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Mai Tai One On (A Tiki Goddess Mystery #1)

3.57  ·  Rating Details  ·  938 Ratings  ·  164 Reviews
Six months ago, if anyone would have told Em Johnson she'd end up divorced, broke, and running the dilapidated Tiki Goddess Bar on the magical North Shore of Kauai she would have told them to shove a swizzle stick up their okole. As if all that isn't bad enough, when an obnoxious neighbor with a grudge is found dead in the Goddess luau pit, suspicion falls on Em and the re ...more
Kindle Edition
Published July 12th 2011 by Bell Bridge Books (first published July 8th 2011)
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May 26, 2016 Paula rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recently divorced Em Johnson leaves the mainland for the North Shore of Kauai to help out her uncle when she finds out that he and the bar he owns, the Tiki Goddess Bar, aren't doing so well. She figures the change will do her good. She helps get the bar back on its feet again, only to have a dead body turn up in the luau pit, the underground oven where the pigs are cooked. The Goddess staff are being looked upon as suspects, so Em and the Hula Maidens (the mostly senior dance troupe who perform ...more
Susan Mallery
Sep 15, 2011 Susan Mallery rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Get ready to go on vacation to beautiful Kauai--in Hawaii. Makes sure to stop by the Tiki Goddess Bar, where the scenery is beautiful and the drinks are strong. California transplant Em is dealing with a recent divorce and running her uncle's bar. Uncle Louie may or may not be losing his marbles, there's a constant flow of tourists and locals and plenty of colorful characters. But the real complication comes in the form of a murder. Any one of them could be a suspect. A second murder has Em and ...more
SOS Aloha
Aug 14, 2011 SOS Aloha rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Best selling and award winning author Jill Marie Landis delivers a story that resembles a Mai Tai - fruity, tasty, and perfect for a summer escape. And let's not forget the umbrella! Known for her historical and contemporary books, Landis truly put her pu'uwai (heart) and `uhane (soul) into MAI TAIN ONE ON as she lives on Kauai's North Shore. Only a kama'aina (resident) could translate the island's culture into the colorful characters that brings Tiki tackiness into the reader's home.

The produc
Mai Tai One On is every single cozy mystery you've every read. It's not bad for what it is, but I've read the same book a dozen times before. Different authors, different characters but essentially the same book.
Sep 08, 2011 Hattie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm all wet from swimming the Hawaiian ocean. I've had a pineapple load of fun. I've also sipped one or two Mai Tais. Of course, along the way there were a couple of murders and kidnappings. Em Johnson is the main character. She comes from California to Hawaii to help her Uncle Louie run his Tiki bar. Almost immediately the bartender, Sophie, is suspected of murdering Harold, Uncle Louie's neighbor. Em does all she can to protect Sophie from the spying eyes of Detective Roland Shar
Apr 03, 2014 Xyra rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Four & a half stars. There is just one thing keeping this from being a five star read and it was a sudden jump that jolted my smooth reading pace. It made me say, "What the heck?" before I could continue with the story. Sorry, I won't tell you more than that because I really try to avoid spoilers in my reviews.

This was a great cozy mystery! Think Nancy Drew and Murder, She Wrote meets Magnum PI & Hawaii Five-0. Add in the North Avenue Irregulars or the Golden Girls, a crazy parrot, aging
Jun 29, 2011 Sarah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mai Tai One On is the first book of a new series, and it is a quirky, fun, delightful escape. Part mystery, part chick lit, and 100% enjoyable, Mai Tai One On takes place in beautiful Kauai at a run-down old landmark bar called the Tiki Goddess. Owned by Em's Uncle Louie, who may or may not be suffering from senility, it is a tourist hot spot and local watering hole. Em's arrival is a second chance for both her and the financially floundering bar. After a humiliating and painful divorce back in ...more
 Gigi Ann
May 22, 2013 Gigi Ann rated it really liked it
After reading two books that were not favorites of mine, I decided to read this cozy mystery, and what a refreshing surprise this story was. It drew me right into the story from the very first line: "They would have found the body sooner if it hadn't been two-for-one Mai Tai Night...."

