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Summary

From USA Today best-selling author Catherine Bruns comes an Aloha Lagoon mystery that proves that, sometimes, paradise isn't all it's served up to be. 

New to both Hawaii and the Aloha Lagoon Resort, Carrie Jorgenson has big dreams of stardom. But, while she awaits fame and fortune, she's forced to accept a job waitressing at the resort's The Loco Moco Café. It isn't long before she discovers the dish on her new boss - also known to many as "The Big Kahuna". 

Hale Akamu is rich, handsome, repulsive...and dead. When Carrie discovers Hale's lifeless body, she's suddenly forced into yet another role: amateur sleuth. With everyone, from Carrie to the saucy chef to the café's hot assistant manager under suspicion, Carrie needs to track a killer before she becomes his next main entrée! Recipes included in the audiobook.

About Aloha Lagoon: There's trouble in paradise. Welcome to Aloha Lagoon, one of Hawaii's hidden treasures. A little bit of tropical paradise nestled along the coast of Kauai, this resort town boasts luxurious accommodation, friendly island atmosphere...and only a slightly-higher-than-normal murder rate. While mysterious circumstances may be the norm on our corner of the island, we're certain that our staff and Lagoon natives will make your stay in Aloha Lagoon one you will never forget! Visit us at alohalagoonmysteries.com

©2017 Catherine Bruns (P)2019 Catherine Bruns

What listeners say about Death of the Big Kahuna

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A big name for a big enjoyable book

I really enjoyed this book. I liked the characters and found the mystery to be fun and entertaining. It is definitely a series I will be adding to my look out for list. There was plenty of suspects and clues that it will keep you guessing who the killer is. Carrie is new to the island of Hawaii and in need of a job.The only job she can find might not be what she was looking for and with the boss hitting on her in the job interview one she wants to keep for long but beggars can't be choosers and at least she will get to work with the hunky Keanu. That is until she stumbles over the boss's dead body and then what was once a life saver could very easily cost her her life. The police have to many suspects, as Carrie wasn't the only waitresses he hit on or crossed with his mean temper. The chiefs knife turns out to be the murder weapon and as the police start to focuses in on Carrie and the Chief, it is a toss up as to which one will be arrested first that is if they are not killed first. I like the narrator and think she plays a big part as to why this book was so much fun. Definitely a series I will be looking out for.

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Karma is a beach.

Death of the Big Kahuna has just about everything it needs to succeed: exotic location of sun, sea, and sand, a touch of both romance and rejection, quirky, well written protagonists, each with a secret they wish to conceal, and the murder of a central unpleasant character, liked by no one making suspects of them all. Hoping to turn he unhappy childhood into a life of success in showbusiness, Carrie follows her boy friend surfer instructor to the stunning resort at Aloha Lagoon where she meets the very wealthy and obnoxious Big Kahuna of the title, the owner of a successful cafe, and the other colourful folks working there. When his body is discovered, stabbed, and pinned with the note, 'pig', everyone becomes a suspect including Carrie, who realizes that, to clear herself, she needs to try to discover his killer. Well written, this fun story oozes sunshine and pins colada, with just enough pathos to stop sweetness overload. There are sufficient clues scattered around for the reader to also act as amateur sleuth and discover the perpetrator before the big reveal, so lots of character backs stories beyond that of Carrie who tells the story from her first person point of view. And, as the action takes place in a cafe, the book concludes with recipes to try out at home. Expert narration by Any Deuchler completes the line up of ingredients in this successful story: her well paced reading adding further brightness and lightness to the mix. My thanks to the rights holder of The Big Kahuna, who, at my request, freely gifted me with a complimentary copy via Audiobook Boom. Perhaps not high literature but it is a nicely written fun read and highly recommended to all who enjoy both murder mysteries and the cozy genre. Delicious

