“Deadly Gamble” by Linda Lael Miller was published by Harlequin in 2006. It is a romantic suspense/mystery/paranormal, written in the first person. This is the first book in the Mojo Sheepshanks series. I received the book in a box of free books. I am not being paid for my review.
This book was also re-released; and then re-released again under the name “Arizona Wild” in 2016. It was also released as a two in one book with the second book in the series. The different covers for the book and then the new name can be misleading and confusing for readers. It makes no sense to re-issue older titles if the author doesn’t have any current books.
As a young girl the heroine loses her family in tragic circumstances. She has a bit of amnesia about the incident and her life before that day. Her half-brother takes the blame for their murders and is sent to prison. The heroine is kidnapped by a neighbor lady who then raises her. The heroine has a dead ex-husband whose ghost she sees and interacts with. She had a dead cat that comes to visit her as well. People are out to kill her as she tries to get her memory back. She has a rocky relationship with another man who is a cop.
Rating Legend: 1-Didn’t like it 2-It was alright, 3-I liked it, 4-It was pretty good/well done, 5-It was excellent
Ratings (on a scale of 1-5):
- Overall: 3
- Heroine Likability: 2.5
- Ex-ghost husband likability: 2.5
- Hero likability: 2.5
- Read more than once: No
- Read next story in series: If I got it in a box of books free.
The book starts with the heroine waking up to the voice of her ex-dead husband who died two years prior to the start of the book. After that everything seems to unravel in her life. The ex-wife of a man she dated twice threatens her and attacks her. Her psycho half-brother comes back. She runs into her Uncle at the nursing home of the woman who kidnapped her as a child. She also has two other sisters by circumstance or marriage that she interacts with. The heroine has a “Damn Fools Guides…” book for everything.
There is no shortage of villains and people trying to kill the heroine. Her memory starts to come back as she pieces together what actually happened to her parents. She has help from the ghost of her ex-husband to figure out what happened. Eventually she decides to be a private investigator.
There was also a lot going on in the novel and too many sub-plots that took from the main story. The 399 page book could have used pruning. A simple search online would have prevented the mistakes that the author made. There were also a few things that just seemed too convenient. The main plot is resolved in this novel. It does end though by setting up a few mysteries to be solved in the next book.
I did think that the ghosts provided humor.