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A Dead Red Oleander (The Dead Red Mystery series) [Kindle Edition]

RP Dahlke
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (212 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $12.95
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Chump Change
Private investigator Leo Waterman thought he had seen it all, until he finds himself in killer's torture chamber. Find out what happens in Chump Change.

Book Description

"Janet Evanovich meets aero-ag pilots." Emily Anderson for The Kindle Book Review
When a late in the season emergency forces Lalla Bains to accept a greenhorn ag pilot for her dad's cropdusting business, she sighs in relief. After all, he comes highly recommended, his physical is spotless, and with a name like Dewey Treat, what could possibly go wrong?
Then her quirky relatives arrive from Texas and things go south in a hurry: Dewey Treat drops dead, his tearful widow claims he was murdered, clobbers Sherriff Caleb Stone with his own gun, and makes a run for it. Lalla, convinced the widow is innocent, sets out to prove it—against the express wishes of fiancé Caleb Stone.
Feds, local law, suspicious ag-pilots, nutso relatives, and her daddy's new sidekick, Bruce the goat, make life a living hell for Lalla. Will her nosey nature solve the crime and save the day? Or put them all in mortal danger?

"A compelling mystery coupled with quirky characters gifts the reader with a humorous tale that makes a delightful read. I was pleased to find that this was one of a series of which I will surely read more." Justakid, Amazon 5 star review

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

I sort of fell into the job of running a crop-dusting business when my dad decided he’d rather go on a cruise than take another season of lazy pilots, missing flaggers, testy farmers and horrific hours. After two years at the helm, I handed him back the keys and fled to a city without any of the above. And no, I was never a crop-duster. I write about a tall, blond and beautiful ex-model turned crop-duster who, to quote Lalla Bains, says: “I’ve been married so many times they oughta revoke my license.” I wanted to give readers a peek at the not so-perfect -life of a beautiful blond. Lalla Bains is no Danielle Steele character, she’s not afraid of chipping her manicure. Scratch that, the girl doesn’t have time for a manicure what with herding a bunch of recalcitrant pilots and juggling work orders just to keep her father’s flagging business alive.

