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REVIEW: Rumble on the Bayou by Jana DeLeon

Dear Ms. DeLeon:

Rumble on the BayouThis is a book I bought based on Word o’ Mouth. It was billed as fast paced, laugh out loud, police procedure book. It was fast paced and a police procedure book but I wasn’t really sold on the “laugh out loud” part. Humor is a subjective thing. Fortunately, the book does not depend upon the humor aspect to be successful. Instead it relies upon the charm of the main characters and there it is successful.

Dorie Berenger is the de facto sheriff of Gator Bait, Louisiana, a small town whose greatest danger seems from alligators and economic downturn. On a call to assist a local colorful resident, Dorie encounters an alligator strung up on heroin and the finger of the man it was stolen from. Running the fingerprint through the national database brings DEA Richard Starke down to Gator Bait.

“Dick”, as the locals call him, is a city rube in that he has an immediate disdain for all things small town. This sets up Dorie’s back and almost everyone else in Gator Bait. Dick’s arrogance is overplayed which is one drawback of the book. Everyone seems to be drawn over the top. Dick is as much of an asshole as could be written. Dorrie and all the small town folk are as quirky as small town folks are perceived to be. This, I am sure, is where the comedic effect is supposed to be mined, but it felt forced.

The whodunit is fairly well crafted and there is a strong romance included in the story. Dorie and Dick have an instant physical attraction that is in conflict with their immediate personal dislike for the other. The conclusion of the novel includes not only a discovery of the villian but also a resolution to the developing relationship for Dorie and Dick.

Other drawbacks included no condom in the sex scene. I kept hearing the “whoop whoop whoop” sound of the submarine followed by “condom, condom, condom”. Alas, no condom. Even after Dorie and Dick have a discussion about being “clean”, there is no use of a condom. To me, this seems like very dangerous activity by a very smart woman.

At some points, the story lacked authenticity for me. Dick became transformed almost too easily. His opinions and prejudices seemed deeply entrenched (although not based on experience) but were whisked away with a few encounters and his lust for Dorie.

This was a quick read, with a decent suspense story. I thoroughly enjoyed the competent Dorie and the vivid imagery of Gaitor Bait, Louisiana. B-

Best regards


Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She self publishes NA and contemporaries (and publishes with Berkley and Montlake) and spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com


  1. Kimber An
    Feb 01, 2007 @ 08:54:04

    Didn’t get the humor? Do you have any small town experience? Well, I do and I laughed my fool head off! This was my favorite book of 2006. It scored an A+ with me! I can’t wait for Jana’s next book, UNLUCKY, due out in the Autumn. Readers should visit her blog. She responds to people who comment in personable good humor. She also has a picture of the new cover and I think it’s fantastic.

  2. Liz L
    Feb 22, 2007 @ 11:25:40

    I too laughed out loud. How could you not see the humor in it? Ms. DeLeon also did a spectacular job with the mystery part. In my head I imagined every person in the small town clique to be the villian at least once. Humor, suspense and an inside look at the qirky characters of GatorBait made the price of the book a huge bargain. I can’t wait for her next one.

  3. Bekki
    Jul 06, 2009 @ 00:23:25

    I have recently come across this author. I have read one book of hers so far. Which means I will be getting any others she has written.
    I am an avid reader. I don’t read just one type of books, I have read all of JK Rowlings “Harry Potter” series, All of Stephanie Meyers, including non-Twilight books. I have read Jennifer Crusie, Mary Balough, and every book ever written by Janet Evanovich. I will say that Jana does fit right in with all of these authors I have mentioned. If a book doesn’t catch me by the first couple pages it usually goes in the trash. Not only did it catch me, but as usual I had it finished in the first day. I think she is a wonderful author and will get the new series and keep reading them.

    If you couldn’t find humor in any of these books then you aren’t reading them right. What the hell is the issue with condoms? If they say they are being safe why do you need to read the word condoms? It is implied. Close your eyes and get lost in the story, enjoy don’t be a critic.

  4. A.C. Braithwaite
    Dec 19, 2011 @ 22:23:52

    Yeah, that first ‘review’ is just a bit odd on several fronts, and I could care less about Gatorbait, though it sounds like she did a good job.

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