Giveaway & Review: Lucky Penny by Ellie Ashe

Scroll to the bottom to check out the giveaway!

Narrator: Teri Schnaubelt

Publisher: Ellie Ashe (2017)

Length: 7 hours 17 minutes

Series: Book 3 Miranda Vaughn Mysteries

Author’s Page

Note: While this is Book 3 in the series, it works fine as a stand alone.

Miranda Vaughn has a new job that may lead to a bigger, more permanent job. She’s off to the Whispering Pines Resort at Lake Tahoe to help Dottie Russel assess the owner’s finances, since he wishes to buy a currently abandoned casino resort, Lucky Penny, that his family once owned. It sounds like a dream job, at least until things get complicated. With a film crew on site and the FBI coming out to investigate the possibility of illegal gambling, there’s plenty of possible culprits in the mix.

This book is rather different from the last, Dropping the Dime, which was also different from the first, Chasing the Dollar. All 3 have been good, though I think I enjoyed Book 2 the most. There wasn’t an instant mystery and nearly all the action happens in the last quarter of the book. However, since I was hooked on the main characters from the previous books, I didn’t mind the slow burn on this story. Just because we don’t have a body doesn’t mean that Miranda isn’t capable of being in the middle of trouble.

I did like the addition of the film crew and famous movie stars. It made parts of the resort inaccessible so Miranda and Dottie can’t go everywhere. Miranda does meet a personal assistant on the film crew and this lady is very cheerful and bouncy and quite willing to sneak Miranda into the filming area so she can meet the heart throb of the film. That adds to Miranda’s romantic entanglements nearly as much as when Quinn arrives.

In Book 2, Quinn showed definite interest in Miranda and she was definitely tempted, yet she still has this simmering undercurrent of attraction with FBI agent Jake Barnes, who also shows up at the resort later. One thing I have enjoyed about these books is that while there is this romantic element, it’s secondary to the mystery. With that said, the author does bump of the time spent on Miranda’s romance life in this book, which made some parts of the story a little silly or a little slow for me. I prefer the mystery, the hunt, the action, the critical thinking.

So we get to the last quarter of the book and things really pick up. There’s definitely some double dealing going on and the Lucky Penny seems to be at the heart of it. This was the best part of the book though I do have to say that using a sneeze to move the plot along is just a touch cliche. It’s cute, but cliche. Still, even with that, I really enjoyed watching Jake and Miranda figure out who did what, since there’s more than one crime to solve. I suspected one culprit but did not see the other. Clever.

All together, it was a fun cozy mystery. I look forward to seeing what trouble Jake and Miranda can get into in the future and also how their relationship develops.

I received a free copy of this book via The Audiobookworm.

The Narration: Teri Schnaubelt is still great at being Miranda Vaughn. I also really liked her always cheery voice for the personal assistant, her older, quavering voice for Dottie, and her distressed drama queen voice for the female movie star. She was great at the male voices as well.

What I Liked: More than 1 mystery to solve; the setting; addition of the film crew; Miranda’s developing relationship with Jake; great narration; Dottie’s character. 

What I Disliked: More time spent on the romance than the first 2 books; cliched, if timely, sneeze.

Check out more reviews, interviews, spotlights, and more on the blog tour.

About Author Ellie Ashe:

USA Today best-selling author Ellie Ashe has always been drawn to jobs where she can tell stories—journalist, lawyer, and now writer. Writing quirky romantic mysteries is how she gets the “happily ever after” that so often is lacking in her day job.

When not writing, you can find her with her nose in a good book, watching far too much TV, or trying out new recipes on unsuspecting friends and family. She lives in Northern California with her husband and three cats, all of whom worry when she starts browsing the puppy listings on petfinder.com.

Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook ~ GoodReads

Synopsis of Lucky Penny:

A year after her acquittal on fraud charges, former financial analyst Miranda Vaughn is finally getting her life back. Not only does she have a chance for romance with her sexy neighbor, FBI Agent Jake Barnes, but she’s also got a new job…one that’s taking her to a vacation paradise!

Perched above the crystal blue waters of Lake Tahoe, the Whispering Pines Resort & Spa is a local landmark and a popular destination for the rich and famous who are stressed out from being rich and famous. And down on the water’s edge is the Lucky Penny Casino – an abandoned shell of a once-stylish casino. Max Emmerson, the owner of the Whispering Pines Resort, used to own the Lucky Penny, and he wants it back. Miranda’s job is to get Max’s finances in order so he can borrow the money to buy the casino, and make sure nothing jeopardizes his gaming license. Easy, right?

But the nice boring accounting job spirals out of control with the addition of a Hollywood film crew, an underground gambling ring, and Jake going undercover at the resort as a newlywed – with another woman. As Miranda and Jake each dive into their investigations, they can’t deny their growing feelings for each other. But it’s more important than ever that they keep their attraction hidden. Especially since someone at the resort is watching them very closely, and is willing to do just about anything to keep them from uncovering the truth.

