What the Lady Wants
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What the Lady Wants

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3.56 of 5 stars 3.56  ·  rating details  ·  4,550 ratings  ·  197 reviews
If he's Cary Grant, where's his Girl Friday?

Mitch Peabody was learning pretty fast that the life of a private detective was nothing like the movies. He'd envisioned a world of tough-talking detectives and smart-mouthed, stunning dames. Instead he saw case after case of cheating husbands, suspicious wives and unsuspecting mistresses…until she walked through the d...more
Paperback, 384 pages
Published March 1st 2010 by HQN Books (first published 1995)
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Saly
Not my favorite Crusie, normally I love her crazy characters from the get go but I don't why there was just something missing for me it was still fun but not as much fun.
The hero is a PI thoroughly bored with the job, he thought it would be glamorous instead he chases cheating spouses and such and then in walks the heroine, who looks rich and classy and is a total liar, but the money she gives him helps him win the bet he made, he's actually a stock-broker.

The heroine tells him her uncle was mur...more
Jacob Proffitt
Like other "middle" Crusie's (mid 90s), this one is seriously flawed, even though I enjoyed reading it. Mitch is simply dreadful at the start with little redeeming value—certainly nothing that should attract Mae. I rather liked Mae, on the other hand, but she's as close to a stereotype as Crusie gets (which, admittedly, isn't terribly close). So yeah, I was entertained. But mostly because Mitch changed drastically around the middle and Mae didn't...

A note about Steamy: Lightly steamy with one an...more
Jennifer
This book gives a nod to the hard boiled detective genre with the main character being a disillusioned private eye whose head snaps and pants tent when "SHE" walks in the door. The mystery of who killed her Uncle is secondary to the romance between Mitch and Mae. Formulaic yet fun.
Olga Godim
One of the earlier stories by one of my favorite writers, this short novel, a blend of mystery and romance, is sweet and funny, although its romantic twist is rather abrupt.
Mitch is a shabby, less than intelligent PI in a seedy office in a dilapidated building. Or so it seems at first glance, when Mae first approaches him with her made-up case of her uncle’s murder. All she wants him to do is to stir up some noise.
Mae comes out of Mitch’s dreams of being a Sam Spade, with his own femme fatale....more
Wicked Incognito Now
Crusie just has the ability to write the most dynamic character interactions. These two, Mae and Mitch, were absorbing from the get go.

The story starts with Mitch in a seedy detective agency, no AC, sweltering, in a cheap suit, fantasizing about how his life as a PI was supposed to be. It would be like The Maltese Falcon and the sexy femme fatale would walk in and turn his world upside down....

Then, of course, in walks Mae. She is determined to con this PI into helping her solve a murder that di...more
Heather Hamilton
I am heartbroken. I can't believe I had to give Jennifer Crusie one star. But What The Lady Wants was just awful.

The two main characters were flat. The relationship between the two main characters was forced. The dialogue was repetitive. The sexual chemistry was described, but not really there. As a romance novel, zero stars were earned. There were one or two funny dialogue bits, but these were the only hints of Crusie's true talent.

The underlying mystery was it's only redeeming quality. It was...more
Hannah
Actually 2.5 stars. Rounded up for Goodreads, because it's Jennifer Crusie, after all.

I love the absurd situations and witty dialog in Crusie's books, and What the Lady Wants was full of both. What it lacked, however, was that undercurrent of hard-hitting realism found in most of Crusie's best works. This book was pure fluff; there was no depth. I wasn't particularly interested in the plot, and I didn't feel connected to the characters. I wasn't even happy about the HEA; I don't expect it to las...more
Maqluba
It really surprises me that this book doesn't have higher ratings. This story was such a fun and wild ride I couldn't put it down! I loved every character even down to Bob the dog:)
I enjoyed every minute of it. I'd definitely recommend this book to anyone who's looking for a fun easy read-- just try not to take it seriously. I'd also like to recommend you imagine the story in black and white with tints of red on Mae's lips cuz that's what was in my head for some reason and it played out like an...more
Jennifer Tatroe
I don't normally give a book two stars unless it has obvious editing errors or just plain bad writing, but What the Lady Wants really feels like a rehearsal for Crusie's later private investigator novel, Fast Women which, unfortunately, I read immediately before this one. This is another early Crusie novel and, though you can still find hints of her magic, it's not all there yet. The sex scenes, especially, are worth skimming over, and the dialogue isn't as snappy as I'm used to with Crusie. If...more
Book Wormy
What the Lady Wants Jennifer Crusie
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When Mae Belle Sullivans 76 year old uncle Armand dies of a heart attack his diary goes missing, knowing she needs information in the diary Mae decides to hire an incompetent detective to investigate Armands supposed murder.