Product Details

  • File Size: 343 KB
  • Print Length: 266 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1478269960
  • Publisher: Dead Bear Publishing; 3rd in the Dead Red Mystery series edition (June 10, 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B008ALR6GC
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #44,476 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
53 of 55 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars New Lalla Bains Mystery Is a Winner! June 21, 2012
By JoAnn
Format:Kindle Edition
In this witty, fun mystery we meet up with Lalla Bains as she's coming to after being knocked out cold and shackled to a truck parked in a cotton field. What? Lalla's got a wedding to go to (her own), a perky blond cousin who's desperate to be Mrs. Anybody, a well-heeled Texan great-aunt who drives Lalla's dad to taking up with a goat, and a crop-dusting business she's trying to wind down for the season--maybe forever. The just-hired pilot in Lalla's crop-dusting company falls over dead at their annual end-of-season barbeque. His wife had given him an oleander stick to roast a hotdog. Was she trying to kill him? His death incites a series of events that sends Lalla racing up and down the Central Valley in California searching for the hit man who's knocking off people who know too much. Dahlke's wit and humor will have you laughing out loud. Her characters are quirky and memorable in this third installment in her popular "A Dead Red" mystery series.
So, fasten your seat belt, because in "A Dead Red Oleander" you'll be climbing fast, with crazy headwinds aloft. But it's a fun thrill ride you won't soon forget.
Highly recommended for readers who love a funny, fast-paced mystery.
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24 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Red Oleander's and White Goats July 22, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
This book is the third book in the series. The author has created a wonderful crime/mystery that will make readers laugh. I know I did several times while reading this book.
The characters Lalla Bains and her fiancé Caleb are at it again. Lalla is trying to end the season of crop dusting in the black and the business will be sold. Caleb is just trying to keep Lalla out of trouble. It seems like Lalla always has trouble following her around is always in trouble. If she is not trying to solve a mystery she is getting chased on the highway. Then her family is a little nuts so maybe Lalla just keeps the trouble around so nothing ever get boring.
Even though this is the third book in the series it can be read as a stand-alone. I have not read the other books in the series, however, I will read them now. The writing style of R.P. Dahlke is fresh with a witty spark that leaves the reader wondering where this author has been hiding.
In this book Lalla's extended family members arrive to help get everything ready for the wedding. However, trouble jump up and Lalla has to solve the problems while still trying to get everything ready.
I live on a farm. We have never used a crop-duster before so I do not know much about this. However, as much as I love the beautiful Oleander flower, I do not have them in my yard due to them being poisonous.
If you are looking for a crime/mystery to read this week then check out this book. However this is a great weekend read. This book is under 200 pages. So if you are a fast reader then you could probably finish this in about 1 day.
Thanks for an amazing read R.P.
The Bunnies and I give this book 5 carrots.
I was gifted by book by the author for an honest review.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lalla is BAAAACK! June 12, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
The opening of the book absolutely hooks you...a gorgeous blonde handcuffed to the bottom of a vehicle on the side of the highway in 100 degree weather. What a wonderful read this was. If you are going to the beach, the pool or even just staying home and avoiding the heat, this is a great read for you. Both my husband and I loved A Dead Red Oleander although I wouldn't go so far as to say that it is my favorite in the series. That would be tantamount to having a favorite child - just wrong. Each book stands alone and I really appreciate Rebecca Dahlke's skill in introducing you to the characters in every book without boring those of us who have followed them from the first. That takes a deft touch. Lalla Bains is a hoot, gorgeous, crazy as heck, a woman that can manage well in the world of modeling or in a man's world of crop dusting. I hope that lots of return readers caught that Lalla shares not only her real name with her aunt Eula Mae but also a huge heart and an outrageous character. I love Lalla's now steady relationship with Caleb and watching her curmudgeon of a father starting to demonstrate his love for his daughter... though walking his pet Bruce the goat would be really weird in any family but the Bains's! The addition of her zany cousin Pearlie to the cast was wonderful and I believe that we may be seeing a lot more of her in the future. Of course, there is a murder, some unofficial investigation by Lalla and Pearlie and plenty of twists and turns to keep you moving through the book without thinking about putting it down. As usual, another Bains bash! Bravo!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Somewhat Entertaining May 7, 2013
By Julie C
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
With a female crop-duster pilot (and former model) as the main character, you'd think the author would have given her a whole lot more depth than she did. Instead, she's pretty one-dimensional and cliched. Hard-headed, impetuous, heart-o-gold, yadda, yadda, yadda. The plots are just silly - and not in a funny way. Characters who keep making the same stupid mistakes, again and again, are not charming.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Almost, but not quite November 26, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I wanted to like this more than I did. Well-written, and the sort of light mystery I usually like... but the characters drove me nuts. The main characters were very "gosh gee whillikers" about it all. The heroine is engaged to a police officer--he tells her "Promise me you won't do X," and she promises, and then immediately does X. And he's fine with that. Hmmm. Good luck with that marriage. It strained credulity that the police would really be OK with the girlfriend showing up and taking part in things all the time, too. The side characters are all "characters" with "quirks," but it comes off as too forced to me. So overall, not great, but also not terrible.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Oleanders
It was entertaining, but the characters were so predictable. Something a bit more believable was lacking in the character development.
Published 18 hours ago by Annie Oakley
3.0 out of 5 stars Characters
The characters were insufficient in relation to the story. I didn't find it hard to put down at all. Sorry
Published 4 days ago by 9042
1.0 out of 5 stars Who Cares?
I found the characters boring, especially the main character Lalla. Her very name diminished my perception of her. . Book was mundane.
Published 12 days ago by Abbottmama
5.0 out of 5 stars Countrified corn-pone thrillers
Dahlke is a jewel. She can paint a character faster than a crop duster can turn a 180. Some are awkward, some are rough, under it all - families are tough. Read more
Published 24 days ago by Peter Prasad
5.0 out of 5 stars fun and exciting
This is the second in the series I've read and really liked them both.
I think almost everyone would enjoy them!
Published 28 days ago by Thomas R. Kurtz
4.0 out of 5 stars Dead Red oleander
Fun to read, and have enjoyed the series. Mystery is what I love and yet the comedic relief is great.
Published 1 month ago by Lauren C. Heiy
5.0 out of 5 stars Very good mystery
Lalla Bains just became my favorite woman detective. The author makes her and her sidekick Pearlie the best entertainment I have enjoyed in a very long time. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Kenneth Bowen
5.0 out of 5 stars A Dead red Oleander - I loved it!
I loved the light heartedness of A Dead Red Oleander. Why the Oleander? You’ll have to read it to find out. This book is very entertaining. Read more
Published 2 months ago by C. Williams
5.0 out of 5 stars A Dead Red Oleander
This is one of the best books I have gotten in a long time. It's funny, it's serious, it has it all. I hope to read more of this writers work when ever it is available. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Janet C Rackley
5.0 out of 5 stars Comical read
This is Stephanie Plum style fun, but not nearly as wacky. It has your crime solving bimbo, with her sidekick and law enforcement boyfriend.
Published 2 months ago by Renita Hulsey
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More About the Author

