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Jess Lourey Books In Order

Publication Order of Murder-By-Month Mystery Books

May Day (2006) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
June Bug (2007) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Knee High By the Fourth of July (2007) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
August Moon (2008) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
September Fair (2009) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
October Fest (2011) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
November Hunt (2012) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
December Dread (2012) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
January Thaw (2014) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Death by Potato Salad (2014) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
February Fever (2015) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
March of Crime (2017) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Publication Order of Witch Hunt Books

Salem's Cipher (2016) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Publication Order of Salem’s Chipper Books

Salem's Chipper (2016) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Adventure of the First Problem (2016) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Mercy's Chase (2018) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

The Toadhouse Trilogy (2012) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Jess Lourey is a critically acclaimed author that is most commonly associated with the ‘Murder-by-Month’ mystery books. Though, some readers might be more familiar with the author for her work in the Fantasy, thriller and Young Adult genres.

Jess also has an affinity for magical realism.

+Biography

Jess Lourey was six when she began writing. She produced a poem about her grandfather that was so popular many of her relatives began to beg her for similar writings. This created in Jess a love for putting words together to paint vivid pictures.

By the time she was in her mid twenties, Jess had written her first novel, a book that was inspired by road trips she had taken in earlier years and which, she admits, was a little wordy and self involved.

The book didn’t sell. In fact, publishers, who she was approaching directly like an amateur, couldn’t make it past the first three chapters. Like most aspiring authors, Jess was so certain her novel was great that she kept making revisions and resubmitting it.

Jess has admitted to being happy now that publishing wasn’t so easy back then. With hindsight, she understands just how terrible her initial foray into publishing was. And she was more than happy to take a break at that point, using the time to get her Masters Degrees in English and Sociology.

For a time, Jess Lourey was simply happy to teach at a rural technical college. But she couldn’t stop crafting new book ideas and experimenting with interesting dialogue. And when a personal tragedy struck, Jess found that she was even more determined to put her stories on paper.

The first ‘Murder-by-Month Mysteries’ book was finally written. Jess was pretty confident in the work she had done, which is why she was shocked when her fifty query letters were met with rejection.

The author changed tactics, read everything there was to read about the mystery genre, wrote a third book and faced even more rejection. However, this time Jess wasn’t so quick to throw in the towel, primarily because she had done all the research, implemented all the requirements for a successful mystery novel and even used her own personal tragedies as a source for her stories.

The author had to push a little harder, burn through one agent and stumble upon another before her first ‘Murder-by-Month Mysteries’ book was finally published in 2006. The critics loved it and so did the fans. And that was all the justification Jess Lourey needed to keep pumping out more novels.

Things changed for the author when her children grew old enough to read her books. It occurred to Jess that it might be within her abilities to write books that even younger readers would love.

This was Jess’ first step towards the Young Adult genre. It took a while for Jess to get a handle over the genre. She had to read a lot of the books her children loved before ‘The Toadhouse Trilogy’ finally came into being.

Since her first novel in 2006, Jess endeavors to write at least two books every year. She never lets a rejection letter stop her from pursuing her goals anymore.

A tenured professor at a Minnesota College, when Jess isn’t writing or teaching, she will play with her dog, watch science fiction movies, travel and raise her children. Many of the author’s novels have received starred reviews from notable online resources and publications. She has also been a finalist for the Lefty award on a number of occasions.

Fans of Jess Lourey who have never heard of her fantasy and Young Adult adventure novels probably don’t know that the author has written under pseudonyms like Albert Lea and J.H. Lourey.

Jess Lourey gets a lot of her ideas from her personal life. She also tends to sleep with a journal by her bedside because some of her dreams are so intriguing and inspiring that she wants to record them the moment she wakes.

Where those two sources prove ineffective, Jess also loves to watch the world around her. If she isn’t watching people, she will eavesdrop on their conversations and see if their interactions can spark something profound.

The hardest thing for Jess is finding time to write. The author has a fulltime job as a teacher. On top of that, she has a family that constitutes her husband, children and all their pets. She makes an effort to put the remote down and use her relaxation time to write.

+May Day

Twin Cities isn’t the place Mira James thought it was, not since she lost her boyfriend and realized that there was no escaping her dead-end job. Having taken things a little too easy since she graduated, Mira decides that rural Battle Lake might offer her the life she desires.

Life in Battle Lake moves quickly. Before long, Mira has more than one job offer to consider, not to mention the handsome gentleman courting her. When the seemingly perfect man turns up dead, Mira cannot help but look into Battle Lake and its mysteries.

She soon realizes that Battle Lake’s polite exterior is a façade hiding many traps and dangers.

The first book in Jess Lourey’s bibliography is very competently written. Mira is easy to admire and appreciate as a protagonist because she is very foolish, making very human mistakes.

She is also funny and witty, though that is tempered by her mean and unpleasant remarks.

+November Hunt

If there is one thing Mira hates about Battle Lake, it is the freezing temperatures that descend in November. For some people, though, November is a pleasant enough distraction because of the deer hunting season.

Mira James has her hands full when Thomas Kicker dies in a hunting accident. For the sake of her P.I. license, Mira makes it her mission to resolve the investigation when she is hired for the task.

But her job won’t be made any easier by the terrible temperatures and blizzards. And the corpses are starting to pile up. Mira connects the clues, stumbles upon an old scandal and realizes that someone out there isn’t too keen on seeing her reveal the truth.

This book gets a lot of things right. As a mystery novel, the book keeps one on the edge of their seat. But it does so even while making them laugh. Jess Lourey’s characters are so funny, and so is their dialog, not to mention all the descriptions.

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