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Flipping Out (Lomax and Biggs Series #3)

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Overview

A cop’s wife has been murdered. As LAPD detectives Mike Lomax and Terry Biggs investigate, a second cop’s wife is killed. Both women were part of an ingenious real estate scheme run by bestselling murder mystery author Nora Bannister: she buys a house in L.A. dirt cheap, and while her partners turn it into a showplace, Nora murders someone there—in her next book. When the house goes on the market, there’s a bidding frenzy. It seems a lot of people want to live in a house where a...

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Flipping Out (Lomax and Biggs Series #3)

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Overview

A cop’s wife has been murdered. As LAPD detectives Mike Lomax and Terry Biggs investigate, a second cop’s wife is killed. Both women were part of an ingenious real estate scheme run by bestselling murder mystery author Nora Bannister: she buys a house in L.A. dirt cheap, and while her partners turn it into a showplace, Nora murders someone there—in her next book. When the house goes on the market, there’s a bidding frenzy. It seems a lot of people want to live in a house where a fictional character has died a violent death.

Is someone stalking the house flippers, or is the murderer after cops’ wives? Either way, Lomax and Biggs have to track down the killer before he (or she) murders the next logical target—Marilyn Biggs, Terry’s wife.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“If you haven’t read Marshall Karp yet, start with Flipping Out. Start today. This mystery is right up there with the best of Janet Evanovich and Carl Hiassen. Yep, it’s that suspenseful, that funny.”—James Patterson

“You're going to love meeting Mike Lomax and Terry Biggs, a pair of hip homicide detectives with the LAPD; unless, of course, you're the perp. Smart, funny and intuitive, Lomax and Biggs glide through the overlit shoals of Los Angeles like sharks through ginger ale. As up to the minute as they are intensely observant, the guys, this time, prowl the golden muck of the Los Angeles real estate bubble to fine effect; an exhilarating read.”—Donald E. Westlake

“Blending the gritty realism of a Joseph Wambaugh police procedural with the sardonic humor of Janet Evanovich, Karp delivers a treat that's not only laugh-out-loud funny but

also remarkably suspenseful.”—Publishers Weekly

“I have not had this much fun reading a murder mystery in quite awhile. The back-and-forth bantering of the wisecracking Lomax and Biggs vastly entertains, while Mr. Karp delivers a first-rate plot with enough twist and turns at a record fast pace that guarantees to surprise readers. I enjoyed this book so much that I am going right out to buy the two previous Lomax and Biggs mysteries.”—Fresh Fiction

“I ‘flipped out’ for Marshall Karp’s Flipping Out, a police procedural that gleefully avoids the over-used CSI-type technical details and concentrates on the joys of a solid plot with fun characters, brisk dialogue, dark cop humor, and a pair of highly likely protagonists . . Fast-paced, suspenseful, highly-readable and thoroughly delightful.”—Mystery Scene Magazine

"Marshall Karp's mordant humor and knack for crackling dialogue are on fine display in FLIPPING OUT. Now that the housing market has tanked and the rest of the economy with it, there's guilty pleasure in reading a book where greedy real-estate speculation would seem to provide a motive for murder. Karp gets everything right, from cop-shop talk to bedroom banter, with bite-sized chapters fueling the pace."—Bob Morris, author of Bahamarama

“Two likeable, entertaining LAPD detectives, Mike Lomax and Terry Biggs, inhabit this series. They form a capable team, with overtones of the Martin and Lewis of yore playing cops. However, the two detectives are intuitive and analytical, while irreverent and rule-breaking. While their wives are busy flipping houses, Lomax and Biggs are hard at work being flip, wise-cracking their way to solving murders. They supply many funny lines along the way, but more importantly supply us with a rousing finish. The plot is imaginative and creative, the dialogue sparkling. RECOMMENDED.”—I Love A Mystery (www.iloveamystery.com)

“[In Flipping Out, Marshall Karp] writes some of the most entertaining scenes in mystery fiction, and I encourage everyone to discover Lomax and Biggs at their most joyful.”—The Courier-Journal (Louisville, Kentucky)

“Los Angeles detectives Lomax and Biggs (The Rabbit Factory ) look into the murders of several real estate agents who also happened to have been married to cops. Karp's humor and convoluted plot make this mystery a pleasure to read, à la Janet Evanovich and Lisa Scottoline, but he includes just enough pointed barbs about contemporary culture to keep the story in perspective.”—Library Journal

“Read this book and you'll be grinning the whole way through. Marshall Karp knows how to keep a story running full speed full time. This one's a blast.”—Michael Connelly