I sort of fell into the job of running a crop-dusting business when my dad decided he'd rather go on a cruise than take another season of lazy pilots, missing flaggers, testy farmers and horrific hours. After two years at the helm, I handed him back the keys and fled to a city without any of the above. And no, I was never a crop-duster.

My Lalla Bains series is about a tall, blond and beautiful ex-model turned crop-duster who, to quote Lalla Bains, has "been married so many times they oughta revoke my license." Lalla is no Danielle Steele character & she's not afraid of chipping her manicure. Scratch that, the girl doesn't have time for a manicure what with herding a bunch of recalcitrant pilots and juggling work orders just to keep her father's flagging business alive.

My romantic suspense, A Dangerous Harbor, is now up on Kindle and if you liked my Lalla Bains series, I know you'll love this book: More romance, more suspense, an exotic location with nastier bad guys and a bald parrot!
Then Hurricane Hole, treasure hunt with Gabe Alexander & TV star Leila Standiford

Here's an excerpt from Chapter One:

The world is flat. I know it is, because for the last five hours, the view has been exactly the same. Only the sun has done any traveling, working long shadows through the straight lines of recently harvested cotton plants with nothing to break the monotony but a few crows shopping the furrowed rows for worms, weevils and grasshoppers.
One hops over to inspect the truck I'm lying under, cocks a beady black eye at me; probably attracted to the shiny metal police-issued hand-cuffs, the hand dangling from wrist to arm, and me, Lalla Bains, Aero Ag pilot, sometime busy-body, meddling where I shouldn't--again. I'm dirt smeared and sweaty thinking if I get out of this alive, if the killer doesn't return to finish me off, I'll foreswear all future sleuthing. My dad, Caleb, Roxanne and half of Stanislaus County will be pleased to hear that promise come true. I will, this time. Really I will.
I waggle my grubby, unpainted and unadorned fingers at the crow. Too bad I didn't have on my engagement ring, maybe get him to peck at the lock mechanism and open it. Yeah, right, and while I'm hallucinating, maybe get him to bring me a nice cold Pepsi.

And in 2012,a whole NEW humorous/romantic mystery series starting with:
#1Wishbone, Arizona

Sisters in Crime, National and Desert Sleuths
1st chapter Pres.Cochise County, AZ chapter of Sisters in Crime 2003-2005.
Arizona Mystery Writers
Society of Southwestern Authors, Tucson, AZ.

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