"Manga and Murder" By Leslie Langtry: Review/Giveaway

Review by Kathleen Costa

Details at the end of this post on how to enter to win an ebook copy of the book and a link to purchase it.

Karma Knows Best!

Karma’s good luck has been on overload on behalf of Fionnaghuala Merrygold Czrygy. She was a CIA field agent covertly embedded in a Chechen terrorist group, until, due to a spat between her Senator father and the Vice-President, a news report outed her identity. She barely escaped, thankfully, and, with a name change and an apology settlement, headed to the one place in which she thought she could hide, Who’s There, Iowa. There she became a Girl Scout leader prepared to mold the hearts and minds of the next generation. It wasn’t exactly how she imagined since the troop consisted of very precocious pre-teens more interested in weapons training and enhanced interrogation methods than selling cookies, but the situation did come in handy when her location was discovered by more than a few bad guys. Along with her co-leader and long-time BFF Kelly Albers, detective and husband Rex Ferguson, her former CIA handler PI Riley Andrews, and several quirky friends and family, including a quartet of teenage druids…the adventure is always exciting!

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Image Source Gemma Halliday
Manga and Murder
Earns 5/5 Iced-Tea Scoldings…Engaging, Clever, Fun!

The Cult of NicoDerm, nothing to do with smokers, has a very small membership: four teenagers, High Priestess Claire (aka the receptionist at Riley’s PI firm), and the Bird Goddess herself…Merry. The teens made it big, in a way, regaining the rights to their one edition graphic novel, Beetle Dork, very loosely based on Merry’s CIA exploits, and Stewie, the Dred Demon Odious, has big plans to host Druid-Con. Well, not plans, per se, he’s already posted the posters, sold three hundred tickets, and advertised that the “Burd Gddess” will be the “star of the two-day event.” Merry is not amused! However, she quickly changes her emphatic “No!” when she learns her childhood idol Deliria, the famous late-night hostess of the horror show “Delirium of Evil,” would be in attendance. She thought about just staying long enough to meet the “mistress of dark,” but no such luck…key note greetings and autograph sessions, her troop of girls and a rival Druid gang, and not again—murder!

Merry Magnificent! Leslie Langtry has again provided a rip roarin’ romp of costumed figures, antagonistic reporters, an eleven-year-old weapons expert, an additional dead body, and Merry at her finest. The mystery is quite fun with everyone pointing fingers toward Merry, of course, and Stewie, who may have wanted to punctuate his Druid-Con with some newsworthy notoriety, gets handcuffs instead of handshakes. Of course Betty, the troop’s agent-in-training, wants to start torturing and interrogating immediately, but Merry’s technique is a bit more conventional as she looks into the victim’s husband, business agent, fanatic fans, and competing druids. Absolute fun! Leslie’s writing style is always well-plotted with vivid description, informative banter, and the snarky retort that has made this series a personal favorite. Betty is back in rare form with her parents threatening to send her away for everyone’s safety and sanity, and, as much as Merry is impressed and may see herself in Betty’s antics, it’s Kelly who reminds Merry of what are Girl Scout-approved life lessons. Even though one needs to suspend disbelief with the troop’s antics, I find the interactions and questionable interests of Betty always a delight, and Ava’s run for mayor adds so much fun to the drama (The town’s charter only addressed half of a previous issue by stating candidates need only to be “human.”) Great perilous moments, of which there are plenty, sparking memories of the similarities and contrast with her CIA past, and highlighting Merry’s spy skills. Entertaining mystery. Shocking whodunit reveal. Well-developed characters. Witty humor filled with my kind of sarcasm. Friends. Fiends. Fun.

Alert! Merry’s twenty-first adventure, Mayor for Murder, will soon be on an Amazon preorder with a release date of January 25, 2022. A three-ring circus has arrived in the shape of the town’s mayoral election, and Ava, one of Merry’s eleven-year-old Girl Scout dynamos, is actively running. Worse yet…conflicts continue among the Druid cult, Betty and her babysitter/assassin-not-an-assassin are way too simpatico, a political worker takes a roof-top nose dive, and the incumbent mayor is missing. Can’t wait!

Be a Big Leslie Langtry Fan!

USA Today bestselling author Leslie Langtry pens one of my favorite series: Merry Wrath series. She also writes the very entertaining Bombay Assassins Greatest Hits Mystery and is one of the contributing authors in GHP’s Aloha Lagoon Mystery with two marvelous books: Ukulele Murder and Ukulele Deadly. Something for every cozy taste! 

Facebook – Leslie Langtry

Merry’s Troop FB group is private. Fans can join HERE.

Website – Leslie Langtry

Be a Gemma Halliday Publishing Fan!

Facebook - GHPublishing

Website - Gemma Halliday Publishing

To enter to win an ebook copy of Manga and Murder, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line "manga,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen November 20, 2021. US residents only and you must be 18 or older to enter.  If entering via comment please include your email address so we can contact you. You can read our privacy statement here if you like.

Check out other mystery articles, reviews, book giveaways & mystery short stories in our mystery section in Kings River Life and in our mystery category here on KRL News & Reviews. And join our mystery Facebook group to keep up with everything mystery we post, and have a chance at some extra giveaways. And check out our new mystery podcast which features mystery short stories and first chapters read by local actors! A new episode went up this week.

You can use this link to purchase the book or click here. If you have adblocker on you may not be able to see the Amazon link:

Kathleen Costa is a long-time resident of the Central Valley, and although born in Idaho, she considers herself a “California Girl.” Graduating from CSU-Sacramento, she is a 35+ year veteran teacher having taught in grades 1-8 in schools from Sacramento to Los Angeles to Stockton to Lodi. Currently Kathleen is enjoying her retirement revitalizing hobbies along with exploring writing, reading for pleasure, and spending 24/7 with her husband.
Disclosure: This post contains links to an affiliate program, for which we receive a few cents if you make purchases. KRL also receives free copies of most of the books that it reviews, that are provided in exchange for an honest review of the book.


  1. I've read a couple of books in this series! Count me in!

  2. Sounds like a fun read. Looking forward to reading the book.

  3. I'm not familiar with Leslie Langtry but from the information in your blog her books
    sound very interesting. My fingers are crossed.


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