“Cop wives are dropping like flies in Karp’s third offering to feature the irrepressible Los Angeles Police Department detective team of Mike Lomax and Terry Biggs. All of the victims were partners in a realestate venture: flipping houses for fun and profit. (The group, which included mystery novelist Nora Bannister, had an ingenious gimmick; in her books, Bannister would set a murder at the address of an actual home up for sale).. Karp’s earlier novels (The Rabbit Factory, 2006, and Bloodthirsty, 2007) were gems of comic timing, focusing on good-natured Lomax and one-liner-slinging Biggs. This time around the attention is more on secondary characters and plot.—Booklist

“The book is completely entertaining, quick and easy, humorous and surprising. Karp's books are first-rate all the way!”—Record-Courier (Ravenna, OH)

"A whistle-stop tour of tension and excitement which doesn't let up for an instant . . . a shining example of all that's best in American detective fiction."—Books Monthly (http://www.booksmonthly.co.uk)

“Full of surprises and full of excitement, Flipping Out is another top-notch winner from a wry writer who has quite a flair for crafting fun-filled mysteries, so don't miss this one.”—BookLoons

“It should be obligatory for Marshall Karp to bring out a new book every summer so that you can relax on the beach or on lengthy plane or train journeys with it. Karp is a natural storyteller who entices you into the story and keeps you there.”— Reviewing The Evidence

“Fast paced with plenty of twists and turns, at times wickedly funny, Flipping Out works on many levels as a crime novel. It is highly recommended.”—Mystery Book News

“The writing and story are compelling and compulsive, leaving no room for an “I’ll finish tomorrow” thought to creep into your head.”—MadnessAbides.com

“Quite simply, this is going to be a book that’s hard to beat for its tight writing, quick witted humour and all around entertainment value.”—Chris High www.chrishigh.com

“Detective fiction is not always renowned for the quality of its dialogue, but Karp's expertise in television writing is deployed to great effect in Flipping Out. Karp confirms two other talents in this book. First, he has great command of his plot. The story sets itself for a grand finale with about half a dozen potential killers but keeps its secret to the very last. Second he is a tremendous technician. Almost every chapter finishes on a high note or a quip - often referencing something that has gone before. In other hands that sort of clever-clever technique could be irritating and wrong. But Karp has such charm and the writing is so good that it establishes a sort of mesmeric rhythm to the story that holds the reader. Hats off to Marshall Karp for another funny, entertaining cop thriller”—Material Witness

Publishers Weekly

LAPD homicide detectives Michael Lomax and Terry Biggs take on a killer targeting a group of police officers' wives in Karp's irreverent third mystery (after 2007's Bloodthirsty). When spouses of some of Lomax and Biggs's closest co-workers are found murdered, they begin their investigation by questioning the surviving members of the LA Flippers, the partnership of cop wives who, along with popular mystery writer Nora Bannister, have found a lucrative way to flip houses in the highly competitive Southern California real estate market. With the body count rising and pressure from Lomax and Biggs's superiors to close the case fast, the wisecracking duo must somehow track down a cunning psychopath before Biggs's wife becomes the killer's next target. Blending the gritty realism of a Joseph Wambaugh police procedural with the sardonic humor of Janet Evanovich, Karp delivers a treat that's not only laugh-out-loud funny but also remarkably suspenseful. (Apr.)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Library Journal

Los Angeles dectectives Lomax and Biggs (The Rabbit Factory) look into the murders of several real estate agents who also happened to have been married to cops. Karp's humor and convoluted plot make this mystery a pleasure to read, à la Janet Evanovich and Lisa Scottoline, but he includes just enough pointed barbs about contemporary culture to keep the story in perspective.


—Jo Ann Vicarel
Kirkus Reviews
What do cops' wives do when their husbands are on the job? Get killed, it seems. Meet the L.A. Flippers: Jo, Marisol, Marilyn, Julia and her mystery novelist mother Nora. Their company rehabs a house and puts it on the market after Nora uses it as a setting for her The House to Die For series. So far so good, until Jo is shot to death and a chunk of her hair chopped off, presumably taken as a trophy. Next to die are Julia and Nora, then Marisol. Is it open season on cops' wives, or is a dissatisfied homeowner intent on doing in these particular helpmeets? Detectives Mike Lomax and Terry Biggs (The Rabbit Factory, 2006) feel pressure from the Los Angeles City Hall to bring the cases to a quick conclusion, but there are several plausible suspects, including Nora's literary assistant, who may have coveted her bestseller status; Charlie, who became sole heir to the cool million Nora planned to bequeath Julia; and Marisol's husband Tony, who'd been carrying a private eye on his tail ever since Marisol became convinced he was having an affair. A bevy of sarcastic ripostes later, Lomax and Biggs figure out who's behind the killing spree. Alas, the denouement breaks up their weekly poker game. Glib, trendy and not so much plotted as delivered in comedy-club one-liners, with an over-the-top final twist. Agent: Mel Berger/William Morris Agency
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780312378233
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press
  • Publication date: 3/30/2010
  • Series: Lomax and Biggs Series , #3
  • Pages: 320
  • Sales rank: 837,608
  • Product dimensions: 8.34 (w) x 5.62 (h) x 0.86 (d)

