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Cheating at Solitaire (Gregor Demarkian #23)

3.64  ·  Rating Details ·  300 Ratings  ·  40 Reviews
The small, exclusive Massachusetts island of Margaret’s Harbor gets its fifteen minutes of fame when aging teen stars Arrow Normand and Marcey Mandret pay a visit to local celebrity heiress, Kendra Rhode. The girls’ drunken, disorderly behavior is being eaten up by the press…until an even bigger media storm erupts.

During a blizzard, Arrrow finds herself staggering around t
...more
Paperback, 384 pages
Published March 31st 2009 by Minotaur Books (first published April 15th 2008)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Diane
Jul 31, 2015 Diane rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is one of the later Demarkians (2008). Margaret's Harbor (obviously Martha's Vineyard) is an island off the coast of Massachusetts. Formerly inhabited solely by fishermen and their families, over the years it has turned into an exclusive summer home for celebrities and the very rich. Usually, they leave during the winter, but this time is different - a movie is being filmed on the island. Two of the film's stars, former teen pop star Arrow Normand and former child star Marcey Mandret, and K ...more
Monica
Jul 24, 2011 Monica rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the third "Gregor Demarkian" book I have read by Jane Haddam. I have enjoyed each one. They are well-written by someone who understands the proper construction of an English sentence. The puzzle central to any great mystery novel is well-constructed and holds my attention to the end.

What I really love about all of her books that I have read so far is her characters. Her characters are not minimal black-or-white cardboard cut-outs constructed to carry a plot. Even the people we are meant
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Maddy
May 23, 2010 Maddy rated it liked it
Shelves: 2008-reads
RATING: 2.5

Anyone who's ever had to prepare for a big wedding can identify with how Gregor Demarkian is feeling about his impending nuptials to longtime love Bennis Hannaford. The whole thing is turning into a production; there is nothing more that he would like to do than escape from Philadelphia to a desert island until it's time to say "I do". His wish almost comes true when an old friend, actor Stewart Gordon, asks him to take an assignment from the authorities on Margaret's Harbor, a wealth
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Janet
Sep 29, 2011 Janet rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
There were things I liked about this book and things I didn't like about this book. What I liked were the setting and the characters. What I didn't like were the setting and the characters. Why was Jane Haddam so shy about just coming out and calling the setting Martha's Vineyard instead of "Margaret's Harbor"? Edgartown instead of "Oscartown"? Come on-if you're going to invent a setting that's based on an actual place, for heaven's sake don't be coy with the names you give it.

The characters-wh
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Joyce Lagow
#22 in the Gregor Demarkian series.[return][return]Haddam always picks some more or less socially relevant theme to hammer on; in this book, it s the irrelevance of celebrity-ism, assuming such a word exists.[return][return]The plot revolves around a film being shot in Martha s Vineyard, and the drunkenness and over-the-top behavior of two of the actresses and a Paris Hilton-type hanger-on, all celebrities not so much because of talent but because of manufactured celebrity status.. Naturally, th ...more
Stuart
Jul 16, 2014 Stuart rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime-mystery
I enjoyed this book a lot, though I have no idea what the title has to do with the story. The action takes place on an island called "Margaret's Harbor", which seems like a substitute for Martha's Vineyard, in a town caled Oscartown, presumably a stand-in for Edgartown, appropriately renamed because, in the story, it is full of film-stars and their entourages. It is something like the 20th book by Jane Haddam featuring her ex-FBI detective Gregor Demarkarian, though I have read none of the other ...more
Anne Slater
Jul 25, 2009 Anne Slater rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: only someone who was desperate
This was a "Good girl, you've cleaned up the house. Now go sit down for a while" book. Beach reading. And if you have connections to Philadelphia's Main Line, or to Nantucket, it has interesting reverberations in the character development.
But, damn it! Minotaur Books (of St Martin's Press) needs to do something about the editing of its books.

(Warning: Rant follows)

There were grammatical lapses that jumped out and bit me ("She was one of those women who does not....." instead of "who do not". Th
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Eunira
Oct 08, 2011 Eunira rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love the characters that Jane Haddam creates and the twists in the plots.

