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The Rented Mule

3.64  ·  Rating Details ·  2,466 Ratings  ·  230 Reviews
Cooper Dixon should have it made, with a beautiful wife, Kelly, two great kids, and a thriving business, the Tower Agency. But for Cooper, things aren’t turning out how he expected. He and Kelly are caught in a never-ending cycle of arguments—Cooper can’t remember the last time they had sex. And Cooper’s troubled business partner, Gates Ballenger, is scheming to sell the T ...more
Paperback, 506 pages
Published March 1st 2014 by Thomas & Mercer (first published January 14th 2014)
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Audrey Gelfand
Feb 26, 2014 Audrey Gelfand rated it did not like it
I have to admit that I didn't finish this book. The plot line seemed interesting ,but the writing style made the characters seem stupid, but not authentic. I just didn't like it and I'm stopping.
Cooper Dixon's wife is making him crazy. His work is making him crazy. Little does he know that his troubles have not even begun. Someone is systematically setting him up for a very big fall.

High scores for the pacing of this novel, particularly during the last third of the book. I truly did not want to stop reading as the story accelerated to the denouement. A couple of the secondary characters were standouts. Maynard, one of the kidnappers, lends a bit of humor with his inexplicable fixation o
Becky Maynard
Feb 23, 2014 Becky Maynard rated it did not like it
I couldn't even finish reading this. It was so poorly written that it was difficult to get involved with any of the characters. It was hard to follow the story as the author changes POV within a paragraph, uses the same word or phrase repeatedly and generally persists in telling the reader everything about a character or situation rather than letting it develop through incidents. I'm not sure how this ended up as a recommendation for me but I fell for it.
Martye Green
Feb 28, 2014 Martye Green rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: nobody
Huntin'... fishin'... readin'... deletin' from Kindle, typin' a review.
All characters drop the "g" in any word ending in "ing". I'm not sure if this is supposed to represent a regional dialect but it is distracting and tiresome, line after line after line. I don't know anybody older than about age 10 who actually speaks that way.

The dialog is juvenile, the characters so stereotyped as to be nearly comical and the writing is trite, amateurish and so littered with cliches it renders the book unre
Barbara E. Kaiawe
Absolutely one of the best books I have read in a long time!

Absolutely one of the best books I have read in a long time!

Filled with mystery, drama, and a touch of humor, the book was simply captivating.
Plan to read late into early morning or all weekend long!
Susan Obryan
Mar 13, 2014 Susan Obryan rated it really liked it
“The Rented Mule” is a Southern-framed novel by West Point, MS, resident Bobby Cole. It is his third work, following “The Dummy Line” and “Moon Underfoot.”

Cooper Dixon is a 36-year-old frustrated ad agency co-owner who dreams of trading the rat race for the outdoors. The Tower Agency is up for sale, but Cooper’s partner, and majority stockholder, has plans to weasel more than his share of the profits with the help of a local banker and his associate. Cut off from his family’s fortune, Gates Ball
Dec 17, 2013 Cortana rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviews
When I got an advanced reading copy of The Rented Mule by Bobby Cole, I was not particularly keen. A mule, and a rented one at that does not look too appealing. But I was intrigued by the author, and started on a new reading journey with this author. Though The Rented Mule is his third novel, it is my first tryst with this writer from Mississippi.

Cooper Dixon is seemingly living the perfect life. With a beautiful wife and kids, and a growing business, he’s the envy of many others. Yet, he is a d
Mar 10, 2014 R. rated it did not like it
While The Rented Mule has an interesting description and enticing plot summary, this was a case where the marketing was better than the product itself. I cannot remember the last time, if ever, that I read a book so campy and poorly drawn. Towards the conclusion of the book, I started to wonder when the main character would be yelling up to Lassie to go get help from the Sheriff at the mill... and then almost on cue... Writing southern dialect takes a deft, steady hand. Instead, this work substi ...more
Mar 11, 2014 Tanya rated it liked it
Giving it a 3 star because I did get caught up in the plot line by mid way through. Writing style was barely passable in parts and was either unbelievable or too cliche in others. There were some characters who I just didn't like such as the single mom divorce who plots to draw Cooper into an affair. At times Cooper is the hero and in other spots he is just clueless. It doesn't all gel together as a result. His marriage is so broken but all is fixed in the blink of an eye. Unrealistic....
Denise Henry
Feb 08, 2014 Denise Henry rated it really liked it
Wow! I won't give away any spoilers but I have to tell you that this book really sucked me in. I usually read in the evenings before bed and I could not put this one down, reading well into the night. I have not read many books in this genre, but I really enjoyed it and want to read more like it. I just need to be prepared for less sleep. :) I won't give away any spoilers
Paula Fraley
Feb 28, 2014 Paula Fraley rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Good storyline with a great twist

I really enjoyed this book.I am looking for new authors and will look for more by Bobby Cole. this had a great storyline, and a very unexpected twist which made it very hard to put down.
Pam Brand
Feb 15, 2014 Pam Brand rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great book!

