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Blanche on the Lam (Blanche White, #1) de…

Blanche on the Lam (Blanche White, #1) (original: 1992; edição: 2014)

de Barbara Neely

Séries: Blanche White (1)

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4011648,306 (3.46)20
In the first of the Blanche White mystery series, the witty and determined Blanche finds herself unexpectedly embroiled in a case of hidden family secrets, untold riches and suspicious deaths.
Título:Blanche on the Lam (Blanche White, #1)
Autores:Barbara Neely
Informação:Brash Books, Kindle Edition, 304 pages
Coleções:Sua biblioteca

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Blanche on the Lam de Barbara Neely (1992)


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Mostrando 1-5 de 16 (seguinte | mostrar todas)
Blanche White is a special kind of sassy woman; not your average maid. When we first meet her in Farleigh, North Carolina, she is waiting to go to jail; convicted of writing bad checks. This is her second offense so she knows the judge is going to throw the book at her: thirty days in jail if only to set an example. When she unexpectedly finds an opportunity to slip away from the bailiff, she takes it quiet as you please. Just slips out the back door of the courthouse.
Through a series of misunderstandings Blanche ends up working as "the help" for an upper class white family: Everette, Grace, Mumsfield, and Aunt Emmeline. Luckily, Blanche has her wicked humor and uncanny intuition because from the moment she starts working for the family, she can tell something is wrong with all of them except mentally challenged Mumsfield. It wasn't just from eavesdropping on Everett's conversation with the sheriff, despite the sheriff’s death the very next day. It wasn’t from observing the odd behavior of alcoholic and seemingly senile Aunt Emmeline, who never leaves her room. It wasn’t from the gardener who perishes in an “accidental” house fire. It was from watching and talking with Mumsfield. From the moment they met Blanche had a special connection to the boy; he was always on her radar whether she liked it or not.
Blanche on the Lam, while humorous also carries the stark reality of sexism, racism and prejudice. Neely deftly weaves these sobering themes through an otherwise funny plot. ( )
1 vote SeriousGrace | Feb 18, 2021 |
this became a little more far-fetched to me by the end, and so dropped off a bit. but otherwise, i thought this was mostly really great. i loved the character's voice and the way she spoke about race and white people. it felt very much like i was hearing both how black people often feel like they need to speak to white people, and then what they actually want to say or how they actually feel. there's a lot of stuff about race and class woven very nicely into this book. that's not what this book is about or anything, but it's all throughout and is a nice addition to the mystery itself. i thought the writing was really good, as well. the mystery ended up being something different than what i thought it was going to be, which was fun.

my only real quibble is that i suspect that disability advocates would probably have something to say about how she wrote mumsfield's character. he's sort of the savant and his disability is what saves him as a white person in blanche's eyes. he's meant to be a positive character, but i doubt he would go over well in disability circles.

still, i really liked this and thought it was well done. i would absolutely read her again.

"A lot of what they owned really belonged to people like her, who were grossly and routinely underpaid, and to those who worked in the factories and mills and made the money for the big boys."

"This is how we've survived in this country all this time, by knowing when to act like we believe what we've been told and when to act like we know what we know."

"She lugged the vacuum and a bucket holding a feather duster, furniture polish, chamois, sponge, spray cleaner, and a long-handled brush up the back stairs. She had no intention of using all of these items, but it looked good to have them." ( )
  overlycriticalelisa | Sep 15, 2020 |
I enjoyed reading this debut novel about an African American woman working as a domestic servant while hiding from the authorities. Blanche was funny and likeable, but she also did not shy from the realities of how society treats people who look like her. I especially like her relationship with Mumsfield, a member of the household where she works. Mumsfield is a young man with Mosaicism (similar to Downs Syndrome) and Blanche can relate to him because he is often treated like his is invisible or less because of his condition just like Blanche is because of the color of her skin. The mystery wasn't too hard to figure out, but how Blanche figures it all out is fun to read. I definitely want to spend more time getting to know Blanche, I will definitely continue the series. ( )
  Cora-R | May 20, 2019 |
When four of her employers go out of town without paying her or informing her, sassy domestic worker, Blanche White, is forced to write a few bad checks that land her in hot water. She might be headed off to prison. Fortunately, a commotion surrounding an unfortunate event involving the county commissioner enables Blanche to make her escape from the courthouse without notice. What will she do? Where will she go? She finds herself in the home of a wealthy family, disguised as a former worker. Blanche figures she can make some money in the meantime before she’s found out and then move on with her life. But she’s chosen the wrong house to get lost in. Things are not what they appear to be in the household. So when two murders happen within her short stay at this hideout home, Blanche will need her quick wits to get away safe, and to uncover who did away with her newfound friend.
This book immediately drew me in. It was creative right from the start, which hooked me. And then Blanche’s personality, which mimicked some women I’ve encountered in real life and in the movies, entertained me. How can I explain her character? 🤔 It was a little like a mix of Octavia Spencer’s character, Minnie, from The Help, and Madea from one of Tyler Perry’s movies. 😂 One of my favorite characters was Mumsfield, a mentally challenged man with a big heart, a love of cars, and an instant attachment to and wholesome affection for Blanche. Mumsfield, although autistic, was very keen in many ways, and there was just so much to love about him.
I would not characterize this book as a cozy mystery because it contains some mature themes and serious subject matter; material that’s best suited for adult readers. It was not the comedic mystery that I thought it would be based on the cover. The setting was the Deep South, and if you are particularly sensitive about outspokenness regarding racial inequalities and prejudice, I’d think twice before picking up this one. Blanche can be a bit saucy with her tongue, and other characters are not shy about expressing their feelings about minorities. Nonetheless, the mystery aspect was top-notch, and I was both impressed and surprised by the outcome.
The audible narrator’s performance given by Lisa Reneé Pitts was outstanding!! She imitates male and female voices, dialects and accents with ease. As the villain, her maniacal laugh was priceless. I look forward to listening to other books she’s narrated.
Thank you, Tantor Audio, for a complimentary audio download of Blanche on the Lam. All opinions expressed about it are my own. ( )
  Lauigl | Mar 19, 2019 |
blanche is a great character, and i enjoyed this book! though the novel came out in 1992, the social and racial issues touched on are still important and relevant today. i look forward to continuing this series. ( )
  JooniperD | Feb 14, 2017 |
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In the first of the Blanche White mystery series, the witty and determined Blanche finds herself unexpectedly embroiled in a case of hidden family secrets, untold riches and suspicious deaths.

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