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Half-Price Homicide (A Dead-End Job Mystery #9)

3.73  ·  Rating Details  ·  738 Ratings  ·  59 Reviews
The national bestselling author presents a high society murder mystery...

At Snapdragon, a high-end designer consignment shop, Helen is at the beck and call of snobby- yet frugal-customers. That alone is a deadly combination, especially with Chrissy, a drool-worthy fashionista who walks in with a purse to sell, and ends up screaming at her husband and another customer.

Hardcover, 272 pages
Published May 4th 2010 by NAL (first published May 2010)
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(showing 1-30 of 1,362)
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May 23, 2010 Gail rated it did not like it
What started out as a good heroine on the lam, a mystery series with a gimmick is winding down with a whimper. Helen Hawthorne has been on the lam because of a bad judgement over her divorce but she's been found out long ago. Her totally sexy mysterious boyfriend has evolved into a faithful fiance at her beck and call. She does resolve her marriage woes, her tax woes, and her life straightens out so she could get paid what she is worth. However, a mystery is set for another book, and the stage i ...more
Jun 01, 2010 Melodie rated it it was ok
Shelves: read-2010
I think this may be the last in this series and it's probably a good thing. I didn't care for Helen in the first book or 2 in this series and I felt that way about her again in this one. Rob's back and there's been a murder made to look like suicide in the consignment shop Helen's working in. Yada, yada, yada........
This is the first Dead-End Job Mystery that I have read. Part of me wants to start from the beginning so I have an understanding of the character growth (and plot development) but there are far too many books and far too little time. In this installment Helen is working at a high-end consignment shop when a trophy wife meets a crushing end and Helen's prints are found on the murder weapon. Although there are legitimate reasons for that, she already has a strained relationship with the Detective ...more
Donna in Southern Maryland
Aug 31, 2010 Donna in Southern Maryland rated it really liked it
This book is just perfect for a lazy couple of summer afternoons. Helen is one again working off the books, and once again, there's a murder. At least the police detective is really starting to look at her funny! Where ever she works, someone turns up dead! Oh, well, it's just a fun mystery series. I like the characters.

There's an odd situation that sets her up for future blackmail. Just when she's gotten her legal life back and gets married to Phil. Not a single mention of Clapton in this book
Feb 09, 2013 Elizabeth rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cozy-mystery
I just finished Half Price Homicide by Elaine Viets, in her Dead End Jobs series. Helen's mother dies, which presents a whole new ball game. There is of course a murder or two which must be solved as Helen works in an upscale resale ship.
Aug 14, 2015 Cheryl rated it really liked it
This is 9th in the dead end job series. Helen is tired of being on the run and goes back to St Louis to clear her name anf finally get married. She still has to work so she works in an expensive consignment shop. A customer is killed at the shop after having a fight with her husband and Helen has to figure out who did it to save her friend and the shop. This did have a really questionable incident towards the end of the book that made you wonder if you wanted to continue with the series. It real ...more
Sep 30, 2011 Betty rated it liked it
When the judge awarded Rob half his wife's earnings for life, Helen Hawthorne refuses to pay this outrageous alimony. She leaves her affluent home in St. Louis and goes on the run until she reaches Fort Lauderdale where she works at a series of dead end jobs. Helen also meets her fiancé private investigator Phil at the apartment complex they both live in. Phil wants to marry her, but before they can Helen must return to St. Louis to fix her legal and financial liabilities.

Meanwhile she works at
May 16, 2010 Mason rated it it was amazing
If it wasn’t for bad luck, Helen Hawthorne won’t have any luck at all.

At least that’s the way it seems most of the time as Helen changes from one dead-end job to the next trying to stay one step ahead of her womanizing leech of an ex-husband, Rob. Helen is the heroine in HALF-PRICE HOMICIDE, author Elaine Viet’s latest installment in the Dead-End Job Mystery series.

