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30 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A New One for Your TBR Pile
Jess Lourey populates June Bug with sharply etched characters so vivid you'd recognize them on the street. Her protagonist Mira James is a gem of a heroine: she's a magnet for stray flying objects, she's addicted to Nut Goodies, and her wry observations on life abound with atypical honesty. When Mira learns there's a big diamond at the bottom of a local lake--and a fake...
Published on April 26, 2007 by Joanna Campbell Slan

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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Couldn't even finish it
I couldn't even get halfway through this book. In fact, I probably only read the first 4 or 5 chapters, that's how bad it was. I very quickly tired of reading again and again how hot she was for the gardener and how much she lusted for him and how she was going to "get her vibrator out of retirement" for him. Ugh. TMI for sure. After her near-drowning, she also...
Published on June 7, 2011 by Ruth H


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30 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A New One for Your TBR Pile, April 26, 2007
By 
Joanna Campbell Slan "Joanna" (St. Louis, MO United States) - See all my reviews
Jess Lourey populates June Bug with sharply etched characters so vivid you'd recognize them on the street. Her protagonist Mira James is a gem of a heroine: she's a magnet for stray flying objects, she's addicted to Nut Goodies, and her wry observations on life abound with atypical honesty. When Mira learns there's a big diamond at the bottom of a local lake--and a fake diamond offered as a contest prize--she straps on diving gear and gamely goes forth to explore. But the clear lake water hides murky intents. She tangles with an unusual underwater hazard--and nearly loses her life. It's no surprise that Mira's not the only person interested in the loot. Larceny and licentiousness abound, and Mira's put herself squarely in harm's way.

Lourey's Mira is a clever girl, down on her luck, but plucky and resourceful. She goes through life fully engaged. Her observations both tickle and resonate. For example, "Actually I always wondered who had the energy to write on bathroom walls. Now I knew. It was people on bad dates." Say "Amen," Sister.

The Minnesota Department of Tourism either has a bounty on Lourey's head or added her to their payroll. She writes, "Minnesota is an incredible place to live, but we natives learn at a very young age that for this privilege we must pay a tithe, usually in blood...A summer day spent in the shallow, still part of the lake results in a chocolate-chip-shaped leech nesting between our peas-in-a-pod toes." Yuck! Lourey's clever pen captures such local gastronomic specialties as field-drinking, five-meat hotdishes, Tiger Pops, tuna surprise, Hamm's sky-blue waters, and barbecued spiced bananas. Mira moans that even the desserts feature cream of mushroom soup. Clearly, this book shouldn't be shelved with a Zagat's Guide.

But June Bug does deserve a spot on your "to be read" pile. Lourey delights and dazzles, making us eager to see what's on tap for July.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Done it again!, February 20, 2007
Lourey's dynamite follow-up to her debut mystery, "May Day" keeps the fresh, sassy voice of her heroine and adds new high jinks, enigmas, and zany side characters. Mira James continues to pass the summer in small town Battle Lake, MN, and in this new installment, of course, a new mystery presents itself along with undesirables from her past and some current favorites from her present. Along the way, she manages to engage in some soul-searching and introspection, which is one of the ways Lourey keeps this series and this protagonist grounded in verisimilitude, especially when contrasted with some of her cartoonish mystery counterparts. Fun and funny, Lourey's mysteries always keep me turning the pages and laughing out loud!
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Move Over Stephanie Plum!, April 3, 2007
JUNE BUG by Jess Lourey

Thank you, Jess Lourey! All of you ladies starved for another great chick-lit series, get out your pocketbooks! One has arrived and how! Jess Lourey, author of the new Murder-by-Month Series starring Mira James is a juicy, light-hearted, smart, witty and a bit saucy set of books that will leave you begging for more! Stephanie Plum is off in a closet somewhere (hopefully with Ranger) and Kinsey Milhone is in absentia. But never fear, Mira will take you where you want to go! These books are terrific. I simply cannot say enough. The writing is better than either of the aforementioned, the setting - mostly - is Battle Lake, a rural lake town in Minnesota and the characters are just wacky and sinister enough to drive the plots. This series is the next smash hit, so get in on it now and don't miss May Day, Knee High by the 4h of July, which hits the bookshelves in September and in March, August Moon will be available.
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Couldn't even finish it, June 7, 2011
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This review is from: June Bug (Murder-by-Month Mysteries, No. 2): A Murder-by-month Mystery (The Murder-By-Month Mysteries) (Kindle Edition)
I couldn't even get halfway through this book. In fact, I probably only read the first 4 or 5 chapters, that's how bad it was. I very quickly tired of reading again and again how hot she was for the gardener and how much she lusted for him and how she was going to "get her vibrator out of retirement" for him. Ugh. TMI for sure. After her near-drowning, she also repeatedly reminds us that her throat was sore from vomiting. Again, ugh. Stop talking about puking, I really don't need that mental picture over and over. And I was unnecessarily annoyed by the character who, despite stating she was from New York, was twice referred to as having a "Jersey" accent. (Being from NJ, this bothers me to no end!)

All this irritating filler didn't add much to the story. She goes to the library, she gets coffee, she pulls weeds in the garden, she thinks about her parents, the mean guy bullies her - and speaking of the mean guy, I agree 100% with the reviewer who wondered why she didn't CHANGE HER LOCKS after this guy broke into her house and GOT INTO BED WITH HER for pete's sake - all this filler, and the plot didn't seem to be moving. I gave up.

Even priced at $0.00, this book wasn't worth reading.
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32 of 43 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Doesn't make a lick of sense, August 27, 2007
What the...?

