Customer Reviews for

Lust, Money & Murder: Book 1, Lust

Average Rating 4
( 49 )
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5 Star

(20)

4 Star

(14)

3 Star

(6)

2 Star

(3)

1 Star

(6)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

Worth the Read

This is another series book, which ends in medias res, leaving the reader yearning for more, and yet, it’s such a good read, long enough to give the feel of a full length novel, that it didn’t bother me too much when it abruptly ended. While I would much rather prefer ...
This is another series book, which ends in medias res, leaving the reader yearning for more, and yet, it’s such a good read, long enough to give the feel of a full length novel, that it didn’t bother me too much when it abruptly ended. While I would much rather prefer a full-length novel to multiple shorts, Wells has actually put all three together for purchase on Amazon and Barnes and Noble, for only $4.99, and in my opinion, that’s a steal, especially as the storyline and writing is so well done. But, if you want to check out the first portion of the series before committing to buy, it’s currently free on Amazon and Barnes and Nobel right now, which is where I obtained my copy for review.

The main portion of the story follows Elaine Brogan as she naively finds herself and her father the victim of a counterfeiting scandal, leaving her destitute and alone. Resolved to join the Secret Service and take down the man who destroyed her life, Elaine throws herself into her studies and works diligently in hopes of revenge. The story moves very swiftly, and Elaine soon finds herself working for Nick LaGrange in Bulgaria as he attempts to shut down the counterfeit ring taking Europe by storm. Of course, things aren’t always what they seem, and while Elaine is indeed amazing at her job, she soon finds herself in a difficult situation, having to choose carefully between love and ethics.

I really enjoyed this story, save that it ended right in the middle of a climax within the story. Wells is a very good writer and his story kept me captivated from start to finish. While there were more references to sex than I would have liked there to have been, they weren’t overly erotic, which is good, although I really don’t see the point of adding detailed sex into the mix of a really good story anyway. But, that aside, the characterization and story were very well done, and I am eager to read the rest of the series, which, like I stated before, is available, complete, on Amazon and Barnes and Nobel and, in my opinion, is worth it. Four stars.

posted by Read_A_Book on April 6, 2012

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Most Helpful Critical Review

6 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

Beware, these 3 books are really only 1 story

This is only one story that needs all 3 books to finish the story. It is interesting and keeps moving. I do dislike having to buy 3 books to get one story. This is very deceptive and therefore gets a one star rating!

posted by 598336 on May 20, 2012

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 20, 2012

    Beware, these 3 books are really only 1 story

    This is only one story that needs all 3 books to finish the story. It is interesting and keeps moving. I do dislike having to buy 3 books to get one story. This is very deceptive and therefore gets a one star rating!

    6 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 6, 2012

    Worth the Read

    This is another series book, which ends in medias res, leaving the reader yearning for more, and yet, it’s such a good read, long enough to give the feel of a full length novel, that it didn’t bother me too much when it abruptly ended. While I would much rather prefer a full-length novel to multiple shorts, Wells has actually put all three together for purchase on Amazon and Barnes and Noble, for only $4.99, and in my opinion, that’s a steal, especially as the storyline and writing is so well done. But, if you want to check out the first portion of the series before committing to buy, it’s currently free on Amazon and Barnes and Nobel right now, which is where I obtained my copy for review.

    The main portion of the story follows Elaine Brogan as she naively finds herself and her father the victim of a counterfeiting scandal, leaving her destitute and alone. Resolved to join the Secret Service and take down the man who destroyed her life, Elaine throws herself into her studies and works diligently in hopes of revenge. The story moves very swiftly, and Elaine soon finds herself working for Nick LaGrange in Bulgaria as he attempts to shut down the counterfeit ring taking Europe by storm. Of course, things aren’t always what they seem, and while Elaine is indeed amazing at her job, she soon finds herself in a difficult situation, having to choose carefully between love and ethics.

    I really enjoyed this story, save that it ended right in the middle of a climax within the story. Wells is a very good writer and his story kept me captivated from start to finish. While there were more references to sex than I would have liked there to have been, they weren’t overly erotic, which is good, although I really don’t see the point of adding detailed sex into the mix of a really good story anyway. But, that aside, the characterization and story were very well done, and I am eager to read the rest of the series, which, like I stated before, is available, complete, on Amazon and Barnes and Nobel and, in my opinion, is worth it. Four stars.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 21, 2012

    Great Read - must read!!!

    This is a very fast paced story - sucks you in and you can't stop reading. Looking forward to reading the rest of the series. Mike Wells is an author to watch - he is great!

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 27, 2012

    HIGHLY RECOMMENDED

    This book draws you into the story from the very first page to the very last page. Excellent writing! A must read - you will not want to miss out on the other two books in the series. I read this book and could not put it down, i went on to read all the books by Mike Wells and have not been disappointed!

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 30, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Dawn Torrens - Brilliant a must read!

