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Murder Notes (Lilah Love) Paperback – March 27, 2018
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A heart-pounding thriller about a woman’s secrets—and a past that’s about to come out of hiding—from New York Times bestselling author Lisa Renee Jones.
As an FBI profiler, it’s Lilah Love’s job to think like a killer. And she is very good at her job. When a series of murders surface—the victims all stripped naked and shot in the head—Lilah’s instincts tell her it’s the work of an assassin, not a serial killer. But when the case takes her back to her hometown in the Hamptons and a mysterious but unmistakable connection to her own life, all her assumptions are shaken to the core.
Thrust into a troubled past she’s tried to shut the door on, Lilah’s back in the town where her father is mayor, her brother is police chief, and she has an intimate history with the local crime lord’s son, Kane Mendez. The two share a devastating secret, and only Kane understands Lilah’s own darkest impulses. As more corpses surface, so does a series of anonymous notes to Lilah, threatening to expose her. Is the killer someone in her own circle? And is she the next target?
This is the first in a connected duet and ends on a cliffhanger.
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“Must-read romantic suspense…Lisa Renee Jones has created a robust, interesting character with FBI Special Agent Lilah Love…She’s tenacious and focused, and a psychological force to be reckoned with…Reader, be prepared: There is a doozy of a cliff-hanger in this first installment.” —USA Today
“Riveting…Lisa Renee Jones knows how to reach her readers, keep them glued to the pages and wanting more…Murder Notes is filled with action, intrigue, suspense and a dark love that neither can fully acknowledge, and it all comes to life in this world the author has built for her readers’ pleasure.” —Fresh Fiction
“Murder Notes is intriguing and edgy. Lilah Love isn’t your usual heroine; she doesn’t hesitate at danger but embraces it, because only then can she see the darkness of the crimes she investigates. The twists and turns will keep you wondering who’s guilty and who isn’t…or are they all guilty?” —Linda Howard, New York Times bestselling author
“Murder Notes has larger-than-life characters who explode off the page and a page-turning plot loaded with intrigue and suspense. Lisa Renee Jones hit a home run with this one!” —Kat Martin, New York Times bestselling author
“Intensely thrilling! A murder mystery, a beautifully flawed heroine, and a killer of a cliffhanger will keep you begging for more!” —#1 New York Times bestselling author Helen Hardt
“Lisa Renee Jones has done it again! Murder Notes is a fantastic, thrilling read that is more mystery than romance. But rest assured, there are plenty of swoon-worthy moments in this dazzling first novel in the Lilah Love series. If you’re craving an emotional ride with unexpected twists and a plot chiseled to perfection, look no further.” —RT Book Reviews (Top Pick)
About the Author
Lisa Renee Jones is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the highly acclaimed Inside Out series; the Dirty Money series; the White Lies duet; the Tall, Dark, and Deadly series; and The Secret Life of Amy Benson series. Murder Notes is the first book in the Lilah Love series. Visit her at www.lisareneejones.com.
- Publisher : Montlake Romance (March 27, 2018)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 270 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1503900312
- ISBN-13 : 978-1503900318
- Item Weight : 10.2 ounces
- Dimensions : 5.5 x 1 x 8.25 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #2,471,287 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Reviewed in the United States on March 27, 2018
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Lilah Love is:
- daughter of a very famous movie star (who died about 10 years earlier in an accident) and a police chief from a small town turned mayor and now wannabe governor of the state of NY
- a former NYPD detective that became an FBI agent and moved relatively suddenly from NY to LA a couple of years ago
- ex-girlfriend of the heir to a giant drug cartel that insists he is not involved in and is instead a businessman
- current-ish girlfriend of a surfer-looking dude that happens to be a fellow FBI agent in Los Angeles (though she is trying to break up with him bc she knows he's not for her)
Lilah Love is not:
- taking any sh!t from anyone, sorry not sorry
- someone's "woman"
- going to be bullied into going along with the plan when she doesn't believe in the cause or buy into your BS
- a victim - yes, she was attacked, but she more than got the better of the man who dared try to one up her, and she does not feel badly... not even a little... which kind of makes her worry a little (okay, a lot)
- not leaving until she solves these crimes
- not staying either
But now Lilah Love has a problem: someone has laid down clues in the form of assassin-like murders that have led her back to the literal scene of the crime: her former home in The Hamptons where her brother is now the chief and her father the mayor. And her former bestie the ADA. And plenty of people that would like to see her fall flat on her face. So not only does she need to figure out why people are dying and why someone obviously wants her attention, but she has to do so while navigating the landmines that riddle her past. And the man she left behind that has never truly let her go.
What I liked:
--- Lilah started off a little too rough but she eventually won me over; Kane is just straight up sinfully delicious
--- The crimes and mystery definitely grabbed my attention and made me want to read more
What I didn't like as much:
--- At some times, it was a lot to keep up with (who is who/from LA or NY/past or present or both), so it took me a little while to get some clarity
--- Not very much in the way of steamy goodness, but what was there was yummy
Overall, my interest in the story, the mystery, and the characters is definitely high enough that I will continue on with the series to see what happens next!
Please note that I received an advance copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.
