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Expected Release Date: May 30, 2011 (Available Now!)
Publisher: Self Published
Imprint: N/A
Author’s Website:
My Source for This Book: Gift from the author
Part of a Series: Yes, Book 1, Addison Holmes series
Series Best Read In Order: N/A
Steam Level: Steamy

Official Blurb:

My name is Addison Holmes, and I teach history at James Madison High School in Whiskey Bayou, Georgia. You might be under the assumption that my life went to the dogs when my fiancé left me at the altar for the home economics teacher, or when I got notice that my apartment building was going to be condemned, or even when I was desperate enough to strip to my unmentionables to earn some extra cash so I could buy a house. The truth is that I’m pretty much used to disasters following me around on a daily basis, but I could have gone without finding my principal dead in the parking lot of a seedy gentlemen’s club.

After the initial shock of finding my first dead body, which included throwing back shots of Jack Daniels like it was water, I decided to take stock of my life. I was in a desperate situation and if the school board ever found out I’d been a stripper, even a bad stripper, I’d be jobless as well as fiancé-less and homeless. Fortunately, I had a friend who felt sorry enough for me to give me a job doing some surveillance work at her detective agency. And it didn’t bother me one bit that it was the equivalent of a pity fuck. Money is money, and I was about to be homeless. Not to mention the fact that I was now able to stick my nose into other people’s business for a good cause, find a murderer and pick up helpful tips from an incredibly attractive detective.

Come check out my story and be thankful your life is relatively normal.

Okay, this book is hysterical. It’s a true comedy of errors. Poor Addison is a high school history teacher with an incredibly awesome (and expensive) car, a penchant for ice cream, and a horrible run of bad luck. Having been left at the altar by her scumbag fiance, who was of course busted banging her bimbo arch-nemesis (also the home-economics teacher from the same school she teaches at), and living in an apartment about to be condemned, she doesn’t currently have the funds to buy the adorable house of her dreams. Having made a bargain with the local sleezebag banker to have the money to him in 60 days, she’s desperate for money.

Enter her ill-fated — and incredibly short-lived — career as a stripper.  Not only does she have absolutely zero talent for stripping, but she spies her Assistant Principal from school in the audience. Immediately after her only dance, her career as a stripper is over, and grateful to make her escape and put this horrible day behind her, she literally trips over a dead body in the parking lot of the strip club.

Unfortunately for Addison, things are rarely simple, and the body she stumbled over belongs to the same Assistant Principal who minutes ago was getting a lap-dance from another dancer and taking lewd photos of Addison during her performance.

Enter police hottie detective, Nick Dempsey.  Immediately at odds with Addison, both feel an intense pull of attraction. However, neither lets that small fact get in the way of their animosity, and soon it seems that Addison can’t decide whether she wants to rip Nick’s clothes off and have her dirty, dirty way with him, or clobber him over the head with whatever heavy object happens to be handy. Or maybe both.

When Addison’s best friend, Kate, who also happens to be a private detective, takes pity on Addison and agrees to hire her to do some surveillance for her agency in exchange for $100 a day.  Addison jumps at the chance, but she’s not exactly the most circumspect woman in town, and while she does get some good results, her methods are unorthodox to say the least…

What Worked For Me:

  • If Addison didn’t have bad luck, she’d have none at all. She is constantly bumbling into bad situations, injuring herself in one way or another, and generally making a muck of things.  She’s ditzy, sure, but I actually liked that about her. Having grown up in a small town myself, I can attest to the fact that just because someone’s a high school teacher, that doesn’t automatically mean they have more sense than G-d gave a turnip.
  • I really enjoy Addison’s penchant for nice things despite her minuscule budget. Her tendency to use convoluted logic to justify expensive purchases earned a chuckle each time because I know so many people who do the same thing.  There’s also her deep and abiding love for Dairy Queen, which of course I can appreciate as well.
  • Oh man Nick is HOT! *fans self* And the chemistry between him and Addison is wonderful, especially with all the animosity they hold towards each other.
  • At first, I wasn’t sure if I would like Addison’s mother because of her guilt trips and so forth, but I have to say events towards the end definitely changed my mind about her. Without giving anything away, she was definitely more than a stuffy old mom and I loved that.
  • I literally LOL’d at the results from Addison’s confrontation with Veronica 😉
  • The mystery itself was actually pretty good. I was surprised at the end to find out the identity of the killer, and even though I wanted to smack Addison by that point, it was still a very exciting ending.

What Didn’t Work For Me:

  • Nick and Addison never actually do the nasty. There was an incredible amount of UST and even some second-base-about-to-steal-home action, and when there wasn’t any sort of consummation to their relationship, I admit I was a bit disappointed.  To be completely fair, I think this book would be better categorized as “Comedic Chick Lit Mystery” than a straight up “Romance”, so I’m not horribly upset that their relationship was never taken to the next level.
  • Some readers may be frustrated by the idiotic decisions Addison makes.  She’s being stalked by someone who obviously knows her connection to a murder, and yet doesn’t think to mention this to her Private Detective best friend, or to the cop who is investigating the case?  There are other examples as well of several Too Stupid To Live moments that Addison partakes in over the course of the novel, and while I personally enjoyed her stupidity, I think some readers might be put off by the extent of her moronic ways at times.

Overall, I loved it. A perfect summer read, this is lighthearted and funny, while still possessing a pretty well executed (no pun intended) murder mystery.  While Nick and Addison never go all the way, I think romance readers will still enjoy all the UST, the transformation from enemies to partners, and the delicious moments where it looks as though these two crazy kids might actually score.

While Addison does have a tendency to have quite a few Too Stupid To Live moments, the sheer amusement gained by reading her escapades is enough, in my opinion, to make it worth reading.

4/5 Stars