When I read the very first Calamity Jayne book I wasn’t too impressed, but I saw real potential for both character and author growth. I decided I was eager to read the next book. With both the second and third books in the series I was very pleased to see that the author’s writing was improving, and Calamity Jayne wasn’t quite as bumbling a character, and seemed to be getting her act together.
The newest release is Calamity Jayne Goes to College, and unfortunately the old Jayne seems to be back. She’s more self-absorbed and seems not to care who she upsets in her quest for her own self-improvement.
To aid that quest she has decided to take a college journalism course. Her effort as it appears to be in her various part time jobs, is only half hearted and when it comes time to submit a topic for a major investigative article which will determine a big part of her course grade, she charms the professor into an extension of time to submit the topic.
Her cousin Frankie who appeared in a previous book along with his fiancée Dixie are also taking a college class. Their class is in criminology and when they tell Jayne that there appears to be a campus crime wave based on one professor’s lecture Jayne sees her topic and a chance to advance her personal goals.
From here things go from bad to worse. Again Jayne becomes a bumbling detective who gets into more trouble than she seems willing to admit to. As I read it seemed to me that Jayne didn’t much care for the confines of the law, or the feelings of the people she’s supposed to be closest too.
As I previously said I wasn’t that impressed with book one of this series, but I had come to really enjoy Jayne’s growth, and the tension as she was trying to decide which of the two men in her life she was truly leaning towards. In Calamity Jayne Goes to College the fun was gone, and the humor seemed a bit forced. With the turning of the last page I was left with a lot of loose ends that set up the sequel, which could be satisfying, but I was hoping for a bit more.
Sad to say Calamity Jayne Goes to College wasn’t a book that touched me on an emotional level. I will read the next in the series, and hope for the fun and enjoyment level of books two and three in this series.