Stilettos & Scoundrels

Rated 3.60/5 based on 11 reviews
RE-EDITED MARCH 2014
Tom raised his hands to protect himself but he wasn’t quick enough. The spikey end of the stiletto heel punctured his neck instantly, sending a spray of blood over the papers on his desk. He tried to cry out, but all that sounded was a gurgling noise as his lungs filled with blood.

The intruder set the shoe down next to Tom and backed out of the room softly. More
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Price: Free! USD

Published by Five Seas Ink
Words: 101,670
Language: English
ISBN: 9781452448626
About Laina Turner

As a child Laina thought she would either be a truck driver (thanks to Jerry Reed in Smokey and the Bandit) or work at Taco Bell (her favorite restaurant as a child). As she grew older she realized her talents lay in academics and business and for the last several years has been a business consultant and college professor where she uses the analytical side of her brain and not the side that makes up stories.

Through all her career choices she has continued to have a passion for writing. This stemmed from childhood whereas an only child she developed a vivid imagination spending most of her time making things up and thinking the Incredible Hulk lived in her closet.

Proud of her vast experiences in life from barrel racing to being on the dance team for a semi pro basketball team to being a mom of 2 amazing kids, she tells her family and friends that no one is safe from their escapades slipping in to her books.

Taking the plunge to write books (cozy mysteries and chick lit) that she actually lets people read in 2010, she has worked her way up to being a real author, having 5 fans (maybe 6 now). Her blog, The Art Of Living Fabulously, was launched to share the daily fun in the life of a Real Housewife of the Midwest along with the musing of other fabulous ladies.

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Reviews

Review by: Rene Lathrop-Nethercot on Sep. 11, 2012 :
I thought this story was entertaining. I would have given it five stars except for the grammatical misteps. The tense changing from first person to third was quite distracting. I liked the premise of the story and really enjoyed the characters I found them well developed, and less "perfect" than most characters one finds in literature. Mainly Presley's predelection to purchase things she can't afford, and throw tantrums to get her way. I wouldn't buy the story in its current form mainly due to the grammatical issues. I would however buy a revised version of this book. Thank you for a good free read.
(review of free book)

Review by: Romance Girl on Sep. 17, 2011 :
Presley has lost her job; but decides this might just be a good thing. The only problem, she doesn't have a job to go to. Of course she is only concerned about her shopping and Starbucks habit needing money. She remembers her friend Trevor asked her to write stories for his on line magazine so she decides to check in with him. This will be a good thing because she has always wanted to be a writer.

Her first assignment is to write a story about a U.S. Senator, so, she goes home to visit her folks for a few days. Low and behold the Senator is in town. The Senator has a gambling problem, as well as, being a womanizer. Presley starts asking the town gossips questions and finds her self knee deep in more then she bargained for. To make matters worse, she discovers Cooper Sands, a high school fling, works for the Senator. When the situation gets ugly with the Senator, Presley teams up with Cooper to do some investigating. He wants to protect Presley; but she doesn't want his protection. Do they both want more then to investigate the case?

The story takes a while to unfold; but in general is an okay story. You have sex, love, murder, and lust. What more can you ask for? Presley, the main female character, is not very likable in my estimation. I find her shallow and extremely immature for the role she played. She wants to be a liberated woman; but comes across as a spoiled child in order to get her way. She goes off on her own to gather information and ends up causing more trouble. Cooper sounds like sex personified. He is handsome, muscular and has nice "buns" according to Presley. He tries to play the protector; but Presley wants none of it.

Overall this is a good story. I just thought it moved too slowly. My biggest problem with the book is the continual descriptions to clothing and shoes. I know they went along with the character of Presley; but I felt they were just a bit over done and detracted from the story. I had the impression they were supposed to make the story amusing; but they had the opposite affect with me.

I wish to thank Laina for providing me with a copy of the book to read and review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed are my own. I was not compensated in any way except for being provided a copy of the book to read.
(reviewed long after purchase)

Review by: Romancing the Book on Sep. 04, 2011 :
Reviewed by JoAnne

This was more chick lit than a mystery but it was a fun read. It was sometimes confusing when most of the characters were involved in the same scene. Presley was the quirkiest sleuth I've ever met, but nothing seemed to phase her. She stuck her nose in everywhere it didn't belong but didn't seem to care. You couldn't help but like her. I laughed quite a few times at her antics and couldn't believe she would get away with her actions. I would recommend this book if you're looking for something light. At the end of the book there was an excerpt from the next "case" she was asked to help solve. I'll give that book a try too.
(reviewed long after purchase)

