Tag Archive | voodoo

The Blue Eyed Doll (Book 3 in The Dead-End Drive-In Series) by Carolyn Q Hunter

 

“You don’t find it odd that the topic of dolls keeps coming up?”

 

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My  very own “blue eyed doll”, “Alice.” She’s a 1916 German  C. M. Bergmann bisque head doll. 

Dolls, they make my world spin in a happy manor where most people step away and call them creepy, scary or just say no to them all together. Not me, bring them on!

 

Carolyn Q. Hunter has made my doll restringing heart happy with her newest release, The Blue Eyed Doll. It starts out amazingly creepy and ends with the same feel. It’s a fantastic, fast-paced story that feeds all my needs for entertainment in the doll realm…haunted and unknown.

We join the sisters, Anna and Belle of Sunken Grove after a wonderful opening prologue that introduces us to the town strange lady and hoarder, Coraline Danvers and the doll in question.

Everyone seems to be searching for this elusive doll, one that is priced above and beyond, a collector’s items we are to guess. She’s old for sure. But as we start meeting the characters in play, something seems…off. Why all of a sudden is everyone looking for this doll and why do they think Ms. Danvers has it.

We have an antiques dealer, a pushy doll restorer/collector (love her!), and an estranged daughter. All of them seem to be hyper focused on this doll. Themes of voodoo and a past kidnapping run through this story. Paranormal happenings and so much else that I can’t talk about without revealing the gooey center that is the plot of this amazing doll-centered book keeps the reader engaged.

As a restorer of dolls and collector as well, I know all too well what people can and do for antique dolls; paying thousands for them just to say they own them. I also know many who collect haunted dolls and what lengths they would go through to acquire such dolls. Yes, it’s a real thing. The doll world is a strange one and The Blue Eyed Doll throws the sisters right in the middle and the reader gets an inside look into the para-doll side of collecting.

Okay, I’m done…not going to say anything else. Yes, read this book. No, you don’t need to have read the other two to understand the characters or setting. Carolyn sets that up so nicely without overdoing it or being too repetitive.

When I asked Ms. Hunter her inspiration, she had this to say:

It was heavily inspired by the real Annabelle doll story. It also takes inspirations from southern Gothic literature and movies. I also was strongly influenced by author R.L. Stine for this one in how I executed the story arc. He’s been my favorite author for many years and his young adult fiction often uses cursed objects and places.

If you don’t like dolls, do not read this book. It will freak you out. And that is why I love it. Nah, go ahead and read it. The doll needs someone to play with…..

About The Author:

Carolyn Q. Hunter is a professional writer, publicist, and editor. She is the author of paranormal and culinary cozy mysteries–including The Diner of the Dead Series, published under Summer Prescott Books. Carolyn has previously worked as a content creator and social media writer for online information websites and publishing agencies. She received her BA in English with an emphasis in creative writing and publishing from BYU-Idaho.

In her free time Carolyn enjoys cooking, baking, drawing, painting, and watching old mystery and horror films on Turner Classic Movies. Her love of old movies helps to inspire her writing. She also enjoys listening to old time radio shows such as The Shadow, Inner Sanctum Mysteries, and Suspense!

Carolyn is a Colorado native, having grown up in the Denver Metro Area. She currently resides in Breckenridge, Colorado a ski and resort town in the beautiful Colorado Rocky Mountains. She works from home as a full time writer. She lives in a small New England style home with her husband and her two black cats Mittens and Thor.

Buy The Blue Eyed Doll

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A Charming Voodoo Scavenger Hunt Tour

Welcome to BTB’s “A Charming Voodoo” Scavenger Hunt Tour Stop

 

About, “A Charming VooDoo”

Bubble. . . Bubble. . .
Whispering Falls is abuzz with the new housing development and new shopscharming-voodoo
popping up all over the magical village right before the annual All Hallow’s Eve celebration.

Cures and trouble. . .
June Heal’s intuition is on high alert and she just can’t shake that something bad is about to happen.

Magic stirs . . .
June finds Violet Draper standing over a dead body in the new pumpkin patch hours before it’s supposed to open for hayrides.

And trouble doubles . . .
Once again, June has to put her sleuthing skills to work and figure out who the real killer is before the new citizens pack up and move right back out of town.

 

Let’s go to the “A Charming VooDoo” Party.  After you……

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Oh Look, The Clue In The Brew…

CLICK for “A Charming VooDoo” Scavenger Hunt Giveaway Clue and you could win…

Print

 

 

Buy “A Charming VooDoo”

 

Remaining Tour Stops & Dates:

9/30~Community Book Stop
10/1~Yaritza Book Group Facebook
10/1~ Girl with Book Lungs
10/2~Bab’s Book Bistro
10/3~Melissa’s Mocha, Mysteries, and Meows
10/4~Tonya’s blog 
10/5~Mystery Reading Nook
10/6~Life with Arielle
10/6~ MJB Reviewers
10/6~ Granny Loves to Read
10/7~Polished Nails
10/7~ A Girl and her Ebooks
10/8~Cozy Up With Kathy
10/9~Brooke’s Blog
10/9~The Books The Thing
10/10~Books, Coffee, and My Dog
10/10~Bibliophile Reviews 
10/11~Books, Movies, Reviews Oh My!
10/12~Shelley’s Book Case
10/13~Killer Characters
10/14~Sharon Reads
10/15-White Pine Cozy Mystery
10/15~I wished I lived in a Library
10/16~Homeschool n’ stuff
10/17~Sleuth Cafe
10/18~Wilovebooks
10/18~Bookish Smart

About Tonya Kappes:
tonya-kappes-witchFor years, USA Today bestselling author Tonya Kappes has been publishing numerous mystery and romance titles with unprecedented success. She is famous not only for her hilarious plot lines and quirky characters, but her tremendous marketing efforts that have earned her thousands of followers and a devoted street team of fans.