It was fun and sometimes silly, but delightfully charming, especially the 'quirky dance troupe of over-the-hill Hula Maidens' I can just picture them in my mind, as I read about their out of step dancing...The book
Jul 09, 2013 Rhonda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mai Tai One On by Jill Marie Landis
4 stars
I had read the third book in the series Three to Get Lei'd. Which was good and I was looking on my kindle and realized I had the first book
Mai Tai One on it. So I read it too. It did not disappoint. I laughed I was kept guessing on who to trust. I did know who was innocent because they
were still characters in the third book. After I had read it I went and bought the second book and am excited to read that soon.

Mai Tai One On is full of over the top fun
Murder in Paradise
Emily Johnson, broke and newly divorced, came to Mauai to help her uncle, after the geriatric and pitifully bad dance troupe who performed at her uncle's Tiki Goddess Bar, the Hula Maidens, had contacted Em to inform her of his declining mental health and sent her a one-way plane ticket. In the six months since she started helping him out, business has improved and the historic hangout is slowly getting back into the black. And that's despite the bar's nearest neighbor, an odio
Oct 24, 2011 Stacie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle
I purchased this for my Kindle when there was a .99 cent special. It sounded fun and came highly recommended by authors I love like Kristin Hannah and Carly Phillips. This isn't my typical genre but with the low price, I was willing to take a chance.

I was expecting a little more "romance", but it was mostly mystery with a comedic twist. Since I have never been to Hawaii, some of the terms and way of life described in Hawaii was new to me. I could see those who are familiar with the Hawaiian lif
Jul 24, 2011 Christa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebook-arc
Mai Tai One On was a fun book that combined mystery, humor, and some light romance. I received this book as an ARC from Netgalley, and am glad that I had the opportunity to read it. I enjoyed the quirky characters, and the storyline was interesting enough to keep my attention throughout the book.

Em Johnson's marriage and life in California has crumbled, and when she is asked by some of his friends, she goes to Kauai to help her Uncle Louie, who owns and runs a Tiki Bar. Louie seems to be having
Aug 03, 2012 bella rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I picked up Mai Tai One On as a a readalong read over my summer holidays. It is the perfect holiday read with hula dancers, cocktails and of course murder!!

Em is helping her Uncle Louie at his tiki bar, while she recovers from a recent divorce. What starts into a nice time on a island turns into a hunt for a killer when an employee at the tiki bar is found dead and the local police officer is intent on pinning the crime on one of Em's new friends, Sophie.

This was the first time I read a book by
Dec 27, 2012 Lara rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012-in-2012
This is a zany murder mystery based in a tacky tiki bar on Kauai in Hawaii. While the main character is from California, she is suffering form the aftermath of a messy divorce and is worried about her uncle, who owns the bar. The book is full of wacky characters, who mostly have good hearts and pull together when most needed.

I really enjoyed the different take on life, and the reflection of the culture of Hawaii residents. The cop is hot and I would looove to see his fire dance. And I liked Sop
Jun 17, 2016 Liz rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed
After weathering a nasty divorce, all Em Johnson wants is a life of peace and quiet. She gets plenty of that working at the Tiki Goddess, a small bar run by her Uncle Louie on Kauai, the so-called “Garden Isle” of the Hawaiian Islands. Here, tourists can relax, toss back a few drinks, and be entertained by the exceedingly awful performances given by the bar’s second-rate dance troupe, the Hula Maidens. Because the bar is short-staffed, Em is forced to hire a young woman, Sophie Chin, on the spot ...more
Lisa Kelley
May 02, 2014 Lisa Kelley rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the first book I have read by Ms. Landis, but it won't be my last. I look forward to reading the next book in the series.

The characters are original and interesting. I enjoyed spending time with Em, Uncle Louie and the staff of the Tiki Goddess Bar in beautiful Kauai, Hawaii. Oh, and the Hula Maidens! Loved the oldster Hula Maidens! The story is entertaining and flows at a great pace. All with a mystery that had me guessing until the end.

