From USA Today best-selling author Leslie Langtry comes a mystery series of laugh-out-loud proportions....
When CIA agent Merry Wrath is "accidently" outted, she's forced her into early retirement, changes her appearance, and moves where no one will ever find her - Iowa. Instead of black bag drops in Bangkok, she now spends her time leading a young Girl Scout troop. But Merry's new simple life turns not-so-simple when an enemy agent shows up dead at scout camp. Suddenly Merry is forced to deal with her former life in order to preserve her future one.
It doesn't help matters that the CIA sends in her former, sexy handler to investigate...or that the hot new neighbor across the street turns out to be the local detective in charge of her case. And when Merry is forced to take on a roommate in the voluptuous form of a turned KGB agent/bimbo, things become trickier than wet work in Waukegan or cookie sales in the spring. Nothing in the CIA or Girl Scouts' training manuals has prepared her for what comes next....
©2014 Leslie Langtry (P)2016 Audible, Inc.
I live to ride my bike.
First, what CIA agent retires (her cover was blown) moves back to her hometown around the corner from her BFF and expect to live undercover? Merry Wrath did. She made superficial changes in her appearance, a change in her hair color and contact lens. Somehow after a drunken night with her BFF, she divulges to her BFF, Kellie, what her previous occupation was. How is it that no one else in town recognizes her?
The CIA gave her a substantial settlement but not a back ground to withstand the basic scrutiny of the local police? They did blow her cover.
Merry Wrath, a girl scout leader, former CIA spy, is still adjusting to normal life (she is still using Dora the Explorer sheets for drapes) after a year. Dead bodies turn up, a new police chief moves across the street and she gets a visit by her former handler. Throw in an attraction for the hot new police chief and her former handler and you have all the ingredients for this story.
Merry has a few skills in sulking around and using guns. The funny scenes are when she has to keep Rex, the police chief, the dark about her previous employment
If you take some of inconsistencies into account, then this is an entertaining story. It does not have the comedic supporting cast that you will find in Fortune Hunter, written by: Jana DeLeon or Claire in the Jackrabbit series by: Ann Charles. Nor does Merry suffer from being a blundering amateur detective like Claire.
What I can tell from the closing dialogue, Merry is looking forward to some interesting action from the mutual attraction between her and Rex and her and Riley.
This has left me with a desire to listen to another Fortune Hunter book. I miss the funny support cast.
Merry Wrath was a CIA agent, and a good one. Then she was "accidentally" outed in a bit of Washington political hardball, and forced into early retirement. "Merry Wrath" is her new name, derived from a middle name and her mother's maiden name. Her hair is now blonde, and her eyes, thanks to contact lenses, blue.
And of course her Deep Cover Dead Secret new home is the small town in Iowa where she grew up. Did I mention that her father is a US Senator from Iowa?
So the completely unaddressed mystery here is why no one except her best friend from childhood, Kelly, recognizes her.
Despite that annoying weakness, this is a funny and fast-paced story, with Merry the unexpected target of a plot that has dead bodies of international terrorists turning up near her: an Al Qaeda agent at the camp where her Girl Scout troop meets, a South American drug dealer thrown in front of her car as she drives home, and a Japanese Yakuza boss found dead in her kitchen. Her sexy former handler, Riley, turns up, and he has a house guest for her--Svetlana, a blonde bimbo former KGB agent, who needs a place to lie low. (Obviously, a great plan, there.) And right at the time that Merry is dealing with bodies turning up everywhere, a very sexy police detective, Rex, moves in across the street from her. We are apparently supposed to accept this as a genuine coincidence.
It's fun, it moves, and while Merry makes some mistakes from rustiness and not really wanting to be in that mindframe anymore, none of the humor is of the "look how the girl agent screws up" variety. Both Merry and Svetlana are genuinely deadly when they want to be. There is one huge "this is never explained" incident that makes no sense, but talking about it would be a spoiler. The "two sexy alpha males" is clearly a set-up for the kind of ongoing "which one should she choose" thing that has, for me, worn out its welcome in other mystery series.
Still, this is light, and fun, and fast-paced. Recommended for a light read if you're willing to let the inconsistencies slide.
I received a free copy of this audiobook from Audible in exchange for an honest review.
If you're looking for something to sink your teeth into I would keep looking. However, if a fun, quirky listen (while your doing something else) is what you want, this books for you.
This was a very unrealistic story with stereotypical characters whose actions were unbelievable and irritating. The plot was beyond absurd and the characters were flat and predictable. The beautiful but practical friend who does not realize how beautiful she is, the over confident extremely attractive and smart alpha male and the beautiful, over sexed air head Russian blonde. It is this character that I found offensive. The character of Lana is demeaned and insulted many times throughout the book because she is extremely beautiful. She is so beautiful that both men and women are drawn to her. So to balance this, Merit constantly insults her or makes snide remarks about her and to her face. Apparently it is ok to use Lana to seduce men in Russia, but, it is not ok to treat her like a human being. I didn't like Merit's character and I couldn't force myself to read beyond chapter 5. I'm glad I only paid $2.15 for it. But, that was really too much.
I didn't give this a four because while I am looking forward to the next book, the main characters romantic musings are just off. They make her sound like a dreamy 16 year old rather than a strategizing ex-CIA agent which is unfortunate. Great book otherwise.
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