    From the moment I started reading this book I could barely put it down! I loved it. Elaine is the main character and she is out to avenge her father's death. She joins the secret service in order to track down the culprit. She takes you on a journey of survival and strenght. Brilliantly written, uputdownable, I could imagine seeing this story on the big screen... If your reading this review I urge you to put this book at the top of your must read list - a fantastic book!

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 15, 2012

    You can get all 3 books for $5.00

    Even though I really enjoyed Book 1, I found it extremely frustrating that I had to buy Book 2 and Book 3 to get the complete story. Be advised: You can buy all three books in one eBook for $5.00.

    I love book series. I read the first book of every series I find just to hope that I find an author and characters I like.

    This series is worth reading. I would have rated Book 1 a four, but I felt frustrated by the technique of providing a free copy of book 1 just to sell books 2 and 3 so you can read the complete story. Not a series, a story.

    I would carefully check out any "series" by this author to make sure it wasn't one long story split across multiple books.

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 29, 2012

    Excellent Read - You will not be disappointed

    When it comes to book reviews, I tend to find no credibility in a review when the poster is Anonymous. If you have a critique, do share it and your pen name too. When I critique a book, I find it more beneficial to be extremely detailed than to "yell fire in a crowded movie theater" as the old saying goes and then close the review. In essence, is it necessary to attempt to bring a person down to your level? That's one voracious readers opinion

    In reading Book 1, I found it exciting and vivid from the first paragraph until the end. I specifically enjoyed the strong personality the Author gave to Elaine - he also let us in on her trials and tribulations that make her who she is.

    One last note on reviews, the Author does write in series form and I myself do not feel cheated that I have to read Books 2 & 3. It keeps me excited to see how it all ends. Great job Mike and I can't wait to see what happens next.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 29, 2012

    Enjoyable

    A very fast read

    Was not happy that i had to buy two more books to see how it all turned out, but i still recommend it!

    Hope to see more from author!

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 20, 2012

    very good mystery

    I enjoyed this mystery.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 7, 2012

    Great, loved it looking forward to 2nd book!

    Great, loved it looking forward to 2nd book!

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 7, 2012

    Meh.

    This book just isn't very good. The writing is amateurish and the story is very shallow, as are the characters. I'm not going to bother reading the next one.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 14, 2012

    Not finished.

    Cliff hanger non ending!

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 18, 2014

    Lust, Money, & Murder: Book 1 is a pleasing thriller with a

    Lust, Money, & Murder: Book 1 is a pleasing thriller with a fast-paced storyline incorporating a touch of romance. I was hooked from the beginning and plan to keep on reading the subsequent books.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 22, 2014

    A must read!

    I found myself not wanting to put this book down. I will read the rest of this set and many more by this author.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 21, 2014

    highly suggested read

    What a great job Mike Wells has done!
    Excellent quick read. Mind blowing and full of suspense. LOL to Mr. R! Hoping for NIck and Elaine.

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  • Posted January 27, 2014

    I found this book to be quick paced but engaging. The writing is

    I found this book to be quick paced but engaging. The writing is clear and concise. Author Mike Wells manages to put a lot of story into a short novella without making you feel as if depth is lacking. Elaine’s father was a hard working man who wanted to give her the world but he was by no means perfect. This tale is always at its darkest when expressing the actions which her father thought were necessary. This was a poor man who wanted to give his daughter an expensive education and basically did this by whatever means necessary. One frustrating aspect of the story is Elaine’s naivete, especially as it relates to her father’s actions. When the story begins and starts to develop the reader almost expects the main character to be a streetwise, no nonsense girl. But, she remains innocent and naïve into her college years. This characteristic results in her ending up in a compromising position. And this is where her life begins to unravel. Ultimately, this story is about a young girl who is taken advantage of, has a tragic loss, and then perseveres.

    When Elaine reaches adulthood and heads off to college the reader becomes more in tune with her personality through a series of fumbling sexual encounters. We have our first laugh out loud moment when she shares her experience with her roommate. After college Elaine is selected to become a Secret Service agent and we follow her on her difficult journey through their rigorous academy. There is a hint that we may now see some action when she has to take a martial arts exam however the action in that scenario is anti-climactic. I would say that my one complaint about the story is the lack of action. I can say from personal experience that the life of a law enforcement officer is much more mundane in real life then portrayed in the movies or on TV. But, since this novella is a fictionalized version of what law enforcement officers do I was hoping for some edge of your seat thrills. Her first assignment goes horribly wrong and she is transferred to Bulgaria where things heat up. It’s on this assignment that she really gets to do her job and show off her talents. This is also where she meets a fellow Secret Service Agent named Nick who she proceeds to fall madly in love with. 

    I did enjoy this story overall. Elaine is a smart girl who you come to care about. Her journey is easy to relate to and you want to know what will happen to her in the future. 

