Author: Ann B. Ross
Publisher: Viking Books, 2008
My Rating: C-
One of the people who works at the library, not my favorite librarian, handed me this book. She said, “This book is wildly popular among the older ladies.” That was my first clue. I thought I read only books I picked myself. I don’t like being classified as someone who only reads the “wildly popular” books. I’m sure you can figure out my reaction to the “older ladies” comment. Who wants to be lumped in that category. However, I took the audiobook home anyway.
As it turns out Miss Julia Paints the Town is the ninth novel in a series of fourteen “Miss Julia” books. Miss Julia is a wealthy widow, now remarried, living in a small town in the south. She seems to know everything that is going on in town and feels the need to meddle as well.
The story opens with Miss Julia learning that several husbands are missing, one of them an investment manager she has given money to. At the same time she learns there is a developer in town who wants to raze the old courthouse and build condominiums for wealthy outsiders.
Miss Julia handles each of her friends, the wives whose husbands have disappeared. Frankly, this is where the story turned me off. The women were all so ditzy I was embarrased for them. In my long life I’ve never known women like this. They are stereotypical brainless females. I finished the book but I didn’t like the people I was spending time with.
Part of what I didn’t like was the voice of Miss Julia in my ears. The audiobook was read by XX. Her version of Miss Julia was often snippy, sarcastic and rude. It’s a shame because the plot itself wasn’t bad. As you can imagine, I won’t be reading any more of Miss Julia’s adventures. And, hopefully, no one else in the future will convince me to read something “wildly popular among older ladies.”