PurplyCookie's Reviews > Social Crimes

Social Crimes by Jane Stanton Hitchcock
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's review
Apr 13, 2009

really liked it
bookshelves: chick-lit, mystery-fiction
Read from January 03 to 07, 2011 — I own a copy , read count: 1

"I vowed that no matter what it took, or what I had to do, or how long I had to wait: I would get my revenge."

How does Hitchcock's amusing saga differ from the scads of books involving money, murder and high society? There's the economy and wit of her prose and then there's Jo's awareness of how silly the upper crust is ("if you're nice and you lose all your money, you're out. But if you're a sh-t with a private plane, you're in").

Playing on the tried and true theme of the older wife being dumped for the young miss, Hitchcock offers a funny, lightweight tale. Jo is living the life: she's married to a billionaire, owns a sumptuous apartment in Manhattan, a rambling home in the Hamptons and a magnificent collection of 18th-century art. Things are just perfect until pretty young thing Monique de Passy enters her world (seemingly as a friend), Jo's husband dies, and Jo learns that he's left his estate to none other than the charming French countess.

Exiled from the kingdom of money, power, and privilege, Jo struggles to rebuild her life only to find herself thwarted at every turn by the countess. From working as a Park Avenue interior decorator to selling "wholesale carpets and hotel furnishings on Lexington and 26th Street," Jo quickly slides down the social ladder until she hits rock bottom.

What follows and constitutes the bulk of the book is Jo's attempt to frame Monique as a seductress and murderer. Jo concocts an audacious scheme of fraud and murder. Her approach is, for the most part, honorable. Can she pull it off?

All things considered, I do recommend this book for the simple fact that I understood why Jo did what she did and was even hoping she would succeed even though I didn't really like her all that much. It is a good book for people who want something but haven't really considered what it costs.

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Book Details:

Title Social Crimes: A Novel
Author Jane Stanton Hitchcock
Reviewed By Purplycookie

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04/15/2009 page 33
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