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Jump the Gun: An Annabelle Starkey Mystery (Annabelle Starkey Mysteries) Paperback – August 6, 2013

4.0 out of 5 stars 11 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Children's author Burke (Charley Harper's What's in the Woods?) introduces smart and sexy Annabelle Starkey, a budget-conscious fashionista with a yen for classic movies, in her adult debut, the first in a new series. Annabelle is a pushover for equally attractive and film-addicted Mickey Paxton, but their fling in Vegas is interrupted by a ham-fisted local cop who pursues the lovers out of town. Annabelle has no idea what's going on, but clearly someone imagines that she's hiding something valuable. Her feelings of dread and disorientation are heightened when she learns of the brutal murder of the friend who went to her San Francisco apartment to feed her cat. Crooked policemen, shifty lawyers, and scheming little old ladies crowd the twisty, screwball plot. Annabelle sometimes even doubts Mickey's charismatic, movie-star-heroic trustworthiness. Those in the mood for a featherweight yarn with an amusing narrator could do worse. Agent: Anna Olswanger, Liza Dawson Associates. (Aug.)

From Booklist

What starts as a wacky romantic caper soon turns more dangerous in this relentlessly readable debut. Seconds after Annabelle Starkey and Mickey Paxton connect at the close of a national book convention in Chicago, he’s invited her to Las Vegas. Thus begins a chase from Vegas to the San Francisco area involving some bad cops, a resident at the nursing home where Annabelle’s grandmother recently died, and a lawyer who volunteered at the home, all of them after Annabelle, as it turns out, with only a suspended cop who’s moonlighting as a cab driver to help Annabelle and Mickey. When Annabelle’s cat-sitting friend is killed at Annabelle’s apartment, things get really serious. If the underlying premise here is a little convoluted and far-fetched, it doesn’t matter a lot when the action is nonstop and the sparks fly between Annabelle and Mickey, who seem to be kindred, movie-loving souls despite a certain lack of full disclosure between them. Impulsive Annabelle, speaking her mind sometimes in CAPS, is a winning protagonist, and this smart, snappy, whirlwind romantic mystery kicks off what promises to be an entertaining series. --Michele Leber --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
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Product Details

  • Series: Annabelle Starkey Mysteries (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 250 pages
  • Publisher: Poisoned Pen Press (August 6, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1464201633
  • ISBN-13: 978-1464201639
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.5 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,941,833 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I read Jump the Gun in two sittings. And enjoyed with very few exceptions every minute of it. It was so well paced that it became increasingly hard to put down. Seems "Annabelle" and i are cut from the same cloth - my idea of Las Vegas is basically my idea of purgatory! She even likes the same movies I do - Sea of Love is one of Pacino's very best. Certainly his hottest. But beyond the fast moving and intricate plot - there is humor, romance and a great deal of sheer fun to be had between the pages of this first time mystery offering by Zoe Burke.

And for one I can't wait to read the kind of mischief our heroine will get into next!

Not only that --- when will the movie be out ? What a cool caper it could be and a perfect vehicle for the right couple with the right chemistry!
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By A Customer on August 10, 2013
Format: Paperback
Jump the Gun: An Annabelle Starkey Mystery
Zoe Burke
Poisoned Pen, Aug 6 2013, $24.95
ISBN 9781464201639

Annabelle Starkey loves shoes, hats and old movies as she is Joan Cusack sidekick loser in Working Girl. At a book convention in Chicago, she meets film aficionado Mickey Paxton, who makes Annabelle feels she landed the lead female role in the Sea of Love. Mickey persuades Annabelle to stay with him at the Royal Opal Resort in Vegas.

In Vegas, his Richard Gere (Pretty Woman) acts more like Johnny Depp in Public Enemies. When he rushes down to the lobby, Goober the goon with a gun invades their room and grabs Annabelle. She escapes and is on the run with Paxton. When she learns someone murdered her friend Cassie while she was house and cat-sitting with Bonkers in Annabelle's San Francisco home, she feels guilt.

Annabelle with her movie references makes for an appealing zany protagonist who changes from the sidekick to the lover to the damsel in distress in this enjoyable screwball comedy. Although the mystery never gels beyond madcap, readers will appreciate Annabelle's "awful" awesome adventure.

Harriet Klausner
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Format: Hardcover
I borrowed this book from my library and would never recommend paying $20 for it, in fact I can't understand how it made it to hardcover. That said, I sorta, kinda, wanted to like this novel and hope the author's follow up has a great deal more character depth than this one or it will be my last read. As another reviewer noted, the romance was totally unbelievable. We're to accept that a rather staid young woman meets a stranger and immediately agrees to go away with him for sex on the fly, the stranger quickly falls madly in love with her, I'm not sure why. All we know about her appearance is that she has very large ears and straight hair. The ear references got old pretty quickly. The entire romance seemed plopped into a mystery without any depth at all. I enjoyed the movie references, liked the primary characters and laughed at some of the situations involving the bad guys. I don't mind crude language when fitting but the Dr. mother's incessant cursing soon stopped being funny. It's nothing like Stephanie Plum novels as the book's cover suggests. The author is talented and quite creative and I sincerely hope for better stuff in future.
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Format: Paperback
A quick, fun read. There were a few times I thought the story was hard to follow, but the explanation came out in the end. I don't look for thrillers or gripping suspense and this was a romantic suspense that kept your interest without giving you nightmares. Nice set up for sequels.
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Format: Kindle Edition
Funny mystery love story. Pleasant but not exactly a cliffhanger
Characters very believable
And interesting.
Predictable ending, but well written
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By Jack on February 15, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition
Kept me wondering what would happen next! I enjoy trying to figure it out before the book tells me but I didn't see that coming
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