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If I'd Killed Him When I Met Him... (Elizabeth MacPherson, #8)
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If I'd Killed Him When I Met Him... (Elizabeth MacPherson #8)

3.85 of 5 stars 3.85  ·  rating details  ·  1,707 ratings  ·  95 reviews
For forensic anthropologist Elizabeth MacPherson, solving mysteries hardly seems the fun it used to be - even if she is the official private investigator for her brother Bill's fledgling Virginia law firm. Then Bill and his feminist firebrand partner, A. P. Hill, take on two complex cases that will require Elizabeth's special participation. Eleanor Royden, a perfect lawyer ...more
Paperback, 273 pages
Published March 31st 1996 by Fawcett Books (first published March 31st 1995)
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Alannah Davis
This fiction novel, published in 1995, focuses on three Southern USA women who have been controlled and emotionally abused by their husbands. One woman was portrayed around the time of the Civil War, and the other two are modern day (although to a Yankee like myself, these two gals still seemed to have ideas of wifehood that my grandmother progressed beyond in 1920. Sorry to any Southern sisters I may have offended.)

I like that this novel portrays a bizarre portrait of humanity. From Eleanor Ro
Sharyn McCrumb is a favourite author who caught me by surprise with this book. This is from the Elizabeth MacPherson, forensic anthropologist series. Elizabeth is still mourning her husband lost at sea in Scotland, or maybe he is not, we have no idea if he is dead or alive. Elizabeth keeps writing letters to him regardless, but of course she just hides them away. This story brings her back to Virginia when her brother Bill invites Elizabeth to join him and his partner A.J. Hill, offering her wor ...more
Samantha Shepherd
Jan 20, 2008 Samantha Shepherd rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: early readers of Appalachian lit
Recommended to Samantha by: my grandma
Another white-trash delicacy. This book is one in a series, but it started my obsession with Sharyn McCrumb who is one of the best Appalachian writers currently working. She's funny, she has wild imagination and, most of all, she incredibly talented.

This is a story of polygamy. Some backwoods preacher gets it in his head that God has told him to marry again after he sees some sweet thang staring up at him from the pews. (Honestly, the joke opportunities are limitless and McCrumb takes some seri
Lissa Notreallywolf
My first Elizabeth MacPherson novel, I think, because I haven't quite grasped her character. This book seemed almost like a collection of short stories until it pulled together a grieving girl friend or wife, an unsolved local murder shortly after the civil war and a budding law practice, MacPherson and Hill. Although most of the characters are MacPhersons, I felt like AP Hill the attorney was the most focused character in terms of getting to know her. The law practice is handling two current mu ...more
Marina Aimer
This was the first Sharyn McCrumb book I read, years ago. I read it because I loved the title, but the story is fascinating! I have re-read it several times, as I have most of her work. Twists and turns and past murders intruding into the present. It is about women who are different in many ways, except that they all might just have been better off had they simply killed the offending male when they met him. I know I have felt like that at least once... A great story!
There are as many reasons for murder as there are murderers. What these women have in common are cruel and abusive husbands. Is murder ever justified? And can you get away with it? In her captivating manner of story-telling, Sharon McCrumb explores these issues. Grounded in reality and history, this fiction read will keep you turning pages. Put yourself in the place of these women . . . or on the jury. What would you do?
I love McCrumb's characters. They're fully realized and a joy to read. About the only thing I didn't like was one of the cases taken on in this book. Eleanor felt a little too much like Betty Broderick. I like my mysteries when the victims are unknown to me. I knew too much about the Broderick case and it made me really uncomfortable. While I figured out the ending before I got there - it was really a fun ride.
Dan Downing
Since McCrumb was cited as a source in "Invisible Republic" I thought I'd read the remaining volume of her work I own.
As usual she embroils her characters in situations reminiscent of something Dave Barry would cook up, but with more reserve and often harking back to scenes from a century ago, where decorum was more important, if no less funny.
Here we take a ride investigating a century old alleged murder, a double homicide by a jilted wife (where we examine the cruelty visited upon women on a c
Wow! I've found a new Southern author that gives great stories, unusual characters and out-loud chuckles! A friend recommended her books. Am I ever glad! I chose this one to read first because it has lawyers and its a mystery. Now my lawyer husband wants to read this because he kept hearing me laughing out-loud. I learned some unusual facts in this story. All I have to say is watch out for dolphins.
Delightedly enjoyable. I found this title laying at work so snagged it to read. It sat around forever & while my parents were here for a visit I offered it to my dad to read. He likes whodunnits. He read it but was somewhat lukewarm in its review. (Takes a bit of doing to impress him sometimes.)

