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Dead to the Max (Max Starr Series, Book 1, a paranormal romance/mystery) [Kindle Edition]

Jasmine Haynes , Jennifer Skully
3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (148 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $9.99
Kindle Price: $3.99
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New Adult Fiction by Rainbow Rowell
Acclaimed author Rainbow Rowell's latest book, Landline, offers a poignant, humorous look at relationships and marriage. Learn more

Book Description

Thirty-something, down-on-her-luck accountant Max Starr has the unfortunate gift of being psychic, a newly-discovered wrinkle in her already messed-up life. Her husband, Cameron, is dead, killed in a botched 7-11 robbery two years ago. She’s cut herself off from friends, moved out of her San Francisco home in favor of a studio apartment, and dumped her flourishing career as a CPA to do temp work.

And now Max has developed an annoying penchant for attracting the spirits of murdered women. Okay, they possess her. And to exorcize them, Max must unmask their killers. But how?! By stepping into the void their deaths created, taking their jobs, befriending the loved ones they left behind. Max goes wherever she has to go and does whatever she has to do, with a lot of help from the ghost of her late husband Cameron and hunky and very enticing Detective Witt Long.

In Dead to the Max, Book 1 in the Max Starr series, Max steps into the shoes of a murdered accountant and starts to learn that even supposedly boring accountants can have secret lives and secret desires. Max just has to hope the secrets she uncovers don’t get her killed, too.

“Dead to the Max” is Book 1 in the contemporary paranormal romance/mystery Max Starr series, contains some erotic elements, and is approximately 82,000 words.

This book contains the following bonus material: Excerpts from the next Max Starr mystery, “Evil To The Max,” “Somebody’s Lover,” and “Twisted by Love.”

Previously published in 2003 as Dead to the Max by JB Skully from LiquidSilverBook.

Contains super sexy material.

REVIEWS for the Max Starr series:

“4 Hearts! Dead to the Max is funny and sad all at once ... it is a true murder mystery; it keeps you guessing until the very end.”

Sensuality rating: Explicit

~ Reviewed by Sara for The Romance Studio

RTR Reviewers Choice Award!

“intense emotions, high-voltage drama and adventure along with delicious sex scenes.”

~ Reviewed by Tracey for The Road to Romance

“This book will put you through the wringer.”

~ Reviewed by Patricia for Sensual Romance Reviews

“4 1/2 Flames. DEAD TO THE MAX is a striking read ... I’m very anxious to get my hands on Book 2.”

~ Reviewed by Robin for Sizzling Romance Reviews


Jasmine Haynes, Rita Finalist for Somebody’s Lover, plus two-time Holt Medallion and National Readers Choice Award winner, is the author of over 30 classy, erotic romance tales. Look for more in the West Coast series and her new Reincarnation Tales. Of course, she’s also the author of the award-winning Max Starr psychic mystery series. And don’t miss her writing as Jennifer Skully, KOD Daphne award-winning author, bringing you poignant tales peopled with hilarious characters that will make you laugh and make you cry.

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Award-winning Jasmine Haynes is the author of sensual and classy erotic romance, a Rita Finalist, two-time Holt Medallion winner, and winner of the NRCA. She writes for Loose-Id and Berkley Heat, including the award-winning Fortune Hunter Tales and her Courtesans Tales. Coming in 2011, she brings readers a breath-taking new erotic trilogy from Berkley Heat, The DeKnight Tales. Visit her website,, for more information. She also masquerades as Jennifer Skully, writing over-the-top, hilarious romantic mysteries and is the winner of the prestigious Daphne du Maurier award for her first book. And of course, she's the author of the award-winning Max Starr psychic mystery series.

