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Reflections on the #AtoZChallenge

by Donna Huber For the A to Z Challenge, I discussed different book genres/categories. Each day, I gave a few details about the genre/catego...

April 16, 2016

N is for Nerd Alert Chicklit #AtoZChallenge

review by Elisa Hordon

I love a great mystery with a fantastic female lead character, who is a bit nerdy and geeky but she can also kick some butt.... Lexi Carmichael is some of those things and she grows into so much more throughout the series. Julie Moffett blends mystery, adventure and humour together so well in this series and shows us that it's ok to always be yourself even if you’re a geeky nerd and people laugh at you, hold you head up high and always be yourself.

Lexi is a code breaker and hacker extraordinaire with a photographic memory, Lexi loves gaming and she is so socially awkward at times it's hilarious. I highly recommend this series to everyone who loves a good mystery, a good laugh and great characters you'll never forget.

No Money Down
No Money Down 

No Money Down is the prequel to No One Lives Twice and even though it's not essential to start with this one it is a good one to read at some point as this is the story of how Lexi met the Zimmerman twins, plus it’s another funny read.

This story takes place before No One Lives Twice while Lexi is still working with the NSA.

Lexi and Basia are off on vacation. Yes that’s right Basia is forcing Lexi to go on a beach side holiday, I know, that in itself is hilarious when Lexi doesn't like to leave her couch unless she is going to work. Lexi also doesn't like the ocean, sand, sun or bathing suits but Basia being a good best friend knows Lexi needs some R&R, so she packs them up and off they head for some fun in the sun.

Lexi begins to enjoy her holiday more when she meets Elvis and Xavier Zimmerman and they all discover they have a lot in common including the fact they all work for the NSA but in different departments. The bond between Lexi and the twins was immediate as was the zing between Lexi and Elvis. I can see those two becoming best friends and.

When Lexi is walking through the hotel lobby she finds a man sobbing because his computer is not working so Lexi offers her help and not only does she fix his computer she also manages to break two of his fingers in the process. Funnier still, this all leads to a mystery were Lexi gets kidnapped and nearly killed but thank goodness she has friends like Basia, Elvis and Xavier to help her.

I love that even when writing a short prequel Julie Moffett can pack so much into the pages. A great little mystery, friendships forming with strong bonds and the main characters also have time to show some of their impressive skill set, these guys are going to be an amazing team as the books progress and it was great to read how it all began.

Buy No Money Down at Amazon

No One Lives Twice
No One Lives Twice (Book 1)

Lexi Carmichael is gorgeous but she doesn’t see it. She is also uber smart; a total geeky nerd who prefers to loose herself in the world of computers and coding than talking to people, unless they are people she cares about. The thing with super nerdy geeks is they do love to talk but don't want to waste their words so they need to really know someone before you find out how awesome a person they truly are and then you also know you have a friend who will always have your back. This is Lexi. Once she makes a true friend she has their back for life. If you use her or break her trust, don't expect to ever get that back. And if you threaten one of her inner circle look out big time, it's really not smart to upset a person with a genius intellect.

No One Lives Twice is the first book in this series. Lexi is working for the NSA, stopping computer hackers at every turn. She thinks her job is a bit on the boring side but it's safe.... Or it was safe. When Lexi's best friend goes missing her job becomes anything but safe. So much so Lexie asks for help from her two other best friends the Zimmerman twins. Now these two guys are even smarter than Lexi: they are super geniuses and they have Lexi’s back.

When Lexi is accosted by two gun toting thugs on the way to her parents’ house, it's just the start of her day turning from safe to bad to worse. Along the way to finding her best friend Basia, Lexi meets two very charming men. Finn a lawyer with secrets. Yes, it turns out Finn is so much more than a lawyer and seriously what lawyer doesn’t have secrets? Then there is Slash: a mysterious government agent who always happens to be there when Lexi needs help.