Helen’s current job is at a high-end clothing consignment shop in South Florida. Vera, the shop owner, buys and re-sales designer ap
Raiveran Rabbit
Jun 07, 2011 Raiveran Rabbit rated it did not like it
Shelves: avoid-reading
This is the first book I've read in the series. I'm sure I've mentioned before; since I started reading these "cozy"-type mysteries, all of which feature a single woman with a crap relationship in the past, I've grown more horrified as I've noticed the mean, petty, narrow-sighted and just plain evil aspects of these MCs' actions. This MC isn't any different. She's selfish, immature, and sports the optional "Cozy mystery relationship action figure", who's of course obedient, supportive and seemin ...more
I have read this series in order. It's a good summer beach want to relax type read for the mystery reader. It been a while since I read the others and I am now catching back up on the series. The one thing I do not like is that you do need to read in order as the sub plots go in order. Some how I wishes these were numbered so I know which to read. I have the next four ready to read and it was a bit confusing as to which to read next so I have kind of spoiled a few things.
My other small complaint
Jan 10, 2016 Jenny rated it really liked it
Bookcrossing link:

I haven't read any others in this series, but this looks like a fun cozy mystery, so I'm breaking my rule and reading #9 in the series first.

This was a good story. I liked the main character Helen Hawthorne A lot happens in the story, but the eccentric characters and humor make the story move quickly and make you want to keep reading to see what happens.
Norma Huss
May 23, 2014 Norma Huss rated it really liked it
Shelves: mysteries
I won this book, and I'm so glad. I've read several of the Dead-End Job Mysteries, both before and after this episode, but I'd missed this one---and I'd missed an important element in the overall arc of the series. (Shouldn't do that!)

In this episode, Helen Hawthorne works at a high-end used mostly clothing store. She wants to clear her name of alimony evasion and marry the man she loves. But a lot more happens, of course. There's murder at the shop, and family upheaval. Let's just say, great r
Jul 10, 2011 Rachelle rated it it was ok
I'm not a fan of this author's writing style. It seems like two different people wrote this book. In one chapter, the main character mentions another character in the book, and in the next chapter, when that same character is mentioned, she has to be reminded who he is. This happens in book-time maybe a day after she was talking about him.

Character personalities aren't consistent or realistic. I get the feeling this series is just the author's way of putting her real life experiences in book fo
Dec 31, 2013 Ed rated it really liked it
#9 in the Dead End Job series. Helen finds yet another off the books job to avoid paying alimony and yet another corpse to challenge her sleuthing abilities. Luckily she has an understanding landlady and a loving fiancée for support in this light hearted Florida cozy.

Dead End Job series - Helen Hawthorne and Vera Salinda, the owner of Snapdragon's Second Thoughts, are shocked when Chrissy Martlet, a wealthy developer's trophy wife, is found coshed, then hung with a scarf. Identifying Chrissy's k
Aug 08, 2013 Veronica rated it liked it
Well, I must admit that this title started with a BANG, but quickly lost momentum for me. Helen, the main character and amateur sleuth, has a likable AND plausible personality. She's a little like STEPHANIE PLUM of the Janet Evanovich Series, but less funny. There were so many plot lines that were going on in this book and each of them had a logical, albeit incomplete, place. I felt that the storyline was too rushed and not all the threads were adequately "flushed" out...And without going too ov ...more
Deborah Replogle
Nov 24, 2014 Deborah Replogle rated it liked it
I like this series. It's like eating popcorn, fun but not too much sustenance. The only thing that bugs me sometimes is that the main character, the one with all the dead-end jobs, sometimes knuckles under too much.
May 13, 2015 Doris rated it really liked it
I really enjoy this series and Ms. Viets's writing style that just makes you flow through the story. The characters are all wonderful and the cast at the Coronado always bring something to each story. There were a number of "asked and answered" instances in this tale, but it was, overall a good mystery and subplot. I'm always on board to read another.
Apr 04, 2014 Min rated it it was ok
Shelves: library, 2014
I think I know where this is going next and I'm not sure I'm all that keen to go along. I have the next book already from the library so I'll at least start it. Unless it vastly improves, however, I think my time with this series may well be over.
Apr 02, 2016 Emilia rated it it was amazing
Ok so I'm jumping right in the middle of the book, no spoilers just some comments - I was a bit worried as to how the things will roll there, especially with her husband, I was slapping my had pretty hard at some points, but overall - loved it again. Definitely a series for me to catch up with!
christine kjeell
Entertaining but...