Audible        Amazon

About Narrator Teri Schnaubelt:

Teri Schnaubelt is a Chicago-based actor, voice actor and audiobook narrator with over 100 titles, including NY Times Bestsellers.

Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook

GIVEAWAY!!!

The Blog Tour and the author have teamed up to giveaway a Kindle Fire! Enter below through Gleam! Ends May 14, 2017.

Miranda Vaughn Mysteries Giveaway

Giveaway & Review: Dropping the Dime by Ellie Ashe

Scroll to the bottom to check out the giveaway!

Narrator: Teri Schnaubelt

Publisher: Ellie Ashe (2016)

Length: 7 hours 9 minutes

Series: Book 2 Miranda Vaughn Mysteries

Author’s Page

Note: While this is Book 2 in the series, it works fine as a stand alone.

Miranda Vaughn has continued to work for Bob, who was her defense attorney when she was wrongly accused of fraud in Chasing the Dollar. Now she’s helping out on a new financial fraud case, her job being to work closely with Chief Financial Officer Kathryn. Looks like there’s some irregularities and Kathryn thinks there’s another chunk of numbers that her boss doesn’t want her to see, but her name as CFO is on many of the company’s legal documents; this gives her plenty of reasons to worry. Meanwhile, the FBI have been called in, and that means that Miranda has to work with Agent Jake Barnes. There’s still sparks between the two, but is that all it is?

I think this book was even better than the first. The plot felt tighter and the characters better defined. There was some humor as well as personalities clashing or folks accidentally step on toes. Miranda has gotten her legs back under her after the events of Book 1. She’s gainfully employed doing something close to doing what she did before her trial. Many folks have moved on but she does bump into a few peripheral characters that feel she’s guilty no matter what the courts decided.

And speaking of that, enter a new love interest, Quinn. He has a drug conviction under his belt though there’s some mystery surrounding it. He’s also part of a rich family and has a nice ranch complete with horses. Miranda may be swept off her feet by this man if she’s not careful. After all, he can understand better than most Miranda’s myriad of feelings about law enforcement and the justice system in this country.

Now we still have Jake Barnes, as handsome as ever, and he’s clearly still interested in Miranda. The author does a good job of not getting caught up in some silly love triangle drama. Merely, Miranda has choices in her life and she has to decide what, or who, she wants to pursue. Plus, all three of these characters have more than romance going on in their lives and that makes them interesting.

Now the main mystery was a good one. I did not see all the angles and that made it interesting. There’s also Miranda’s added complication of her little breaking & entering that muddies the waters. On the surface, financial fraud seems like dull investigative work. The author makes it exciting by showing how the criminals can gain from it and the lengths they are willing to go to cover it up.

I received a free copy of this book via The Audiobookworm.

The Narration: Teri Schnaubelt continues to be a great Miranda Vaughn. I like how expressive her voice is for Miranda, because Miranda goes through quite a variety of emotions in this book. She also does a good job with the male voices, making Quinn and Jake both sound interesting and sexy (when needed) yet distinct.

What I Liked: Interesting financial fraud; the deeper mystery; Quinn’s past; Jake’s role; Miranda’s breaking and entering error; great narration.

What I Disliked: Nothing – I really enjoyed this one!

Check out more reviews, interviews, spotlights, and more on the blog tour.

About Author Ellie Ashe:

USA Today best-selling author Ellie Ashe has always been drawn to jobs where she can tell stories—journalist, lawyer, and now writer. Writing quirky romantic mysteries is how she gets the “happily ever after” that so often is lacking in her day job.

When not writing, you can find her with her nose in a good book, watching far too much TV, or trying out new recipes on unsuspecting friends and family. She lives in Northern California with her husband and three cats, all of whom worry when she starts browsing the puppy listings on petfinder.com.

Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook ~ GoodReads

Synopsis of Dropping the Dime:

Miranda Vaughn was once falsely accused of stealing millions, and now she’s helping others who are facing criminal charges. While being an assistant to her former defense attorney isn’t Miranda’s dream job, she’s eager to prove herself, and her first task is a simple one – protect Kathryn, a shy CFO turned informant, and help her prove that a popular real estate developer is embezzling millions from his company. But what should be a straightforward assignment is deliciously complicated when Miranda is thrown together with FBI Agent Jake Barnes, the man who saved her life, broke her heart, and then disappeared.

Beneath the neatly plotted rows of new homes lurk dark secrets, bitter feuds and a whole lot of greed. Nothing is what it appears; even Miranda’s timid client is hiding secrets of her own. Despite her growing distrust of her client, Miranda must protect Kathryn from becoming the target of the FBI’s investigation and protect herself from the real thief – all while protecting her heart from the sexy FBI agent she can’t seem to resist.

Audible        Amazon

About Narrator Teri Schnaubelt:

Teri Schnaubelt is a Chicago-based actor, voice actor and audiobook narrator with over 100 titles, including NY Times Bestsellers.

Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook

GIVEAWAY!!!

The Blog Tour and the author have teamed up to giveaway a Kindle Fire! Enter below through Gleam! Ends May 14, 2017.

