How to Get a Literary Agent, In Two Murders or Less
By: Ellie Burmeister
Publisher: Mirth Press
Publishing Date: December 2011
Reviewed By: Amy Lignor
Review Date: January 2012
A debut that is not only interesting but absolutely ‘nails’ the subject. Not only will ’desperate’ authors who have been through this laugh hysterically, but so will the rest of the world as they experience the interesting oddities that come along in the publishing industry.
Amanda Anderson is an author who hasn’t had a whole lot of luck securing an agent. She’s a good storyteller, but agents do not grow on trees and the available ones always have an excuse (some really hysterical ones) why they do not want to read her book.
Working as a makeup consultant in a department store in Ohio, Amanda believes that she has written the ‘Great American Novel’ and is just a step away from achieving fame and fortune. To make her wish come true, she is traveling to Malibu to attend a writer’s conference and to secure the agent who will find her that publisher who is just waiting for her story.
Instead, what she finds are agents who have no intention of bothering with an unpublished writer. By complete mistake, Amanda ends up meeting Jonny Goodsnuff, a best-selling novelist who sets his sights on Amanda to become Mrs. Jonny Goodsnuff and live happily-ever-after with him in his Malibu beach house. Amanda is smitten with Jonny, even though he is much older than she, but, sadly, after they marry - even though he throws money at her and tries to give her a great life - he treats her badly, never paying any attention to her which makes Amanda and the reader wonder why she ever married him in the first place. Jonny is a widower with two grown daughters who are real pieces of work, and who do not take kindly to a new ‘step-mommy’ that’s younger than they are.
Amanda is also warned by Jonny to not speak to their closest neighbor, Lance, so of course that’s what she does almost instantly. Shortly after she meets Lance, Jonny meets his demise and a murder case begins.
The plot thickens and readers literally will not be able to put this book down until the very end. There are so many memorable characters; Amanda’s step daughters, Misty and Lulu, are very amusing ‘bad guys,’ along with Amanda’s friends, Ivy and Zachary. Even Stonewall, Jonny’s ex-agent and lawyer who becomes Amanda’s during the trial, is a whole lot of fun!
Quill Says: Readers will definitely have to read carefully to pick out all the clues but, when all is revealed, it will go down as one of the best mystery/thrillers that they read this year.