Read Coming Out Can Be Murder by ReneeJames Online


First he wants her ... then he wants her dead.Bobbi Logan's life and career begin to spiral downward when she comes out as a transgendered woman. But the gutsy hairdresser is determined to live her "new life" authentically, even as she is drawn into the investigation of her brutally murdered friend.The Chicago police have all but said they're not interested in the death ofFirst he wants her ... then he wants her dead.Bobbi Logan's life and career begin to spiral downward when she comes out as a transgendered woman. But the gutsy hairdresser is determined to live her "new life" authentically, even as she is drawn into the investigation of her brutally murdered friend.The Chicago police have all but said they're not interested in the death of a "tranny" and the media has failed to report it. As she follows a trail ofevidence through the shadowy underground of the Windy City, Bobbi is led to John Strand, a seductive powerbroker. Coming face-to-face with the number one suspect can only lead to one thing ... murder. But who will it be?(Please note this edition has been re-published as Transition to Murder.)...

Title : Coming Out Can Be Murder
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 978935766285
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 266 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Coming Out Can Be Murder Reviews

  • Lena♥Ribka
    2019-05-02 21:38

    When I started A Kind of Justice I had no idea that it was a second book in Bobbi Logan Crime Novel series . But I loved the writing so much, that I immediately purchased the only other already published book by the author WITHOUT even knowing that it was the first book to the series. Can you imagine my surprise (and excitement) when I found out that there was a background, a BEGINNING story of Bobby Logan! I normally do not read series backwards; it is not my art. And if Iunintentionallypick up a book that is a part of the series, then I try to cope the situation and figure out what happened BEFORE by myself without giving up. But I NEVER go back. Normally.Renee James made me break my own rules. And I’m soooo glad she did it!As an experienced Bobby Logan's expert, I dare to say, that you can read two books (I don’t know if more will come, so I mean really only the first two books in the series), as a stand-alone, or in any order you like, you won’t miss anything. The author succeeded to create two full length novels that are OF COURSE closely connected to each other, but every single one gives you a completed story. I am though glad that I read it in the wrong order. If you think I knew everything already, and it made a suspense part for me less thrilling- you are WRONG!!! I thought I knew it, NO; I did not! I just can’t say more, because a normal reader is supposed to read a series in a release date’s order, so I am not going to spoil you anything.Aside from an intriguing and interesting mystery part (as you know, I'm a big mystery fan), I enjoyed this book in the first place because of Booby Logan. If in the second book Bobby went already through a surgical operation and transition, in the fist book she IS in her transition phase, and comes out to her hair dresser collegues and to her ex-wife only at the middle of the book. The first person POV gives you very intimate insights into a world of a trans-woman. I have to admit though that I was surprised to meet unsecure Bobby after I already know her position from the second book. On the one hand, she is sure that she doesn’t want to be Robert EVER AGAIN, on the other, she has doubts and fears about her decision. Though she knows that it is the only way for her to be happy. "I don't want to spend my life pretending to be a man, not when I can spend it trying to be a woman."I didn’t know that if a duration of hormonal treatments will exceed a certain time, there is a point of no return! It is why Bobby tries to go celibate through her transition phase, because she doesn’t want her sex life be able to influence her decision in any way. But we all know that a real life has sometimes a different scenario. And it is actually where a mystery parts leads...So, yes, the driving force, the greatest strength, a true magnet of the series is the main character.Booby Logan maybe will not change your view on transsexuality, but she for sure expand your horizons and enrich your knowledge and understanding of transgender people. in the most charming and charismatic way, though I’m aware that reality for them is far away from a fairy tale. And THAT I learned also from this book.P.S I'd like especially thank the author for her Author's Notes at the end of the book. Highly recommended!

