It’s beginning to look like out next holiday mystery!
A Farewell to Yarns (Jane Jeffry #2) by Jill Churchill
Thoughts Before Reading:
It has been a while since we have reviewed a Jane Jeffry book. Let’s give a little background. Jane Jeffry is a widow with two sons, one daughter, a dog, and a cat. She lives in suburbia as housewife…er housemom? I’m not sure what the correct term would be. Anyways, her husband was head of the family company and she receives enough that she doesn’t have to worry about work but can focus on her children. In the previous book she was caught up in mystery when her cleaning lady was killed…only to turn out that the murderer killed the wrong woman.
As you might have guessed, all the books in the series are reworking of famous films/literature. This one is of A Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway.
Christmas is coming and Jane is extremely stressed out. Not only does she have to deal with the usual end of the year Christmas/Winter recitals and parties for her children, she is in charge of the Church Christmas Bazaar, and has to finish an afghan in only a few days.
She doesn’t need anything else to add to it, but what do you know? That’s life. It turns out Phyllis Wagner, Jane’s old friend, has finally decided to take her up on one of her halfhearted invitations to visit. Jane doesn’t really want her to visit but is stuck.
Shelley drives her to pick Phyllis up from the airport, to give Jane time to knit her blanket, and she gets the shock of her life. Phyllis has arrived with her son! A son? When did she have a child?
It turns out that when Phyllis was in high school she ran off with a classmate and got married. The parents tracked them down and paid for an annulment, but Phyllis discovered afterwards that she was pregnant.
Her parents not wanting the child and Phyllis not believing she could take care of it, went to stay with an aunt, had the baby, and put it up for adoption. Afterwards she met Chet and married the much older, divorced father of two; them living in the same apartments as Jane and her husband.
Phyllis and Chet couldn’t have any children, and after a terrible near death experience, Phyllis revealed her secret. Chet searched for her son and found him, Bobby.
Bobby came to live on the island Chet set up as home and soon became a bad note in the symphony of their lives. Bobby is a major jerk, but Phyllis dotes in him and fulfills his every whim as she feels guilty for giving him up and sad about missing everything from his early life.
Pretty soon Chet couldn’t stand another second with him and gave the ultimatum, him or Bobby. Phyllis choose Bobby and headed back to the States to visit Jane and find a place to live.
Jane is shocked about what has happened, and upset with Phyllis and Bobby. She happily leaves her home to go to Fiona Divine’s house, the widow of the famous and deceased singer Richie Divine, the one hosting the bazaar. Phyllis wants to come too and after they discuss details, Fiona relays that the house next door is for sale.
Phyllis is extremely interested and Fiona forces her second husband, Albert, to take Phyllis on a tour. By the time Jane and Phyllis head home; Phyllis is renting the house and in the process of buying it, has had one of Chet’s people purchase everything needed, and packed up all her belongings to send them to the house; vacating Jane’s home.
Jane finds this unbelievable, but is thrilled to have the house back to the family only.
The next day, Jane receives a call from Fiona that the police are at Phyllis’ new home. Jane rushes right over and into her sometimes date/interested party Detective Mel VanDyne of the homicide division. Yes, it turns out that Phyllis was murdered.
All Jane wants to do is stay out of this, but finds herself caught up in the case. Will she figure out who the killer is before they strike again?
Thoughts After Reading:
I did not like this book at all.
Jane was horrible and cruel to her friend; making fun of her so much that it was a terrible read. Why did she hate her so much? The was never really revealed.
The mystery’s solution was so obvious as well. As soon as the character entered the picture and Phyllis gave her backstory it was so easy to figure out and boring!
I can’t believe that Grime and Punishment was so good, and this book was an incredible stinker. It does not bode well for the next book.
For more Jane Jeffry mysteries, go to Grime and Punishment
For more Christmas mysteries, go to The Undoing of Saint Silvanus
For more mystery reviews, go to The Lesson