Review by: Cheryl Francis on Aug. 04, 2011 :
Presley is a Senior Human Resource Manager at McLaughlin Industries. Right in the beginning of the book, she gets fired from her job. She definitely has to find some kind of work since she loves shoes and shopping! As you can see from these quotes:

"Enough reflecting, she said to herself, unlocking her door. There were more pressing things to worry about--like finding a new job. The bills wouldn't pay themselves, and she didn't have a sugar daddy in her back pocket. Stepping on the foyer, she kicked off her Jimmy Choo's (she had a weakness for shoes and would rather not eat than go without her favorite shoes), and dug her toes into the thick, cream shag carpet as she hung her coat in the front closet. I'll have to cut back on the shoe shopping now that I am unemployed, she thought to herself. That was going to be more difficult than anything. A girl had to have her priorities." p.14

"Shoes, bags and accessories of all kinds were just as important as food; actually, they were probably more important than food. Right after coffee and before food was probably the perfect priority for accessories." p. 34

She was thinking about what she would like to do for a job. The two things she always wanted to do was be a writer and work at Kentucky Fried Chicken (her favorite restaurant when she was little). Her friend Trevor had talked about her writing for his online magazine. Since she loves to write, she thought maybe she will try that. Her first assignment is to interview the Senator who is from Alkon, her hometown. She decides to go there and do the interview. She figures it will be a good chance to spend time with her friends and family too.

Within a few hours of the time that she interviews the Senator, he is murdered. She finds herself immersed in trying to figure out who murdered the Senator. This is when the book really picked up for me! I am surprised at how good of a detective Presley is, and this really made the story!

Presley's mom still treated her like a little girl, and that was really annoying. If I was Presley I would have told her that she is a grown girl and stop treating her like a child!

Overall, I really enjoyed this book! The story really picked up for me after the murder, and I was turning pages to see what was going to happen next! I hope Presley comes back in another book! I definitely recommend this book!
(reviewed long after purchase)

Review by: Kristin Durham on July 16, 2011 :
A wonderful and quirky who dun it with a chick lit spin! I fell in love with Presley Thurman from page one and couldn't wait to hear all about her adventures. The large cast of characters was hard at times to remember who was linked with whom, but once it was all settled I couldn't find out who was the killer and why they committed the murder. I had my thoughts and debated a few times, but in the end she got me and I couldn't wait to find out all the details!

The one thing that I didn't fall in love with was the random times it switched to another's persons thoughts or head. I would be reading along and then all of the sudden I would be hearing how a different character was thinking about what they were encoutering with Presley. A little confusing and made for some moments of wonder.

I would absolutely recommend it to those who love a little suspense and love a little chick lit when they pick up a book. Any murder using a shoe is worth reading in my book!
(reviewed long after purchase)

Review by: Eileen Burmester on June 14, 2011 :
The plot was interesting and fast moving. The story was written in Presley's point of view and there were times in the book that confused me because I was unsure of what character was speaking/thinking at the time. Because of that, I did not get to know the other characters very well. There was a lot of mystery and romance throughout the book that kept me engaged and when I though I knew who the killer was, there was new twist introduced in the storyline. I recommend this book to anyone who likes romance, mystery and looking for a summer read.
(reviewed long after purchase)

Review by: Paula Phillips on May 20, 2011 :
Review : Stilettos and Scoundrels - Laina Turner- Molaski - February 2010
When I first heard about this book being offered for a Virtual Book Tour, I jumped at the chance as from the cover and title I was drawn to it and then when I read that it was a chick-lit mystery, that drawn-ness became stronger and I was like now I definitely have to read it and Im glad I did as I have personally always had a thing for newspaper reporters and those amateur detectives like Nancy Drew and Veronica Mars and now after reading Stilettos and Scoundrels , I can add a new name to my list Presley Thurman. The story starts with shoe-loving gal Presley being called into her boss's office and ending up fired because she simply won't sleep with him, good on her I say- leave with dignity. The start of the book reminded me alot of Legally Blonde with Elle Woods played by Reese Witherspoon. We then see Presley taking a job writing for an newspaper and her first story is to write about Senator Daniels, who happens to be in her hometown at the moment. So deciding to kill two birds with one stone, as her parents have been practically begging her to come and visit and she's also now unemployed and seen some Manolo's she covets, she accepts the job. However, on the job she discovers that the Senator has been murdered , now here's a story with excitement and mystery to solve, so we soon see Presley swapping her writers hat for amatuer detective as she ventures out to solve his murder, unfortunately there's one thing standing in her way - a guy - the head of Senator Daniel's security Cooper who happened to be Presley's high school sweetheart . So readers expect to see some romance blossom between these two as well as some reporter/ detective solving to the rescue and of course Presley's motto can be seen throughout the novel "A Girl can never have enough shoes".
(reviewed long after purchase)

Review by: Mareena McGirr on May 19, 2011 :
Presley Thurman has recently been fired from her job - which has left her free to follow her dream of writing. Her friend offers her a job writing for his magazine. Her first assignment is to interview a well-known senator from her own hometown and when that senator is murdered, Presley sets out to find a killer first out of a need to keep her job and then out of curiousity.

