Cover image for Mrs. Million
Mrs. Million
Hautman, Pete, 1952-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Simon & Schuster, [1999]

Physical Description:
280 pages ; 25 cm
Format :


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Material Type
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Item Holds
X Adult Fiction Central Closed Stacks
X Adult Fiction Open Shelf

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Everybody loves somebody sometime. Everybody falls in love somehow. But when you mix love with a million dollars, somebody's going to get hurt.

Barbaraannette Quinn loved her husband, Bobby, right up until the day he got in his Jeep, left their home in Cold Rock, Minnesota, and never returned. She's waited six years for him either to turn up dead or walk through her door with a crooked smile and a pocketful of lies.

Everything changes when Barbaraannette wins the lottery.

Bobby Quinn is alive, well, and watching TV when Barbaraannette suddenly appears on-screen waving a snapshot of him and offering a million dollars to anyone who can find her runaway husband and drag him back to Cold Rock. Bobby and his girlfriend, Phlox, decide that she will turn him in, collect the million bucks, and then they'll both hightail it back to Arizona to live happily ever after.

Unfortunately, everybody wants a piece of Bobby -- including a pair of hulking good ole boys, who figure Bobby owes them, and a sociopathic pretty-boy fresh out of St. Cloud Correctional, who notices that Barbaraannette's offer doesn't require that Bobby arrive al

Reviews 2

Publisher's Weekly Review

In a Minnesota peopled by Salem-smoking, cake-baking women and their disappointing, truant men, Hautman's faded rose Barbaraannette kills time and stakes her hopes on daily Powerball. The dumbest thing that Barbaraannette ever did was to marry her two-timing high school sweetheart Bobby Quinn‘but the second dumbest is to offer up a hefty chunk of the $9-million lotto jackpot she's just won as a reward for his safe return. Missing for six years, having left only a broken-down Jeep and some abandoned fishing gear in his wake, Bobby Quinn has changed his name to Steele and is shacked up in Tucson with an untrustworthy ladyfriend named Phlox. When Barbaraannette's ship comes in, the couple see an opportunity for an easy swindle. They're not alone in this: friends of Bobby's whom he once gypped, professional crooks, extortionists and leeches of all kinds circle in on Barbaraannette's cash. And Barbaraannette 's protective sisters and senile mother will all butt in to protect her from herself. Hautman (Short Money) brings these eccentrics to life in a swift-paced, none-too-serious but colorful story with lots of entertainment potential. (Mar. ) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

Ever wonder what a person would do for a million dollars? Barbarannette Quinn finds out in spades when she wins over $80 million in the Minnesota lottery and announces on Eyewitness News that she is offering a cool million for the safe return of her husband, Robert, who left six years earlier on a fishing trip from which he never returned. This announcement inspires as unrepentant a group of kooks as ever ran rampant through a Minnesota snow bank. Besides every Cadillac dealer in Minnesota (and two from Wisconsin), there's the young con artist who writes letters to celebrities soliciting money, the local college professor who gets a taste of murder and likes it, and Robert's current girlfriend, who says she'd give up oxygen for a million dollars. Barbarannette's travails make a riotous story of good luck, bad timing, and redemption in the best tradition of Donald Westlake. Hautman is also the author of Ring Game (LJ 10/1/97) and Mortal Nuts (LJ 5/1/96). Highly recommended.ÄThomas L. Kilpatrick, Southern Illinois Univ. Lib., Carbondale (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.



Chapter One When Barbaraannette Quinn heard the Powerball numbers come over the radio she was busy decorating a Cowboy Cake for her niece, spelling out "Brittany" in pink script beneath a peanut-butter-frosting rendering of a cowboy hat. She was giving this cake her all because she could still remember her own seventh birthday party. Her mother had served Hostess chocolate cupcakes with the little corkscrew of icing on top. No candles. Her birthday present that year had been a Star Trek metal lunchbox. She still had it. According to Schroeder's Antiques Price Guide, it was worth more than five hundred dollars, but what she remembered most was that she had not gotten a real birthday cake. Barbaraannette did not know how her niece had become interested in cowboys. Possibly some old Bonanza rerun off the satellite dish. She hoped the girl would outgrow them. Cowboys were trouble. But this year Britty would get her cake, a three-layer devil's food covered with dark brown chocolate frosting and topped with a peanut butter cowboy hat and her name in pink frosting, all surrounded by a peanut butter frosting lasso. Barbaraannette would have drawn a horse, too, but she did not think her artistic skills were up to it. When she heard the Powerball numbers coming over the radio -- 2, 4, 10, 19, 29, and 16 -- she stopped moving for several seconds, then took a breath and fitted a fluted nozzle onto her cake decorator and applied a pink scalloped ridge around the base of the cake. It wasn't an authentic cowboy touch, but she had a lot of frosting left and besides, in addition to cowboys, Brittany adored all things pink. The lottery numbers were interesting because 10-29, 2-19, and 4-16 were the birthdays of relatives, specifically, those of her sister Toagie, their mother, Hilde, and Toagie's daughter, Brittany. They were especially interesting because Barbaraannette always based her weekly Powerball numbers on family birthdays. But with two sisters, two nieces, and a nephew, she could not for the life of her remember whose birthdays she had chosen for her most recent ticket. Barbaraannette set aside the cake decorator and regarded her work. Using the handle of a teaspoon, she touched up a stray glob of pink frosting. Brittany probably would not have noticed the tiny flaw, but there was no point in doing half a job. The Powerball ticket she had purchased last Sunday at the Pump-n-Munch waited in the purse hanging from the knob on the kitchen door, not six feet from her elbow. Barbaraannette was powerfully curious to have a look at that ticket, but she took a few more minutes to press seventeen tiny cinnamon hearts into the band of the peanut butter cowboy hat. She knew that if she looked at that ticket now, and it was a winner, her hands would be shaking so hard she would never be able to finish decorating that cake. She placed the hearts carefully, spreading them out nice and even. Britty loved little cinnamon hearts. After positioning the final heart, Barbaraannette washed her hands, then placed a clear plastic cake protector over her creation. She lifted her purse from the doorknob and fished the lottery ticket from the inside pocket. Before reading the numbers, she took one last look at the Cowboy Cake. Britty was going to love it. Copyright © 1999 by Pete Hautman Excerpted from Mrs. Million by Pete Hautman All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.