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The Staggerford Murders and Nancy Clancy's Nephew
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The Staggerford Murders and Nancy Clancy's Nephew

3.38  ·  Rating details ·  124 Ratings  ·  23 Reviews
Filled with his trademark humor and warmth, Jon Hassler’s The Staggerford Murders and The Life and Death of Nancy Clancy’s Nephew offer a welcome return to the town that has captivated readers for years.In The Staggerford Murders, residents of the Ransford Hotel "solve" the nine- year-old murder of esteemed Staggerford citizen Neddy Nichols and the disappearance of his wid ...more
Paperback, 208 pages
Published November 30th 2004 by Plume
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Jun 10, 2017 rated it did not like it
What the hell did I just waste my time reading!? The first story was ridiculous & poorly written, while the second story was entertaining for a while, but the ending was appalling, and altogether, this book was an entire waste of time and energy. Awful.
Mark Oppenlander
Nov 13, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery
Jon Hassler has long been one of my favorite authors. This book, actually two novellas, was written late in Hassler's career and just a few years before his death. It is definitely not his best work, but I would contend still worth the read as it's short and entertaining.

The first novella, "The Staggerford Murders," feels like an experiment. The story is told from the POV of several different characters as they uncover a string of events from a number of years before to solve not one, but two mu
Jan 05, 2017 rated it liked it
The book contains two novellas for the price of one.
"The Staggerford Murders" is a silly story about the murder of the director of the Staggerford Chamber of Commerce and, somewhat later, the disappearance of his widow. The events are told nine years later in the words of several characters as unsolved mysteries are solved. I don't think the storytelling methods works very well in this case.
"The Life and Death of Nancy Clancy's Nephew" is the story of an old man who likes to run. Not much happen
Jan 12, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: 8-09, fiction, mystery
This book is two novellas in the place of one. I thought this was okay. The first story deals with two seven year old cold case murders of a couple. I thought this story was a bit better than the second, which deals with some major players in their own POV. I gave this one a three, since this is a mystery. The second deals with a resident, aging beyond his year to visit his aunt, and showcases his life and then in the end, his death. I gave this one a two for this literary fiction/fiction story. ...more
Aug 05, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: contemporary
Hassler is what is called a regional writer. his books mostly take place in small-town Minnesota. I discovered him through my mother, a small-town MN girl until my Naval officer father lured her away to the bigger world. I have read most of Hassler's other books and have been enchanted with the simple straghtforwardness of the people in his stories. This book was actually 2 novellas - the titular one and "The Life and Death of Nancy Clancy's Nephew." The first one was just two quirky for me; the ...more
Jun 05, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction
After my first reading, I wrote, "Not as complex or interesting as Hassler's earlier novels."

After a second reading, the two novellas in this book seem more perceptive than I thought 8 years ago. It may be that I have read about and experienced enough more life situations to be more charitable toward characters like Grover and W.D. It could be that I was in a more receptive mood. In any case, I needed a short book after American Elsewhere's 600+ pages and this book turned out to be an excellent
Jan 20, 2008 rated it liked it
Two short books. I read The Staggerford Murders, only. I have read the other Staggerford novels and found this at the library. I didn't recognize any of the characters. The story held my interest, but just barely.
A couple of unrelated novellas--they both take place in the same part of Minnesota. No Agatha in either of these; and Hassler strangely reincarnates a hotel he tore down in a previous book. Liked it better than The Staggerford Flood .
Jo Marie
Aug 04, 2010 rated it it was ok
This is actually two very different novellas. Not sure why they're published as one book. Anyway, I didn't like either one very much. The first one is just too silly, and the second "The life and death of Nancy Clancy's nephew" was more interesting but still not very good.
Jul 31, 2010 rated it liked it
Two novellas with very different tones. The first one reminds me of comic Eudora Welty. The second is more in the rather melancholic tone of the other Hassler novels--perhaps even more so. I liked the Staggerford Flood perfectly fine.
Jan 14, 2010 rated it liked it
When I'm looking for something light but not empty, I often turn to Jon Hassler. This novel (which is actually 2 novellas) has been just that. I can't wait to make myself a cup of tea, curl up on the couch, and finish this one tonight.
Apr 04, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Well, okay, I didn't read it. After 15 miserable pages, I couldn't justify the time. Maybe if I had a rural background and was interested in a "say it the way they do" book, I could get to page 16 and beyond. No Hassler for me -- ever.
Nov 29, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Two stories, the first very funny, the second kind of dull.
Dec 10, 2008 rated it liked it
Very easy read
Feb 13, 2011 rated it liked it
Two quick, short reads. Being a native Minnesotans myself, I can relate to many of these characters and know people who are just like them.
Jul 31, 2008 rated it liked it
Two short stories, I found "The Staggerford Murders" not to my taste, but enjoyed Nancy Clancy's Nephew a great deal. I think this Hassler binge is done.
Jill A.
Jan 17, 2016 rated it liked it
pretty darn funny
Apr 29, 2011 rated it it was ok
My 1st Hassler, I doubt there will be a 2nd
Aug 20, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Wholesome, comforting, cozy, interesting,, typically Hassler.
Feb 19, 2009 rated it liked it
a quirky book,2 short stories, ok i guess
Mar 10, 2011 rated it it was ok
Jon Hassler is one of my favorites but this book was so - so. Hassler's Staggerford, Simon's Night and A Green Journey are very good. I would recommend them without reservation.
Apr 10, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: book-club-books
I used to love Jon Hassler books but I must have outgrown them :-( I was really really disappointed.
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Jon Hassler was born in Minneapolis, but spent his formative years in the small Minnesota towns of Staples and Plainview, where he graduated from high school. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree in English from St. John's University in 1955. While teaching English at three different Minnesota high schools, he received his Master of Arts degree in English from the University of North Dakota in ...more
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