  • Audra (Unabridged Chick)
    2019-04-25 22:39

    This is another book my wife tore out of my hands because I gushed too much, too soon. We both adored Achy Obejas' short story "Destiny Returns" from Chicago Noir and this book reminded me greatly of Obejas' story: the wonderful use of place and the bright light shone on the experience of those on the margins of society. James' novel is about a transgendered hairdresser, whose personal life is already emotionally tumultuous -- she's working on coming 'out' wholly as a woman without, hopefully, losing her job -- when she learns that a friend, another transgender woman, is brutally murdered.Concerned that police aren't moving on solving the murder, Bobbi tracks the man believed to be the murdered, and unsurprisingly, this leads Bobbi into some serious danger. The story flips between Bobbi's first person account and the murderer's life, and it's chilling (delightfully, deliciously, angry-making-ly). This is a political thriller in some ways, unintentionally, but by virtue of the fact that the murder of a transgendered woman is often under-reported in media and poorly investigated. I loved that nuance to this story -- the violent death of anyone is horrible but James really lifts up the fears and anger from a community that often has to watch silently as society ignores the violence they face.I loved the characters and James' writing, and Bobbi passed my I-want-her-to-be-my-bestie test. She's smart and funny, nervous and bold, scared and surprisingly strong, and very real. She's also a sexual person with desires and lusts, and James doesn't hide that. There's some sex (PG-13ish, I'd say), and some romance, and I loved it all -- and I was really delighted that James doesn't hide Bobbi in anyway. The secondary characters were just as appealing as the main characters, and again, I was so taken with the mix of crime and social/political commentary.This is a fantastic murder mystery -- don't be scared off by the focus on the transgender community. Even if you're unfamiliar with what 'transgender' means isn't a problem as James provides context and explanation. As Bobbi goes through the process of coming out as a transwoman and what that means, James brings the reader along the whole time, and I dare anyone not to be moved.I am so eager to see James' next endeavor, and I kind of hope Bobbi shows up again. She's a heroine I'm rooting for, and James' Chicago is a place I want to visit again. Give this book a try, especially this summer: this is a fun, quick-but-meaty murder mystery that is engrossing from the first page to the last.

  • Renee James
    2019-05-18 20:17

    Well, I wrote it, so maybe there's a hint of bias in my rating. But it really is a good read--interesting character in an interesting and very different world, and a plot that puts her in the center of human conflict where morality and the will to live come to a crashing junction.

  • Shelleyrae at Book'd Out
    2019-04-29 02:10

    I was intrigued by a review I read online of Coming Out Can be Murder at the book blog Literary R&R which praised the novel's combination of unique transgender protagonist and page turning mystery plot. After leaving a comment, the author contacted me to ask if I would be interested in reviewing the novel and I was happy to accept, adding it to my schedule. Coming Out Can Be Murder is set in and around Boystown, Chicago, a district recognized as a cultural center for the LGBT community. Bobbi Logan is in a period of transition, working as a male hairdresser by day, on her own time she prefers to dress and identify as a woman. Considering gender reassignment surgery, but still uncertain about her such a radical change, the first step for Bobbi involves coming out at work. It's a difficult transition and between her insecurities about her looks, hormones and more than a few nasty reactions, Bobbi can't help but question her burgeoning identity. James realistically portrays Bobbi and her emotional and mental turmoil as she begins her life as a full time transgender woman considering gender reassignment. Much of the novel focuses on the individual challenges Bobbi faces as she tries to become comfortable with who she is and I couldn't help but sympathise with the difficult journey she undertakes. James approach to Bobbi's character is a holistic one with the author careful to ensure that Bobbi is a well developed multifaceted character.When one of Bobbi's clients, Mandy, a young transgender woman, is brutally murdered, and the local cops seem indifferent, Bobbi finds herself drawn into finding the man responsible. In her emotionally vulnerable state however she finds herself in a dangerous situation, targeted by the sociopathic man who is protected by wealth, power and status. I think Coming Out Can be Murder is more properly a psychological thriller than a mystery. The tension is generated by the author's decision to give us insight into the man's perspective. The reader witnesses his sadistic personality and fears for Bobbi's safety while Bobbi largely remains oblivious to the situation she has created. While I thought the suspense aspect of the plot was well developed, I have to admit I wasn't satisfied with its cold blooded conclusion. Though I can see what the author was aiming for, it didn't sit well with me and as a result there is a sense of imbalance overall.Coming Out Can be Murder also explores the social challenges members of the transgender community face. The responses of family members and friends, many of whom choose to exorcise the transgender person from their lives in shock and disgust, leaving the person vulnerable with few resources. Having to endure the attitudes of strangers, ranging from the uncomfortably curious to violent anger and hatred. The apathetic political, legal and justice systems whom discriminate against the community because of individual prejudices. There are some confronting scenes in the novel, including a brutal rape and assault on Bobbi, but I found the less violent slights, snubs and reactions of Bobbi's clients similarly disturbing. I have to admit I have never met a transgender person but I like to think I would not be bothered by an encounter. My personal philosophy is along the lines of "live and let love".While I enjoyed the thriller aspect of Coming Out Can be Murder it is the insight into a lifestyle and a community I am not familiar with that I found to be the most fascinating element of the novel. I am glad I took a chance on this small press title and I would recommend it to anyone whose curiosity is piqued by the premise.