Book description from Amazon


The small, exclusive Massachusetts island of Margaret’s Harbor gets its fifteen minutes of fame when aging teen stars Arrow Normand and Marcey Mandret pay a visit to local celebrity heiress, Kendra Rhode. The girls’ drunken, disorderly behavior is being eaten up by the press…until an even bigger media storm erupts.

During a blizzard, Arrrow finds herself staggering around town, covered in blood
...more
Felicity Disco
Jan 01, 2014 Felicity Disco rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, read-in-2014
This is my favorite mystery series, and this was the perfect book to read during a cold, snowy New Year's week in New England. At this point, Gregor, Bennis, and the rest are like old friends I love to visit, and Haddam's mystery plots are always satisfyingly intricate and solid rather than showy. This book did seem slightly sloppy - there was a scene in which someone was shocked by information learned in a conversation he had already witnessed, and Haddam's social messages (this time mainly abo ...more
Joy
Sep 08, 2012 Joy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A junk movie is being made in a Massachusetts conclave for the summering rich. Only one rich person is there in the thick of winter, young Kendra Rhode, intent on making herself a celebrity and on ruling the lives of the silly young actresses running riot over the island. Then one actress shows up at the house of a respectable local author, with blood all over her and a dead boyfriend down the beach. Dr. Annabeth Falmer, suddenly immersed in the lives of the moviemakers and the investigation of ...more
Karen Hufman
Feb 24, 2016 Karen Hufman rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In this installment of the Demarkian series, Gregor goes to an island off the coast in the Northeast. He's asked to go by an old friend who's sure that the current suspect the police are holding is innocent of the charge of murder. The whole premise of this story reminds me of the current batch of reality stars who spend their time being famous for no particular talent and all of their money goes to partying. Their fame is enhanced by the photographers who follow them around to take pictures of ...more
Kyrie
Dec 07, 2013 Kyrie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
Hmmm, I wrote a review and well, my computer ate it.

There's a lot of celebrity excess in this book, and excess by the papparazzi.

I really liked the side romance going on between a history writer and a famous movie star.

I didn't like all the detail of excess by both the celebrities and the media.

