might make a very good detective. So, of course I had to read it, and since I am an obsessive kind of reader who likes to read series books in order, I started with the first one, Dangerous Admissions.

While the concept seemed a go
Fun read. As a former editor, I was attracted to this because the review said it was about a proofreader. I loved the inside jokes about typos, blue pencils and grammar goofs. It's a nice beach-type read, with teenagers run amok, college admissions hanging by a thread and murder. I won't give away too much of the plot since others will likely do that, and I do not want to spoil the mystery for readers.
Jennifer A.M.
This is the 1st adult novel by O'Connor most well known for her popular series of children's books starring Fancy Nancy. I thought the book was amusing and well thought out for a chick lit type murder mystery. It reminded me a lot of the Kate White books which I also enjoy quite a bit. Rannie is the 40 year old protagonist who fears the death of the college counselor at her son's private high school was not an accident. She gets involved with some detective work of her own falling for the father ...more
The author should stick to the children's books. The overall story was a good idea, but not executed very well. It dragged in places. Also the random masturbation scenes were totally unnecessary and out of place. They added nothing to the story.
Chris Dorr
Wish there are half-stars as this would be 3.5 worthy. Fun plot twists and characters that you want to know more about. Prep-School backdrop is an added nugget for those who went to one.
Ellen Kirschman
I liked O'Connor's spunky, slightly daffy protagonist, Rannie, a copy editor and single mom, who can't stop copy-editing in her head, even when she's in extreme danger. She has a quirky, somewhat cynical view of life and an overwhelming curiosity that ultimately leads her to figure out "who dun it?" before the cops do. The book moves at a face pace and the setting, New York City, figures prominently. Her descriptions of teen age life and angst are wonderful. I only wish that O'Connor had copy-e ...more
Jane O'Connor has written a raft of books for children, but Dangerous Admissions is her first adult book. It's classic chick lit mystery with a gutsy heroine - single mother Rannie Bookman - a fantastic Manhattan setting and lots of romance and thrills.

Rannie is a freelance copy editor and part-time tour guide for the exclusive Upper West Side private school her son Nate attends (courtesy of her rich WASP ex-mother-in-law).

When the Director of College Admissions is found

To read the rest of this
Dec 01, 2007 Christine rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: mystery romance escape
NYT Book Review 8/18/07
Fun chick-lit for the older crowd, but with a substantial portion in the first person from some high-school senior characters, all credible and likeable. I solved the mystery in the first 2 chapters, but still enjoyed the portrayal of the Upper West Sider involved in an Upper East Side milieu -- a competitive private school. Also the protagonist, as an unemployed editor, can't help hearing grammar and seeing punctuation the way I do -- a life long handicap. (It was especia
Rannie Bookman is a divorced copy editor with a daughter away from home and a son, Nate, who is a senior at the Chapel School where his mother gives candidate tours. Rannie continually corrects people's English, and finds a new male friend in the single father of one of Nate's classmates. The guidance counselor at Chapel is found dead by one of the students, and Nate may have been the last one to have seen him alive. Rannie does some investigating, and gets into trouble with too much information ...more
I enjoyed this - loved the NYC setting, great characters, especially Rannie and a plot that kept my attention!
Jamie Clarke
I enjoyed this book for a few reasons. Rannie is a real woman with who sounds like a fun person who'd be a great friend. I don't believe she'd do a few of the pseudo-detective things she's feels compelled to do however that's what drove the plot. My favorite part of Rannie was her inner editor; how she was always correcting grammar in her head both written and spoken. That just cracked me up! The clues to the who-done-it were well hidden, my suspicions weren't confirmed until the last few chapte ...more
Read this for an LJ column on books about college admissions (suggestions eagerly accepted if you can think of any!). It's a totally light-hearted "suspense-romance," neither of which are my usual genres, but O'Connor won my heart by creating a copy editor protagonist who thinks and acts exactly like a real copy editor, complete with complaints about who/whom and the misuse of commas. It's like she read the inside of my brain (and the mystery was fairly compelling, too).
Mari Manning
Light and frothy. If you're look for a light-hearted whodunit, this is the book for you.
I wanted to like this, and the setup seemed ideal: a grammarian sleuth, set in a prep school. But it just didn't grab me, and my motivation to continue is just not there. Meh.
The premise of the text was somewhat interesting, but I wouldn't call it compelling. Too often there was superfluous curing and sex scenes, which I didn't expect in a criminal mystery novel. I did finish the book, but only because I hate starting a book and not completing it. The grammar tidbits were humorous, but I'm an English teacher. The writing craft was tolerable, though not necessarily impressive and engaging.
Matthew Cousens
The first time I tried reading this I couldn't get into the rhythm of the writing and didn't make it past 30 pages. I put it down for a little while and tried again, and I'm glad I did because I enjoyed it. This is a murder mystery set in a private high school in New York City, and it is great. There were several pieces which I could see coming, so perhaps it is a little too straightforward but it is still a good read.
Good book. I'll read the next one. Liked the characters and their relationships.
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This was a cute little mystery about a school mom and part-time copy editor who gets embroiled in a murder mystery at her son's school. Rannie is horrified to find that the college counselor at her son's New York City prep school has been murdered. Part murder mystery, part romantic comedy, this was pretty good for a light mystery.
It's not challenging reading by any stretch, but I thought it was fun. While the mystery wasn't overly hard to figure out, the book was still reading -- sort of chick lit meets mystery, rather than a full-on mystery. Besides, who *wouldn't* want to read something by the Fancy Nancy author?!
An exclusive private school in Manhattan faces a crime spree. Of course, it is related to the pressure to get into the Ivy Leagues. I had read it previously, and remembered whodunit, but the details of why the killer did it are fascinating. A fun read from the author of the "Fancy Nancy" series.
Really enjoyed this one - a light and fun mystery/social satire about a mom attempting to solve a murder at her son's fancy Manhattan prep school.

Interesting note - this is the first adult novel by the author of one of my 3 year old daughter's favorite books, Fancy Nancy.
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Since the publication of Fancy Nancy, Jane O'Connor's closet now boasts so many boas, tiaras, and sparkly ensembles that sometimes friends do not recognize her on the street. She still resides (that's a fancy word for lives) in New York City with her family and their canine companion, Arrow. --from the publisher's website
More about Jane O'Connor...

Other Books in the Series

Closet Sleuth (2 books)
  • Almost True Confessions: Closet Sleuth Spills All (Closet Sleuth #2)
Fancy Nancy Fancy Nancy: Bonjour, Butterfly Fancy Nancy and the Posh Puppy Fancy Nancy: Splendiferous Christmas Fancy Nancy: Nancy Clancy, Super Sleuth

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