I just finished it & can understand why he didn't care for it. I liked it but one of the reasons I thought may have put him off was the skipping around. It had three major story lines & three
Beth Schmelzer
One of the best mystery stories I ever read and I love the title. This novel is one that remains with you for many years. I think I want to re-read it as I am mentioning it in my blog as an example of complex characters. Both Eleanor Royden and Donna Jean Morgan are accused wives who have interesting stories to defend. You do not need to read the first Elizabeth MacPherson mystery in the series to appreciate this one.If I'd Killed Him When I Met Him...Sharyn McCrumb
I haven't read any of McCrumb's work in quite a while (who knows why). I selected this one that's apparently one of many in the Elizabeth MacPherson mysteries series. Oops on that mistake, as I really like to enjoy in the proper order. However with McCrumb's clever writing, her blends of satire with suspense, and her great character development, I didn't feel as though I was "missing" anything from previous ones of the series.
This one has Civil War history/mystery intertwined with a current law
Linda Rowland
Another wonderful story, so I hate to give only four stars. I can always read McCrumb without those jarring bits that distract me. There were two in this book. They are not as bad as some writers but...
How did Bill lose the big house? The usual continuity is missing, or did I miss something? I read the books one after another but could have missed something.
A lawyer visits a client in jail. She is buffing her nails, but has a nail file later. A nail file in jail?
On a sad note, this seems to be t
Stick with the Ballad series! This was a pick for a book club or I wouldn't have read this one. I am a huge Sharyn Mccrumb fan since I've enjoyed the Ballad series but this one is silly and shallow. I read that the author quit writing these since fans were taking them too seriously! Well done!
The author's love for this beautiful part of the world and haunting culture shines best from the Ballad series. I hear leaves rustling and fiddle strings while I'm reading them. Is that Apple pie in the ove
"When forensic anthropologist Elizabeth MacPherson becomes the official P.I. for her brother Bill's fledgling Virginia law firm, she quickly takes on two complex cases. Eleanor Royden, a perfect lawyer's wife for twenty years, has shot her ex-husband and his beautiful late-model wife in cold blood. And Donna Jean Morgan is implicated in the death of her Bible-thumping bigamist husband.

"Bill's feminist firebrand partner, A.P. Hill, does her damnedest for Eleanor, an abused wife in denial, and Bil
Four unique cases are visited in the book. One is a historical poisoning. One case involves her great granddaughter in the modern poisoning of her bigamist husband. The case of a fed up divorcee on trial for offing her lousy vindictive cheater husband and his new wife. The strangest case of marriage I have ever encountered. Which proves a lawyer will take any case for the sheer sport of it. I mean really, wanting to marrying a dolphin? I have now read it all. The consummation of their love was a ...more
Donna Davis
This is one of the funniest books I have ever read! I have had two friends who were in, or leaving, abusive relationships, and they found this novel hugely cathartic.

