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Die Tote Von Harvard (A Kate Fansler Mystery #6)

3.48  ·  Rating details ·  594 Ratings  ·  43 Reviews
Translation = Death in a Tenured Position
Published (first published 1981)
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Julie Ehlers
Talking, talking, talking. So much talking. So many characters saying so many things as wordily as humanly possible. Don't get me wrong, they were usually talking about interesting things, and I don't mind a lot of talking in novels in general. But mystery novels should have more action than talking, and this one was about 90 percent talking, 10 percent action. This is the fourth Amanda Cross mystery I've read but, I believe, the earliest one I've read in terms of when she wrote them. Now I'm wo ...more
Jan 29, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: genre-mystery
I am not certain what I think about this. I did not enjoy it very much.

I liked the points of view on feminism, from Janet who thinks it is all nonsense and doesn't believe sexism exists, to the women's separatist commune, to Moon whom if we met him now would seem rather sexist (although if he continued to develop he might have become a respectable feminist ally), to Kate herself who looks at all these shades thoughtfully and considers them in their contexts.

But I thought the mystery itself (view
Aug 28, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read all the Amanda Cross mysteries a long time ago. I really enjoyed them, particularly for whatever author or issue she was examining in the course of the mystery. I seem to have run into a fair amount of people who find them wanting in some way, but I didn't. I also really like the nonfiction she wrote under her real name, Carolyn Heilbrun.
Ben Loory
Jun 23, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really enjoyed this. Smart, literate, full of feeling, and written at a high level of polish. The actual mystery isn't much of a mystery. But, whatever, we carry on.
Oct 29, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I read this book as part of a book group. We were charged with reading something fictional "about academia," and in fairness, the conversation we had as a result of reading the novel was quite strong, especially in considering how the role of women in academia has changed (or not changed) in the intervening 40 years between when the book is set and now. We also laughed a lot, too, because it's really a dreadfully, awfully written book.

Every single character is a type. The protagonist, Kate, is a
Sep 10, 2008 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I adore Carolyn Heilbrun, so I thought I'd love this mystery under her pseudonym. This one drags through every preposterous murder scenario it's possible for the human mind to invent, and then settles on the least interesting.

Maybe I blame it for reminding me how dreary sexism was in the 70s -- or how little editing used to be employed. Either way, I'll try reading at least one more Amanda Cross (hopefully, one with a more straightforward murder) before I give up.
Aug 11, 2009 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
And some people in our book club didn't like Sayers' "Gaudy Night"! I found this very difficult to finish. Very wordy. Kind of preachy about the women's lib issues (quite boring--written in 1981, but living in a slightly earlier time) I simply could not warm up to any of the characters, and didn't even care if the 'victim' had been murdered or not! Not much to like here...
Mar 23, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The last of the three Amanda Cross books I've been given to read. I liked this one the least, though I still enjoyed reading it. I think another thing that I enjoy about her books are the unusual, eccentric characters one meets. In this book Harvard is almost the villain! Lots of women's issues in it.
This mystery really captured realities about universities and how faculty behave and function together with an historical period (when women were breaking into the professorate in Ivy League Universities in the 1970's).
Elizabeth Sulzby
I was so looking forward to a mystery by Carolyn Heilbrun and especially one about academia, Harvard, and the women's movement. But this one is a real drag. It supposedly is in the late 70's/early 80's but reads like the 50's. I start grad school at Harvard in the 60's and got my first academic job (Northwestern University) in the 70's and moved to U of Michigan in the 80's. All of my experiences predated the way this book is written.

Calling another woman a "libber" and talking about "frying and
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A psuedonym of Carolyn G. Heilbrun.

Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name. See this thread for more information.
More about Amanda Cross...

Other Books in the Series

A Kate Fansler Mystery (1 - 10 of 14 books)
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  • The James Joyce Murder (A Kate Fansler Mystery #2)
  • Poetic Justice (A Kate Fansler Mystery #3)
  • The Theban Mysteries (A Kate Fansler Mystery #4)
  • The Question of Max (A Kate Fansler Mystery #5)
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  • No Word from Winifred (A Kate Fansler Mystery #8)
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