1. Mira is surprised when a man who is practically a stranger to her and who almost sexually assaulted her years before, climbs into her bed in the middle of the night, thinking she is someone else. Understandably she is frightened, but WHAT does she do? She piles cans up in front of her door at night to alert her to an intruder, and orders a stun gun on the Internet. She also contemplates sleeping under stuff in an extra room because "he wouldn't look for me there". I am amazed she doesn't think of -DUH- changing the locks!

2. Mira thinks the diamond is in a room at the "Shang-ri-la" Inn and intends to search the room. WHY would she feel justified in sneaking around and trespassing on private property just to satisfy her curiosity?

I had to stop reading this silly book before I finished it. Although I enjoy "light" reading as much as the next person, this book was the equivalent of a helium balloon.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars a light summer read, July 18, 2011
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This review is from: June Bug (Murder-by-Month Mysteries, No. 2): A Murder-by-month Mystery (The Murder-By-Month Mysteries) (Kindle Edition)
Just finished June Bug. I enjoyed the story line, a bit funny, and a bit mysterious. Mira has had a bad time in relationships with men. Actually destructive relationships. She can't seem to shake off one particularly bad guy, and through no fault of her own, ends up in a dangerous situation. Her curiousity gets the best of her as she starts exhuming fragments of an 80 year-old puzzle, bit-by-bit, and piecing them together. Before long she is entangled in a web with an assortment of odd individuals, which makes for a fun, light mystery.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Guess what Mira? No one cares., July 3, 2011
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This review is from: June Bug (Murder-by-Month Mysteries, No. 2): A Murder-by-month Mystery (The Murder-By-Month Mysteries) (Kindle Edition)
Have you ever asked someone how their day was going and had them regale you with a story so long that you wished you never opened your mouth? That's exactly what this book did... repeatedly.

The main character in this little murder mystery is a gal named Mira who seems to be one sandwich short of a picnic, if you ask me. Although the author tries to make her seem clever and cute, she repeatedly shows that she not only is dumber than a box of rocks, but also naive and spineless. Through the whole story her only redeeming characteristic is that she's a nice person with good morals.

Now, I do thoroughly enjoy when witty banter and quirky background stories are included in the storyline - they give great depth to otherwise two dimensional plots. However, this author takes it to such an extreme that instead of being amusing, you almost feel like you're sitting next to Forest flippin Gump. The entire length of the plot could have started and ended in exactly one chapter, but because of the coma-inducing amount of senseless tangents, it lasts for what seems like forever. What DID make me laugh, though, is that this book reminds me of a quote from Planes, Trains & Automobiles:

"Didn't you notice on the plane when you started talking, eventually I started reading the vomit bag? Didn't that give you some sort of clue, like maybe this guy is not enjoying it? Ya know, not everything is an anecdote - you have to discriminate! You choose things that are funny or mildly amusing. You're a miracle! Your stories have none of that! They're not even amusing accidentally! "Honey, I'd like you to meet Del Griffith, he's got some amusing anecdotes for ya!.... And by the way, you know, when you're telling these little stories? Here's a good idea - have a POINT. It makes it SO much more interesting for the listener! "

Needless to say, the only way that I was able to finish this book was by skipping several paragraphs at a time simply to fast forward through Mira's relentless and incessant mental babble about everything from her neighbor's toe lint to what she ate for breakfast when she was four years old (not those things specifically, but you get the idea).

On a side note, I'm annoyed at the fact that not only did I know who the Antagonist was from the very beginning, but that the whole story could have been resolved from the start if Mira had only had a speck of backbone. I mean, come on! Who let's someone man handle them and abuse them like that and not report them or press charges? If she had done that from the very beginning, she would have found out early on that he skipped bail and had warrants out. Boom! Done.

So I guess what I'm saying is that this could have been a good book, but all in all it left me more exasperated than anything.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Real nice surprise., June 28, 2011
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This review is from: June Bug (Murder-by-Month Mysteries, No. 2): A Murder-by-month Mystery (The Murder-By-Month Mysteries) (Kindle Edition)
What a lovely and funny little book this was. I have just fund my new favorite female lead character in books. Mira is tought and well spoken. I was enjoyably surprise with this mystery novel. The writing is witty without to much boring description. The plot is well woven and I am still wondering about some of the other characters in the book which made me buy Lourey's next book. If you are look for light and funny, go with this.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Slight humor, slight plot, June 28, 2011
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This review is from: June Bug (Murder-by-Month Mysteries, No. 2): A Murder-by-month Mystery (The Murder-By-Month Mysteries) (Kindle Edition)
I downloaded this book because it was free and everyone said it was so funny. I was disappointed in the humor as it was only mildly amusing (certainly not laughing out loud), nor was it really used in dialouge to enhance character development. There are a lot of crude comments being substituted for funniness. Much of the character development was hurried over, for both good guys and bad guys, and every character pretty much fell into one category or another. The biggest bit of info given is on character appearances, rather than actions and personality. Also, there is a lot of political preaching that is thinnly veiled.
Plot was reasonable, but unpredictable. I knew who the "bad guy" was at the very beginning; there were no surprises.
The book has some redeeming qualities. It was interesting enough for me to finish, and although it was not nearly as funny as most reviewers commented, there were humorous places, especially near the end. It was a quick read, and free.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very Nice, June 16, 2011
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This review is from: June Bug (Murder-by-Month Mysteries, No. 2): A Murder-by-month Mystery (The Murder-By-Month Mysteries) (Kindle Edition)
I got this because it was free- and was not expecting to read a very nice, very enjoyable story. It was funny. It did put me in the mid-west and I like the character Mira very much. As a woman I liked having the "star" of the book be funny and smart but sort of not too. I like that she was not all goody- goody. The story kept me interested through the whole book. I liked that it was a nice light story- just right for June, getting ready for the summer days. I was very impressed with it.
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