Be aware that this is VERY dark humor. Don't hand it to your 12-year-old, even if they can read it. If you do not care for edgy humor, this may not be your book. I won't go into plot and spoil it. Sharyn McCrumb generally writes mysteries (but not always) and they are set in her Appalachian homeland. (The middle a is soft, as in "ap
One of the reviews for this book (on another site) is tagged: EVER THOUGHT OF KILLING YOUR HUSBAND. Hmmmmm. Yes, I know this is fiction by a beloved author, it's light entertainment, it's supposed to be fun and witty . . . yet there is an undercurrent of general nastiness that just made me cringe. Literally. Maybe because I was listening to the book on CD, so the narrative and dialogue felt that much more "real." Sexuality, religion, politics, adultery, murder, marriage, beastiality (yup) . . . ...more
Witty, with some absurd situations as well. Bill Morgan and A.P.Hill (the A is for Amy but no one dares to use the name to her face) run a small legal firm in Virginia. The theme of marriage (generally bad) connects not only their cases in this book but also the lives of some family members. The title refers to a quotation: "If I'd killed him when I met him I'd be out of jail by now."
I read this book because it was the selection of the month for a local book club. I liked it, although it was a bit slow-going at first with all of the transitions from plot to plot, past to present. I didn't know the characters and it was a bit confusing at first. But I forged on and finally caught up. It was an engaging story (at least once I got halfway through) and I was fascinated by the intertwined mysteries. The sideplot that involved the dolphin seemed to be a bit Carl Hiaasen-esque in i ...more
I bought this book at our library sale because I loved the title. It turned out that I loved the book as well. An interesting weaving of four plots that somehow aren't confusing. It is filled with humor, and held my attention well. I recommend it to cozy fans.
Started out boring but got better with each page. A.P. Hill and law partner George McPherson are young attorneys with two very different murder cases. The mystery really is if these two can get their clients off. That is what makes this book good.
Luckily this is the last book in this series that I have. I won't be buying the others.

At the first, when I realized there was multiple related stories all told together, I was really happy. That's how my favorite Ballad novels were told - many intertwined stories in a single narrative, all variations on a theme. I should have recalled that it's an Elizabeth McPherson mystery, where nothing gets taken seriously -- to the point where it becomes a farce.

So, I started with low expectations, worked
Katherine Clark
I read this for the Cozy Monograph. I believe it is the last book in the Elizabeth McPherson series. It is the second time I read the book. It held up in some ways, but I think reading it out of context hurt my reading of it which is disappointing. It won the Agatha Best Novel award in 1995. I'll be relying on this book heavily in Ch. 5.
Laugh out loud funny. A good story and a murder with a twist. My first by this author and I really enjoyed it.
aPriL does feral sometimes
Women - if you've experienced the disrespect of society and husbands that only the institution of marriage can dish out, this is the Elizabeth MacPherson series novel to read, especially if you are a sensitive person who shrinks from self-defense, blood or violence. The author generously provides a quartet of humorous offscreen nastiness and death subplots through which a girl can fantasize satisfaction, in some vicarious sense of the word. Well, on second thought, there is that episode of the a ...more
Let it suffice to say that at one point a woman dies while having sex with her dolphin boyfriend.
Sharyn McCrumb is just a joy to read. This book is based partly on a true story: a preacher in the area of Lynchburg, VA did actually inform his wife and church that God had told him that he should take a teenager as his second wife. In real life he was punished by the courts. In this version he ends up dead.

This book has not one, but three he-done-me-wrong murders, one in the past. Her subtle prose makes them sing. For example, a college linebacker is 'shaped like a thumb'.

I've read almost all
Love this title! Sharyn has a great sense of humor.
Her stories are always interesting
What a great title for a book! She read my thoughts exactly!
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Sharyn McCrumb is an American writer whose books celebrate the history and folklore of Appalachia. Educated at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Virginia Tech, she has also taught Appalachian studies. She is married to David McCrumb, a corporate environmental director, and has two children, Laura and Spencer.
More about Sharyn McCrumb...

Other Books in the Series

Elizabeth MacPherson (9 books)
  • Sick of Shadows (Elizabeth MacPherson, #1)
  • Lovely in Her Bones (Elizabeth MacPherson, #2)
  • Highland Laddie Gone (Elizabeth MacPherson, #3)
  • Paying the Piper (Elizabeth MacPherson, #4)
  • The Windsor Knot (Elizabeth MacPherson, #5)
  • Missing Susan (Elizabeth MacPherson, #6)
  • MacPherson's Lament (Elizabeth MacPherson, #7)
  • The PMS Outlaws (Elizabeth MacPherson, #9)
The Hangman's Beautiful Daughter (Ballad, #2) She Walks These Hills (Ballad, #3) The Ballad of Frankie Silver (Ballad, #5) If Ever I Return, Pretty Peggy-O (Ballad, #1) The Rosewood Casket (Ballad, #4)

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