Meet the Author

Marshall Karp

MARSHALL KARP, former ad executive, playwright, TV and screenwriter, is the author of the Lomax and Biggs mystery series. He is currently co-authoring a thriller with James Patterson.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 22 )
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 22 Customer Reviews
  • Posted June 3, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Flipping Out

    I am a huge fan of The Rabbit Factory and Blood Thirsty and could not wait to get my hands on Flipping Out. Sadly, for me, Flipping Out was a disappointment. A disappointment because I read it too quickly and wanted MORE! Seriously, though, while I was a little let down at the length of the book compared to Mr. Karp's fist two, the story did not let me down at all. Still the same great cast of characters, moments that had me laughing out loud, and a nicely written mystery. Now I'm disappointed again, because I have to wait until the next Lomax and Biggs book comes out! To anyone who enjoys mystery and humor and "real" characters who hasn't read these books - what the heck are you waiting for?? You will love them!

    6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 17, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    You'll flip over the ending of this book!

    Flipping Out by Marshall Karp

    I have to say that this book just flat out really did it for me. I have found a new obsession in Mr. Karps writing! I love mysteries, and this is a police procedural too.then to add the cherry onto the cake it is also laugh out loud funny. Mr. Karp better be sitting in front of his word processor right this minute cranking out the next book in this series that's all I have to say. I read this the third in the series first and as soon as I was done, I immediately went back and ordered the first two on this series - The Rabbit Factory and Bloodthirsty. There really is no need to read the first books in order since each can stand on it's own quite nicely, but it may help clarify some minor points and "in" jokes..

    Okay now down to the nitty gritty - this series stars two of LAPD's finest Detectives Mike Lomax, Terry Biggs (an aspiring stand up comic) and a whole slew of other equally hilarious secondary characters, including Mike's teamster father who loves to be a butinski, Mikes lady friend Diana and Terry's wife Marilyn. The first murder that happens, just happens to be another detective's wife and then there is a second murder of a cop's wife and then. well you get the idea! What do these murders have in common besides they are all cops wives? Well this group of women just all happen to belong to a club that flips houses for profit and this group includes Terry's wife Marilyn. This club is headed by famed mystery writer Nora Bannister who is writing a series of mystery books called The House to Die For Series. Each house in her series is an actual house newly renovated by the partners and as soon as the newest house in the series is ready to go on the market the wives start dying.

    If you think you will be able to figure out who-dun-it quickly and neatly you have a big surprise coming to you. I thought I had it all wrapped up neatly too, but Mr. Karp manages to throw in one heck of a curve ball at the end.
    Add to this some additional mayhem of Mike and Diana buying and renovating an older home and the humor never stops.

    PS: I just finished the The Rabbit Factory and Bloodthirsty and highly recommend them also

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 21, 2009

    Best Kept Secret

    How is it that after three stellar books, Marshall Karp is still unknown to the mainstream public? Flipping Out is yet another thiller that is both riveting and hilarious. If you are new to the series and are looking to enjoy the summer, buy all three and read them in order. If you are hopping on a plane, grab any one you can and settle in. Heck, the airlines may no longer give you peanuts, but Karp doesn't skimp on the characters, dialogue or plot. I also recommend going to his website -- he is a wonderfully funny blogger.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 13, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Another Awesome Lomax & Biggs Mystery!

    Flipping Out is the third book in a wonderful series by Marshall Karp featuring LAPD Homicide Detectives Mike Lomax and Terry Biggs. If you haven't read the first two yet, never fear. Karp's style of writing is such that you can jump right in and hit the ground running... then go back and order books one and two, The Rabbit Factory and Bloodthirsty. :-)

    The premise of Flipping Out revolves around a group of women who form a business to renovate and "flip" houses for profit. Lomax & Biggs become "involved" with the project when a member of the house flipping group, who was also the wife of one of their fellow detectives, is murdered at the location of the group's most recent house flipping project. Before Lomax & Biggs can figure out whether the victim was targeted because she was a police officer's wife or because she was a member of the house flipping team a second murder occurs, also of a woman who was a member of the house flipping team and a police officer's wife. Clearly, Lomax & Biggs have their hands full with a serial killer, and from there the pursuit is on in a race against the clock to catch the killer before he/she can work their way through the entire house flipping team.