I love a good mystery series with a great female lead with a strong sense of self, but still has many vulnerable moments that keep her real, good friends to back her up and a couple of hot guys to pick then add in spies, espionage plus kidnapping  and the adventure is always going to be entertaining.

No One Lives Twice was a brilliant first book in the Lexi Carmichael series.

Buy No One Lives Twice at Amazon

No One to Trust
No One To Trust (Book 2) 

In book 2 we find Lexi has left the NSA to work for Finn Shaunessy full time at his new cyber security firm. If Lexi was looking for more of a challenge this job is perfect for her. When their first client Darren Green goes missing and Lexi is suspected of being a part of it, things can only get better right??

There are a lot of laugh out loud moments in this book, more so than the first. Lexi finds herself in new territory when Slash and Finn both show interest in her of a more personal nature and then there is Elvis, sweet, shy Elvis, the male version of So what does Lexi do when things start heating up on different fronts in both her work and personal life? She turns to her best friend Basia who as always is itching to help Lexi break out of her nerdy, geeky shell.

Lexi's best friend Basia shines in this book even though she only has a small part it's still a very significant one. Basia is spunky, sassy and she challenges Lexi out of her comfort zone which Lexi needs, they complement each other well as true best friends do.

I love the group Lexi is forming around her without even realising it. You have Lexi herself sweet, shy, sensitive and super smart. I love how she is willing to try new things without too much of a Then we have Basia the best friend who is the total opposite to Lexi in every way. It's why they work so well together. Basia knows how far to push Lexi out of her comfort zone without pushing her away. The Zimmerman twins, Elvis and Xavier, have both become very good friends of Lexi. The three work well together and love gaming together. Both boys are just as socially awkward as Lexi is and not as happy about moving out of their comfort zones, but they both see they need to.

The character growth from the first to the second book was great and makes a great building block for future books. Finn Shaunessy is now Lexi's boss but he would love to be more, Finn is good looking, has money and seems to be a nice guy and a good boss, but office romances are not always a good idea especially if you toss in Lexi's social awkwardness. This could spell disaster, which is why Lexi is happy having the hots for her boss but from a distance. She loves her job too much to jeopardize it. And then there is Slash the mysterious man who loves to break into Lexi's apartment. Slash really sees Lexi; he sees beneath the mask she tends to hide behind.

Buy No One to Trust at Amazon

No Place Like Rome
No Place Like Rome (Book 3)

Book 3 has Lexi hiding from the world after another disastrous date with her super sexy boss Finn and Rome is hopefully far enough away or is it considering she is going to Rome with Slash and he will take any opportunity to show Lexi he is the guy she should be with. I really love Slash's confidence: he really drips with in a totally sexy way.

When Slash asks Lexi for help she had no idea she would end up in Rome, Italy with him. Evading being kidnapped and finding a dead body is just some of the trouble Lexi finds herself in again.

Lexi is trying her hardest to step out more into the real world. She tries dating with hilariously funny results and she pushes herself out of her comfort zone more and more to do her job. I really love how her character is growing throughout these first three books and yes I do cringe and laugh at the situations she gets herself into in her work and personal life but in the end Lexi gets the job done and as for her personal life, well, that is an interesting work in progress.

Visiting Italy is exciting and mystifying for Lexi. Trying to navigate a language barrier and the touchy feely nuances of the culture make for a really fun story with a great mystery, lots of adventure and even a visit with Slash's grandmother. For Lexi that alone was worth the trip as she got more insight into this mystery man of hers, well he could be hers if she wants him.

Slash opens Lexi up to more of the world in this book both good parts and dangerous parts but he knows she can handle both and she does. There is great intrigue within this mystery, some steamy romance and some very funny moments as well and yes Lexi brings Basia and the Zimmerman twins in to help solve this case too.

Buy No Place Like Rome at Amazon

No Biz Like Showbiz
No Biz Like Showbiz Book 4

No Biz Like Showbiz is one of the funniest Lexi stories so far, seriously hilarious but still with a great mystery to solve and lots of death defying feats, well for Lexi anyway.

