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Blanche Among the Talented Tenth: 02/09/23
Blanche Among the Talented Tenth by Barbara Neely and Lisa Reneé Pitts (Narrator) (1994) is the second of Blanche White mystery series. Blanche has traveled to Amber Cove, Maine, to watch her children and their friends while the parents of their friends travel. Although she knew this resort town was elitist, she is still shocked at how divided and color struck it is.
Dealing with the many ways the residents divide themselves from everyone else would have been frustrating enough but Blanche finds herself in the middle of not one, but two murders. The first was made to look like an accident and the second made to look like a suicide. But Blanche knows people and she can see that neither scenario adds up. While she would prefer to leave the sleuthing to someone else, no one else seems willing to.
By themselves the two murders are very straightforward. Their posed scenarios read like scenes from a pair of Columbo episodes with Blanche in the place of the lieutenant. What fills out this novel, then, is the lengthy discussions on race, class, white supremacy and how it affects the Black community (beyond the obvious ways), self esteem, and other social issues.
The third book is Blanche Cleans Up (1998)