Entertaining, but not her best. Wrap up didn't close all the plot lines well. None the less it was entertaining.
Jun 20, 2011 Jaclyn rated it liked it
The book was good, but I'm not sure I like the twist at the end with the ex-hubby. It doesn't sound like Helen and her sister make very good choices.After all helen has been trhough she enters into her new marriage with a lie looming over her head? Perhaps this is a way of keeping the series going? I will read the next one and see where the author is going with this but I hope it's not going to get too much more far-fetched and silly. The witty humor of the first few novels really appealed to me ...more
Oct 16, 2010 Scilla rated it did not like it
This was sort of a stupid book. Helen Hawthorne, has left St. Louis to go to Florida to escape the alimony she is supposed to pay to her divorced husband. She works at a consignment store where a rich customer is murdered in the dressing room. Meanwhile, her estranged mother broke up her next wedding and dies in Florida. Helen takes the body back to St. Louis because the mother's husband doesn't want to pay anything, and more strange activities take place during funeral activities. Back at home, ...more
Jul 09, 2010 Susan rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Feb 26, 2014 Janet rated it liked it
I'll be interested to see where she goes with this series. I need to see the main character get a grip on reality.
Jan 17, 2013 Ann rated it liked it
Helen Hawthorne is hiding from her ex-husband. He was awarded 1/2 of all of her future earnings by a judge in their divorce. She is working at a high-end thrift store when one of the customers is found dead in the store's dressing room. Helen needs to stay in town because her mother is dying in a local nursing home. She is engaged to be married and needs to get things solved and the problems with her ex solved so that she can start her new life with no extra baggage. This is kind of cute but I d ...more
Jun 18, 2010 Deneen rated it liked it
Without spoilers-I like the Dead End Job series and Elaine Viets, but this book, although I enjoyed reading it is left some loose ends, weird loose ends. Although I can guess where perhaps her last book in this series will take us(I am guessing there will be one more to wind up the series), it was as if Ms. Viets threw in a twist she'll have to revisit and it just sort of appeared at towards the end of the book like it was just thrown in. From the reading of this one, if she doesn't do a "wrap u ...more
Apr 12, 2014 Melody rated it it was ok
This book was OK. The reason I only gave it two stars is that I felt the author created an unnecessarily sordid situation involving a child in order to set up a blackmail situation for a possible next book. Without that, it may have been three or maybe even four stars for me, but I just found that particular aspect of the book tasteless.
Mar 16, 2016 Jill added it
My favorite book so far in the series!
Jan 06, 2016 Michele rated it really liked it
Love this series...however, there was one plot twist that had me saying, oh, no, please don't do this...we shall see in the next book if this is where the series "jumped the shark"....I'm hoping not.
Aug 25, 2010 Darcy rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2010, mystery
Boy, this series has really gone down hill. I found myself very bored while reading this one. Sometimes I can handle when the story is very formulaic if the characters are still interesting, but in this book they have become caricatures of themselves. The events that happened in St. Louis have a will probably have an effect on future books. I will probably read them, but just not rush out to the library to get it right away.
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As a young girl, Elaine Viets was taught the virtues of South St. Louis: the importance of hard work, housecleaning, and paying cash. She managed to forget almost everything she learned, which is why she turned to mystery writing.

Living in South Florida has not improved her character. But it has given her the bestselling Dead-End Job series. Like her amateur detective, Helen Hawthorne, Elaine actu
More about Elaine Viets...

Other Books in the Series

A Dead-End Job Mystery (1 - 10 of 15 books)
  • Shop Till You Drop (Dead-End Job Mystery, #1)
  • Murder Between the Covers (Dead-End Job Mystery, #2)
  • Dying to Call You (Dead-End Job Mystery, #3)
  • Just Murdered (Dead-End Job Mystery, #4)
  • Murder Unleashed (Dead-End Job Mystery, #5)
  • Murder with Reservations (Dead-End Job Mystery, #6)
  • Clubbed to Death (Dead-End Job Mystery, #7)
  • Killer Cuts (Dead-End Job Mystery, #8)
  • Pumped for Murder (Dead-End Job Mystery, #10)
  • Final Sail (Dead-End Job Mystery, #11)

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