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Second-Hand Murder by Blair Merrin; Interview and Review

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Booth Talks Books: What inspired you to make your first book, Second-Hand Murder, a paranormal cozy? Would you define it as a paranormal cozy?

Blair Merrin: I don’t actually define it as a paranormal cozy, but I think it definitely has a foot in both worlds (pun fully intended, lol). Cozy readers will probably enjoy the tight-knit relationships and positive/funny interactions between characters. Bandit Hills has some decidedly different folks in town, and they all try to accept each others differences without making a fuss over them. Paranormal readers will hopefully appreciate the strange and creepy things that happen in Bandit Hills. If someone is strictly a paranormal/occult/horror reader, this book probably won’t scare them a bit, but Cozy readers can get a kick out of it, without having to double check the locks on the doors and windows.

I like to think outside of the box, and I think this flexible interpretation of the genre will illustrate that pretty well. If I had to invent a name for the genre that I think it falls into, it’d probably be “Creepy Cozies.”

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BTB: What kind of research did you need to do for your first book?

BM: I happen to love ghost stories, and have always been fascinated by voodoo and other creepy or mysterious things, so, much of what came out in the book, I already knew. I did research some of the specifics regarding witches and voodoo dolls, though, as well as looking into the topography and climate in Tennessee – I’ve been through that beautiful state, but have never lived there.

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BTB: What inspired the town of Bandit Hills? To most people it seems like a creepy place but the residents seem to be pretty cool with it.

BM: My mind wanders sometimes (occupational hazard, lol), and one day, I just started thinking…”What if I took a bunch of interesting people, some of whom had unusual habits and abilities, and put them in a secluded town, where weird was normal?” Yes, this is exactly the kind of thing that keeps me awake at night…and Bandit Hills was born.

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BTB: Have you ever personally been to New Orleans? What did you like most about it if you have?

BM: I love N’awlins! The beignets and coffee, crawfish etouffee, and the voodoo shops like Marie Laveau’s. I admire the magnificent architecture, priceless antiques – the colorful creativity of the French Quarter of course, and the Laissez Les Bons Temps Roulez attitude of this “laid-back, anything goes” city.

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BTB: Which character was the most challenging to write about? Do you have a favorite?

BM: Actually, these folks are so fun, that it’s an absolute blast creating their world! I think it’ll probably be a bit more challenging in Book 3, because there will be some complicated relationships that are dealt with (teaser!).

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BTB: Will we be able to visit Bandit Hills again in the future? If so, is there anything fun you can bate us with about book two?

BM: Oh goodness yes, I’m already working on book tow, and loving every minute of it! I think that there will be several ladies swooning about a particular character in the second book.

 

 

Review of Second-Hand Murder

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If you like paranormal stories like I do, then you’ve often thought if would be pretty cool if there was a place you could visit that was almost like a para-vacation location. You know, where you could go and actually see real stuff going on, hear actual voices and interact with the spirits and it’s completely normal. No judgment from anyone and people actually believe you without that weird look after you tell them that you hear voices in your attic. Well, Blair Merrin has created that place, Bandit Hills, Tennessee. When something strange happens in Bandit Hills, they have a saying, “ That’s Bandit Hills for ya!”

We meet Cassie and her mom in their antique shop, Miss Miscellanea, which sells other people’s castaway treasures. Some items are junk but others are down right fascinating. On this particular day, one of the most interesting finds of all shows up in a box. In an unmarked box, sitting along with other boxes full of uninteresting items, is a small, roughly made burlap doll with button eyes and yellow hair and a photo of a recently deceased woman. Cue creepy music, right? For this town however, just another Tuesday. Well, things are about to change.

Cassie begins to wonder why someone would place a photo of a recently deceased woman with a voodoo doll and more than that, who the woman was. So, she begins looking into it out of pure curiosity. She then calls her old high-school friend turned investigator, Dash to see if he could help find out more about who she now knows is Stephanie Marshall after a quick look at recent obits on the internet. The woman has been dead all of a week.

Their investigation uncovers a lot; too much in fact. They discover an ominous note, speak to a spirit from beyond the grave, break into this deceased Stephanie’s home, find a photo of her with a mystery man which leads Cassie to take a trip to New Orleans in search of said mystery man and there, encounter evil magic beyond her imagination. Let’s just say she comes home with a doll that looks like her.  I will leave it at that.  The ending is heart stopping and leads one with more questions than answers. Glad to know book two is in the works.

Second-Hand Murder is an amazing premier paranormal book for author, Blair Merrin. She has hit upon several aspects that some authors have not yet explored. I love the theme, the characters and the constant action throughout the book. This is a town I would not only love to visit, but live in. I could see me visiting this little shop every week and being perfectly content with the crazy things that happen there on a regular basis, saying right along with the town folk, “That’s Bandit Hills for ya!”

 

Buy Second-Hand Murder

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