* Miss Julia’s Marvelous Makeover by Ann Ross

I have a vague memory of one of the earlier books in this series that featured the Miss Julia of the title as a spunky, self-deprecating, middle-aged Southern belle turned detective, with generous amounts of irony thrown in for a delightful, light effect. Alas, in Miss Julia’s Marvelous Makeover, Miss Julia seems to have hardened into a spoiled, helpless, arrogant, class-ist, snobbish, patronizing, egotistic, shallow, self-satisfied version of a Southern belle who thinks she is an example to all mankind but looks down on anyone who does not wear proper makeup and focuses her good deeds on a few sycophants who will sing her praises and do her dirty work, literally and figuratively, as a thank-you for her past largess. All irony is gone and she is now seriously obnoxious.

Her newly-acquired husband displays apparently inexhaustible patience with her and I hope he wins the election he is fighting for. That would give him more time, perhaps, in Raleigh, away from the shrew…

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