Whiskey Rebellion (Addison Holmes Mysteries #1)
Free on iBooks/Amazon/etc for promotion
So since I got my iPad recently, I’ve spent quite a bit of time on iBooks. They tend to have some pretty good promotions and they’re easy to find – I find it much more user friendly than Amazon. Recently (and I think it’s still going) they’ve had a ‘first in a series’ promotion where there’s a bunch of books that are the #1 in a series that are free. There are some pretty decent finds in there, a mix of traditionally published and self-published. I’d imagine that for self-pubbed authors, it’s a good way to try and hook readers and get them in and purchasing the follow up books.
So I randomly clicked on a bunch of free books, one of them being this one: Whiskey Rebellion by Liliana Hart. Set in Whiskey Bayou Georgia, it’s the story of Addison Holmes, a high school history teacher who is struggling big time for money. Her fiance left her at the alter for the Home Ec teacher (and her teenage nemesis) and she’s living in a building that’s about to be condemned. She’s found the perfect house but her teacher salary doesn’t get close to allowing her to purchase it so she takes a job moonlighting as a stripper. Only Addison is a terrible stripper and during her first gig she spots her high school principal in the audience. And he’s recognised her. Not long later, Addison stumbles over his dead body in the parking lot.
This crime introduces her to local detective Nick Dempsey who catches the case. Nick and Addison have an instant chemistry that is somewhat complicated by the fact she keeps finding bodies and ending up in the middle of his investigation. As the books progress (so far there are 4 in the series with more to come in 2015) Addison begins working towards her PI license, is introduced to an FBI agent named Matt Savage, a man who wears crazy socks and wouldn’t mind getting to know Addison a lot more intimately and progresses to an on-off relationship with Nick Dempsey.
There is no denying the comparison with the Stephanie Plum novels by Janet Evanovich. Both Addison and Stephanie led relatively ordinary lives and then fell into something out of the ordinary. They are both about 30, live paycheck to paycheck and possess more dumb luck than amazing skills. They also have their lives complicated by two different men and at times, are torn between them. I loved the first 10 or so Stephanie Plum books and I’m happy to try similar ones in an attempt to find stories that I liked as much as I used to like those. These aren’t perfect but to be honest, they’re a lot of fun.
After I finished Whiskey Rebellion I shelled out the $5 or so each for the next 3 in the series. It’s not hard to enjoy a free book but a good test is whether or not you feel you got your money’s worth after you pay for one. The second and third books, Whiskey Sour and Whiskey For Breakfast were my favourites. I enjoyed watching Addison go through the steps to get her PI license. She actually does some training, has to take a written test and a fitness exam as well and it was nice to see her actually attempting to acquire the skills needed to move into full time PI work, instead of just half-assing it. The chemistry between Nick and Addison is off the charts good – full of heat and I love all of their interactions. Often love triangles annoy me but the introduction of FBI Agent Matt Savage in Whiskey Sour adds another element, giving the often commitment-phobic Nick a bit of competition. Perhaps I enjoyed it because in this series I always got the feeling I was ‘cheering’ for the right couple and that the other element was merely a bit of a distraction or motivation, rather than a genuine contender. Hart also proved that she could write more than just heat and teasing interactions with a few really emotional scenes between Addison and Nick in books 2, 3 and 4.
Each time I finished a book I wanted to go straight onto the next one – actually I read 2, 3 and 4 in a day and was extremely disappointed when I discovered that I was all caught up! Especially with the way Whiskey, You’re The Devil ended! So now I need to keep an eye out for the next books, apparently there will be two this year.
Book #256 of 2014 (Whiskey Rebellion)
Book #2, 3 & 4 of 2015 (Whiskey Sour, Whiskey For Breakfast & Whiskey, You’re The Devil)