Miranda Vaughn Mysteries Giveaway

Giveaway & Review: Chasing the Dollar by Ellie Ashe

Scroll to the bottom to check out the giveaway!

Narrator: Teri Schnaubelt

Publisher: Ellie Ashe (2015)

Length: 7 hours 23 minutes

Series: Book 1 Miranda Vaughn Mysteries

Author’s Page

Miranda Vaughn has been through hell lately. She’s been accused and arrested for fraud and her court battle has cost her dearly. She lost her job, her fiance, her financial security, and the trust of friends and colleagues. Now, even with the not guilty verdict, she hasn’t been able to find a job in the financial district. Instead she works at her aunt’s bakery. Miranda becomes convinced that her name won’t be truly clear until she finds who is really behind the fraud. As she digs into details of her own case, she uncovers plenty that makes her think she can catch the real culprit. Bouncing about the globes chasing that elusive dollar, she’s joined by the FBI agent Jake Barnes (who is rather suspicious of her motives).

This was an easy mystery to get caught up in. Right away, we have Miranda who society (and some white collar criminals) has wronged. She’s been set up to take the fall for this financial fraud. I was on her side from the opening scene. As I learned more about her, I liked her even more. She was raised by her aunt who owns that bakery and her aunt loves her dearly. In fact, her aunt’s bakery is on the line in the upcoming civil suits as those who lost their savings try to wring it out of Miranda. She can’t stand for that so she starts digging and each clue leads to another and another. Pretty soon she’s off to Monaco with a half-baked plan.

Enter our hunky main man, FBI agent Jake. He’s the guy who actually arrested Miranda all those months ago, so she’s really not thrilled about him showing up. However, the militant folks with guns seem more threatening in that moment, so an unsteady truce is called. The two join forces even as they shoot skeptical looks at each other. I loved that they didn’t instantly trust each other even as we know there is a spark of interest there.

The mystery remains the center focus of this novel, which I appreciated (not being a Romance genre fan overmuch). Someone put together a clever scheme and had Miranda’s personal info to set her up. She has a list of people who could have done it. Now from the beginning of the book, I did guess who the main bad guy was going to be. I’m going to call it a lucky guess. At any rate, Miranda didn’t figure out who all the bad guys were until the main villain was standing in front of her with a pistol in hand.

When I thought the mystery was wrapped up, I still had perhaps another 2 hours left in the book. The author does a good job of wrapping up any loose ends. I was worried I might be a little bored with such a long wrap up but the author made it pertinent and enjoyable. I look forward to Book 2!

I received a free copy of this book via The Audiobookworm.

The Narration: Teri Schnaubelt did a really good job with Miranda’s emotions. When Miranda was shocked, so was I. When she was feeling all tingly towards Jake, I was right there with her. Schnaubelt has a good range of voices so all the characters were distinct.

What I Liked: I was caught up in the mystery right away; from the beginning I was on Miranda’s side; Jake and Miranda don’t trust each other for much of the book; the ending wraps up several loose ends.

What I Disliked: I did guess one of the main bad guys right away but perhaps it was a lucky guess. 

Check out more reviews, interviews, spotlights, and more on the blog tour.

About Author Ellie Ashe:

USA Today best-selling author Ellie Ashe has always been drawn to jobs where she can tell stories—journalist, lawyer, and now writer. Writing quirky romantic mysteries is how she gets the “happily ever after” that so often is lacking in her day job.

When not writing, you can find her with her nose in a good book, watching far too much TV, or trying out new recipes on unsuspecting friends and family. She lives in Northern California with her husband and three cats, all of whom worry when she starts browsing the puppy listings on petfinder.com.

Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook ~ GoodReads

Synopsis of Chasing the Dollar:

Miranda Vaughn has spent the last year and a half fighting for her freedom. Arrested for a fraud scheme involving her supervisors, she’s lost her job at a prestigious investment firm, her fiancé, and her reputation. She walks out of the courtroom a free woman, only to find that life has a few more curve balls to throw her way. The jury may have found her not guilty, but Miranda is broke, in debt to her beloved aunt, and can’t find a job because of the cloud of suspicion still swirling around her. She’s not going to be able to move forward with her life until she finds out who set her up.

Buried in the evidence against her, Miranda finds a larger scheme, one involving far more money than the $37 million her boss fleeced from unsuspecting investors. Determined to uncover the truth, Miranda begins her own investigation – leading her to Macau and Belize, and into the arms of one sexy FBI agent, who may or may not prove to be trustworthy. When the danger heats up, Miranda finds herself in a race against time to find the person behind it all. Before he finds her….

Audible        Amazon

About Narrator Teri Schnaubelt:

Teri Schnaubelt is a Chicago-based actor, voice actor and audiobook narrator with over 100 titles, including NY Times Bestsellers.

Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook

GIVEAWAY!!!

The Blog Tour and the author have teamed up to giveaway a Kindle Fire! Enter below through Gleam! Ends May 14, 2017.

Miranda Vaughn Mysteries Giveaway