    It's not easy to write a book that is both edge of your seat mystery as well as laugh-out-loud funny, but Karp pulls it off effortlessly. The black humor banter between Lomax & Biggs is razor sharp, and the one-liners fly fast and furious. But beneath the surface jocularity there is real depth to the characters in Karp's novels. Even the most bit player comes across as three-dimensional, and Lomax & Biggs are fully realized characters, wonderfully painted in a million shades of grey... there is nothing "stock" about these Hollywood Detectives.

    Far from putting it into cruise control for his third book, Karp just keeps getting better. This is easily the most complex mystery of his three offerings to date. The "who" of the "who dunnit?" is never obvious, and even when you think you've got it figured out Karp manages to serve up a wicked curveball of an ending. If you like mysteries, police procedurals, characters with depth, and laugh-out-loud writing then look no further... Flipping Out has it all, and then some!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 10, 2009

    Killer Karp

    If you liked his previous books, you will flip out over this one. It has all the humor and heart of Rabbit Factory and Blood Thirsty, but it has a killer plot that zips along so seamlessly that you'll discover it's 2AM and you can't stop reading. I loved this book. More, please!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 5, 2009

    Awesome

    Some suthours write a good first novel and then slack off-not Karp, he delivers. His characters (Lomax & Biggs) are so real you can reach out and touch them. The Rabbit Factory, Blood Thirsty, and Flipping Out are "must reads". If you like Demille's style you'll love Marshall Karp. Murder, mystery, mayhem, and monkeyshines between the covers of his books.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 4, 2009

    Flipping Out is a homerun

    Marshall Karp's latest, the third in the series, has his dynamic
    detective team, Lomax and Biggs, up to their eyeballs in a clever and
    surprisingly apt murder mystery. A bunch of women partner up with a famous lady mystery writer whose hook is to write about houses where murders are committed and then rehab and sell the houses. "Houses to Die For," she calls it. Brilliant, I calls it, and timely.
    Everything is going well and then the partners start getting killed.
    For Lomax and Biggs the stakes get significantly higher, the women are all cops' wives, and Biggs's wife is one of the partners.
    This is a smart, funny procedural, with plenty of twists and surprises and smooth dialogue to keep you interested and turning the pages.
    It's also a great way to escape the current mess for a while.
    Sometimes you just have to stop and smell the victims.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 27, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Terrific Read

    Flipping Out is a fast paced murder mystery. The cops are well-written, likeable characters who are quicker with their wits than with their guns. The plot twists and turns, leading in several unpredictable directions, finally culminating in a terrific surprising conclusion. I highly recommend this book to any mystery or humor fans. Very funny and thrilling.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 11, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    fans who enjoy a facetious funny yet suspenseful investigative thriller will want to read flippant FLIPPING OUT.

    Southern California residents are stunned and frightened when several spouses of cops are murdered by a serial killer with an apparent grudge. LAPD assigns homicide detectives Michael Lomax and Terry Biggs to lead the investigation. The common threat besides the jobs of their husbands is all the victims belong to the LA Flippers; a group making money even with the housing bubble bursting by flipping out houses for sale.<BR/><BR/>Lomax and Biggs interview the surviving members including the only no cop wife popular mystery writer Nora Bannister, but nothing makes sense as all the ladies do together is flip houses. More murders follow as several suspects surface. However, Terry is especially concerned as his wife is one of the surviving flippers.<BR/><BR/>In their latest Southern California police procedural (see THE RABBIT FACTORY and BLOODTHIRSTY), LAPD Detectives Mike Lomax and Terry Biggs feel incredible pressure beyond the usual brass, media and political harangue as this case is personal. It is so much so it even intrudes on their poker game. Although the plot is thin, fans who enjoy a facetious funny yet suspenseful investigative thriller will want to read flippant FLIPPING OUT.<BR/><BR/>Harriet Klausner

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 12, 2009

    Great Book

    This is a great book. I read it in 2 days. I couldn't put it down.

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  • Posted March 22, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    So glad Lomax & Biggs are back!!!

    This third installment in the Lomax & Biggs series does not disappoint. The wonderfully written characters are so quirky and flawed they'll feel like members of your own family. The plot twists will keep you guessing until the end, but not without a lot of laughs along the way. Not only a definite read for fans of the detective duo, but a must for anyone looking for a quick, witty read topped with an air of mystery.

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