I can't wait for my next visit to The Tiki Goddess
Sep 20, 2013 Dalene rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cozy-mystery, 2013
Original review posted at A Date with a Book

Characters: Several, developed well enough to picture them, but not be overwhelming. The cast of characters are funny and quite creative. My favorite, other than Em and Sophie, were Big and Little Estelle. A mother and daughter duo, but you’ll have to read the book to learn why they were titled “big” and “little”.

Location and Setting: This is the first cozy I've read where the location was Hawaii. I loved the cozy little location in a small part of
Jul 27, 2011 Amanda rated it liked it
Shelves: cozy, humorous, series
Recently divorced Em moves to Kauai, Hawaii to help her Uncle Louie run his tiki bar. Things are going well until their neighbor shows up dead in the tiki bar's barbeque pit. Em, the waitress, and a band of elderly hula dancers known as the Hula Maidens proceed to attempt to solve the crime.

This book's strongest point is definitely its sense of humor. Every character possesses an astounding, biting wit that keeps things light-hearted even in the midst of crime. The characterization varies widely
May 02, 2013 Annette rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Jill Marie Landis has written a fun book. Em Johnson has moved to Hawaii to help her Uncle who seems to be losing his grip on reality. Em is escaping from a life of ease ruined by a cheating, stealing husband. So helping Uncle Luke at his bar sounds like a plan. And it turns into quite an adventure. Their next door neighbor is murdered, in a distressing way. The bartender Sophie, Uncle Luke and even Em are suspects.

The policeman investigating the crime is a sexy flame dancer in his spare time.

Lelia Taylor
Aug 22, 2011 Lelia Taylor rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: full-reviews
Mai Tai One On
Jill Marie Landis
Bell Bridge Books, July 2011
ISBN 978-1611940442
Trade Paperback

Emily Johnson needed to start a new life when her marriage broke up rather badly so she moved to Hawaii to help her uncle run his restaurant, the Tiki Goddess Bar, on the island of Kauai. Favored by locals and frequently drawing tourists under Em’s management, the restaurant has finally begun to come into black ink for the first time in quite a while.

Then the unthinkable happens. A cantankerous neighbor
Aug 21, 2011 Julie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a great start to the Tiki Goddess Mystery Series.

Em is divorced and broke, went to help her Uncle Louie to help run the infamous Tiki Bar The Goddess. Uncle Louie is funny and has a parrot who is taste tester for all of his drinks.

Soon every event at the Tiki Bar or catered event, dead bodies start showing up, Police Detective Roland has his eye on the whole crew at the Tiki bar. When their Bar tender Sophie, who has a checkered past, is accused of murdering the victim's. Needless to s
Linda McLaughlin
Dec 02, 2013 Linda McLaughlin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
The first in the Tiki Goddess mystery series is set (mostly) in a seedy but vintage seaside bar where the protagonist, Emily, works for her Uncle Louie. Rumors reached her in So. Calif. that her uncle was becoming a little dotty, so Em pulled up stakes and moved to Kauai to manage the bar and save her uncle's business. One of her cost-cutting measures was to hire a local dance troupe, the Hula Maidens, in place of professional entertainment. The Maidens, a group of eccentric women of varying age ...more
Aug 12, 2011 Jennifer rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
MAI TAI ONE ON is a fun, exotic mystery, taking place in and around a tiki bar in Kauai Hawaii. Em Johnson is offered the opportunity to help a relative's ailing bar in Hawaii after her world turns upside down. Once she manages to get the tiki bar running better, however, the murders start. The pot-growing neighbor next door is the first, and there is more mystery to come.

