Cover Image: Murder Notes

Murder Notes

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Member Reviews

I loved the characters and the storyline development of this book. It was absolutely one of my favorites so far and I can't wait to delve in to the next one that this author writes. The storyline was simple, enjoyable, and entertaining.
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This book tells the story of Lilah Love, FBI profiler with a penchant for murder. Sounded like a winner to me and at first, I did find the story interesting, though a bit slow moving. The book abruptly ends mid scene with no resolution, forcing you to read the next in the series if you want any closure. I’d prefer to make that decision on my own, this feels forced.
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*I was kindly gifted this in exchange for an honest review via Netgalley*

This book has me feeling all sorts of conflicted feelings. I really can't decide how I feel about this book. Hence the middle-of-the-road rating. 


Things I didn't like...
LILAH -Lilah is dull and really irritating. Her inner thoughts drag on for pages and pages and I just couldn't care less. She has zero charisma inside her own head (when she's around others I liked her a lot) but when she's on her own (which is most of the novel) she is such a drag. You learn nothing about her as a person other than snippets about a tragic past event in her life and even that is vague. You read it from her POV and you should connect with her but you don't.
THE CHARACTERS - I don't think I liked a single character in this. They all felt very 2D. We learn nothing about any of the characters other than what potentially could fuel the plot, and even then it's vague at best. Especially Kane...the number of times he says "I'm not my father" is comical. He needs more of a personality than not being his father. 
THE ROMANCE - I wanted to like the romance, give Kane and Lilah something redeemable. BUT again, you learn nothing about them - how they met, how they fell in love, first kiss or date. Why they bonded? What connected them? All you learn is why they are not longer together. It's hard to route for them why you don't even know why they want to be together. 
THE WRITING - I did like the writing style...but there was very little dialogue. You spend a solid 80% of this book in Lilah's internal thoughts or description of things. It just drags it down. Mysteries rely on questioning people to gain information hence there should be a decent amount of dialogue but instead, it's just mental leaps made by Lilah alone in her room. Lilah never seems to question anyone. She just sends her lackeys to do internet research. The couple of times she tries to get information from someone - she fails. SHE SUCKS AT HER JOB!! Why is everyone treating her like is amazing at it?
THE PLOT - I still don't know what the plot of this book really was. The first 20% - great plot. And then after that point...not much happens other than Lilah running around and learning nothing. And then the murder mystery book ends without solving anything and just leaving it to the next book in the series. 
THE CLIFFHANGER - well...this is obvious why I didn't like that. Does anyone like cliff-hangers?

The things I liked...
INTRIGUE - Despite not liking all of the pretty key features of a book that I mentioned above...something about this made me want to keep reading. And has made me already start the sequel because I just had to know what happened next. It wasn't just the cliff-hanger that made this a thing, it was like this the whole way through. I didn't want to put it down despite seemingly enjoying very little about what made this book this book. I can't explain why but something about this has me hooked.
THE DIALOGUE - Even the dialogue was very few and far between in this book, when it did crop up I adored it. They were the few moments where I liked Lilah. It was actually funny and I did laugh aloud. I hope the next book has more dialogue!

Basically, my thoughts are that this book was too vague. It feels unfinished. The author didn't want to give away too much about the mystery which she successfully managed...but in the process left everything else in the book feeling vague too. Leaving the reader not ever learning anything at all and not connecting to anyone or any aspect of the book. I hope the next one improves because this has promise if it just focuses and develops these things.
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Have you ever finished a book and wondered what was the main goal or central purpose?
I understand having multiple partners is cool for some but why the love triangle centering around Rich (our La guy), Kane Mendez (fiancé of Lilah), Samantha, and Lilah's brother.
The book started off fine with Lilah being drugged and these crazy notes being left all around like the 'M is for murder' style but then it went crazy with bed hoppers and so I wondered what happened to the intro which claimed she a FBI profiler now on the hunt for the killer with ties to her past.
Flashbacks resulting from her previous attacks and brutish brutalities come to light but she's now on the smack down against any woman who comes her way.
So, the final question is what happened the last day on the beach and who is the ultimate killer is on the line. This guy Romano then shows up unable to move in a chair in this Lilah Love the first of the series.
This wasn't what I was expecting but I hope you enjoy it.
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Murder Notes (Lilah Love #1). By Lisa Renee Jones. 2020. Julie Patra Publishing (ARC eBook).

When FBI profiler Lilah Love is called to a murder scene on a California beach she finds a connection to her past—a past event that sent her running away from the NYPD, her family and lover. Now she learns that this murder ties to another in New York and Lilah believes they are the work of an assassin and not a serial killer that the police are assuming. That past connection though is what sends Lilah back home to do damage control. But she seems to have collected a stalker as creepy notes begin showing up for her, warning her away from investigating. 