Presley is determined to solve the mystery until she meets Cooper Sands, head of the senator's security. Cooper was a one-time fling and his good looks are extremely distracting and he knows it. He's trying to relive old memories with Presley. The suspects are mounting up but can Presley keep on the task at hand?

I enjoyed this story; I found the characters likeable and well-drawn. I didn't really follow all the shopping metaphors, but the storyline moved along quickly and I give the story an A!
(reviewed long after purchase)

Review by: Kristin Durham on May 15, 2011 :
A wonderful and quirky who dun it with a chick lit spin! I fell in love with Presley Thurman from page one and couldn't wait to hear all about her adventures. The large cast of characters was hard at times to remember who was linked with whom, but once it was all settled I couldn't find out who was the killer and why they committed the murder. I had my thoughts and debated a few times, but in the end she got me and I couldn't wait to find out all the details!

The one thing that I didn't fall in love with was the random times it switched to another's persons thoughts or head. I would be reading along and then all of the sudden I would be hearing how a different character was thinking about what they were encoutering with Presley. A little confusing and made for some moments of wonder.

I would absolutely recommend it to those who love a little suspense and love a little chick lit when they pick up a book. Any murder using a shoe is worth reading in my book!
(reviewed within a month of purchase)

Review by: Sheila Hendrix on May 13, 2011 : (no rating)
Presley Thurman is your average run of the mill single female trying to make a name for herself. She loves her job, most of the time, except for when she's being sexually harrassed by her boss. She also loves to shop. When she refuses his advances one to many times, he fires her.

Now Presley doesn't know what to do. She really liked the job, working in Human Resources but now she has to start a new career. Growing up, she's always wanted to write so she contacts an old friend of her's, Trevor, who is the editor of a newspaper, and asks him if she could work for him. Trevor knows Presley's always wanted to write and offers her a job. He gives her an assignment to go back to her home town of Alkon Illinoise and do an article on Senator Tom Daniels.

After putting on her favorite killer suit and high heels she set's out to get her article. She does her interview and thinks everything is okay but tables are turned when the Senator is murdered. She quickly takes advantage of the news deciding to find the killer herself, thus jumpstarting her writing career.




Cooper Sands job is protecting Senator Daniels. He's head of Security. He's also gorgeous, sexy, and had a thing with Helen in high school. When the two start working on finding the killer together, the passion they had in high school comes back full force and now he tries his best to keep Presley out of the way but she's stubborn and doesn't take no for an answer.




Laina Turners book Stilletos and Scoundrels has it all. Murder, mystery, lust, and fashon. The story was well told. My only regret was that it was mostly written in Presley's POV. I would have really liked to have gotten into the backgrounds of some of the other characters but that was my only problem with the book. All in all in was well written.




My rating: ***stars
(reviewed within a month of purchase)

Review by: Jaidis Shaw on May 09, 2011 :
Stilettos & Scoundrels by Laina Turner-Molaski is a quirky tale with all of the essentials: murder, mystery and great fashion! Presley Thurman is just your average single female trying to make her way up the corporate ladder while looking the best she possibly can. So when her boss fires her after she refuses his advances, she naturally prepares thinking of ways she can have a career and her shoe collection at the same time. Quickly being offered a job for a newspaper, Presley heads to her small hometown where she is to write an article about a local Senator. Dressed to impress, she sets off on what she expects to be an easy endeavor, only to have the tables turned when the Senator is found murdered. Presley quickly takes advantage of the situation in hopes of writing the piece of a lifetime.

Cooper Sands is not only extremely charming and sexy, but he happens to be in charge of protecting the Senator while he is in town. When his job brings him face to face with Presley, the connection that sparked to life in high school is back and hotter than ever. Cooper must find a way to solve the murder and keep the stubborn Presley out of harms way.

Stilettos & Scoundrels is written in third person and is mainly from Presley's point of view. There are only a few paragraphs throughout the book that are from the perspective of other characters and I feel as though this prevented me from getting to know what some of the other characters were really about. Although this did add to the mystery in some ways so it works out well with the story line. And there is plenty of mystery to go around! Just when I was getting comfortable thinking I knew who the murderer was, new scandals and clues were thrown in to throw me off of the trail.
(reviewed within a month of purchase)

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