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Book Review: The Square Root of Murder by Ada Madison


When a copy of this book arrived in June of 2011, it immediately found it's way onto the shelf, as did the following installments. Math and I are not friends and whenever I saw them mocking me, I knew eventually I would have to read the series.

This is the story of Dr. Sophie Knowles, a math instructor at Henley College, an all girls college in Massachusetts.

Sophie has launched a new math class during summer school and she's regretting it since there's a heatwave and a murder to solve.

Dr. Keith Appleton isn't one of the most favored instructors on campus and during the celebration party for Hal Bartholomew receiving his doctoral degree, the department's intern/assistant, Rachel Wheeler discovers the body but doesn't report it. She tells everyone that she took some cake and a soda to his office, but claims that since he didn't answer her knocks she left it in the hall.

When Keith's body is reported by the janitor, Rachel becomes the prime suspect because there are yellow sheets of paper crumbled in his office with her name and scathing comments on them. She tells the authorities that Keith wouldn't review a paper on yellow paper and her alibi for leaving the cake falls apart since the police didn't find any cake in his office.

It was no secret that she and Keith didn't get along, but, she's also been accused of having an affair with Hal.

Sophie has a feeling that a group of girls, known as the Big Three may have something to do with Keith's murder since they were all doing poorly in his class.

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Although it took me longer than usual to read this installment, it does refer math (and if you're like me, you may panic) but overall, it is an entertaining read. I'm not going to say that there are parts which are slow, but there are spurts when it does get going.

I was able to predict who the killer was early on, but I did have my doubts as to the identity.

In the future installments, the school will be allowing boys so I can almost see what hijinks are in store.

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