Murder Notes is a fascinating read. Lilah is brash and has no filter. Her story unfolds with humor and building tension and suspense. Lilah’s former lover, Kane Mendez is a powerful and dangerous man, so totally swoon-worthy. Together they are a hot mess. Lilah’s family and fellow law enforcement are acting shady and the cliffhanger has me wanting to start the second part of the duet ASAP.
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Fasten your seatbelt and prepare for a wild ride.  The action and suspense will keep you on the edge of your seat.  The attraction between Lilah and Kane just sizzles.  I loved the badass personality of Lilah that is balanced out with her hints of femininity.  She is a hunter that enjoys her vintage Louis Vuitton wardrobe. I loved how she acknowledges that she does better with dead people than with the living as there are some days that I can relate. There are lots of twists in this story with all the different characters and potential suspects (even family members) only for it all to end with a cliff hanger!  Can’t wait to start book 2, Murder Girl.
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Another favorite by a great author. The plot of the story was very well written. The author really draws the reader in as you read. I felt like I was an unnamed character in the story. Love this author.
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This is a solid first book to get you hooked in the plot. 

The whole time you have two main questions. What happened the last day Kane and Lilah were on the beach and who is the killer? During the whole book Lisa Jones does an excellent job at making all the characters appear to be morally grey and have a reason to be the murderer. You also have a love triangle brewing between Kane, Lilah, and Rich; Rich is the guy Lilah has been with while living in LA. While, Kane was old faithful that she was hot and heavy with in her hometown. You also have some other questionable relationships politically and sexually that don't seem to make any sense either. I will continue to read this series because I really want to know who is behind the murders and why.
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This author is someone I've checked out before and thought I'd look at again. Boy am I glad I did! And let me just say that this woman is the queen of cliffhangers! The story is full of suspense, action and intrigue and truly captured my interest the entire time. I'm glad I got the first few books to get started! #murdernotes #netgalley
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Murder Notes by Lisa Jones was a difficult book for me to finish.  Sure this is catnip for some readers but the super-wealthy woman -  an FBI profiler -  pursued by men but uninterested reads like a man writing about a woman.  Like a reverse batman without the cool villains.  This is the first book in the 'Lilah Love' series I don't intend to read the others.
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Good mystery and very good pacing blended with romance. The one thing I would change is that cliffhangers need to be written in a way that you still feel you good a complete book. When done right, I've even loved some cliffhangers because they can add to the emotional experience, but when not, they just feel anticlimactic.
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Murder Notes was a bit different from the previous author's books. It did take me a little bit to get into this story, But I was in it I couldn't put the book down Lilah Love's story is full of suspense, mystery. Thanks netgalley
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Lilah love daughter of an actress and a police chief has a secret to hide. Since joining the FBI and becoming a profiler she has helped solve many crimes and moved away from the Hampton's set she was brought up in, That is until a series of murders appearing to be linked to her past and secrets force her return. Whom is it that is behind the murders? Who is taunting her with notes hinting they know her secret? What actually happened that fateful night on the beach? I am loving this crime mystery and it is keeping me guessing with its twists and turns which is good because if I think I knowvtge answers I rush through to the end to see if I was right and am often then left dissatisfied that it was to easy to solve. I am about to dive in to book 2 Murder girl and still trying to figure this puzzle out,
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FBI Agent Lilah Love is a New York native who loves to shock with her pretty looks and foul mouth. A serial killer takes her from California back to her hometown in New York – all the while causing flashbacks of what forced her to flee in the first place.

Unfortunately, this was a miss for me. I couldn’t connect with the main character because I didn’t get enough of a background. There was so much secrecy about her past and what happened that I didn’t feel like I could find a common ground with her. I also did not like the constant flashbacks in the middle of a chapter; it was hard to bounce back and forth between the two storylines. For me, this was a typical murder mystery – so definitely grab it, especially if you’re looking for a series to get into – but there was nothing special to set it apart from the others.
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This is the first book in a series and you will need to be committed to reading the next one as the book ends abruptly and the next one begins immediately after.