Great book!

This story has all the right ingredients. Page turning story line, not clear who the real bad guy is, a bit of romance, great characters. I look forward to reading more from g his author.
Mar 05, 2017 Kelly rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Quick, good read.

This book was fast paced, with twists and turns. The author does a good job of engaging the reader! Enjoyable.
Bobby Mathews
Dec 27, 2014 Bobby Mathews rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Look, I’m just going to admit it: The Rented Mule by Bobby Cole made me tap out. It made me quit.

It was so bad that I stopped reading it. Shut it down for good, returned it on the Amazon Kindle Unlimited platform in order to get something—anything—else. In my entire life, I’ve had only one other book make me stop reading it and put it away, never to come back.

I’d say the characters were cardboard, but that would be an insult to liquor boxes everywhere. I’d say the dialogue was inane drivel that
Jun 01, 2015 Beetqueen rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I read this book for a school book club. The concept sounded interesting. Based on the summary on Amazon, I listed it as one of my top 10 choices for book club (every member makes suggestions). I finished it, but only because as an English teacher, I figure it's sort of my duty to.

My biggest problem with this book is that none of the characters are really likable or believable. There are really only four female characters (which does not make a book bad). One is a manipulative sex pot who is try
Schuyler Wallace
Jan 24, 2014 Schuyler Wallace rated it really liked it
Novelist Bobby Cole has, once again, penned an action novel that almost goes too far in its outrageousness, but still makes for enjoyable reading. THE RENTED MULE is of the same ilk as his earlier two books with an out of control plot and scandalous characters. He manages to meld all this together into an enjoyable and exciting story.

The plot is simple enough. There’s conflict between a man and his wife, a man and his business partner, a man and his banker, a banker and his son, banker’s son an
Rhok Mhaan
I read mostly Heroic Fantasy, but since this book was offered free for my Prime Membership I decided to give it a try. I enjoyed the story and the character development. I guess I am a simple reader and enjoy a book for the story. I do not try to pick the book apart and wonder why the author did what he did, or said what he said. I enjoy reading for the entertainment.

Did the book drag in places? Did the author repeat himself? Did the dialog make sense? I guess I didn't pay that kind of attention
Jan 03, 2014 Cheryl rated it it was amazing
Author Cole is quite the raconteur

I enjoyed this third offering by author Bobby Cole, after "The Dummy Line" and "Moon Underfoot." He has quite the talent of bringing his characters alive on the page, letting us readers peek into the nooks and crannies of their lives.

Cooper Dixon, the protagonist of "The Rented Mule," is a similar character to Jake Crosby from his first two books. An everyday good old boy who loves fishing and hunting, he definitely isn't perfect. He makes mistakes going through
P.e. lolo
Feb 23, 2014 P.e. lolo rated it it was amazing
In this story the main character Cooper is lost, in his marriage and his business partnership. He really does not know what is happening around him. He is more focused on some piece of land that he wants to buy after his company is sold. But he does not want to sell the company, his partner is in a lot of trouble with gambling debts and he is the one who is pushing for the sell. Now his wife can only see the money that they should be receiving from the sell so she is out spending and planning a ...more
Mar 17, 2014 Erin rated it liked it
I got this book for free with the Kindle First program. It was definitely an easy, relatively quick read. The story was engaging, but also felt very choppy. We are led through the mystery of Cooper Dixon being framed for the kidnapping of his wife, without any obvious reason why he is being set up. The story bounces back and forth every chapter to the storyline of each character in the book - Cooper, his business partner, the kidnappers, the mysterious client, the detective, Cooper's love intere ...more
Feb 05, 2014 Abbey rated it it was ok
This book was a very very slow starter. Once it got going it didn't go anywhere particularly entertaining. The events were fairly predictable. I didn't feel invested in the characters. I didn't care what happened to the nice guy that was thinking about cheating on his wife, the selfish single small-minded wife or the divorced woman looking to lure a married man into her bed. There was potential in the detective character, but it was never actualized. The most interesting characters were the kidn ...more
Blech. A poorly-written freebie from Amazon.