This book made me laugh, and the Hawaiian setting is a joy to read about. The Hula Maidens are a hoot. MAI TAI... is pretty s
Kate Eileen Shannon
Set in The Tiki Goddess Bar in Kauai, Hawaii, MAI TAI ONE ON is a quick, light fun cozy. It starts with ‘They would have found the body sooner if it hadn’t been two-for-one Mai Tai Night’ and ends with a section of drink recipes that will knock your socks off. I love a book with good recipes ;) Emily Johnson moves to Hawaii, after a divorce, to help her Uncle Louie Marshall, who is in the early stages of dementia, run his bar. Besides Em and Louie, you have Sophie Chin, bartender with a past; Ro ...more
Jeannie and Louis Rigod
I bought this book due to the cover blurb, the title, and for a distinct change in cozy formula. Well, I was not disappointed in the least. The book is a cozy murder mystery but a whole lot more is included as well. Even Recipes for some daring cocktails, which you would hope, since the location of the book is Kauai, Hawaii at the Tiki Goddess Bar!

Our sleuth Emily, known as Em is the Niece of Tiki bar owner, Louie Marshall. His bar had been losing money until the 'Hula Maidens' decide to fix the
Dec 25, 2012 Tom rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In "Mai Tai One On," Jill Marie Landis does for Kauai what Tim Dorsey does for Tampa, or Carl Hiaasen does for Miami. She takes a tropical locale, adds a bunch of colorfully eccentric local lunatics, and comes up with a funny, interesting tale, that--oh, yeah--happens to have a murder mystery attached.

"Mai Tai One On" follows Emily "Em" Johnson, a refugee from an especially acrimonious California divorce. She's moved in with her Uncle Louie, owner and chief mixologist of the Tiki Goddess, a loc
Jacqueline Hopkins
Mar 15, 2012 Jacqueline Hopkins rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone
Mai Tai One On is a fun, quirky mystery set in Hawaii (my favorite place to live) about a woman who has gone through a nasty divorce and moves to Hawaii to work in a relative's Tiki Bar. The hula dancers are not the young, spry beauties you'd normally see in Hawaii, but the older ladies who refuse to give up their love for the hula dance; they support the workers of the Tiki Bar and give their best dance performance as best they can for the tourists.
When a murder happens, everyone gets involved
Sylvia Kelso
Bought this on an Amazon sale because it showed up on a friend's FBook feed, and am glad it was on sale. It has an interestingly detailed local Hawaiian setting, but the plot elements and characters are pretty much generally derivative - eccentric old female characters, can you say Janet Evanovich? - resident old male character - can you say Sue Grafton? - car chases, caricature pop stars, and a particularly dumb heroine who keeps getting hit on the head - can you say Nevada Barr? and is almost ...more
Diane Wachter
NookBook, @ 2011, 8/13. The Tiki Goddess Mystery Series. Emily Johnson, divorced, broke and managing her Uncle's tiki bar in Kauai, Hawaii, tries to discover who killed Harold Otanami, a crotchety old neighbor, who killed Fernando, a Las Vegas headline who took Liberace's place, and finally who kidnapped her twice, before she, her uncle or their best bar tender Sophia get arrested for the crimes. Okay.
Feb 26, 2013 Jamie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this book to get an idea of what the publisher is looking for. It is the first of four very different books from this publisher (or books that they say they like) that I grabbed from the library.

I liked the story. I would classify it as a cozy mystery, although it is the first mystery I recall reading. There were a lot of characters in the short book, so they weren't very well-rounded. I also knew the "who dun it" as soon as I met the character. But there was sexual tension between two,
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JILL MARIE LANDIS is the bestselling author of nearly thirty novels which have appeared on the NYT bestseller list, USA Today and other national bestseller lists. She has won numerous awards for her heartfelt characters and sweeping emotional historical romances that include SUMMER MOON and MAGNOLIA CREEK and the Irish Angels Series; HEART OF STONE, HEART OF LIES, and HEART OF GLASS. All of her Hi ...more
More about Jill Marie Landis...

Other Books in the Series

A Tiki Goddess Mystery (4 books)
  • Two to Mango (A Tiki Goddess Mystery, #2)
  • Three to Get Lei'd (A Tiki Goddess Mystery, #3)
  • Too Hot Four Hula (The Tiki Goddess Mystery Series)

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