Product Details

  • File Size: 485 KB
  • Print Length: 244 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Jasmine Haynes; 5 edition (December 16, 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B003XRE4XG
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #255,392 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
46 of 48 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars "erotic" does not mean x-rated November 21, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I wanted to love this series, I truly did. At this point, I'm not even sure if I'll continue with Book 2. The over-the-top sex descriptions were actually a turn off for me. If you cut out the graphic sex, Max might be a likeable character, but when you add in how desperate she is for a man, any man, AT ALL, even the ghost of a dead husband, she really seems more pathetic than anything else. And the need to suspend disbelief more than most other novels grated on my nerves a bit. I am an avid fan of urban fantasy and strong female leads, which is why this book seemed so interesting to me, but I don't think any police detective would involve the employment replacement of a murder victim to hunt down leads! Especially not when he thinks she is a suspect! I also can't understand why readers would respect Max, or her husband's ghost, for the blatant trickery of allowing the ghost to enter through the exit (if you read the book, you know what I mean). That's the kind of husband we all should have: "you can't do this, unless I get to do that". Even though Max says she enjoyed it after, does not make it appealing. Give me a break. I get enough of pushing-the-boundaries-of-sex from Laurell K Hamilton, and honestly, if my OCD would let me, I'd discontinue those series' as well. Unfortunately, I'm seven books into Merry Gentry and 18 books into Anita Blake, so I can't. This series isn't quite as bad, but neither was Anita Blake at first...
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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Don't miss this series! August 17, 2010
Format:Kindle Edition
I had the privilege of reading five of the Max Starr books when originally published by Liquid Silver Books. This book hooked me, and I had to read each one to find out how the potential romance developed. It's quite an adventure, and the characters get better with each story. But read them in order, starting with this one. Hang on for a wild ride because this author delivers (explicit language and sex)!
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Judge This Book By The Cover August 5, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
My title "Judge This Book By The Cover" has a point, and I will get to that, but I want to qualify my review to say that this was my first experience with an "erotic" novel of this nature. I am a big fan of paranormal mystery and love Iris Johansen, Heather Graham, and Kay Hooper. This author ranks right up there with them, but with the added component of "caution: graphic sex". I will admit to blushing because her sex scenes are on a whole other level than my experience, but when I downloaded the sample, I was taken in by the skill of the writer (lol....reminiscent of the guys who say they read Playboy for the articles?)

I do not want to spoil the book for anyone who wants to read this, so I am not going to talk about specific examples in the book because I believe my star rating speaks for itself. I do want to say, for those who may be like me and not a fan of "graphic sex" for "sex" sake, the content of the book was such that I was okay with the sex. Perhaps it is because I am a returning college student, and have been exposed to some books in my literature classes that were far more graphic and offensive than what I read in "Max Starr" series. But for those who can't stomach it, just hit the arrow over button on the Kindle. The book is that good. Also, the sex scenes do not detract from the meat of the story which is a paranormal suspense mystery at its core.

I also want to applaud whoever it may be that chose the cover to this book. There are many authors I would love to read but I won't when I see some of the covers. I grew up reading series romance, and every now and then they are a guilty pleasure, but the reason I downloaded Ms. Haynes "Max Starr" series was because it presented the "mystery" and not "erotic sex".
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Too sexy for the book June 11, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I like mysteries, and the mystery was in this book. However, if you took out the erotica, you would have about 20 pages of story. For what it is, I suppose it was well written, but "Max" came across as a "nympho". The ghost in her head was supposed to be her husband, but I thought he was mean. I got through 57% and quit. It was too much like porn.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good but disturbing December 21, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I really enjoyed the author's writing skill and character development, in fact those aspects of the novel are 5-star. What was too disturbing for me was the graphic (IMO) descriptions of child sex abuse, I just found that too distasteful such that it influenced my overall impressions of the whole novel.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Weak Women, Cruel Men, Gratuitous Sex July 11, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This mystery could be well written as a short story, magazine length. There is much more erotica than there is mystery. Sometimes the erotica fits the scene; but too often the erotica is stuck in there, with no apparent connection to the mystery that is unfolding. The women in this book, including Max, are weak and they need strong, controlling men in their lives. Max's ghost husband is controlling, and sexually abusive. All the men in this book are cruel to women. I bought this book, so I did read all of it, but it is not the type of mystery writing that appeals to me.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Sex, Sex, and more sex, but not much of a mystery July 9, 2013
By Janice
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The good news was I downloaded the book for free. Had I paid for it, I would be ticked.