Unsympathetic characters and hackneyed dialogue written by someone who thinks everyone from the South drops their Gs. Gah. All the "down-home" dialogue came across as fake rather than folksy. Some folks jest don't know how ta write Suth'n, nor when they shouldn't use dialect.

I bailed out of this novel so fast, I can barely tell you the plot: something about an ad agency being for sale; our "hero" is being strong-armed into the sale by both his spendt
Feb 16, 2014 Wrb752 rated it it was ok
This is a tough book for me to rate. The story wasn't too bad. The plot moved along although it was often a little clunky. There were several characters that were seemingly meaningless to the story, and yet others who would suddenly appear in a critical role despite the fact that we had no idea who they were. There was also a rather odd plot line that was continually touched on but never actually went anywhere. I also felt the end of the book was somewhat out of place. It's not like it was a bad ...more
Mar 16, 2014 Hyouten rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book was pretty annoying to read. One chapter per scene and a writing style that just tells, doesn’t show. Characters are flat even though we know about them. We can’t relate to them, we’re just there observing. There’s a lot of unnecessary scenes and characters that doesn’t really contribute to the whole story; the story would go on even if they were edited out. I predicted the culprit two-thirds into the book, and that pretty much set the whole thing in cruise control from there on out.

Feb 01, 2014 Camilla rated it did not like it
Average: perhaps a 3-star, but that feels too generous relative to my previous ratings so 2 is as much as I'll give this book.

Very slow. Clunky style. The story has many characters, some throwaways that clutter up the story. The different pov per chapter ended up working in its favor, though I was put off at first. Cole's writing screams Exposition and often states the obvious or repeats facts again and again. It managed to pick up the pace in the last fourth of the book. There was a surprising
Oct 11, 2014 Marty rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was an interesting read - started slowly, but as I progressed through the story, it did grab my attention sufficiently so that I finished it, and actually stayed up longer than I had planned to read, just to finish it. So the author is a fairly good story-teller. Some of the situations were awkwardly, or unrealistically contrived but overall - it was a good gripping tale...with ONE exception. The author used a stylistic tool that annoyed the living daylights out of me, and i couldn't, for t ...more
Christine Lowe
Mar 10, 2014 Christine Lowe rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The meaning of a rented mule

I enjoy a book that is long enough to become immersed in the plot and the characters. The Rented Mule @ 509 pages was both interesting and intriguing. The main story line is about Cooper who is a hard working, part owner of an advertising agency. Cooper's partner who owns 70% of the business is addicted to sports gambling and cocaine. He's also very good at covering up his vices. Unbeknownst to Cooper he is also desperate to figure out a way to pay off his bookie.

Feb 25, 2014 Terrie rated it it was amazing
Shelves: adult-suspense
What a page-turner!!! The story grabbed me from page 1 and I could barely work or sleep until I was finished. And I was so happy that there is zero ZERO bad language or anything else offensive. So to all- I say- THIS IS A GREAT READ if you like suspense and mystery!

Conner Dixon has an unhappy marriage, and is frustrated in his work, where his partner is extremely anxious to sell out. When Conner comes home from work one day, he finds his wife is missing and the Alabama Police believe he is the o
Shafi Ibtesham
Finally I finished the book. Bought it as part of the kindle first program. I have enough book log of already popular books so at times I use this opportunity to try new, relatively unknown authors. This was one such. After finishing the book, I can say that the book is very loosely knitted. It has breaks very often for example, for a book of 300 odd pages, it had more than 100 chapters. So the storyline jumped a lot. At times the book felt captivating specially towards two thirds of the book, b ...more
Mar 28, 2014 Cateyesmd rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014-challenge
A well rounded mix of suspense, love, the dark side!

I grabbed this as my pick through the Kindle First program, but I would certainly purchase this book for $$!

As crazy as the story is, it actually has a feel of reality. The characters and story lines for each are relatable. I was rooting for Cooper!!! I was not expecting the dark side of this book at all. It was clear without being detailed and over the top about the actions committed by people, which is good for me because I don't like gory b
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Born William Robert Cole, Jr., in Montgomery, Alabama, in 1964, writer Bobby Cole now lives in West Point, Mississippi, where he is President of Mossy Oak® BioLogic®. He and his wife Melissa are the parents of a daughter named Jessi. Cole is an avid wildlife manager, hunter, and supporter of the Catch-A-Dream™ Foundation (a program for terminally-ill children). He began writing his first book, The ...more
More about Bobby Cole...

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“You need to get right with God, you need to get right with Kelly, and you need to start spendin' time with dem precious chirren. Don't matter hows much money yous got, you can't buy back time. You been worrin' 'bout all da wrong thangs.” 1 likes
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