Mitch has 1 week left to go as a private detective when Mae walks into his office looking like Brigid from The Eagle has Landed despite knowing she is lying to him Mitch accepts his final case.

What Mae didnt bargain on was how deter...more
Rebecca
Dizzy good fun that doesn't quite hold together when the dizziness wears off. This is a mishmash of lovely little details that are way too much fun and puzzling little details that don't actually quite make sense. But it's fast and lightweight enough that it doesn't really seem to matter all that much.

The characterization feels a little thin for our two leads. She insists no one ever gives her what she wants, just what they think she wants; he insists that marriage is for idiots. They both kind...more
Carrie
This was a re-read for me. I love anything Jennifer Crusie writes and will go through phases where I re-read all of my favorites. I like this book because of Mitch. I love the way he looks out for Mae even if he doesn’t think that’s what he is doing. I also love the secondary characters - the slutty housekeeper, the mistress, the mobster, etc. They make the story funny and keep the plot flowing perfectly. This book is perfect for a spring day when you want something light, funny, and quick to re...more
Joanne Simpson
My favorite quote:
"Look, there's no point in getting upset about this. You can't understand because you're a woman, and women don't think like that."
"Women don't want to open the west?"
"No. Women want to stay home and keep the East looking nice."
Mae took a deep breath..."You're deliberately trying to make me kill you, aren't you?"
http://www.jennycrusie.com/books/what...
Tasmia
Having read nearly all of Crusie’s other books before getting to this, I found it kind of a neat embryonic form of her later work. Here she’s trying out tropes and techniques that she brings to perfection in books like Tell Me Lies. Overall a quick and satisfying read, so long as you let yourself go with the seriously high-current flow. Also, it’s a fun glimpse back to the early 90s!
Gramy
This is an interesting romantic mystery involving Mitch Peabody, stock-broker turned private eye, and Mae Belle (Mabel) Sullivan, an orhpaned neice of a recently deceased uncle whom she was slated to inherit a great deal of money from. Her living relatives are less than reputable and will do anything to protect her. She hires a private eye to help her find her uncle's diary (containing daily entries about the details in his life), by claiming her uncle was murdered. Together they determine that...more
Alana
Not as good as the other crusie book I've read, but still entertaining. There were times when I kept thinking, "just call each other on your cell phones!!" But then realized the book was written in 1995. Lol
Cissa
I LOVE Jennifer Crusie. I think she writes the best dialog ever.

This is a great book for that. OK, the plot's pretty silly... but the dialog is wonderful, and it's got a happy ending- even for the dog.
Gina Hott
This book was really a lot of fun!

Both Mitch and Mea have a bit of a problem, they've modeled the life of a PI after Sam Spade's in A Maltese Falcon. It's really funny to watch them try to determine if they are playing out as Sam & Brigid.

Mitch is doing his best to get his PI business in the black and only living off the income - not an easy feat. Mae is trying to figure out what has been going on in her home the last few months. Mae is a ward of her uncles. The one whose home she grew up in...more
Mary
Guilty pleasure!
Don't judge me-
Laermie
well,a particular topic caught my attention in What the Lady Wants. it vividly pointed out the difference of man and a woman. For example, "women stay at home and keep the East looking nice" while "Men want to open the West". Another is that "Men need multiple breasts in their lives. Women need to make a commitment to one penis." It is a pathetic stupid argument as to why men cheat but it was greatly explained by cruisie. Like i am pissed with the "fact" presented but i like how it was presented
Starry
Mae belle Sullivan(nick:maebel)-main character
Mitchell Peatwick(kincaid-real last name)-investigator/dude that mae ends up with
Gio Donatello-mae's uncle
Carlo Donatello-gio's grandson
harold-mae's bultler,also june's lover
bob-someone/something(dont know)-think its mae's dog
June-someone related to mae/knows her, also harold's lover
Barbara Ross-was dating uncle armand,the girl armand was with while he was also with stormy
uncle armand(armand lewis)-mae's uncle,died of heart attack, his diary missing
n...more
Debbie
In walked the lovely and sexy Mae Sullivan, just like in a dime store novel, into the office of a private investigator named Mitchell Peatwick. The plan was to seduce him into helping her to find her Uncles stolen diaries, but what PI would take that job on, so the story had to be more intriguing. Murder, someone murdered her Uncle and stole the diary. That was her story, Mitch was not that gullible no matter how she fit into his fantasies. As far as a mid-life crisis went, thanks to her he migh...more
Julie
(2.5 stars)