The mystery is shallow. The hauntings are ridiculous. Does anyone truly believe ghosts "live" for sex? Seriously hard to believe that not only was this the only thing on the ghost's mind, but the only thing the heroine thought about as well.

I definitely would not recommend this book unless you got it free or were seriously bored and looking for a mindless read.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
It kept up your interest with a delightful erotica.
Published 12 days ago by jim e knutson
2.0 out of 5 stars This should not be labeled as Romanace but as Erotica
If this had been presented as Erotica, I would never have picked it up. Instead, I find myself wincing at every page turn waiting for the next graphic sex scene. Read more
Published 2 months ago by J. Moore
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow
This book has awesome characters and author. If you like this mystery book you are going to love this book.
Published 2 months ago by Tori Reynolds
2.0 out of 5 stars To the Max
I think this was very good who-done-it; it might have been my fault not noticing that it was erotic romance that I was just not prepared for. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Hillary Bowden
3.0 out of 5 stars Dead to the max
Well this sure was different for me..Although I found it quite enjoyable.The lightheadedness. Just kept me turning. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Unknown
5.0 out of 5 stars Shades of Ghostbusres
MAX is a widow,with a live in ghost,Cameron can talk to her ,love her,and nag her ,but when she dreams of a murder Cameron can't get Max to admit she must be psychic. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Annlouise Fallon
3.0 out of 5 stars A Sexually Explicit Fantasy Paranormal Mystery
As clearly indicated by the array of low and high ratings obviously this book won't be for everyone. Read more
Published 5 months ago by PURPLE JEWELS
1.0 out of 5 stars ok
i didn't even get to chapter 3 before i quite just couldn't get in to it sorry not good book
Published 5 months ago by Teresa Lynn Brewer
5.0 out of 5 stars Dead to the Max
If you want romance and mystery along with some sex this book is the one for you to read. It starts at page one and gets better from page one on through to the end.
Published 5 months ago by dlair
4.0 out of 5 stars a little predictable but it kept me reading to the end
Psychic Dreams, sleeping with a ghost, too many suspects, lots of gritty sex, wrapped around a pretty good murder mystery.
Published 6 months ago by Genie
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More About the Author

Jasmine Haynes is the NY Times and USA Today bestselling author of over 35 classy, sensual romance tales. In 2013, she started a sexy new series for Berkley Heat, beginning with The Naughty Corner in Oct 2013 and Teach Me a Lesson in Apr 2014. Look for more in the sensual West Coast series; Book 5, Pleasing Mr. Sutton, coming in Summer 2014. She's also the author of the award-winning Max Starr psychic mystery series. And don't miss her writing as Jennifer Skully, KOD Daphne du Maurier award-winning author of contemporary romance, bringing you poignant tales peopled with hilarious characters that will make you laugh and make you cry. And look for many of your favorite Jasmine Haynes and Jennifer Skully books in audiobook.

Don't miss the new anthology Love is a Mystery: Six Novels of Love, Laughter, and Lawbreaking. Here's the line-up of authors: Frosted Shadow by Nancy Warren, She's Gotta Be Mine by Jasmine Haynes/Jennifer Skully, The Honeymoon Cottage by Barbara Cool Lee, Steamed by Holly Jacobs, The Zen Man by Colleen Collins, and Caught You Looking by Shelley Adina. Available for 90 days for only .99!Look for Can't Forget You, a new Cottonmouth adventure!

Jasmine lives in the foothills of a gorgeous California mountain range, the perfect setting for writing erotic romance, chilling mystery or something guaranteed to make you laugh. Jasmine and her husband have a recent addition to the household, an 8-month old nuisance, oops, adorable little kitten named Wrigley!

Read more about Jasmine Haynes at, Jennifer Skully at, and the Max Starr series at Visit her blog!

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