Lilah Love is a FBI profiler and she has all the badass qualities you would hope for. Really enjoyed this first novel and am now straight into the next!
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The title and the author caught my attention then hooked once the pages are turned. I do not often get to read this author so this was a treat. This is also fitting into my reading taste of late when I notice too the character is a FBI profiler. This also will have a series of murders so that promised intensity at times and it delivered. But folks it is not a serial killer according to Lilah. All paths go to her place she grew up so things will and do get deep. Now with family and history in the picture this gives you alot to sink yourself into. You left with questions though needing answers so be ready to devour to get to the next one.
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I was hooked from the beginning to the end. Fantastic storyline and wonderful characters Can't wait to read more by Lisa Renee Jones
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Honestely this book is first in a series and you should definitely *not* pick it up if you don't want to be stuck to multiple books since this first one ends. Not even in a cliffhanger, it just stops in what could be the middle of the book if books 1 and 2 were properly combined with an ending that makes sense.
Also don't pick it up if you want romance, cause multiple times stating you hate a guy and what he respresents, yet feel yourself drawn too because of certain events in your past and have sex with out of anger is not romance.

Yet the dynamic between Lilah Love, FBI profiler and Kane Mendez, alleged cartel leader,is interesting and I did end up liking the pairing. The book is written in a first-person pov (Lilah's) and I think the writer puts too much effort in  creating her like a dark character to explain her connection to Kane. Her repetitive thinking about her being a coldblooded killer as if that would explain why she liked Kane started to annoy me. He's tall, dark, handsome and a little (or lot) dangerous...everyone will be tempted.
It might sound as if it was not enjoyable at all, but that's not the case. I was interested to see where it would lead and who would be the people behind all the murders. So yes, I did start book 2 which proves there's something interesting enough to keep going. 
Just don't pick it up if you're offended by a f*ck here or there and only want to read about perfect, female FBI profilers.

*** An ARC was provided by Netgalley in exchange for a honest review. ***
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3 1/2 you have my attention stars (rounded up)

Murder Notes is the first book in a series, and it ends in a cliffhanger (that feels like it's right in the middle of the story), so you should definitely know that going in bc there is no resolution to anything at the end of this ride.

Lilah Love is:
- daughter of a very famous movie star (who died about 10 years earlier in an accident) and a police chief from a small town turned mayor and now wannabe governor of the state of NY
- a former NYPD detective that became an FBI agent and moved relatively suddenly from NY to LA a couple of years ago
- ex-girlfriend of the heir to a giant drug cartel that insists he is not involved in and is instead a businessman
- current-ish girlfriend of a surfer-looking dude that happens to be a fellow FBI agent in Los Angeles (though she is trying to break up with him bc she knows he's not for her)

Lilah Love is not:
- taking any sh!t from anyone, sorry not sorry
- someone's "woman"
- going to be bullied into going along with the plan when she doesn't believe in the cause or buy into your BS
- a victim - yes, she was attacked, but she more than got the better of the man who dared try to one up her, and she does not feel badly... not even a little... which kind of makes her worry a little (okay, a lot)
- not leaving until she solves these crimes
- not staying either

But now Lilah Love has a problem: someone has laid down clues in the form of assassin-like murders that have led her back to the literal scene of the crime: her former home in The Hamptons where her brother is now the chief and her father the mayor. And her former bestie the ADA. And plenty of people that would like to see her fall flat on her face. So not only does she need to figure out why people are dying and why someone obviously wants her attention, but she has to do so while navigating the landmines that riddle her past. And the man she left behind that has never truly let her go.

What I liked:
--- Lilah started off a little too rough but she eventually won me over; Kane is just straight up sinfully delicious
--- The crimes and mystery definitely grabbed my attention and made me want to read more

What I didn't like as much:
--- At some times, it was a lot to keep up with (who is who/from LA or NY/past or present or both), so it took me a little while to get some clarity
--- Not very much in the way of steamy goodness, but what was there was yummy

Overall, my interest in the story, the mystery, and the characters is definitely high enough that I will continue on with the series to see what happens next!

Plot --- 3.5/5
Main Characters --- 4/5
Supporting Cast --- 3.5/5
Steam Level* --- 2.5/5
Violence --- not overly graphic but crime scenes and attack flashbacks
Language --- Lilah's fave word is the f-bomb
POV --- 1st (Lilah's)

*Note that steam level is not a rating so much as a how hot was it: 0/5 - clean; 1/5 - mild (nothing descriptive); 2/5 - 3rd base action/1 home run; 3/5 - now we're getting somewhere (a couple of full-on steamy scenes); 4/5 - yes please! (erotica territory); 5/5 - they did EVERYTHING in this one, y'all
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Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for the opportunity to read this book.  I have found a new favorite author! I love Lilah Love, her toughness, her vulnerabilities, her drive, and most of all the love of those who care for her! What a great read! The book starts off with a murder or two and then three seemingly all connected that have something to do with FBI agent Love and her past. Growing up in a law enforcement family with her dad the Police Chief, now her brother the police chief and a past love Kane who as she may try cannot get out of her head - this book was wonderful! I can't wait to read more from this author!
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