What the Lady Wants is one of Jennifer Crusie's earlier books, and it shows. I had the same feeling about Charlie All Night -- it had all the classic Crusie elements, but the writing, dialogue, plot, and pacing weren't done as well as they are in her later books. However, I adored Charlie All Night, not even really noticing its faults because it was so cute and enjoyable.

This book started out slow. The gist of the plot is that Mae's wealthy uncle dies and she needs to find his diary f...more
Amanda
This is my 3rd book by Jennifer Crusie alone, the first was Getting Rid of Bradley and was worth the 5 stars I rated it, the second was Strange Bedpersons which was for me was a total flop because I couldn't finish it. This one however was somewhere in between, the Hero wasn't really a hero, in fact he was kind of disgusting. I found myself wanting to hate him but I couldn't. Maybe it was because he was just a smart ass to any and everyone. The plot was a little weak but it worked. I liked the H...more
Karen Keyte

Mae Belle Sullivan needs a private detective, preferably a balding, overweight private detective without an abundance of brains or ambition. The reason Mae Belle would prefer her detective be incompetent is that she doesn’t actually want to tell him what she’s looking for. She figures that if she dresses like a fifties femme fatale and throws words like murder around, even an over-the-hill plodder with Sam Spade fantasies will create enough of a fuss to keep whoever stole her late, unlamented un...more
Punk
Romance. Published in 1995, this is another one of Crusie's older works and is almost exclusively focused on romance rather than emotional growth -- to the detriment of the characters. Mae Belle Sullivan, who's only sort of related to the mob, hires stockbroker-turned-private-eye Mitch Peatwick to investigate her uncle's death. If Mae's not all she seems to be, neither is Mitch, who started the agency on a bet and whose real name is Mitchell Kincaid, though even the book seems confused about thi...more
Carrie
This book has some of the funniest dialogue I've read in ages. It's a sometimes campy, farcical romp and can't be taken seriously, but as a romantic comedy, it shines. I loved Mitch, I loved Mae, I loved the whole cast of characters, including the dumb-as-a-rock dog, Bob. But mostly, I loved the interactions with Mitch and Mae. I just had to smile as a slightly bemused Mitch watches his footloose single days slip away.

There is one dialogue around page 73, 74...somewhere in there (I don't have t...more
Navdha
This book wasn't bad. It's a 2.5 for me. I'm still giving it a 3. It's the first Jennifer Crusie book that I read. The writing style was okay. It wasn't flattering and I wasn't flattered. I was looking for a light-read, something that is equivalent to watching a movie and this book was just that. It had a nice humor. The mystery wasn't really shocking although it was somewhat surprising. Also, I think Armand was really a nut job. Who the hell writes everything that like on a diary and leaves it...more
Megan
Who other than Jennifer Crusie would even attempt to write a Harlequin noir romantic comedy?

With its streamlined plot, I thought this category-sized book worked better than Crusie's vaguely similar-ish single-title, Fast Women. There wasn't much space for more than broad strokes of character development, but I felt that worked for genre mash-up like this: the characters were always dependable to be themselves, bringing both humor and plot developments that fit the story perfectly. The romance it...more
Anna
Reviving long-dormant traditions of laughing until other people in the room ask me if I'm all right, this book is a hilarious homage to the noir tradition. It also cuts right across several romantic conflict tropes, which is very satisfying.
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19005
Jenny Crusie is the NYT bestselling author of twenty some novels and lots of other stuff. Her latest novel, Maybe This Time, hit shelves in August, 2010.

Jenny lives on the Ohio River where she often stares at the ceiling and counts her blessings.
More about Jennifer Crusie...
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“Of course it hurt you neanderthal! See that? Thats blood. If theres blood, theres pain. Its like smoke and fire.” 5 likes
“Everyone Lies.” 2 likes
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