Southern Bound (Max Porter, #1)
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Southern Bound (Max Porter Mysteries #1)

3.6 of 5 stars 3.60  ·  rating details  ·  43 ratings  ·  31 reviews
It was supposed to be a new beginning - good job, good pay, and a lovely home in North Carolina.

But when Max Porter discovers his office is haunted by the ghost of a 1940s detective, he is thrust neck-deep into a world of old mysteries and dangerous enemies.

One in which ghosts, witches, curses, and spells exist. One in which a simple research job can turn deadly.
ebook, 245 pages
Published June 11th 2012 by Stuart Jaffe
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(showing 1-30 of 83)
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Charles Glass
A great read. Mr. Jaffe has a warm style that is reminiscent of the great pulp detective novels, but updated for today's readers. Definitely a must read for fans of a good mystery and fantasy alike! solid plot, good characterization, and a devilish twist that ensures I will be eagerly awaiting a sequel.
William P.
I'm a big fan of the paranormal/occult/Cthulhu Mythos detective stories out there. This, this is good stuff. I'm really looking forward to seeing what Mr. Jaffe does with the next book. Things to love here: the P.I. is dead, the main character is a teacher, he and his wife are happy within the bounds of reason, and the book managed to follow the rules of both the hardboiled detective and of fantasy. Specifically, the detective can't really change anything on a big scale, so his victories are mos...more
This was a great read!! A researcher that turns detective, that now see's ghosts, has to deal with thugs, witches and a sketchy past for a client, that he has to try to put together without getting killed!! LOVED IT!!
I would suggest this book if you are into mystery and a good ghost story!
Wonderful JOB Stuart Jaffe, thank you so much for the opportunity to review your book. Will be passing this one on as a "You need to read" to my friends!
Amber Garabrandt
This was a good, though short novel. The plot had just the right amount of real mystery and quirk to be a new favorite of mine. I can't wait until i get home so I can buy book two
Becky Hoffman
This was a book given to me by the Author in exchange for an honest review, so here is what I have to say about Southern Bound.

This story definitely had a lot of potential when it began, but I was already struggling by the first chapter. Everything was very rushed and there really wasn't much in the way of background history or information that helped place me inside the story world that Mr. Jaffe had created. One of the things I constantly struggle with in books is that if someone (namely the a...more
Cheryl M-M
It is a creative combination of fact and fiction. Paranormal meets research and history. There were quite a few factual subplots in the book that I checked out
Halfway through the main characters wife Sandra reveals something about herself, which changes her role in the story. It came out of the blue and to be honest it felt contrived, as if it was added to link her to the storyline in a tighter way.
Jaffe didn't fully utilize the potential if his character Drummond. A 1940s detective...more
Max Porter is a regular guy. He struggles to find work in a tough economy so he and his wife move from Michigan to Winston-Salem, NC. He takes a job as a researcher for a mysterious client and trouble ensues.

I like Southern Bound. I found Max Porter to be a very believable character with real flaws which I found refreshing. The only down side to that is that I don't really like Max Porter. He is a bit of a whiner and I don't really care for the way he talks to people. I find Max to be Harry Dres...more
Christopher Hernandez

A present day mystery genre that includes a wise cracking ghost detective from the 1940's? Author Stuart Jaffe had me at hello... Let me start off by saying this book would have been rated at 3.5 stars if allowed. This was a light, but fun read that could potentially be a television sitcom in the making. The main character, Max Porter, is a normal everyday "got to make a living" individual who is thrust into a world of dark secrets, magic, and the paranormal. He is a plain vanilla yet flawed ch...more
The idea of this book was really cool. A man moves down south with his wife for a new job and to start over but the office that he is working in is haunted by a 1940's detective and something creepy is up with his employers. I really wanted to like this story because like I said the concept is really cool sadly it just wasn't executed that well. I was expecting there to be more action and that the ghost would have more of a "Humphrey Bogart" type feel. I also felt like some of the writing was a...more
Scott Vout
The author of this book contacted me and asked me to read and honestly review it for him. I was quite happy to do so.

