Friday, September 11, 2015

Review: These Boots Are Made for Butt-Kickin' by Kalan Chapman Lloyd

These Boots Are Made for Butt-Kickin' 
by Kalan Chapman Lloyd
Series: The MisAdventures of Miss Lilly #2
Pub. Date:  May 26, 2015
Publisher:  Lloyd Words
Pages:  250
Format:  eARC
Source:  Author

My Rating:  
Sultry Scale:

"You know you're a little crazy, right Lil?" 
"I know. I get it from my mama." 

Unfinished business. Old family secrets. Guilt. Attorney Lilly Atkins has survived the long, hot summer in Oklahoma after running home from a cheating fiancé and discovering a former flame had become a career criminal. That infamous ne'er-do-well, Cash Stetson, is on the tail end of a stint in rehab; and with a near-death experience skirted, life-altering epiphany under her belt, and cowgirl boots in place, Lilly is ready to kick butt. Except something's got ahold of her; turning her every way but loose. And as much as she tries to hide her crazy, it keeps flashing everyone on Main Street. Former federal agent Spencer Locke is rescuing her. Again. Her latest case includes dead varmints. On YouTube. She's finding dead bodies. In her office. She's getting assaulted. Weekly. And it won't stop raining. So there's reason enough to come unwound. 

As an attorney, I have a love-hate relationship with "legal" fiction or books that feature lawyer characters. The hate part comes from my proclivity to pick apart the legal aspect, or get annoyed when something improper is done, or get annoyed when something is done differently from how I would have done it. Because I know best, right? I know, my ego knows no bounds. The love part comes from the fact that I love to envision myself as the lead character... and with a character in my profession, that is one step closer to letting me live out the fictional fantasy. But because of the hate part, I usually find that I rate legal fiction on the lower end of the spectrum or give up and stop reading the book altogether. I am happy to report that I have found my solution and it comes in the form of Kalan Chapman Lloyd!
My friends are just like yours. Only prettier. And scarier. Like a hormonal, big-haired, pistol-packing gang.
Why, you ask? Well this requires some explanation. Yes, I am an attorney - but one who has been nicknamed Bambi, and referred to as the "dumbest smart person you ever met." I am clumsy and klutzy and I have a little black cloud that follows me around that I have affectionately named Carlos. Weird things happen to me. This makes my life seem a bit ridiculous sometimes... so I was absolutely delighted to find a kindred spirit in the heroine of this book, Lilly Atkins. Lilly would totally be in my girl posse if she jumped off the pages of this book.
So even though I've been raised a Southern belle, I am at least a quarter redneck from my Nonnie's side (don't tell her I found out in a genealogy search).
Lilly is not just an attorney... she is a curly-haired dynamo, part southern belle and part redneck, and has questionable taste in men. It was like looking in a mirror, I swear. She loves clothes and shoes and handbags and boots. A woman after my own heart.
...slipping off my heels to get into the car. You don't drive in heels, especially if they're expensive. That's how accidents happen, but more importantly, that's how heel scuffs occur.
Lilly has taken up residence as one of the few attorneys in a small podunk town - something that I think could be very fun for me after I retire. It's a thought (a scary thought).
I used to be a snooty real estate lawyer in Dallas, but after I caught my gutless wonder of a fiance cheating on me, I hauled my heart and my bags back to my mama and daddy. I set up shop to practice small town law and got involved in some seemingly big city stuff. My ex-boyfriend tried to enlist me to divorce his wife (I'm not proud to say I accepted the retainer before I came to my senses)...
Lilly is like Stephanie Plum, if Stephanie Plum were a southern debutante lawyer. If you are a fan of the Stephanie Plum Series by Janet Evanovich - then I predict that you will be a fan of the MisAdventures of Miss Lilly by Kalan Chapman Lloyd. No, these are not copycat books or any nonsense like that. But they are Stephanie Plum for southerners. The characters have similar family dynamics, a hip and hilarious grandma, and a penchant for getting into impossible situations. These series may not enrich you in a literary sense or impart some vast knowledge, but they are damn funny. Lloyd has created a great campy comedy that is unapologetically southern and certain put a smile on your face.
You're just embarrassed because your redneck came out while he was watching.
What's unapologetically southern you ask? Grandmas that go by Nonnie or Memaw, sisters named Talula Belle, daddies with a Magnum P.I. mustache, cowboy boots, big hair, moe-rons, and decorating that is Better Homes and Garden meets Guns and Ammo. And great southernisms like He could wait me out better than an opening day hunter in a tree stand.

There is kind of a love interest triangle at play... note that I said love interest. There is no real romance, yet. But the path is definitely paved for the future. We have Cash Stetson, the ex-boyfriend gambling addict doctor/conman, versus Spencer Locke, the yankee former FBI now attorney. Lilly is attracted to Spencer Locke but he also irritates the hell out of her. Then there is also the little problem of his heritage, which started above the Mason-Dixon line.
...I was the belle of the ball, and he wore Yankee gray, so it would be hard for us to ever understand each other.
You're such a Yankee. I don't know why people like you.
Now this book is not the first in the series, and I didn't realize that until after I started reading. Normally I hate when that happens, particularly when a series is following the same main character. It just bothers my OCD reading tendencies. But it wasn't too bad here. Lloyd did an excellent job of referencing and summarizing what happened in Home Is Where Your Boots Are. But now that I have read and enjoyed this book so much, I will definitely be reading the rest of the series.

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. 

The MisAdventures of Miss Lilly