Carlton “Coop” Cooper, (a widower recently retired from the railroad and facing a life of grinding boredom) agrees to become the typist at his church when Violet Crenshaw announces that she plans to move to Los Angeles soon. In doing so, he sets in motion a chain of events which completely discombobulates his life and that of the small northeastern Iowa town in which he lives. Set in the fictional town of Bathington, Iowa (1952), The Temporary Typist features a colorful cast of characters including the preacher, the limerick-spouting town drunk, and the formidable Mrs. Clarice Broughton, in charge of just about everything, including the upcoming centennial.
When a socialite from Chicago appears in Bathington with a team of three young adults in tow (including “Alice,” a Chinese martial arts expert), offering to set up a “Publications Ministry,” Coop gladly steps down from his typist duties. But not all is as it seems. They’re publishing more than church bulletins. Quickly Coop is in the middle of an imbroglio that threatens public humiliation. With its fast pace, riveting storylines and provocative discussions, the story comes to its exciting conclusion, not in Bathington, but in a Chicago cemetery. The Temporary Typist, set in another era, speaks to us in our own time.
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