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Jilly Gagnon Books In Order

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Publication Order of Choose Your Own Misery Books

with MikeMacDonald

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

#famous (2017)Description / Buy at Amazon
All Dressed Up (2022)Description / Buy at Amazon
Scenes of the Crime (2023)Description / Buy at Amazon
Love You, Mean It (2024)Description / Buy at Amazon

Jilly Gagnon
Jilly Gagnon lives with her two cats in Salem, Massachusetts. Originally, however, she is from the state of Minnesota, a fact that she will most likely inform you of within just minutes of meeting you. She loves horrible TV, talking to her cats, and well-crafted Manhattans.

Her op-eds, personal essays, and humor writing has appeared in The Toast, Elle, The Hairpin, McSweeney’s Internet Tendency, Newsweek, Vanity Fair, and The Huffington Post, among others.

For “#famous”, there is a pretty obvious inspiration: the “Alex from Target” tale. Jilly believes that the idea of unexpected and instantaneous fame is fascinating, making for a great story.

She didn’t think about writing a story about Alex from Target right away, but she was intrigued by it immediately. The idea of being just a regular person one day and then incredibly famous the next blew her mind.

Then more of the story began coming out, that while he was going on Ellen, his girlfriend was receiving death threats. From there she kept getting more interested in the entire thing.

She typically needs a bit more time to allow for ideas to percolate, however this one certainly came to a boil far more quickly than was usual.

“#famous” is the first stand alone novel and was released in 2017. Jilly Gagnon bursts right onto the scene with this story that is equal parts romance and bite that is about falling for somebody in front of everybody.

In this modern day love story: Girl likes boy, so she snaps a picture of him and posts it online. Boy becomes insta-famous. And what begins as just an innocent picture turns into this whirlwind adventure which forces them to question whether or not fame (and even love) are even worth the price. It changes their lives forever.

Told from alternating perspectives, this novel captures the sometimes crazy thrill ride of social media and the just as messy yet wonderful moments of liking somebody in real life.

Jilly’s debut is a big hearted and bracing story about love, life, and horrifying embarrassment in front of millions of people.

“All Dressed Up” is the second stand alone novel and was released in 2022. A murder mystery at a remote hotel, and a missing woman. Everybody has got a role to play, however what is part of the game and what is actually real?

The weekend getaway at this beautiful hotel really should have been perfect. However Becca’s still smarting from husband Blake’s betrayal and realizes that this trip is only an expensive apology attempt. The drinks are strong, and the weekend has this elaborate 1920s murder mystery theme to it. She figures she should get into the spirit of things and enjoy their stay.

Before too long, the game’s afoot: Ida Crooner (famed speakeasy songstress) is discovered “murdered”, and it is up to the guests to sniff the culprit out. Playing Miss Debbie Taunt, this ingenue with a dark past, Becca dives deep into the world of pun heavy clues, secret passages, and hammy acting, hoping she can take her mind of her marital problems.

The morning after they arrive, the actress that plays Ida’s maid fails to show back up for her role. Everybody just assumes that she flaked out on her job, however when snooping for clues as “Debbie”, Becca discovers evidence that this young woman might not have left of her own free will.

Told over a nailbiting 48 hours and interspersed with in game clues, set pieces, and character histories from the flapper-filled mystery that’s nested inside of a modern one, this is a loving tribute to classic whodunits, and is a riveting exploration of the secrets that we keep.

Jilly’s well crafted maze of shifting realities and clues is perfect for Lucy Foley fans.

“Love You, Mean It” is the fourth stand alone novel and was released in 2024. A playful romantic comedy that features fake dating, dueling delis, a shockingly awesome ex, and the right amount of amnesia.

Ellie Greco wishes that she were not stuck in Milborough. For just a few shining and brief years, she escaped from her hometown in order to pursue her dream career, designing elaborate and beautiful costumes for theater productions. That ended five years ago when her dad died and called her back home in order to run the family’s decades old deli. Sure, she loves that place, however she had always believed that she was meant for much more exciting things than just stocking the right tinned fish. However once she hears about a local landlord is planning on renting to Mangia, the glitzy gourmet food department store, the existence of Greco’s Deli is suddenly in jeopardy.

She attempts to plead her case to Theo Taylor, the scion of the property management firm which is about to put her out of business, however their meeting goes from bad (it isn’t her fault he’s so infuriating) to worse (nobody expects for the ceiling to literally fall in).

With Theo knocked out cold, she panics and claims that she is his fiance, and comes close to passing out herself once amnesia means that Theo appears to actually believe her. The effects of his head injury wear off pretty fast, however Theo proposes that their “engagement” stick around. If they manage to convince enough people, they may each get what they want: an end to the Mangia deal. Ellie does not trust this man after all (since if Theo wants it, how can it actually be good for her?) However seeing no other better option, she agrees reluctantly.

This fake engagement seems to be working, by some miracle, even Ted (Theo’s shrewd and cold dad appears convinced) that is, until Sam (Theo’s ex-fiancee) shows up again on the scene. Not only is she able to see through their ruse, however she proposes a proposition of her own, which forces Ellie to decide between her family’s legacy, a blossoming friendship, and this burgeoning romance that she frankly never even asked for.

Jilly delivers a sweet confection that makes for a delightfully tropey romantic comedy.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Jilly Gagnon

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