Plot --- 3.5/5
Main Characters --- 4/5
Supporting Cast --- 3.5/5
Steam Level* --- 2.5/5
Violence --- not overly graphic but crime scenes and attack flashbacks
Language --- Lilah's fave word is the f-bomb
POV --- 1st (Lilah's)
*Note that steam level is not a rating so much as a how hot was it: 0/5 - clean; 1/5 - mild (nothing descriptive); 2/5 - 3rd base action/1 home run; 3/5 - now we're getting somewhere (a couple of full-on steamy scenes); 4/5 - yes please! (erotica territory); 5/5 - they did EVERYTHING in this one, y'all
Lilah's boss, Director Murphy, sends her to the New York to investigate a case that might be related to the case she's working in California. Unfortunately for Lilah, another body shows up in the Hamptons around the same time.. Lilah swore to never return to the Hamptons after she left but now she has no choice. She has to confront her family, friends, enemies and her past in order to solve the crime.
The cast of characters isn't huge but it appears that they are all important to the story. Lilah is dating Rich. He wants a relationship with things like public dates and moving in together. His character doesn't get a lot of development in the story. Kane Mendez is the ex-boyfriend. He's a man with ties to the mob and with a set of questionable morals. He still wants Lilah. Eddie Rivera is a police sergeant in the Hamptons who doesn't like Lilah and doesn't want her investigating the case. Lilah's brother, Andrew, is the chief of police. Her friend, Beth, is the medical examiner. And Samantha Young dated Lilah's ex-boyfriend, Kane, before Lilah. There are others but the bottom line is that Lilah thinks it's possible they are all involved in some way with the murders but she just can't figure out how.
Lilah believes that the murders are all related and that they are all assassinations. That is not a spoiler! In the end, Lilah doesn't know who she can trust, who is leaving her threatening notes or who is involved in the murder. It's a sticky situation because her family is clearly tied up in the mess somehow!
The timeline bothered me a bit. Based on the intro, I thought Lilah was in her 30's but she's in her late 20's. While it shouldn't make a difference, I can't understand how she worked for the NYPD and got FBI training and has the reputation she has in such a short time frame. I also struggled with some of the intuitive leaps that LIlah made. I felt like Lilah needed a partner to bounce her ideas off so that the conclusions she was drawing were not quite so out of the blue.
We are left with lots of questions at the end of the story. I think the second book should be an action packed story!
I recommend this story to anyone who likes contemporary mystery stories. There is a "romance" subplot but nothing romantic happens in this story. If you don't like cliffhangers, wait to read this story until the next book comes out.
I don't argue. I step around him and dart for the living room, pausing in the doorway long enough to say, "Lock up when you leave. Sick ***** love me." I take off for the front door.
"What the **** does that make me, Lilah?"
"The exception,".... loc 204
And I don't show emotions because I don't feel them anymore. loc 987
I read an ARC copy of this book
Top reviews from other countries
This author may well have written other books but there's never chance I will read them.
I found this book very offensive. Perpetual foul language and blasphemy. Totally unnecessary in the context used.
I can't fathom why on earth such fullness is used over and over again bringing no substance to whatever the wobbly incoherent storyline. I have up reading: I didn't have to persevere.
Looking at other reviewers now it's obvious when you get to the end you are high and dry with the necessity of the next book to know what happens and pay accordingly. A trick increasing get a book read it but you need the next one and maybe the next one to find out what's going on!
Certainly a book of offensive trash from my viewpoint.
For a women to use such filth is disgusting and demeaning and frankly shows no thought or regard in
The writing has no flow, the story so far is disjointed and not interesting enough to intrigue me to finish the book. I hoped it would get better, but it gets worse.
As the title says, these are not sentences, they are notes!
Lilah is a proficient FBI crime profiler in LA. She is investigating a series of murder with the same MO. Whereas everyone seems to believe it's a serial killer, her instinct and experience tell her it's not the case. The latest victim stirs an unwanted bad memory and at the same time, she is sent to her hometown in the Hamptons where she is greeted with a horrible case. Not what she anticipated at all. Coincidence?
She has her specific method of gathering information and whilst doing so, she finds that she has to plough through a mound of suspects, before narrowing it down. She starts to receive cryptic notes, connecting to the past that she left behind two years ago. A past that is a secret known only to herself and one other. Her job isn't made easy, for the locals want a quick fix and the authorities are only too keen to "have their minds put at rest"!
As the story develops, it becomes obvious that there is more to this case that meets the eye. A conspiracy looks likely, but identifying the guilty parties isn't so straightforward. The more she digs, the more convoluted it becomes. There are those who want her out of the way. Do they have their own agenda, and if so, what is it?
Family and friends are not what they seem. Kane, the son of a crime lord has a past with Lilah and now they are constantly butting heads. She can't decide if he is friend or foe. It's exhausting watching them fight the obvious chemistry between them. I must admit that I am in Kane's corner and hope that the next installment sheds more light on the true nature of his involvement. This novel kept me on the edge of my seat and then came the cliffhanger. This murder mystery thriller is complex, but well crafted. A very compelling indeed!
I’m not a huge fan of Lisa Renee Jones but the blurb of this book intrigued me enough to take a chance and I am so glad I did. I absolutely loved Murder Notes. This book had everything I look for – a strong female lead with attitude, mystery and suspense, multiple murders, deep dark secrets, a will they/won’t they love element with the local bad boy all woven together in a fast paced plot that will leave you totally confused but at the same time unable to stop reading because you just have to know what happens next. My one slight issue would be that this book doesn’t have a conclusion. Fortunately for me the next one, Murder Girl is available so I can dive right into it. The Lilah Love series has gone straight onto my one-click list.
A new book in a series should always be linked to the last but they should be a story in their own right - this one is not.
I really would avoid for that reason alone.