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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Didn't want to put it down!
This book almost made me late for Mass, something which Ellie Haskell would probably have understood. How could I have possibly torn myself away with a mere 25 pages remaining although time was running out? I didn't and I am unrepentant. Karisma, the male cover model of the title, is a hilarious spoof of Fabio. (Neither is the man of MY dreams, but I am repulsed...
Published on 27 Aug 1998

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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Another dud
Still reeling from the sheer awfullness of 'How to Murder Your Mother-In-Law', I thought I must give Dorothy Cannell one more chance. So many people seem to like her books, I thought, there must be something about them, I'll try once more.

Well, if anything 'How to Murder the Man of Your Dreams' is even worse than the earlier book, if such a thing is...
Published on 14 Nov 2007 by L O'connor


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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Didn't want to put it down!, 27 Aug 1998
By A Customer
This review is from: How to Murder the Man of Your Dreams (Mass Market Paperback)
This book almost made me late for Mass, something which Ellie Haskell would probably have understood. How could I have possibly torn myself away with a mere 25 pages remaining although time was running out? I didn't and I am unrepentant. Karisma, the male cover model of the title, is a hilarious spoof of Fabio. (Neither is the man of MY dreams, but I am repulsed by any man who looks as if he could snap my bones like twigs.) I loved the snatches of imaginary romance novels. They reminded me of the Barbara Cartlands and Harlequins I read when I was a teen, but these were much funnier. I think the late Georgette Heyer would have enjoyed them, too -- she was so good at skewering the excesses of the genre. The rest of the book is the sort of fun I've come to expect from this series. There are so many twists and odd coincidences that I don't feel bad for coming to the same spectacularly wrong conclusion that Ellie did. Can't leave this review without expressing my appreciation for the author's double nod to Joan Hess when she announced that Zinnia Parrish would be writing a sequel to a book by the late Azalea Twilight [see Hess's *Strangled Prose*]. Oh, and I mustn't forget to rave about the cover! It's a pity that Amazon.com shows you only the front cover because the back cover is even better! It's delightful! It's inspired! I had to laugh! Thank you! Ann E. Nichols
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Another dud, 14 Nov 2007
By 
L O'connor (richmond, surrey United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: How to Murder the Man of Your Dreams (Mass Market Paperback)
Still reeling from the sheer awfullness of 'How to Murder Your Mother-In-Law', I thought I must give Dorothy Cannell one more chance. So many people seem to like her books, I thought, there must be something about them, I'll try once more.

Well, if anything 'How to Murder the Man of Your Dreams' is even worse than the earlier book, if such a thing is possible.

An incredibly silly plot involves a cover-model for romance novels visiting the village where the heroine, Ellie Haskell, lives. There is an array of grotesque and absurd characters. There is the elderly lady who was jilted by her bridegroom sixty years previously and never goes out by daylight(you could just about swallow it in Dickens, but in a 20th century whodunnit? come on). Since the book was published in 1994, that presumes she was to be married in 1934. So why, then, is she described as wearing 'a pre-WWI bonnet'? Unless, of course Dorothy Cannell doesn't know the difference between WWI and WW2, which wouldn't greatly surprise me.

Then there is Greta, the German home help hired by Ellie haskell because she has been thrown out by her husband, who has fallen in love with another man (evidently, in Cannell country, women have no property rights).

Probably silliest of all is the lady who fled in horror on her wedding night thirty years before when the facts of life were revealed to her by her bridegroom. "It was a different era then" as Ellie Haskell solemly observes. Yes indeed it was, the sixties, and from what I remember of them, ignorance about the facts of life was not a chracteristic of the decade.

Three sudden deaths occur int he village before it dawns on the bird-brained Haskell woman that they might be suspicious. For most of the book she is too busy drooling over her husband to take any notice of whatis going on around her. The detecting, such as it is,as in the previous book, is crammed into the last twenty pages or so.

I have read many detective novels that are not my cup of tea for one reason or another. But I accept that other people like them. Live and let live. In the case of Dorothy Cannell though, i consider her books to be so abysmally bad that I truly cannot understand how ANY murder mystery fan could possibly like them.
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2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Insipid, derivative, and NOT A MYSTERY!!, 12 Mar 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: How to Murder the Man of Your Dreams (Mass Market Paperback)
<<AVOID THIS THING LIKE AMOEBIC DYSENTERY>>
I finished this "novel" feeling as though I had slogged through fifteen miles of day-glo swamp. It smacks of a sequel written under contract by an author who needed to make payments on a car. The "delightfully quirky" characters and the "kooky" goings-on were so unimaginative, relentless, repetitive and uninspired that I only finished the wretched thing so that I could review it in good faith and forget about it.
Devoid of wit, style and substance, it succeeds neither as a puffy comedy or an arch "woman's" novel. (And in its moronic way an insult to the romance community) Obviously intended for people with IQs lower than their shoe sizes.
And to raise the question that irked me for 200 of it's pages: why is this ATROCITY classified as crime fiction or a MYSTERY? The only crime that occurs takes place in the last 50 pages of mess. Instead we are treated to a relentlessly neurotic romance-fanatic (with an irrationally devoted husband) who remains at the same pitch for the duration. If a man had written this, he would be decried as misogynistic. Not only does it fail as a mystery, it is about as suspenseful as a pedicure. Tedious isn't the word: think gum-surgery. About as funny as a metastatic mammogram.
Ms. Cannell's prose reads like something dreamed up by a marketing department: a horrifying hybrid of hack romance novelist and armchair sleuth intended to encourage cross-over readers between the genres... Leaving us with this dismal, stitched together, seeping-seams-and-bolts-exposed mess of a fictive Frankenstein with which to prop up a dresser. A "book" not to be read lightly but to be hurled with great force into the furthest furnace. Abysmal.
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How to Murder the Man of Your Dreams
How to Murder the Man of Your Dreams by D. Cannell (Mass Market Paperback - 1 Jan 1920)
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