And there were some just kind of weird characters that I never quite figured out - the newspaper editor was the worst, but the publicity agent, and well, people who had the chance to get off this tiny
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Derk
Nov 22, 2012 Derk rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
2.5 stars. It was a boring book, boring characters, boring plot; but I finished it so that added the one/half star. The aptness of the title to the story wasn't even clear to me This was the second book by Haddam I've read (the other is later in the series than this one). Both had the same general theme. There is some segment of the population that Haddam doesn't care for and she makes a point of her dislike in the book by exaggerating their characteristics. OK, will I read another by her? Proba ...more
Randy
Sep 16, 2013 Randy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this book. Gregor Demarkian, the protagonist, is an ex-FBI guy who now consults on major cases. This one takes place on an island near Cape Cod and involves movie stars, paparazzi and murder. It shows the underbelly of movie celebrity and how far paparazzi will go to get good pictures. Ms. Haddam inserts some social commentary in the book about movie stars and entourages that I found interesting. There are many interesting characters.
Mascanlon
Jun 07, 2008 Mascanlon rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have always enjoyed this series. The latest story centers around the world of cult celebrity, the paparazzi and a mystery surrounding 3 young women with a host of motives. The latest Gregor Demarkian is very satisfying, the plot is complex, the commentary on current state of the press is right on target and leaves the reader thinking about how the public contributes to the problem. Elegant and stylish as usual.
Tomi
Jan 05, 2014 Tomi rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A Gregor Demarkian mystery; I always enjoy these because they are a little more cerebral than a lot of mystery books. This one involves a group of young celebrities (think Paris Hilton, the Kardashians) who are totally useless and inane. I found myself hoping the killer would take more of them out before the book was over! (Haddam does a good job with character development.)
Laurie
Jan 04, 2010 Laurie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ok, I tend to find an author I like and then read them to death. So now I'm on Haddam, thanks to Pam (also because I seemed to get on a mystery phase this past year). This was an intriguing read as the characters seemed to be patterned after the "celebrities" of this generation who haven't really done anything to be famous (e.g., Paris Hilton et al.).
Bethj
Feb 04, 2012 Bethj rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have read EVERYTHING by Jane Haddam, including her early stuff under her real name (Orania P), and I have enjoyed almost all. This one however isn't a favorite. The characters are forgettable and show you nothing new, and the story does not grab you at all. Usually you get sucked into her books right away, but it took me MONTHS to even read past the first chapter.
Pam
Feb 25, 2009 Pam rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mysteries, fiction
Actually a good read. I haven't read any of Haddam's Demarkian mysteries in 15+ years. It was a treat. I had no idea who did it. Good observations about the 24x7 news media turning society into a big high school (more like JHS in my mind).
Meg Benjamin
Haddam is always skillful, and the book has some dry asides about celebrity, but for once I figured out the mystery far too quickly. And I found I really didn't care very much about the murderer or his victim.
Bridget
I just didnt connect with this book. I thought it was written poorly - the author doesnt seem to know any other word for young women besides "twits". I had never heard of Gregor Demarkian, but wasnt impressed with him as a character.
Jason
Sep 12, 2011 Jason rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Loved the set up and the construction of the the story. My only issue was that there wasn't a whole of detection happening in the book, and I figured it out half way through. Still, great characters and well written.
Sue johnson
Apr 20, 2008 Sue johnson rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Always a great read by Jane Haddham. I love Gregor Demarkian and his friends. This book was not quite so unpredictable as past editions, or maybe I am beginning to think like Gregor.
Troy
Mar 02, 2010 Troy rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Not a great book. I didn't feel bad for reading it but it didn't grab me or even interest me that much in terms of plot, character development, word choice.
Jackie
I am enjoying the Jane Haddam series. Gregoire Demarkian is very Columbo like in his detecting. Listens, watches, and then solves.

I would like to read all of Ms. Haddam's Demarkian books
Tonia
May 22, 2012 Tonia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really liked this one. It gripped me. Want to read more by this author and in this series.
Margaret
Apr 27, 2014 Margaret rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mysteries
Quite well written--but I can't remember what happened, in spite of having read it within the last few months.
Mary
Jun 12, 2009 Mary rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: did-not-finish
I will save this one for another day. I just couldn't get into it right now. Usually, I love any of the Gregor Demarkian novels.
Tina Jurgaitis
Jul 26, 2010 Tina Jurgaitis rated it it was ok
unimaginative
Sarah "Kat"
Aug 31, 2013 Sarah "Kat" rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned
Enjoyable enough. There were characters that were depicted after real movie stars - the most blatant was a character based after Patrick Stewart. I enjoy the series.
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9849
Aka Orania Papazoglou

Jane Haddam (b. 1951) is an American author of mysteries. Born Orania Papazoglou, she worked as a college professor and magazine editor before publishing her Edgar Award–nominated first novel, Sweet, Savage Death, in 1984. This mystery introduced Patience McKenna, a sleuthing scribe who would go on to appear in four more books, including Wicked, Loving Murder (1985) and Rich,
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More about Jane Haddam...

Other Books in the Series

Gregor Demarkian (1 - 10 of 29 books)
  • Not a Creature was Stirring (Gregor Demarkian, #1)
  • Precious Blood (Gregor Demarkian, #2)
  • Act of Darkness (Gregor Demarkian, #3)
  • Quoth the Raven (Gregor Demarkian, #4)
  • A Great Day for the Deadly (Gregor Demarkian, #5)
  • Feast of Murder (Gregor Demarkian, #6)
  • A Stillness in Bethlehem (Gregor Demarkian, #7)
  • Murder Superior (Gregor Demarkian, #8)
  • Dear Old Dead (Gregor Demarkian, #9)
  • Festival of Deaths (Gregor Demarkian, #10)

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