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VINE VOICEon May 25, 2009
STORY BRIEF:
Flynn is 29 years old with no direction in life. She has had a variety of short term jobs, but has never really learned or achieved anything. She has no passion for anything. Her father Richard is a wealthy real estate developer. They inherited a hotel from Flynn's great aunt Esther who recently died. Richard asks Flynn to go to the hotel to be a presence, while he finds a buyer and negotiates a sale. She knows nothing about hotel management or accounting. She is reluctant to go because the hotel is in a rural area, and she doesn't like nature or bugs. She prefers the city. While there, Flynn is bothered by frequent visits from Esther's ghost.

Jake is a former cop who is currently working as a bartender at the hotel. He and Flynn are attracted to each other. They end up solving some suspicious deaths and money embezzlements. Along the way Flynn discovers she cares about the people and the hotel and wants to stay and run the hotel rather than sell it.

REVIEWER'S OPINION:
This was an ok story, but it didn't hold my interest as well as other books have. I had no major problem with it other than I wasn't drawn into the characters as much as I would have liked. It's hard to say what was wrong other than it wasn't a good fit for me. I loved the sequel "Wish You Were Here."

DATA:
Story length: 309 pages. Swearing language: strong. Sexual language: none. Number of sex scenes: 1, 4 pages long. Setting: current day Boston, Mass. and Scheintown, NY. Copyright: 2007. Genre: romantic fantasy mystery with some suspense.

OTHER BOOKS:
For a list of my reviews of other Lani Diane Rich books, see my 4.5 star review of "Wish You Were Here" posted 11/2/08.
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on October 19, 2007
What happens when you're almost thirty and have difficulties maintaining a steady job and a steady relationship?

If you're Flynn Daly, you find yourself presented with an offer you can't refuse. Tired of worrying about Flynn's safety, love life and diminishing bank account, Flynn's family schedules an intervention. She joins the family hospitality business and is sent to the Goodhouse Arms inn. The inn belonged to her great-aunt. Now that Aunt Esther is dead, Flynn's job is to keep the staff calm until her father finds a buyer for the inn.

Jake Tucker was a cop until a key piece of evidence in a high-profile case he was working on went missing. He's now a bartender at the inn. Mercy, his sister and the inn's chef, is hoping that he'll move on with his life. But is it a coincidence that Gordon Chase offered to buy the inn just before Aunt Esther died? And is there a connection between Chase and the missing evidence?

Flynn's job is to keep the staff calm but she finds herself drawn to the inn and the friendly people. She also finds herself sharing her room with the ghost of great-aunt Esther. Jake finds that his first impression of a spoiled rich girl is wrong. There is something about Flynn that he finds irresistible. Has Flynn finally found a job and a guy that she can commit to?

Crazy In Love is a sweet, fun book. The plot keeps moving, there's plenty of laugh-out-loud moments and likeable characters. Flynn and Jake are people you'd want to be friends with. The sibling relationships were also a lot of fun. Flynn and Jake have great relationships with their older sisters. Freya and Mercy are convinced that they know what's best for their younger siblings. Mix in embezzlement, unsolved crime and some CWIL (Crazy Women In Love, an acronym that I love!), and you're in for a treat.

Armchair Interviews says this blend of mystery and romance is very satisfying read!
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VINE VOICEon March 4, 2008
At the urging of her sister, ne'er-do-well Flynn leaves her dilapidated South Boston apartment to run an inn passed down by their great Aunt Esther in upstate New York. She soon encounters a host of eccentric townspeople, most employed at her inn. While she fights her attraction to sexy bartender Jake and the inevitable questions about whether her family plans to sell the inn, she avoids responsibility and decision making at all costs. Oh and she has to dodge crotchety Aunt Esther's ghost, particularly after moving her collection of kitschy cow creamers. Jake draws her into an investigation of town real estate shark Gordon Chase who wanted the inn so bad he might have killed for it. When Flynn loses her heart to the inn and Jake, will she be able to convince her dad to give her the responsibility she needs to grow up?

Rich has an incredible talent for coming up with funny plots and unleashing her wit and wry observations on readers. Her leads sizzle off the page; Flynn's sister Freya is a hysterical bundle of tension; and Aunt Esther is one funny ghost. I don't think I've laughed quite as hard as I did when Flynn developed a gastro-intestinal disorder while making out with Gordon. It was a funny read from cover to cover. My only criticism is that there was often too much going on and sometimes too much can be... well, ... too much. But with a great catchphrase like CWIL (crazy woman in love), you can't find too much fault with the story! I have yet to read a bad novel penned by Rich - other stand outs include "Maybe Baby" and "The Fortune Quilt."
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on January 14, 2015
Lani Rich hit another home run with this one. Loved Flynn and Jake, heroine and hero. Yep they had chemistry all right. Loved the plotting in this one. From the beginning to end I couldn't wait to read the next page. Not going to replay the story. Just tell you I would recommend and you should plan to do some non stop reading. I especially enjoyed the Inn and the descriptions of the place. I kept thinking I could see this young couple living there and running the business like a bed and breakfast. Just happy they got all the murders and shooting out of the way so they could settle down happily and run that adorable Inn. Keep up the good work Lani!