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  • Lomeraniel
  • 16-02-20

Enjoyable but forgettable

I want to clarify that this is a multi-author series, meaning that each book is written by a different author, and the stories are not related. I had previously listened to the first book, and despite being this the sixth book, I had no issues following the story as each book is a stand-alone. The only thing they have in common is that the events happen in Aloha Lagoon, an imaginary place on Kauai, Hawaii. Decided to part with her dysfunctional family, and following her boyfriend Brad, Carrie Jorgenson, a twenty-something girl, is a newly arrived at the Aloha Lagoon resort. Without previous real experience, she applies for a job at The Loko Moko Café, where she gets hired. The café owner is a despicable man with many enemies, and everyone seems to be a suspect after Carrie finds him dead at the cafe one evening after closing time. I am really into cozy mysteries, and after listening to Ukulele Murder, the first book in this series, I was looking forward to this one. I would like to mention that I listened to this audiobook while I was spending a week in Hawaii, so I was ready to enjoy the luxurious descriptions while I was in a similar setting. Something that I missed were those descriptions, though. I have the feeling that this story could have happened anywhere else and still retain its essence. I have expected a special atmosphere to set the reader’s mood but it just was not there. The mystery was interesting enough to kept me engaged, even though the characters were not super developed. Despite Brad being Carrie’s boyfriend, we know little about him, and even Carrie’s story is obscure. I think this book would be mostly enjoyed by young adults, as Carrie is quite young and her worries revolve around an unresponsive boyfriend and an attractive coworker. It was an entertaining story, not the best cozy mystery I have ever listened to but good enough to keep me going. Amy Deuchler’s portrayal of Carrie was quite good, but I would have liked a bit more expressiveness and a more lively narration during humorous moments. Her male voices were good, but there was little differentiation among his female interpretations, which made following dialogs a bit difficult sometimes. The audio production was good and there were no issues. I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

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  • sci teacher
  • 16-02-20

Death of the Big Kahuna Rev

Summary: Carrie Jorgenson has a lousy boyfriend but lands a waitressing job at a little café called the Loco Moco. It’s owned by a rich jerk who gets himself knocked off. Now everybody’s under suspicion, including Carrie. Additional Comments: - Series features different authors. It’s an interesting concept and probably a fun project to contribute to. Basically, I think the only thing linking the series is the locale and maybe some side characters. You can certainly experience each of the titles on their own without the others. Except the ones by Catherine Bruns here. Death of the Kona Man should be read after Death of the Big Kahuna because Carrie comes back and the events take place right after. - The con to doing things this way is that it’s probably up to each author to get their own book made into an audiobook, so not every one of the titles is even available through audible. - Carrie’s backstory is harped on a little too much, but I did enjoy the fact that it’s not a typical upbringing. - Typical cozy mystery fare. Hapless girl gets in trouble, can’t resist a good mystery, finds killer, gets some things settled in her life, etc. - Side Characters: Not going to lie here, a few of the side characters are blurring. Tad’s interesting. Keanu’s perfect. Lola? is the gossipy new bff. - Amy Deuchler’s performance is good. She distinguishes the various characters and settles into the first person pov well. - Wrapup is just okay. There’s quite a bit of info dumping at the end. Maybe that’s a cozy mystery thing I’m just not used to, but the bad guys tend to have long soliloquy type speeches wherein they layout why the MC must die, then of course get foiled somehow. - The recipes at the end ticked me off, but I’m pretty sure I’m going to be in the minority here. Why include that in an audiobook? (I’ve included charts before…and yup, it was a mistake. People typically can’t absorb things that way – not to the point where they could use the recipe.) Unless you’ve got a stellar memory, you’re better off Googling it so you can re-check instructions and ingredients. - Setting: I enjoy things set in Hawaii. It’s a great mix of familiar yet exotic. Conclusion: If you live and breathe by cozy mysteries, give this book a shot. They’re all standalones so I can’t vouch for any of the others. *I received a free copy and have chosen to leave a review

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  • Hudson the Basset
  • 22-10-19

Trouble In Paradise

Death of the Big Kahuna Aloha Lagoon Mysteries, Book 6, is a fun little mystery. The setting is Hawaii and a small café. The "Big Kahuna" is the not so nice owner of the restaurant. Things do not go well for him (think large knife). The narrator, Amy Deuchler, is great. She set the tone for a good island story. I was given a free copy of this book for an unbiased review.

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  • Troublemer(tammy hovey)
  • 22-10-19

LOVED IT

I love this series. This is the 3rd book i have read in this series and love them all. This story kept me laughing through out. I loved the characters and i was thoroughly entertained trying to figure out the murderer. The victim had too many enemies. The narrator did a great job. I will definitely continue to do more in this series. I was gifted this book at my request in exchange for an honest review.

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  • Katie
  • 17-10-19

Another winner by Bruns and Deuchler............

