In 1914 collisions between motor cars and horse-drawn carriages are an everyday occurrence on the streets of Paterson, New Jersey. But when an out-of-control driver smashes into a buggy driven by Constance, Norma, and Fleurette Kopp, their lives change forever. Constance, the oldest, demands payment for the damages but quickly realizes that she is dealing with a madman - Henry Kaufman, a silk manufacturer with a drinking problem and a dangerous group of associates.
Soon the Kopp home is under siege. The sisters face threats of arson, kidnapping, and white slavery. Bricks come flying through their windows, and shots are fired at their house late at night. Even the sheriff can't solve the case on his own. He issues revolvers to the Kopp sisters, posts guards at their house, and enlists Constance's help in catching Kaufman. In the process Constance finds herself pulled into an underworld of abused factory workers, missing children, and dirty dealings.
Her attempts to help another woman in trouble forces her to confront her own past and imagine a different future for herself and her sisters. Before the collision, she was just a bored 35-year-old woman living at home with her sisters in the New Jersey countryside, stuck in a life she didn't want but couldn't escape. But the minute Constance is issued a gun, she finds her calling.
Set against the backdrop of the famous Paterson Silk Strike and based on actual events, Girl Waits with Gun is the first in a series of novels based on the real life adventures of Constance, Norma, and Fleurette Kopp. Drawing on extensive research into newspaper reports, courthouse files, genealogical archives, and letters, this intriguing story remains true to the historical record.
©2015 Amy Stewart (P)2015 Recorded Books
"Christina Moore is simply spectacular narrating Amy Stewart's story of one of the country's first female deputies.... Stewart is telling a fascinating story, and Moore makes listening an immersive experience." (AudioFile)
I don't review every book--only books I feel strongly about--hence the many 4-5 star vs 1-2 star reviews. Just my opinions--hope they help.
I loved this book because of the detailed depiction of life in 1914. Amy Stewart is known for her highly researched nonfiction books. Now she has turned this finely developed skill towards fleshing out the adventures of a group of sisters living in New Jersey. Lucky for us!
This book is so well written and captures these eccentric, individual, quirky, stand up for themselves women perfectly. The narration was excellent.
Be aware that while the characters engage and jump off the page--coming vividly to life as the story progresses--the pace of the book matches the era. Horse and buggy rather than high speed action. For me, this wasn't a problem. I liked hearing about day to day life on the farm and nearby town. To me, this was a delightful window back to another lifetime in history. However, if you prefer fast paced action and high tension storytelling you might find this charming book a bit too tame.
I did not realize when I started reading that this is the first book in a planned series. It's a good thing since I'm hooked and look forward to future books. Recommended if you like living history that might just make you smile.
I love to read books set in interesting places or historical settings. I especially love mysteries and thrillers.
I enjoyed this historical novel very much. The story was interesting from the beginning and there was no lag during the entire story. Amy Stewart did a great job of building the different characters of the three sheltered Kopp sisters living together in the country. As with all sisters that are so different yet love each other, they are a hoot and I smiled or laughed several times during their interactions with each other. The sisters encounter a very distressing event in their lives and the men involved make it much worse than it should have been. My favorite character, Sheriff Heath, was the right person in the right place to protect them while efforts for justice move forward.
Who would love this book? People who love "lightweight" history with good characters and descriptions of life in 1914-15 in Paterson & Hackensack, NJ. It sounds like a YA story at times. If you have listened to several "intense" stories, this is a good transition before your next strong listen. The narrator did a good job with all the different voices, especially the sisters. I will look for more books from Amy Stewart.
I picked this book up for two reasons:
1. I love to hear this narrator.
2. It was a $3.95 daily deal, or some such inexpensive treat.
then, it sat in my library for months, unread, because the cover & description just never seemed to grab me like other books did. Finally, one night when I couldn't sleep, I decided to try "the boring looking book," thinking it would help me to nod off.
Boy, was I wrong!
this book was a delightful read, and kept me up more than one night, wanting to know what came next! I hope the author will continue to entertain us with the adventures of Miss Copp!
From the reviews, I was sure this was going to be a pleasure to listen to. I am obviously in the minority, but I am having trouble finishing it! I hate to use the word "boring", but really, it is. I don't care about the characters. The narrator is at times cloying, at times, strident, and over-articulates so much that there is no naturalness to her reading. Again, I am in the minority, but I can't wait until it's over! Sorry...
