Monday, February 27, 2012

Review: So Damn Lucky

Summary: Lucky O’Toole—Head of Customer Relations at The Babylon, premier mega-resort on the Vegas Strip—thinks it’s just another night in Las Vegas. But then a magician pulls a disappearing act, right under Lucky’s nose. Is it a stunt? Or something worse?

While Lucky chases leads, someone is trying to put her off the scent. As if this wasn’t enough to ruin her day, Lucky’s relationship with The Big Boss is coming to a head—past hurts can no longer be denied. Of course, she is already on shaky emotional ground: Teddie, her live-in, has been touring with a young and lovely pop star. Paxton Dane, former coworker and would-be suitor, is still circling, hoping to find a chink in the armor of Lucky’s resolve. And then, there’s this French chef, who is proving to be too hot to handle….

Las Vegas expert Deborah Coonts thrills again with this third installment in her dazzling series focused on casino “fixer” Lucky O’Toole. -- Forge

I have anxiously been awaiting the release of SO DAMN LUCKY by Deborah Coonts, the third book in the Lucky O'Toole Vegas Adventure series. Since I thought the first two books in the series were terrific (my review of WANNA GET LUCKY? and my review of LUCKY STIFF), I couldn't wait for the third installment. These mystery books just epitomize everything that I love about escape reads. They have a spunky main character in Lucky O'Toole, a terrific setting in Las Vegas, a tad of romance, as well as some very interesting mysteries.

After reading a few chapters, I was pretty sure that I would have the same reaction to SO DAMN LUCKY as I did to the first two books; and for the most part, I did enjoy this novel. But.... I don't think it's my favorite of the three. While SO DAMN LUCKY still had all of the elements I appreciate in a fun mystery book, I felt as if the mystery aspect wasn't as strong in this novel. That's not to say that I didn't like the mystery of the disappearing magician. It's just that I didn't think it was as intriguing as the first two mysteries.

Prior to reading this novel, had you asked me what my favorite part of these books were, I think I would have said Lucky and her personal life. However, now I'm not so sure. I don't think I gave enough credit to the author and her talents for weaving a good mystery. I think what made the first two books really special to me was the blend between the mystery and Lucky's escapades. I just wish SO DAMN LUCKY had a little more parts about the complexities of the mystery and a little less about Lucky and her conflicted emotions about all of the guys in her life.

Now don't get me wrong. I still love Lucky and think that she is a fantastic character. I, once again, got caught up in her boyfriend issues (as well as her mommy and boss issues.) I also loved reading about the crazy people and situations that she encounters as head of customer relations at a casino. I can pretty much guarantee that you will crack a smile or two when you "meet" some of the characters that visit Lucky's casino. (Is a casino in Las Vegas a perfect setting for a mystery series, or what?)

By the end of SO DAMN LUCKY, Lucky, of course, manages to solve the "murder," but she doesn't have as much luck with her love life. She is still reeling from the pain of missing her boyfriend Teddie who has left to tour the world as a pop star, and she finds herself attracted to the sexy French chef who runs a restaurant in the casino and a private investigator who is patiently waiting for Lucky to realize his potential. The end of the novel was definitely left open-ended, so I guess that means that I will have to read the next book in the series. Oh darn!

While SO DAMN LUCKY wasn't my favorite book in this series, I still consider myself a big fan of Lucky and her adventures. If you enjoy cute (and sexy) mysteries, then I definitely recommend this entire series, but I do think it's best to start from the beginning even if this book could work as a stand-alone.

Thanks to FSB Associates for sending a review copy of this novel.

Mystery Mondays is a regular feature where I review all types of mystery books -- traditional mysteries, suspense/thrillers, and even cozies! Please feel free to share your thoughts on any recent mystery books that you've read. 


Serena said...

Sounds like this one could have been a bit better. Thanks for the review.

bermudaonion said...

There's always a book in a series that isn't as strong as the rest. It sounds like this book is still good, though.

rhapsodyinbooks said...

Well Vegas is certainly a good setting for this kind of book - never a dull character out there! Sorry this one wasn't as good for you as the others!