  • Sally
    2019-05-17 00:18

    As the title of Renee James debut novel suggests, coming out as a transsexual can be murder – both literally and figuratively. The story opens on a rather grim and graphic note, with a scene of murderous obsession that leaves you feeling like you need a shower to wash the hatred away. It’s immensely powerful, and it serves to put the reader in an emotional place similar to that of Bobbi Logan, our transsexual heroine.Bobbi is an amazing character, realistically drawn, possessed of both human flaws and attributes. Hairdressers are often talked about as confidants, if not therapists, but rarely are they put in a position quite like hers. She finds herself caught between the bona-fide therapist who confides in her about the murder’s identity, the community leader who confides in her about the victim’s identity, and the cop who confides in her about his desire to connect with the community he protects.Spurred on by the injustice of it all, she takes the next step in her own transition, coming out at work, and then watching helplessly as her career begins slipping away from her. Forced to become something of an amateur sleuth, she forgoes the safety of anonymity and visibly immerses herself in the underground transsexual community, only to be singled out as the murder’s next target.While it might be a bit clichéd, Renee presents us with a story where the marginalized outcasts of society earn our respect and admiration, while the leaders of society earn nothing but our contempt. As befitting the genre, corruption is a significant them here, and one that extends deep into the human psyche. Her killer is not some faceless, mindless sociopath - he’s a conflicted individual who rationalises his actions, justifying them to himself so well, we have to admit to a grudging understanding even as we loathe him for it.The story here is equal parts coming out drama, hard-boiled murder mystery, and political thriller. Even though she begins the story as an effeminate hairdresser, Bobbi is about as far removed from a stereotype as you can imagine. She is a breath of fresh air, a source of light and joy amidst the darkness of the streets. Although the story could have worked with a cisgendered protagonist or out-and-proud transsexual heroine, Bobbi’s personal transition is just as important as the investigation she’s pursuing, and Renee manages to do justice to both aspects of the story. What struck me most vividly about the read is the contrast between fear and hope that is woven into the story. This is not a serialised crime drama where you know the protagonist has to survive into book number twelve or television season number thirteen. Bobbi’s situation is a dark one, and we honestly fear for her safety. Physical and sexual abuse, stalking, taunting, and police persecution are just a part of what she has to face in order to get at the truth. The more she suffers, however, the more she reaffirms her sense of self and grows into her womanhood. It’s an exhausting, difficult journey, and one that has a few very dark twists before the end, but it’s also one you can’t step away from for long.Of course, no character, no matter how strong, can carry a story this intense alone. Fortunately, Bobbie is surrounded by a solid cast of friends who seem to come alive in her presence, and who serve to remind us that love and acceptance are more powerful that hate and disgust.Originally reviewed for Frock Magazine

  • Nila
    2019-05-05 01:18

    Do you wonder how a trans person thinks, what she loves, how she lives, her many incarnations? This book will lure you in to caring about the equivocal Bobbi, grumpy and growing, quick to hate herself, but also ready to undergo surgery that will make her irretrievably a woman. Bobbi loves her work. She's a hairdresser, and I got such a kick out of her and her occupation. She loves it and is good at it, and there are no jokes here. The lady has friends, intelligence, a chip on her shoulder and a hatred for one human that over-rides her own nature and her pleasures in life.This is an excellent book. There's a crime and violence, but it's not as horrifying as I was fearing.I was lucky to find this book! (There's a sequel I'll be starting right away.)

  • Ann Werner
    2019-05-05 19:11

    Hats off to Renee James for writing a story that not only keeps your eyes glued to the page but also gives you an insight into a small and sometimes very lonely world. The story of Bobbi Logan and her transition from male to female is the backdrop to a tale of murder most foul. When one of Bobbi’s transgender clients is beaten to death, the whispers in the LGBT community all point to successful and untouchable businessman John Strand. As time drags on, the police do nothing, or at least nothing that anyone can see. There is no movement in the case and Bobbi decides to do a bit of poking around on her own. She soon finds out just how big a mistake that is. She has no idea of what is in store for her, but when it happens it isn’t pretty. In fact, it’s horrifying.While spinning a great tale about murder and intrigue, James also lets the reader inside the innermost thoughts of a transgender person: the hurts endured on a daily basis, the feelings of inadequacy, the fears, the hopes, the dreams and the reality of living life in one body when you feel you belong in another. I found myself getting angry at the slights, insults and violence Bobbi endured, feeling happy for the strides she made in overcoming the prejudices of the people around her and rooting for her as she decides what to do about John Strand. The finished story is nothing less than an intricate and beautiful tapestry. I learned a few things while I was being entertained and I can’t think of higher praise than that. Great job, Renee!