So we have a reality dating show 'Geeks Who Get Some' and all is not what it seems on the show, but really that is so not surprising when you have a bunch of geeks in a house and gorgeous women around. There is going to be some disasters, even more so when a hacker starts screwing with the voting results. Is it someone on the inside or an outside force and what is their end game? Well that is for Lexi to find out.

Lexi's character is getting there with overcoming her social awkwardness and in this story we see her step out more by becoming a contestant on the realty TV show she is sent to investigate. I really do love how Lexi is blossoming more and more in each book. When Lexi accepts this job even though she was reluctant to do it because the thought of a dating show was enough to break her out in Lexi decides it's ok because she will be working from behind the scenes. When things take a turn for the worse once Lexi gets there, all of a sudden she finds herself a contestant on the show and Lexi wonders if her Mother had anything to do with it ok maybe not but Lexi wouldn't put it past her

Lexi may not be in her element being a contestant on the show but she is in her element when it comes to finding the Hacker trying to ruin the show but can she find the mysterious hacker before he kills her? Becoming a contestant on this show maybe a bit more dangerous than Lexi expected.

This mystery has some hilarious moments, a few romantic moments and as for Lexi's love life some more confusing moments for her as she learns to navigate feelings she has never dealt with before. I really love how Julie Moffett fits so much into her books. There is always a great mystery to solve and we return to good friendships with each book, Lexi's character grows more and more with each new story and I love how Julie adds so much of her love life into the story without it taking over.

Buy No Biz Like Show Biz at Amazon

No Test for the Wicked
No Test For The Wicked Book 5

Oh my if you thought Lexi's worse nightmare was a reality dating show then you were dead wrong. In No Test For The Wicked Lexi is going back to high school and undercover to boot.

Lexi has a new job for the agency and she is the only one who can do it.

What I really love about this series is how Lexi is open to bettering herself even though she finds it uncomfortable she does push herself to try new things and overcome her phobias. I also love how Lexi thinks her love life is totally confusing but it's really not. She has already picked a guy and that guy is Slash. And now Slash has Lexi, he will not be letting her go. He is going to show her what love is all about and how good it is. I have read some series where there were multiple prospective partners the main character could choose from and I must say I get bored when they don't choose book after book. The timing of Lexi and Slash getting together was perfect and I am looking forward to how they grow as a couple and manage their work and personal lives.

Lexi's personal strength has improved with each story and even more so in this story Lexi really shone and showed the world what she is made of, yes she is still a geeky nerd but she can also handle herself in most situations and yes she can also get the gorgeous guy to I can't wait to read Lexi's next adventure.

The mystery was awesome. Lexi meeting new friends even better and I love how she eventually takes them under her wing and they help Lexi solve the mystery. So when Lexi doesn't  have her own team to help her she makes a new one and that is awesome and what makes her character more lovable.

This story also covered a bullying side story which was a powerful message; one that had a real impact on me personally that bullying should never be tolerated, I really appreciate Julie Moffett more as an author for hitting on what is seen as a sometimes touchy subject but should be out there more as it effects so many.

Buy No Test for the Wicked at Amazon

No Woman Left Behind
No Woman Left Behind (Book 6)

Lexi really knows how to impress, no seriously who doesn't love it when their daughter brings her new boyfriend home and bullets start flying through the window ..... would you like wine with those bullets or maybe something stronger?

All of a sudden Lexi finds herself embroiled in another life threatening mystery with everyone wanting her help to find the man behind it all: Johannes Broodryk. And he wants Lexi.

Broodryk wants revenge on Lexi after she foiled his plans in No Test For The Wicked and he has taken something very precious to Lexi to ensure her cooperation in his new twisted game.

