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The fixer upper
Mary Kay Andrews
Adult Fiction ANDREWS

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From Publishers' Weekly:

Andrews's latest Southern charmer begins with junior lobbyist Dempsey Jo Killebrew in the crosshairs of a political bribery investigation. Suddenly unemployed and the victim of a sleazy smear campaign by her former boss, Dempsey decides to take up her father's offer of flipping a recently inherited family home in Guthrie, Ga. As it turns out, the house needs much more than a fresh coat of paint, and Dempsey's ornery cousin and her dog are squatting there. So it is that the formerly glamorous Dempsey steps into her dead uncle's overalls and chips her manicured nails as she scrubs and sands her way through fixing up the house, quickly finding a renovation groove, fitting in with the locals and embarking on a romance. Meanwhile, the FBI and a pesky reporter come asking questions about the bribery accusations. This authentic tale of cleaning up life's messes and self-discovery is bright, engaging and thoughtful, enlivened by Andrews's quirky characters and lovely backwoods setting. (July) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

From Library Journal:

Arriving just in time for summer beach reading is the most entertaining novel yet from Andrews (Deep Dish). Washington, DC, insider Dempsey Jo Killebrew is surprisingly clueless about her lobbyist boss's less than ethical behavior, even after she finds herself unceremoniously fired and licking her wounds in Guthrie, GA. There she reluctantly undertakes a project of restoring a dilapidated house that her father had recently inherited, hoping to sell it for a profit. Not surprisingly, this project is full of problems. The house's elderly resident isn't one bit anxious to move out, but luckily the charming if eccentric townsfolk include a pretty darn handsome local lawyer who comes to Dempsey's defense when it looks as if she might be in just as much trouble as her backstabbing former boss. Add a couple of FBI agents, a meddling mother, and a dog named Shorty, and readers will find themselves eagerly turning pages to find out how the situation resolves itself. Verdict Fans of Jennifer Crusie or Susan Elizabeth Phillips will find this a delightful addition to the genre of slightly wacky romance stories. [See Prepub Alert, LJ 3/15/09.]-Margaret Hanes, Warren P.L., MI (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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main characters Dempsey Jo Killebrew
Worked in a high-powered public relations firm until her boss was caught in a political scandal; reluctantly accepted her father's offer to help renovate a Victorian mansion he recently inherited; dealing with a distant relative who refuses to move out of the mansion claiming squatter's rights.

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