Living the Vida Lola by Misa Ramirez

A Lola Cruz Mystery, Book 1

Synopsis: Meet Lola Cruz. After paying her dues as an intern, she’s now a full-fledged detective at Camacho and Associates. Her boss is Manny Camacho, a muy caliente former cop with a mysterious ex-wife, a Lara Croft look-alike girlfriend, and a sudden personal interest in Lola. Her first big case? A missing mother who may not want to be found. And to make her already busy life even more complicated, Lola’s helping her cousin plan her quinceañera, and battling her family and their old-fashioned views on women and careers. She’s also reunited with the gorgeous Jack Callaghan, her high school crush whom she shamelessly tailed years ago and photographed doing the horizontal salsa with some other lucky girl.

Lola takes it all in stride, but when the subject of her search ends up dead, she realizes she has a lot more to worry about. Soon she finds herself wrapped up in the possibly shady practices of a tattoo parlor, local politics, and someone with serious—maybe deadly—road rage. To top it all off, her treasured postcoital pictures of Jack are missing! Still, Lola is well-equipped to handle these challenges. She’s a black-belt in kung fu, and her body isn’t her only weapon. She’s got smarts, sass, and more tenacity than her Mexican mafioso-wannabe grandfather. A few of her famous margaritas don’t hurt, either.

Review: I saw a very nice review about this book, it was even compared to the Janet Evanovich’s series. So you as you think, being a fan of the Stephanie Plum novels, I could not wait to start it and see for myself how it was. Even if we can compare Lola and Stephanie by their disdain for guns, I do not think the two books are really similar. The two novels are very different, although the genre is the same.

Lola is a young detective in a big office and only dreams to show her worth. And now Manny, her boss, gives her a new case, although Sady, another associate, does not agree with this choice and even far away. This is an opportunity for our young heroine to show what she can do. And even if her methods are unorthodox, returns are felt quickly. A mother has disappeared under mysterious circumstance and Lola is determined to understand what happened. But things get complicated when the young woman is found dead, drugged and drowned. And if that was only that … Jack, her love of adolescence, is back in town. This man she spied when she was younger, taking pictures of him in a compromising situation to keep them until today. So of course, even years later her feelings remain the same and the photos are stored in her closet. Well … until her brother finds them out and steals them in order to blackmail her when it suits him. Everything changes, however, when she learns that her little crush is not one-sided and that Jack would love to be with her. Her girl dream comes true but she is still suspicious, Jack was well known for being a womanizer. But how to say no to such a man? Impossible. Yet he has many secrets that we do not discover this time, but I’m sure Lola will soon discover the truth.

I did not really expect a book such as this one, I thought I would have something really crazy and it’s actually not the case. This is not a bad thing, but it was different from what I thought. Lola is funny, bubbly and determined to do what she wants. And nobody, not even her family, that she loves more than anything in the world has the right to judge her on her work. She loves what she does and is passionate about her job that is her life. She perfectly complements her brother, who, like her, is a really strong character. I loved them both and it was very funny to see the blackmail they set to achieve their purposes. Jack is also a great character, one we can only love, although there are a lot of questions about him like the ones about Dolores. But how can we not appreciate this protective, courageous and loving man? I’m sure they will form an explosive couple. I had a lot of questions about Manny, and I do not really understand what he wants from our heroine. There is something I could feel throughout the book, without being able to put my finger on. Stay tuned!

I was quite surprised to see that the investigation took so much space in the story. I thought it would be something lighter, but this is not the case. The survey is fully developed throughout the story with a very interesting ending. In fact, I didn’t expect the truth behind the case of the woman disappearance. Well I must say that Lola has quite an extravagant way to find information. The history between our detective and Jack is also quite present, it must be said that she thinks about him all the time and is still in the middle of his path. It was nice to have a story so constructed and I’m curious to see what the author has for us for the next volume. This introduced us to the characters, highlighting the secrets they hide, but knowing Lola, it will not take her long to find out what happens.



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