Barbara A. Whittington, author
Vada Faith
Ezra and other stories
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on June 26, 2008
Overall, I enjoyed this book. I liked Flynn and Jake and thought they had amazing chemistry. I also liked Dead Aunt Esther and her ceramic cow obsession and the mystery surrounding her death. This book was well written and the dialog was great.

My favorite thing was that Finn wasn't super successful or incredibly wealthy but trying to find herself and her purpose. I liked that. I liked that she had jobs that weren't glamorous too.

The only thing I didn't enjoy about this book was the ending because it confused me. The whole embezzlement scheme was never fleshed out enough for the ending to really add anything. A sum up would be better. And why, for the love of god, did they steal Mercy's saucier?
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on June 26, 2014
What happens if you are Flynn. Well you might just take a job with your father while you are in between jobs. She is supposed to handle the sale of her aunt's hotel but finds so much more in a matter of days. She is haunted by her aunt's ghost, is attracted to an attractive man and stumbles into a bit of embezzlement as well. Can she sort everything that is going on? And is she becoming more then attached to the hotel and employees. And did her aunt really only die of old age? This was as entertaining as the other books I have read by this author.
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on March 9, 2008
I honestly have trouble remembering what this book was about. It has nothing to do with my memory and everything to do with the fact that Rich has shoved half a dozen different plot senarios into a tiny paperback with characters that are far from memorable.

It starts with a "change your life" ultimatum, then you think it's going to be about the ne'er do well daughter making something of herself ... but she never really gets into the business of being in charge, then there's a ghost whose presence is only logical in the sense that it throws the heroine into a romance, then the espionage, followed by the psyco chick trying to kill the heroine. All in less than 340 pages. Needless to say none of the senarios work themselves out to any kind of satisfying story with a good solid conclusion.

Okay, maybe the romance follows through. Maybe. It's not satisfying but it is an ending.

And what about the ghost? We never find out if the ghost ever makes her way to the big bright light in the sky or if she haunts the heroine for eternity just because she can't find a pop-tart.
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VINE VOICEon April 26, 2014
I downloaded this book for free, I believe, and it was worth every penny! I plan to find more from this author. I like her style.

Flynn Daly's sister and father scheme to try to mold Flynn into a responsible young adult like her sister Freya. Flynn has bounced from one meaningless job to another and they think it's time she joined the family business. They send her to visit an historic hotel property run by a recently departed aunt to size up the place and tell the workers they are closing it down. The first person Flynn meets is the sexy, charming, former-cop bartender, Tucker. It's not exactly love at first sight, but they are soon entangled in a mystery that has them spending a lot of time together. Flynn quickly becomes attached to the hotel staff and realizes the hotel has a lot of potential, if only she can convince her father of that.

I loved Tucker and his close-knit family of four sisters and mother. Flynn, too, was very likable. She's spunky and fun and someone who has more to offer than her family has ever given her credit for.

This book has everything - romance, comedy, mystery, adventure, and a touch of the supernatural. It all makes for a fun story that I really enjoyed.
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VINE VOICEon July 31, 2013
Flynn Daly is a 30 year old single woman from a wealthy family who doesn't know what she wants to be when she grows up. Tired of the way Flynn drifts aimlessly from job to job, her father sends her to upstate New York to manage an Inn that's been in the (distant) family for years. Once she arrives in NY Flynn meets Jake Tucker, former cop and current bartender. You know what happens next (this is, after all, a Romance).

Wow, I feel cranky for giving this 3 stars since I usually really enjoy this author's work. There were parts of this book that I did like. The dialog is quick, polished and very humorous. The characters were off-beat and original. Overall it worked as a Comedy, but Romance? Perhaps not so much.

Flynn, Flynn, Flynn. This woman drove me crazy; she was just too ditzy for words. It's one thing to have no experience running an Inn, but Flynn couldn't seem to grasp even the concept of a quarterly report. Thank God her family has money, because left to her own devices she'd surely starve to death. Her one and only coping mechanism was to get falling down drunk. She also appeared to have misplaced her backbone, as she lets her family tell her what to do and when to do it. She seemed more like a college freshman (and an exceptionally immature one at that).

So Jake falls for Flynn (rather unconvincingly) and the two have a cringe-worthy sexual encounter that seemed rather pointless to me. Then there's a kind of a subplot about missing money and crazy stalkerish women that I felt never really got off the ground.

Here's my last gripe (then I swear I'll wrap this up). I usually think of the name "Flynn" as being a guy's name. But hey, it's kind of a cute name for the heroine. Flynn calls Jake "Tucker", though other people refer to him as "Jake". I had to stop and remind myself who was who - Flynn/Tucker/Jake - had I stumbled into a Lora Leigh novel?

So while this is not my favorite Lani Diane Rich story, it's not a bad book. She's a good writer but something about these characters just didn't gel for me.

There's some swearing and some sexual content, though I didn't think the sex scene was particularly explicit.
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on August 10, 2013
Wow, what can I say? I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. It was so unexpected. I thought I was getting a romantic comedy, but I ended up with so much more! This book had it all...drama, action, suspense, oh and romance and comedy. It was witty and very well written and I can't wait to read other books by Lani. I highly recommend this book to anyone that wants a good read.
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