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  • Posted December 31, 2013

    I received this book in return for an honest review. Beware wha

    I received this book in return for an honest review. Beware what you ask for.

    Lust, Book One of Lust, Money and Murder is approximately 106 pages long, and is the first book in a trilogy. Elaine Brogan was an engaging character and the subject of counterfeiting was either well-researched or one with which Mr. Wells was very familiar from his day-job. The book was fast-paced and kept me on the edge of my seat, but there were continuity and grammar issues, info dumps and point-of-view jumps that I found very off-putting and distracting. I know what free-lance editors cost, but they make the difference between a polished, professional book, and the kind of amateurish presentation that gives independent publishing a bad name.

    Finally, these pieces should not have been published as a series. Three hundred pages is not a long book. Most of the big publishers won’t look at a manuscript of fewer than a hundred thousand words and that runs about three hundred pages. When writing a series, each book should be able to stand on its own. Look at Patterson’s Alex Cross books or Clancy’s Jack Ryan books, any of the Kellerman’s series (Jonathan, Faye or their son Jesse’s), or Jim Butcher’s Harry Dresden Files. You can pick up any one of those books and they stand on their own. You can read one or all in each series. Yes, The Hunt for Red October made me want to see more of Jack Ryan. Storm Front made me want more of Harry Dresden. But each book had a beginning, middle and end. Lust does not have an end. It just stops at the beginning of Money. That makes me crazy and makes me feel manipulated. It’s not like this book would have been a couple thousand pages and needed to be split into manageable pieces like Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings (which was originally written as one book, but was split in three by the publisher). If you still want to read this book, buy the bundle and read the trilogy as one book. Otherwise, you’ll be stuck with only part of the story.

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  • Posted November 24, 2013

    Lust (Lust, Money, Murder #1) has wetted my appetite for the oth

    Lust (Lust, Money, Murder #1) has wetted my appetite for the other books in the series. It follows the story Elaine Brogan, who starts out trying to be a photo model. After a bad experience at a sleazy modeling agency, that leaves her father accused a passing counterfeit money, she becomes a secret service agent. She meets NickLeGrange who seems to be the love of her life, except he may not be all that he seems.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 28, 2013

    Not a full novel

    interesting and easy read. Most of it is a quick trip through the protagonist's life on fast forward with a few stops on significant events. I felt like I was reading much more back story than was necessary.
    I felt like the actual inciting incident of the story came in the last dozen or so pages, then the book ended with a To Be Continued.
    So much of her life didn't seem relevant other than showing how she came to be in the Secret Service. But it easily could have been skipped to get to the story sooner.
    Fortunately, the story didn't bog down in all of this history. It went too fast for the reader to lose interest, however it made it impossible for the story to have any substance.
    The prologue was interesting, but that story line does not come back up in this book.
    The romance with the boss and the implications of other things going on was exciting. I was disappointing that it took the entire book to get there and then stopped.
    So although this is only a third of a novel, it is compelling enough to be worth the read.

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  • Posted October 24, 2013

    This is the first in a series and as such I was disappointed tha

    This is the first in a series and as such I was disappointed that it was not a stand alone novel. You are in effect getting the first part for free and if you want the rest you need to buy the set. I assume like some eighteenth century novel, it is in three parts, but not as long, another Clarissa would be commercial suicide.




    The Prologue sets up the counterfeit storyline and proves that where money is concerned, people will go to any lengths. In contrast a father's love for his daughter, will illicit the same results. Going to any lengths to provide for her. From an ethical standpoint, we would condemn both, although the reader would be more sympathetic to the latter.




    Elaine's 'modelling' career shows her naivete and the way people can be taken in by the promise of a lucrative career. The writer demonstrates this through the shambolic nature of the agency, requiring ever more qualifications and sample photos.




    These chapters set up the motive for joining the secret service. The years of college are skipped over quite quickly, which raises the question why so much attention is given to the secret service training. How does it move the plot of the novel forward? It could be to show a diversity of knowledge and expertise, in addition to her tenacity and determination when dealing with difficult people.




    The sexual harassment at her first job, gives her a reason to move, but would a professional act in such a manner? In the UK sexual harassment was perhaps more prominent in the seventies, than in the power dressing environment of the eighties. Was America so different during this decade?




    The second job is based on her skills at detecting counterfeit bills. In one sense this is more believable. Every employee hopes that their skills will be recognised and they will be placed in a job that utilises their abilities. The fact that she falls for her boss, is again understandable. Their developing relationship and then the question over his integrity, sets up the suspense for the next book, but does not give a satisfactory conclusion for this book.




    Mike is a best selling author, his style is easy to read and the 'James Bond' type subject matter will undoubtedly appeal to a lot of people, due to the escapism. I have not had a lot of experience with this type of genre and it is very difficult to judge. It doesn't have the kind of imagery, or wider social themes that characterise a great, or classic novel. A charge made against Ian Flaming, by his wife, but it is very readable.

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