Trouble in Mudbug Audible Audiobook – Unabridged
Scientist Maryse Robicheaux thought that a lot of her problems had gone away with her mother-in-law's death. The woman was rude, pushy, manipulative and used her considerable wealth to run herd over the entire town of Mudbug, Louisiana.
Unfortunately, death doesn't slow down Helena one bit.
DEA Agent Luc LeJeune is wondering what his undercover assignment investigating the sexy scientist has gotten him into - especially as it seems someone wants her dead. Keeping his secrets while protecting Maryse proves to be easier than fighting his attraction for the brainy beauty.
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|Listening Length||9 hours and 20 minutes|
|Whispersync for Voice||Ready|
|Audible.com Release Date||July 15, 2014|
|Best Sellers Rank|| #11,014 in Audible Books & Originals (See Top 100 in Audible Books & Originals) |
#115 in Humorous Fiction & Satire
#257 in Women Sleuth Mysteries
#583 in Humorous Fiction
Top reviews from the United States
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But this book is different, and it is the first time in reading one of these books where I've said at the end, "I think I want to read the next one in this series, even if it costs me money." :)
It is fast, funny, and well-plotted. Because of its style (sardonic & witty) it is full of colorful characters, and it's set in an unusual or exotic location where there is beauty and danger mixed--the bayous of Louisiana.
Our protagonist is having a very bad day when the book opens, and it does not improve when she sees something at a funeral that almost scares her to death. So she faints.
The plot simply thickens from that point on, with multiple twists and surprises, falsely supportive people who are trying to see her eliminated, and subtle, unseen supporters who were there the whole time mostly silently rooting for her, but sometimes stepping out in the open to protect and defend her.
Of course there's a romance involved, too, and there are emotional highs and lows. And there's a surprise of a huge payoff as well as the crushing of some dreams, but ultimately, this is a story that is fun and wicked and enjoyable.
Mostly the book is well written and well edited. There are two instances of "revert back." (Hint: Dear writers, "revert" means "to turn back." "Revert back" means to just turn in a circle and continue. Please don't do this.) But I did not encounter other common errors I see in modern books, such as hyphenating an "ly" adverb. (The "-ly" of the adverb takes the place of a hyphen, so "slowly-rising temperature" is the equivalent of adding a hyphen (-ly) and then adding another. Which is not necessary.)
Now as to rating: I would have given this five stars because I so thoroughly enjoyed the book, and loved the pace kept me wanting more—so much so that, as I said, I want to buy the next book in the series. And I probably will!
But this gets four stars because as the book neared its end, it became so much more talky. Yes, of course given the characters of the people in this book, talkiness itself isn't unusual. These people are lively and emotional and like to spew their thoughts. But when characters are explaining the plot or explaining their motives, a book becomes a book report. Please don't do this, writers.
The other major flaw is that one of the characters who is represented in the book as a fool ends up having this very detailed, self-aware conversation that, given the character arc and story, just comes out from left field. Given this character's history and their actions, even in moments of crisis, led to utter disbelief when they shared some of their thoughts. I cannot imagine someone with that depth of self-awareness to be able to say and to the very foolish things they were doing <i>throughout the book</i>.
These faults did not ruin the story. I still enjoyed the book based upon the strength of the characters and the wonderfully witty plot. And almost all the writing is executed professionally. It was just the wrap up felt like everyone was in a hurry to get the book finished and published, and while both the writer and editor felt there were some problems with how to end the story, the decision to simply have the characters speak the plot and their part in it was disappointing.
Am I still going to buy the next in the series? Yes! I enjoyed the book. I think the writing is very good. I want to know more about these banana-pants people and their antics.
I recommend the book, and hope that when you read it you enjoy it as much as I did.
Trouble in Mudbug is the first book in the "Ghost-in-Law Series" by Jana DeLeon. The adorable cover first caught my eye. The covers for all three books are cute, but the premise of the book sounded interesting as well. It reminded me of Ann Everett's "Laid Out and Candle Lit," which I loved, so I was willing to give this book a try. For those who enjoy Ann Everett and Janet Evanovich, you'll probably be entertained by this one.