This story is full of intrigue, mystery, mayhem and turmoil. Lexi finds more inner strength to focus on the task and save everyone. Even when Slash is not on board with her plans, she knows she is right and takes a stand and I love it, If you read these books from the start you know what I'm talking about. Lexi's character Rocks in so many ways. Gone is the naive, shy, socially inept geeky nerd and now Lexi is more confident, strong, sometimes a bit sassy, she can still work on that one, and most of all she is loyal to a fault. Oh and still as geeky and nerdy as ever but seriously she wouldn't be Lexi if she lost her inner Geek that’s what I love about her the most.

Lexi is assigned to a SEAL team to help her bring Broodryk down. This is just another new challenge for Lexi that takes her further out of her comfort zone and I really love how she handles it and shows she really can do anything she sets her mind to.

This story was awesome on so many levels for me. Lexi and Slash came up against their first relationship problems and worked through it in a more mature way than I expected, There was a lot more action involved which I really enjoyed and it goes with the evolution of this series that each new job will be a greater challenge than the one before. That’s what makes a great series and I really love the development of all of the main circle of characters that make up Lexi's inner circle.

Buy No Woman Left Behind at Amazon

No Room for Error
No Room For Error (Book 7)

Just when you think Lexi has been given an easy I know there really is no such thing in her world but yet it sounded so simple. Do a favour for her best friends the Zimmerman twins that’s all hmmm why does it always get complicated on Lexi? All Lexi had to do was deliver a microchip to a manufacturing plant in Indonesia, easy right? I guess not when you factor in because this microchip was invented by the Zimmerman twins it's a pretty major deal in the technology world and a lot of people would love to get their hands on it, maybe even kill to get it. So maybe not such an easy job after all.

Basia and Finn are along for this adventure with Lexi, Slash is working on meeting Lexi in Indonesia but things go all wrong when someone tries to hijack the plane. It crashes and all of a sudden Lexi, Finn and Basia are lost in the jungle and they are all out of their depth and out of their element. It is actually very funny. You have Lexi a geeky nerd who likes her comforts without and loves her technology, then you toss in her best friend Basia who can speak a lot of languages but is not really known for her survival skills outside of a 5 star resort and lastly Finn who maybe all things wonderful but he is injured and not much help at the moment, but again what I love most about these books is the bond between the main character Lexi and her closest friends plus the lengths she will go to in order to keep everyone safe no matter how out of her comfort zone she is.

I really loved this story in the series so much and yes it is my favourite Lexi book so far. We have all of our main characters back once again and they are all evolving more and more. Lexi and Slash grow in their relationship. It is a lot more settled by the end of the book which I love, they really work well together in a relationship. Lexi's character grows in self-confidence throughout this book more than any other. Basia shows what she is really made of and people should never underestimate her, ever. Finn displays his strength under pressure. Slash goes to extraordinary lengths to save Lexi even if she doesn't need saving, but that just proves how much he loves her. The twins work hard behind the scenes to help while still getting over their injuries after being kidnapped in the previous book.

No Room for Error was a fantastic, fast paced, adventure with great characters you will love, lots of humour and a great mystery to solve.

Buy No Room for Error at Amazon

No Strings Attached
No Strings Attached Book 8 (coming soon, expected publication date is 4/7/16)

I am seriously hanging out for this one to land in my kindle, I love pre-ordering the next book in a series I love and then counting down the days until it is released.

No Strings Attached is the 8th book in the Lexi Carmichael series and it sounds like it's going to be a wild adventure yet again.

It looks like Lexi has found trouble again but luckily she has Slash, Basia, Finn, Elvis and Xavier to help her solve the mystery and keep everyone safe.

Buy No Strings Attached at Amazon

Elisa Hordon, reviewerElisa lives on the Southern Highlands of NSW, Australia were she spends her days reading, journaling, painting, cooking and home schooling her daughter. She has always been an avid reader, Elisa loves reading many genres of books except horror; her favourite genres would be mystery, romance and paranormal. Elisa also loves pursuing many creative outlets if she is not relaxing with a book she can be found writing, sketching, painting or cooking. Elisa loves to share her obsession with books especially with her family and friends. Reading and reviewing books is a favourite pastime of Elisa’s.

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