Saturday, January 4, 2014

Lust, Book One of Lust, Money and Murder by Mike Wells


This book begins with a young and naive Elaine Brogan as she initially pursues her dream of a career as a photomodel. After becoming entangled with a sleazy modeling agency, she decides to become a Secret Service agent, struggling through the arduous training academy. After her first disastrous assignment, she is transferred to Bulgaria. There, she meets Nick LaGrange, the love of her life.


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.

Length:  106 Pages
Price:  $2.99

Thanks for visiting. RIW


  1. Actually, some books are 50-60k words. My hardback's about 65k, I think. But all books should definitely have an end. I hate when I'm left hanging and it's The End.

  2. Most of the e-pubs will accept manuscripts of 50-60k words, or even less. E-publishing has done wonders for short fiction, and I've reviewed some really good short pieces. But when I tried to submit one of my books to a big name publisher, they wanted a minimum of 100K words. In fact, one of my e-pubs won't bring a book out in print unless it's a minimum of 45K words, and my book came in at 41.4K, so it's published as an e-pub by my publisher, but I had to self-pub the print version, with my publisher's permission which she very graciously gave.

    Regardless, anything that is published as an individual entity whether it's 12 pages or 300, should have a definite beginning, middle and end and should not leave one hanging, even if it's part of a series.