I found this book to be very rushed. Almost like the author was told you can only have 200 pages and it all has to fit in there. It seems to make leaps to the next scene without explaining how it got there. This appears to be the first book in a potential series. As such, i would expect to see some background building. This is how and why we got here. To me it felt like this infor...more
Note: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

One of these days, I'll learn not to trade reviews for free copies. It's hard for me to be fully honest when the author is a person in my very own inbox who I know will read the review, as opposed to someone who is famous (or dead; I review a lot of old books) and therefore won't condescend to read my criticisms.

Anyway. Southern Bound is a paranormal mystery; the main character moves south to North Carolina (iirc) for a m...more
Chad Sutton
Southern Bound was an interesting read. I enjoyed the story, and I felt excitement at all the right times, nervousness when the situation warranted, and happiness when the characters felt the same. While there were no huge, explosive surprise twists, there were enough bends and turns in the story to keep things interesting. There was also just enough uniqueness and flavor to the world to make it unique and worth spending time in.

However, while the book wasn't bad at all, I felt as though it was...more
Aster Brown
Sep 21, 2013 Aster Brown rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: North Carolina
Ok - After finishing the story, I re-looked at the title and it took on a dozen new meanings. Rarely have does a title fit a story this well.

The story is a research-mystery genre, with a little paranormal thrown in. I liked the character doing research in actual books, as well as Internet, foot work, and face-to-face interviews. Slow in parts, because research is slow. Fast when a breakthrough happens. You feel like you are going step-by-step through the process with the researcher. No magic Goo...more
What do you get when take a down-on-his luck researcher and teacher, a mysterious employer, and a ex-cop ghost set in WInston-Salem, NC? A quirky mystery titled Southern Bound.

The story revolves around Max Porter who, along with his wife, move to Winston-Salem from Michigan so Max can take a good paying research job. He did not meet his employer and when he gets started his only contact is a mysterious intermediary who sets him up in a strange office with unusual requests. Max starts on his res
Star (The Bibliophilic Book Blog)
Max and Sandra Porter are trying to start over in North Carolina. Max has gotten a job as a researcher for a mysterious employer who works through a middleman. There are a lot of rules about his new job, but for the pay, he’s willing to go along…for the most part. A startling discovery will have his priorities shifting and things may hit just a little too close to home for the Porter’s comfort.

‘Southern Bound’ is a fast-paced and charming part gothic/part hard-boiled mystery. There is murder, m...more
From the beginning I knew I had a good book in my hands. The description and opening told me everything I needed to get into the plot and live the characters life with him. It only took two or three pages to suck me into a feeling if an old white and black Noir movie. While I kept reading I started to feel like a narrator was telling me the story.

I enjoyed the book. It was a fun read and would recommend it to others. The writing was easy to get into, god and had the writers own signature. It isn...more
Lori Spier
I rarely read mysteries, so most likely my take on this novel is a bit different from other peoples. I know other reviews would like more "noir" - personally I enjoy "quirky" when you add mystery to paranormal.

All in all, I enjoyed the book immensely. I can see where hard-core mystery fans may have issues - the issue with Sandra was a bit random, Modesto was a bit thin as a character, and Taylor was just inept at his stated profession (as a student, he was great). The witch sections could have b...more
I enjoyed the characters and the story overall. The ideas are cleverly worked out, even if it does take a little time to get going and pull you into their world. The mystical elements are well-integrated and clear, which is not always the case with this genre. It sets the stage well for an introduction to this potential series of books, which given the ending seems to be the desire of the author.

However, the typos and slightly stilted dialogue (at times) were jarring and made me wish that a more...more
Cults, conspiracies, and curses, oh my. I found this book had a good main character who I could enjoy reading and learning about. His side kick being a ghost was interesting and the limitations of the world were reasonable and enjoyable. I look forward to the next in this seriea
Mlpmom (Book Reviewer)
This was one of those reads that took me by surprise. I was expecting the mystery and even the paranormal element but I wasn't expecting all of the history. It was a nice surprise to have real history blended in with fiction.

I didn't feel any real connection to the characters but that was okay for this read, it wasn't really needed and didn't make me feel like I was missing out on anything by not having it.