Death of the Big Kahuna is the sixth book in the series, but the books are written by different authors and are completely standalone. I was already a big Catherine Bruns fan from her Cindy York series, and this book further cements my respect for her writing skills and vivid imagination. The book features Carrie Jorgenson, a recent transplant to Hawaii from the mainland. I wasn't certain if I was going to like Carrie because she seemed to be chasing after a worthless boyfriend and a pipe dream of stardom. However, quickly into the story, the author gives us more background into Carrie's difficult upbringing and romantic past. Given this rather sad history as well as her youth and naivete, all of Carrie's actions began to make more sense. By mid-way through the story, I was very impressed with both her personal growth and her ever increasing spunk. While trying to retain her job as a waitress at the Loco Moco Cafe after her discovery of the dead body of the owner, Carrie decides to investigate his murder. Because her boss was such a jerk, she has plenty of suspects to consider and eliminate. With the assistance of several friendly coworkers and the resistance from the boss's hostile widow and multiple enemies, Carrie sticks with the challenge until the very end. I was completely surprised by both the identity of the murderer and the motive, and I grew to love the family Carrie was building with her new friends. With just a hint of romance on the horizon, I would love to see what adventures Bruns has in store for Carrie next. Amy Deuchler's narration is as superb as always. She narrates many of the cozy mysteries by Catherine Bruns, and these two make a great team. Deuchler adds just the right amount of drama to her performance to increase the excitement without going over the top. Her delivery is flawless, she differentiates well between characters, and she has an all-around pleasing voice. I received a copy of this audiobook at my request in exchange for this honest review.

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  • Nicole
  • 14-10-19

Love it!

This is a great cozy mystery with a splash of love story. Can’t wait to see where this series goes! I received a review copy

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  • Catharine Blankenship
  • 03-10-19

Death of the Big Kahuna

Good story, Very enjoyable. Will recommend to friends. "I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review."

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  • Jan
  • 01-10-19

Good read!

What could be better than living in Hawaii? Being broke, having an egocentric cheating boyfriend, and, oh yeah, finding your new boss that everyone hates dead on the hotel kitchen floor with a big knife in his chest. And being the newest employee doesn't mean much because the entire staff are the suspect list. A good cozy mystery with believable characters and a sound plot. I loved it! Narrator Amy Deuchler has a melodramatic delivery that really ratchets up the suspense factor. I won the audiobook in a giveaway!

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  • Layla
  • 01-10-19

Loved it.

I loved it and listened to it from beginning to end. Love this authors book. There is something about them that I like. If you like cozy mysteries on a tropical island then this is for you!

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  • Kathleen C.
  • 28-09-19

Earns 5/5 Mai Tai Umbrellas...Engaging Fun!

Catherine Bruns offers in her first book in the Aloha Lagoon Mystery collection a clever bite from ‘Karma’ giving many of us, who have suffered working for an insufferable boss, a cathartic experience along with a delightfully fun setting, mystery, and well-developed characters. Carrie Jorgensen exchanged life in Vermont for Kauai, but finding a job and trying to salvage her romantic relationship is problematic. She finally lands a waitressing job at the Loco Moco Café, and, despite the congeniality of the other employees, the owner, dubbed the “Big Kahuna,” is very worrisome with some “Me, too” behaviors. It gets more worrisome when Carrie happens upon the “Big Kahuna” in the kitchen…dead. Carrie is a bruised soul for whom you are sympathetic, and that keeps you engaged with her journey, her growth, and the strength she discovers she didn’t realize she had. Descriptions bring the humidity and the tropical aromas to life, and dialogue is as engaging as eavesdropping. This is a marvelous cozy journey for it’s humor, suspense, and satisfying resolution. Even though my journey started with reading the eBook, I was eager to revisit the story by listening to the newly released audiobook. I was not disappointed as my re-experience was greatly enhanced by Amy Delucher very talented narration, who also lends her talents to Bruns’s Cindy York series. Amy does well with the traditional reading out loud performing the tone and emotions to keep listeners, like myself, totally engaged, but she goes beyond just reading. Her voice artistry portrays well the different personalities with varied inflections, tone, and accents like Poncho’s Spanish accent to make this audio version very entertaining. Even though it’s a challenge for female narrators, she did well with the male voices, too. Get a pad and pencil since Amy does read the ingredients and directions for the four recipes included in the book: Poncho’s Pineapple Salsa (I can attest it’s delicious), Pumpkin Roll, Pulled Pork, and Mai Tai Cocktail (sans the little umbrella, of course). The only construction criticism I have is the absence of a Hawaiian dialect. I know it may be stereotypical, but it is set in Hawaii and would have added a uniqueness to the story. All in all...I loved it! A delightful way to enjoy Catherine Bruns’s Aloha adventure...Death of the Big Kahuna is great! Can’t wait for the next book, “Death of the Kona Man.”