I missed this one on a Giveaway, but was able to pick it up on a Whispersync sale later. When I started it, I realized that I had read it when it was hot and new from the public library. Didn't syop me from enjoying a reread though.
Well researched history fictionalized to educate the rest of us. Constance was a real trailblazer for women not suited to the restraints ordinarily placed on a single woman in 1914 in the USA. The tale is told clearly and fluidity of a city woman with business interests who defended herself and her sisters against an influential madman and became one of the first women to be deputized.
I really enjoyed it! Both times!
I now have it on audio as well, and Christina Moore did really fine work as narrator.
The author has done something clever here. She took a minor true crime story that was all over the papers in 1915 and built on it to create the confined world of three very different but each very strong-willed Kopp sisters. There are no major plot twists and turns, little violence, and only some subtle surprises, but it was the charm of the characters that kept me listening. I searched the New York Times and identified articles about the Kopps from as late as the 1920s. The last article refers to their work as private detectives; more fodder for the author for future stories. Overall, the book is pretty light, but I give kudos to the narrator who was very well "cast" as the central character and oldest sister, Constance. Her intonation is that of a practical and fearless woman who is careful with the irony and always emotionally restrained - perfect traits for a fledgling detective.
Say something about yourself!
This book is great. Action at a decent pace. Narrator is good. It is easy to differentiate voices. The author does a very good job of keeping historical detail accurate. Waiting for next book. You won't regret the purchase or credit use.
I am an avid eclectic reader.
This is Amy Stewart’s first novel. She won awards for her non-fiction books. Stewart states this is the first book in a new series. What triggered me to purchase the book was that it was based on a true story. It is based on Constance Kopp one of America’s first female deputy Sheriffs. Stewart states she researched newspaper articles and court documents and was originally going to write it as a non-fiction book, but was unable to obtain enough information so changed the story to historical fiction to fill in all the gaps.
The story takes place in 1914. The Kopp sisters were riding in their horse drawn buggy on a New Jersey road when they were hit by a car driven by Henry Kaufman, a wealthy factory owner and possible mob boss. Constance Kopp demanded Kaufman pay $50 for damages to their carriage. Kaufman refused and threatened bodily harm; then he sets upon a reign of terror against the sisters including shooting at them and threaten to sell them into white slavery.
The story is the tale of a woman who refuses to be bullied by a man in the age when women had no legal rights. Stewart was careful to chronicle the social restriction placed on women in the timeframe prior to World War One. The story is well written and moves at the pace of the times the story is placed. I am looking forward to more stories about Constance Kopp. I enjoyed reading this book; I could hardly put it down to get the chores done. Christina Moore narrated the book.
Audible has changed my life! Dry , itchy eyes were destroying one of my greatest pleasures - reading. Now I am experiencing books again!
A review of "Girl Waits with Gun" in The New York Times led me to this excellent listen. The author has cleverly expanded a real case from 1914/15 New Jersey into a cracking good historical mystery featuring some terrific characters.
The three sisters Kopp reside without a male protector on their isolated New Jersey farm. The true incident upon which this story is based involved an accident between their horse and buggy and the "newfangled" automobile owned and driven by a local factory owner of dubious reputation. Although clearly at fault, this man and his thugs initiated a plot of harassment and intimidation against the Kopps.
This would surely have been a traumatic event for these sheltered women, and Amy Stewart has given the tale life by creating an involving story and three distinct personalities for the sisters. The eldest (and our chief heroine) is Constance, a tall, intelligent woman approaching middle age who feels constrained in her cooking/cleaning/gardening existence. Norma is unsociable and blunt in manner, content with their quiet and uneventful lives. Fleurette, the pampered and adored much-younger sister, is a pretty, irrepressible, and naive 16 year-old.
The individual reactions these ladies have to their new and frightening situation make for a rousing tale laced with action and humor. I enjoyed the writing very much but must also give considerable credit to the narrator Christina Moore. She makes the Kopp sisters - and all the other characters with which they come into contact - absolutely irresistible.
I look forward to the next tale about Constance and her sisters!
This story of Constance Kopp had me wrapped up in it from start to finish. Part thriller, part detective story, and part bildungsroman. I love character building stories, but if you frequently complain about slow narratives, this one isn't for you. Christina Moore was absolute perfection as narrator. She really added something special to the story.
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