It's not nearly as funny as Everett or Evanovich, but it did have me chuckling when Maryse finds herself completely unable to ignore Helena's ghost and ends up making statements like, "I never wear underwear!" There is also a lot of humor between the two main characters as far as the romance goes. DeLeon did a good job of playing Maryse and Luc off one another. Helena was by far the funniest part of the book. Her wardrobe challenges provide humor in just the right places, and her antagonistic nature frequently riles Maryse up to the point of something going badly wrong.
Given that this is a mystery romance, I expected both to play a big part, and I wasn't disappointed for the most part. The romance between Maryse and Luc is engaging and steamy. Maryse is determined not to give him the time of day, practically throwing herself at another man to accomplish it, and Luc is supposed to stay focused on his work, not Maryse's curves. DeLeon kept the tension up throughout the book pretty well. There was one sex scene that I wouldn't let my teenage nieces read, but that was the only part like that.
As for the mystery, it was interesting. I didn't feel like it was incredibly gripping, and at times I thought the clues were not terribly subtle. I correctly guessed who the killer was two-thirds of the way through the book. I was still entertained by the twisty path DeLeon took the mystery down before revealing the answers, but the mystery behind Helena's actions was more entertaining to me than the murder mystery in some ways. Throughout the book you get hints that even though Helena was the worst mother-in-law on the planet, she had reasons for at least some of her vileness. I enjoyed learning more about why she did what she did quite a bit.
Thinking of the book as a whole, it was a fun read. It was made me laugh, had a good romance, and was filled to the brim with memorable characters. I'm not running off to buy the next book, but I am planning to read books two and three. They were entertaining and fun, and DeLeon's writing ability leaves nothing to complain about. I look forward to getting the rest of the details about what's going on in Mudbug, especially figuring out who really did kill Helena.
Top reviews from other countries
January is always such a long, cold and dark month, I wanted something easy and comical to read so I chose this one, I have started another series by Jana Deleon so I know I find her style amusing but light reading.
Maryse finds herself confronted with her horrible mother in laws ghost, asking for her help in solving her unfinished business. Maryse wants no part of it, considering she was trying to get away from her husbands debts.
I was immediately drawn into this easy going and cosy read. The story is easy to follow and nothing too complicated but enjoyable and caught my attention really well too. It made me chuckle to realise the tarot shop is called ‘Read ‘em and Reap’ 🤣
This was an enjoyable and sweet read, with a feel good ending.
The problem I had with this is that it doesn't seem to know what genre to belong to. The vast majority of the story is a lighthearted supernatural crime mystery. There's a pinch of romance thrown in too for good measure, and then suddenly blam! A scene of detailed erotica that wouldn't have been out of place in a certain monochromatically-titled book. Fortunately it was only one scene, and took just over two pages, but I did not see it coming and it rather detracted from where the story was going.
The end of the story felt slightly rushed; a shame considering the nice pacing throughout the earlier part of the book. Almost all the loose-ends were nicely tied up at the end, leaving a nice little sequel-hook. This was done sufficiently well enough that I was satisfied by conclusion presented, and could happily leave it at that without downloading #2.
The characters were likeable - even the unlikeable ones - and the basic concept was intriguing and didn't disappoint. If I had any problem with the character development it was with the slightly unnecessarily detailed back-stories that felt a bit crow-barred in at the end.
So it's a bit of a hodge-podge. But an entertaining and enjoyable hodge-podge. I'm looking forward to reading the next one, with the potential to buy if the gamble pays off.
Maryse attends her Not so nice mother-in-law's funeral and is surprised to see Helena rising out of her coffin. Initially depicted as a very bitchy and not so nice person Helena comes to be a better ghost than she was a person. Evidently she cannot "die" yet as there is something still to be taken care of i.e. Her murder. Maryse is astonished to learn that she has been left something by Helena in her will that may put her life at stake. Of course there is the hunk too...Luc who initially is there to investigate Maryse but finds himself helping her when someone is trying to kill her.
Some of the questions raised in this book are not answered so to find out who killed Helena we do have to read book 2 and I suspect book 3 too.