  • Bobbie C Thompson
    2019-05-15 19:24

    I'm an outsider looking in. My spouse is a transgender individual - a male to female (MTF). While reading "Coming Out Can Be Murder," I'd often look at my spouse and say, "Honey, I've heard you say that before." The feelings, fears, highs, and lows Bobbi, the main character who is also a TG MtF, experiences can only be conveyed by someone who has been in the experience - valuable insight for us outside the experience - I learned a lot.The book kept me on the edge of my seat, as all excellent thrillers do. Yet occasionally I couldn't help but laugh loudly.At times I was even repulsed - but not by the story being geared around a TG individual. Although `Murder' is fiction, it repulsed me to think it even possible that anyone could treat another person so horribly just because they're `different,' yet, knowing that's exactly how many are often treated - how sickening - it made my stomach turn.I cheered for Bobbi, and I feared for Bobbi. I rooted her on hoping she'd do what she had to do, while fearing the possible consequences if she did what she had to do."Murder" says to the TG community, "You're not alone, our experiences are similar." "Murder" says to the non-TG community, "This is my life's experience, and it's no different from yours - like you I laugh, cry, fear, rejoice, love, etc." And, it fosters acceptance teaching that `people are just people' no matter what their life's journey.I also LOVE the main character's name.

  • Cookie Tischler
    2019-04-25 21:39

    A Wonderful Read Ms. James's Coming Out Can Be Murder exceeded my expectations big time. Who would have thought someone could create such a multi-layered mystery novel. On the surface it is a page-turning, suspenseful fun read; a mystery with a satisfying ending. Under that layer are characters that become very real through their dialogue and actions. Digging deeper is the backbone of a very good, solid story. At a deeper level, this book can be said to approach literature in that literature deals with universal truths. I loved sharing Bobbi's (the main character) thoughts and experiences as she wrestles with her own truths and capabilities, her own good and evil sides, and her own coping mechanisms for a non-humane humanity. Also, this novel taught me a few things about hair as well as transwomen. Who knew people still teased their hair?

  • Theresa de Valence
    2019-05-06 02:33

    COMING OUT CAN BE MURDER is a mind-blowing story. Whatever your feelings about transgenders at the beginning, you will come to care for Bobbi and root for her survival. Author Renee James weaves such a great story, I’m fascinated to learn about this community. Bobbi has some odd friends, some sweet ones, and some acquaintances who are downright horrific. The writing is tight and clean. The pace of the story keeps the tension high. COMING OUT CAN BE MURDER tells a personal story which I never could have imagined and which I never knew I was interested in. And it’s a great, satisfying story.

  • Frank778
    2019-04-30 00:09

    Gotta say I loved this book. Despite the very graphic violent episodes, the book was gentle and well paced. I learned a lot about the day to day issues of a trans women. The narrator is a smart self aware person. I would love to hang out with her. Initially, I felt there was too much emphasis on hair styling (the lead is a hairdresser) but even that seemed like a realistic depiction of working in a salon and it won me over. My only disappointment is that so far this is the writer's only book. I had started it thinking it was the first of two but later realized the "second" was a re-packaging of this book.

  • Judy
    2019-05-16 22:23

    Sure, it's a great thriller, on a part with the best of Patricia Cornwell. More importantly, Coming Out Can Be Murder is a deeply moving portrait of a transgendered woman's journey. Bobbie Logan's voice is complex, compelling and deeply compassionate. Hopefully, we'll hear from her again!

  • Sue Evans
    2019-05-14 00:36

    This was a fairly good murder story but it was a great look into the world of the transgender. It really gave me a better understanding of what transgenders must deal with and how conflicted they often feel about their situation. This book has definitely altered my viewpoint.

  • Trista
    2019-04-28 23:31

    Great thriller. A real eye opener into the world of transgenders. A lot of knowledge is learned through this read. Hope more people read this book.

  • A.R. Fiano
    2019-04-30 22:39

    Good, engaging story and characters--tense and suspenseful. I really felt for the main character. Really heartfelt in showing transgender persons' experiences and issues.

  • Douglas Castagna
    2019-05-13 03:16

    I received A Kind Of Justice, the sequel to this book from Net Galley and started reading it before realizing there was a first book, this one. It was also rewritten a bit, the ending, for the birth of the series it has become. I can guess at the differences but that is not really important, what is important is the writing and the story this book takes painstaking detail to tell. The mystery, or the crime, at the center of this book is not the most important thing, in fact it pales in comparison, what shines is the new literary character of Bobbi Logan. Bobbi is a hairdresser who is transitioning to being a woman. She hides what she is doing at work and is only truly out the the closest of friends. Soon she decides to "come out" at work which means dressing as a woman. This does not go over well with some of her co-workers or her clients but Bobbi stands her ground. Amid her tribulations in dealing with her transition, a friend of hers from the community is murdered by someone and his identity is uncovered but the police seem to be dragging their feet on the matter, and this will not stand with Bobbi. Like I said the mystery or crime element is fine, but as a character study is where this book shines.

