missing member
Politics can be funny!

But when Texas Congresswoman Carly Wagner finds her party's boss dead in her inner office chair, she's not laughing.  Instead, she's searching for the culprit before the scandal puts her career in an early grave.
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Carly Wagner is a Texas congresswoman and has been for five terms. Carly is quite shocked to find congressman Alistair Dunhill in her office with a fatal chest wound and his hacked off penis in his mouth. She had been planning to run for a sixth term. Will this derail that plan?

She is a suspect because Alistair had been to see her the night before and she has no alibi. She begins asking question in the hopes of finding someone else for the police to center their attention on. Then Mr. Jones shows up. He has been hired to protect her, but he won't tell her who hired him. She is being driven crazy by his good looks. She eventually agrees to work with him than against him in her attempts to find the killer.

Can Mr. Jones and all his gizmos protect her?

This was my first book by Jo-Ann Power. It won't be my last. Carly is a great protagonist and I look forward to reading many more books in this series. Having lived in D.C., I enjoyed this book set on Capital Hill a lot.

The author definitely knows Washington and all the politics involved. She has such a great sense of humor that comes through on every page. I highly recommend this book.

Dawn Dowdle

A cast of character list commences this story and at page one, you know that a womanizing jerk has left this world; he was murdered. Carly Wagner is a congresswoman from Texas. One of the most important and unfortunate early facts you learn is that the fellow killed was graphically whacked in her office.

Immersed in humor, action and set in Washington, D.C., politics proceed. A tough jawed detective named Sarge tells the participants exactly how the investigation will be conducted. He is not prepared for Ms. Carly though. A former Miss Texas; she is a beauty. Not only is she pretty and smart, she has some life experiences behind her. She has had to take care of herself and this is not the first time she has seen a dead person.

Media attention comes to Carly and this draws some extra interest to her. Then someone breaks into her home and that alarms her. Protection comes to her in the form of a man named Mr. Jones. Even though she doesnʼt know where her protector came from, he is worth every cent someone is paying him. When attacks in various types come to her, she is happy she has Mr. Jones in her corner. A solution is forthcoming and this is a good first installment of the series.

Rita Ratacheck

Meet Carly Wagner, five-term Texas congresswoman and likable heroine of a new mystery series by romance novelist Power (Never Say Never). When Carly finds a congressman murdered—and his penis hacked off to boot—in her office, no one really suspects that Carly killed her colleague, but until the culprit is caught, she's under a cloud. Enter Mr. Jones, a bodyguard-cum-PI who makes Superman seem inept and homely. Someone with a vested interest in clearing Carly hired him to look after her, but even Jones doesn't know who's paying his salary. Carly, wary of accepting Jones's help, eventually agrees to work with him to find the killer. The identity of the enigmatic Mr. Jones's employer is every bit as intriguing as the identity of the murderer. Numerous potential suitors guarantee that amorous sparks will fly in future installments of this promising political series.

Publishers Weekly(Sept.)

Texas congresswoman Carly Wagner is suddenly in deep trouble after she discovers the minority whip of her party, Alistair Dunhill, dead in her office in her chair--murdered and mutilated--and she is the prime suspect. To protect herself from jail (and not damage her future chances for reelection), Carly launches an investigation. Party leaders are willing to protect her, as they have her pegged for bigger things, and someone hires "Jones," a shadowy, spylike figure to keep her safe. Reluctant to accept Jones' help because she doesn't know to whom she will become beholden, and believing she can take care of herself, she turns him away. However, Jones proves invaluable when Carly is attacked in the process of unraveling motives and finding a killer. Carly is a strong-willed, principled, attractive woman who carries a gun and isn't afraid to use it, and as a single mother, she must also negotiate issues between her 12-year-old daughter and her ex-husband. Humor, politics, and likable characters distinguish this first in a series.

Sue O'Brien, Booklist
Texas Congresswoman Carly Wagner knows it's going to be a bad day at the office when she finds Alistair Dunhill, the second most powerful man in her party, stabbed to death and mutilated, in her chair. Worse yet, her letter opener seems to have been the murder weapon.

She wasn't fond of Dunhill, a womanizer and master manipulator, but she didn't wish him dead. Needing to clear herself of suspicion, and wanting to find out who did kill him, she starts her own investigation. She quickly finds out there are those who don't want her to pursue the matter. There are also those who want to protect her --- some are official, like the stalwart District of Columbia policemen who guard her door, and at least one is not. When mystery man "Mr. Jones" slips into her back yard, dressed in black commando gear, it takes her awhile to figure out he's on her side. No wilting female in jeopardy, Ms. Wagner holds her own in a bit of hand-to-hand, body to body wrestling match. Her pet chimpanzee, Abe Lincoln, lends a hand, but in the end Jones prevails, and while he refuses to say who hired him, he does convince Carly that he's one of the good guys.
Carly Wagner is a fresh new face on the scene, a fortyish, sexy, tough, Ann Richards-like politician, a former Miss Texas and champion barrel racer who can juggle the needs of her family, her constituents, and her party with ease and grace. 

This looks to be a break-out novel for Power, author of sixteen romance and suspense novels. Janet Evanovich provides a cover blurb, and her fans will probably enjoy reading about Carly's adventures too. Before moving to Texas nine years ago, Power was a public relations professional in D.C., and she seems to know the inner workings of Capitol Hill very well.

There's a lot to like about this book. I just have one quibble, concerning her pet, Abe Lincoln. First of all, even though Carly and her daughter Jordan did generously provide him a home when he showed up on their doorstep, and did register him as an exotic animal, I think he should be living on a preserve with others of his kind. Secondly, Carly says he got his name when little Jordan called him "ape," which Carly says is not accurate. She then goes on to refer to Abe as a monkey. Jordan was indeed correct, chimps are apes, as a quick Google search would have told her. Not a big thing, and it's a common misconception, but it did "throw me out of the story" when I read that passage.

Ape vs. monkey notwithstanding, I look forward to the further adventures of this pistol packin' Mama. As for the hunky Mr. Jones, will he slip out of her life as quietly and mysteriously as he entered it? Being as the book is billed as "A Me and Mr. Jones Mystery," I think not.

Shirley H. Wetzel,