Really this story was a nice easy read. It flowed nicely and kept me interested for the m...more
I was given this book for free by the author in exchange for an honest review and I have to say I'm very happy I got to read this. I love mysteries and the supernatural and of course this has both. Great twist and turns here and there and just the right balance of humor, seriousness and action to keep you turning the pages.
The main character Max can be very weak at points, but he does show promise of development after all this is his first time being thrown into a world full of espionage, and su...more
Call me crazy but I have found another author that writes what I want to read, a great story! Mr Jaffe takes this story and weaves it around ghosts, murder, true love, humor, witchcraft, filled with suspense and the funniest co-character around. Max and Sandra are down and out and need a job, they take one that payes really good, well almost to good to be true! Max soon learns that the office space he's using is haunted and not by your everyday run of the mill ghost. but by one that is in need o...more
Marta Rawlings
It’s a long way from Michigan to North Carolina. But is it far enough to get a new start? Max Porter was trying to escape the past and the past comes after him. Not his past but the ghost of a private investigator who had died years ago. Could this old office really be haunted? Was Max losing his mind?

Southern Bound is a fun and interesting. Not only was I entertained I learned a few things about Winston-Salem. The story was very engaging and kept me reading. I kept wondering how all of it was g...more
The Author of this book contacted me and asked for an honest review in return for a copy of the book....

When i read the blurb of the book i felt very excited a paranormal/1940s detective story... yes please. I felt that the author missed a trick with Drummond the 1940's detective and didn't fill the potential of the character.

The story felt rushed, and i don't think i would be looking to read any more in the series..I didn't feel the need to keep reading... if i have a good book in my hands it...more
Southern Bound was an intriguing book. The author took a bold approach of blending the ‘North’ (MI) and the ‘South’ (NC) together in this sci-fi mystery novel. It is safe to say it is unlike any book I’ve read. It was by no means perfect, but the author did a good job writing out the scenes, thoughts, and personalities of his characters. He is also able to throw in some unpredictable twists and connections that I didn’t expect when I first started reading it.
Another thing I respect is that the...more
Juliah Wiederhold
Southern bound
I'll start by stating that I received this book in return for an honest review. So, I'm a supernatural junkie...books, TV, movies, you name it. When I found out this story was about a ghost, I was excited to read it. When I started this book I was very happy to find that Max and Sandra are from am I. I personally found both of them to be very relatable. I also felt that there was a very realistic feel to the supernatural aspects of the story. I enjoyed reading this bo...more
I should begin this by saying that I am not traditionally a paranormal book reader, so this was an experiment. A good one. The story was well researched, the characters had some nice twists and grew on me - they started out a bit boring, but that made them much easier to be interested in later. It moved. I had one issue: The copy editing was pretty bad, and I find that very distracting. Found myself reaching for the pen to fix the spelling. But I suspect the next one will be better, and I'm quit...more
I enjoyed the book, I thought it was an interesting mystery. I also how he had the history of Winston-Salem thrown in the plot. I didn't know there were POW camps in North Carolina. However, I thought Max could have been a stronger character, like his sassy wife and Drummond. I also thought the plot was confusing at times, like there was some information missing but that could just be because I'm blonde. Overall I did have a pleasant reading experience and plan to read the second book in the ser...more
This was a fun story. I had no idea where it was going and that made it interesting. The characters were likeable. I thought at first I wasn't going to like Sandra but she turned out to be made of sterner stuff than I thought. Max is a bit of a ding dong in the beginning but he gets it together. Drummond of course is a fun addition. The plot tied up very well at the end. It could have been a bit more in depth but all in all if there were more Max stories I would read them.
Russ Olsen
This is a fun book. Combining a private detective, ghosts, and witches, with a dash of wholesome sex and just enough plot twists to keep you guessing, this is the perfect novel for a lazy Summer afternoon.
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Stuart Jaffe is the author of the Max Porter paranormal-mystery series, the Gillian Boone novels, The Malja Chronicles, The Bluesman series, and much more. He has written numerous short stories in Fantasy, SF, and Horror. He is also the co-host of The Eclectic Review ( -- a podcast about science, art, and well, everything. For those who keep count, the latest animal list...more
More about Stuart Jaffe...
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