  • Molly
    2019-05-06 00:31

    I was totally prepared to give this book at least three, possible four, stars until I got to the end. What started as a mix between a murder-mystery and coming of age novel, turned into a cold-blooded revenge novel, which left me disappointed. I can explain more, but will end up hiding the review due to spoilers. Please don't read this review if you want to see how the book ends on your own.I really liked that the main character, Bobbi, is a person of transgendered status. In the beginning, she is uncertain about herself, her transition from male to female, and her place in the world. About half the story arc is about her transition, her successes and her set-backs. By the end, she is a woman in her own right, finding friendship and acceptance and success in her career as a hairdresser. The other story line deals with her interactions with a douche-bag named John Strand, whom we as the reader know killed a pretty, young transgirl named Mandy at the beginning. Strand becomes interested in Bobbi. They have have one experience (I think "date" is too generous of a word here). The author does a good job interweaving Bobbi's strange desire for Strand, her uncertainly as a woman, and her outright fear of Strand during this encounter. Strand isn't exactly a gentleman when he takes Bobbi out, but he's not a total monster either. The most harm he does is squeeze Bobbi's breast so hard it leaves her bruised and achy for several days. I don't feel this warrants Bobbi to murder him... but let's not get to that yet.Curious if Strand murdered Mandy, Bobbi follows Strand around. Strand learns about this and decides to teach her a lesson. He sends two goons to go out and rough her up. They beat her up and rape her in an alley. Bobbi doesn't recognize the men and is unable to give a description. There is little the police can do, and she begins to feel she has to take matters into her own hands. She designs a plan to kill John Strand.This is where I have a problem with this book. Strand didn't rape her. Strand didn't beat her up in the alley. Sure, the goons were following Strand's orders, but they choose to act on his orders. Had Strand been directly involved in the rape, possibly having his goons bring Bobbi to him (which I would have found more plausible, considering his violent nature), I would have been more supportive in Bobbi's revenge. Bobbi goes after Strand in cold blooded murder. She uses a tranquilizer to knock Strand out cold and ties him up, helpless in his living room. At no point is Strand attacking her. She has no claims for self-defense here. I think the author missed a chance to notch up the drama and suspense by keeping Strand helpless. I would have found it more interesting if Strand had gotten free and attacked Bobbi. I could have justified her killing him then. The real disappointment is that Bobbi gets away with it. She has a lot of guilt, and ends up sharing her guilt with her therapist. Not once does the therapist suggest she turn herself in. Instead the therapist gives her a go-ahead letter for sex reassignment surgery like a pat on the back. Bobbi ends wildly successful, an outstanding member of the transgender community, and she has come to terms with her guilt and even justifies the murder by rationalizing that her friends would understand if they knew the whole story. I would have liked to have seen Strand's character fleshed out a bit more. He was portrayed a a wealthy villain, with nothing but evil thoughts. I feel that real antagonists are fully human, and have good parts that oddly contrast with their vile deeds. Even Hitler had an appreciation for art. I think it would have been an odd contrast if this man who loves to beat up transwomen was a huge supporter of the trans community, donating generously to trans causes and events. Overall, the writing is very good. The author's description of Chicago are spot on. The author has done her research regarding transition and hairdressing. The characters are likable, and it's really easy to root for Bobbi, especially in the beginning. Honestly, it's a good read, until the last 100 pages or so. Strand was evil and mean, but even evil and mean people deserve a fair trial, not cold-blooded murder by someone acting as jury, judge and executioner. In the end, Bobbi becomes no better than Strand, which made me sad, considering how much I was rooting for her at the beginning.

  • E.C. Diskin
    2019-04-30 20:17

    This was unlike anything I've read before....this book is a window into a world most of us don't understand. I thought about Bobbi long after I finished the book and felt like I really gained great insight into the transgender world. Beyond that, the story held my attention til the very end-- it was both moving and fascinating.

  • Erin
    2019-05-05 01:34

    This is a book that I read for my book club by a local author. I really enjoyed it. It was a great mystery and I learned a lot, and have a greater appreciation for, the transgender community because of it. This is definitely a one of a kind book - there is nothing else like this out there!