New Release Giveaway!
Death by Séance – A Ghost & Abby Mystery #3 – By Jo-Ann Carson
5 Lucky Winners!
Winner 1 – $20.00 Amazon Gift Card
Winner 2 – $5.00 Amazon Gift Card
Winner 3 – $5.00 Amaaon Gift Card
Winner 4 – digital copies of Midnight Magic, I Messed up Christmas and Death by Seance
Winner 5 – digital copies of Midnight Magic, I Messed up Christmas and Death by Seance
**Giveaway Eligible in US Only**
Love, Lies & Lust to Die For
Single Mom Abby Jenkins hunts for a murderer in Sunset Cove, the small Pacific Northwest town famous for all things that go bump in the night.
Abby is the night janitor in the haunted teahouse and only private detective in town. She’s also a reluctant witch with major man-trouble. Blackmailed into attending a séance, she expects to wrestle with a cranky ghost or two, but instead finds herself in the middle of a murder.
Seven people attend the event; some human, some not so much. They have one thing in common: a murky past.
After Abby washes blood off her hands, she’s left with her first whodunit. With the help of her partners in crime: Eric, the Viking ghost with existential issues; Dante, the local Casanova-man-witch; and Sparky, her snarky familiar, she digs into the secrets of the cove.
Will she survive to tell the tale?
CHAPTER ONE – The Séance
“Things we lose have a way of coming back to us in the end, if not always in the way we expect.”
Luna Lovegood, The Order of the Phoenix.
Some say dead men don’t talk, but that’s hogwash. As the night janitor of the haunted teahouse in Sunset Cove, I can tell you many are chatty and some are downright dangerous. That’s why a séance was the last thing I wanted to do in my free time. But I had no choice. My friend Joy blackmailed me into taking part in her version of the ancient ritual. I had to go. Whether I liked it or not, I had to go. She reassured me the evening would be fun, but when she put the words dead and fun in the same sentence I knew it spelled trouble.
For the last two months Joy practiced what she called her “kinky ability to communicate with the dead.” “I’m really good at it,” she told me every time we spoke. “I’ll start up a business soon.” I wondered if her logo would include the word “kinky.”
Don’t’ get me wrong. I’m not a bad person. I wanted to be a supportive friend. I hoped her business plan worked. I wished her well in her new found “thing,” and in all things. I just didn’t want to be part of raising dead spirits. Not any part of it. Living in Sunset Cove, the small Pacific Northwest town where everything goes bump in the night for the last two years had taught me that some dead things, should remain dead and buried, forever. I pleaded with her to leave me out of her plans.
Joy cornered me. Her slate-gray eyes pulled on me. “Tonight, I need one more warm body at the table. Nothing bad will happen. I promise you, you’ll have fun,” she said. “You’ll help me build a cool reputation as the new medium in town. Everyone will want me to help them talk to their favourite dead people. I’ll make a killing.”
What could I do? My good friend wanted to open her own séance business, which wasn’t such a bad idea considering the demand for that kind of thing around here and her inherited talent for communicating with dead things. How could I not help her? Would it be that bad to sit and watch a table shake?
Besides, I needed her to keep my secret, well secret. I couldn’t have it exposed, at least not until, I had figured out how to manage damage control. While Joy never said it out loud, I knew my confidentiality issue was on the negotiating table, another sign of how important this new gig was to her.
Séances are unpredictable at the best of times. I had only been to one in my life and it involved the family of a nasty poltergeist intent on devouring the souls of my children, mine included. It had been neither fun or easy.
Gritting my teeth as I sat down at Joy’s séance table, while I silently gave myself a pep-talk. It had to be alright. Right? Mentally preparing myself for anything the universe, in all its inter-dimensional glory had stored up to sling at me I forced myself to smile. I have supernatural savvy, after all. I’ve seen things, heard things, experienced things most mortals experience only in their worst nightmares. I should be able to handle “whatever.” I needed to go with the flow. Right?
But I was wrong. So wrong. I wasn’t ready for what happened that night. No one was ready for what happened that night.
As we say in the cove: shit happens, even in the supernatural world.
The evening started out pretty normal, though I have trouble saying that because my life is so-not-normal. As the clock neared midnight I debated what to wear for the occult soiree.
The weather that week had fluctuated from wet to wetter, with oppressive, dark clouds and a chilly wind flowing from the arctic, or so said Alfred, the TV weatherman. It was a gumboot with wool socks kind of day and while I wanted to look nice for the meet-and-greet with the dead guy, I needed to be warm and dry.
I threw on a pair of black leggings, a comfy thrift-shop sweatshirt which had a Deadhead logo on the front and a rain jacket. My three kids were asleep and my cousin Jill lay curled up under a blanket on the sofa in the living room reading a JC McKenzie shifter novel. A steaming cup of hot cocoa sat on the table beside her. My home life was momentarily in order, and I had no excuse not to go.
As I headed to my beat-up Mini parked outside, I checked the sky. No lightening or thunder. No visible moon or stars. No drama whatsoever. Just drizzle. The kind that seeps into the marrow of your bones and makes them ache for sunshine. Fog horns sounded in the distance and the buoy at the entrance of our harbor clanged in the ocean waves. I could taste the salt in the breeze. The neighbour’s hounds howled. All was as it should be.
I grumbled. I really didn’t need another séance in my life.
Joy chose to hold her event at her aunt’s teahouse, which was a hangout for the local ghosts. I should know. I work there as the night-janitor. While it’s decidedly wicked reputation scared some, it was a second home for me.
I walked up the creaky, wooden steps to the front door of the gingerbread Victorian home determined to make the best of the evening. The house sat on top of a portal linked to other realms, and the house was sentient. The front door opened on its own and I entered.
About the Author:
Where magic happens…
Reports of Jo-Ann Carson’s death on a Gulf Island are greatly exaggerated or, at the very least, premature. The eclectic crew of ghosts that haunt her head spill onto the page in two series: The Gambling Ghosts and The Ghost & Abby Mysteries.
A Viking with existential issues, a broken-hearted Highlander, a Casanova man-witch and a Pirate with a secret are just a few of the males her strong heroines encounter in tales of fantasy adventure and romance.
A firm believer in the magic of our everyday lives, Jo-Ann loves watching sunrises, walking beaches near her home in the Pacific Northwest and reading by the fire. You can visit her on social media. Her links are on her website: www.jo-anncarson.com.
Jo-Ann Carson’s Awards
A Highland Ghost for Christmas (2017)
1st, Paranormal Romance Guild, Paranormal Romance/ Holiday category
Gambling Ghost Stories (Cheating Death) 2017
1st, Paranormal Romance Guild, Paranormal Romance/ Holiday series category
Midnight Magic (2017)
2nd, Paranormal Romance Guild, Paranormal Romance … Ghosts and Physcics
Confessions of a Pirate Ghost (2017)
1st in I Heart Indie Contest (Paranormal category)
Ancient Danger (Mata Hari Series, Book 3)
3rd in the 2015 Yellow Rose, Cover the Words Contest, Romantic Suspense category
Covert Danger (Mata Hari Series, Book 1)
* 2014 Daphne du Maurier Romantic Suspense contest
(series category) Honorable Mention
* 2014 Sheila Contest (Valley Forge RWA, Pennsylvania)
(Rom Sus) Third Place
The Stolen Rembrandt (formerly The Dutch Kiss)
* third, 2012 Daphne du Maurier
* Gold finalist, 2012 Golden Claddagh
The Lost Vermeer (formerly Fighting Fear)
* first, 2013 Emerald City Opener
* fourth, 2013 Great Expectations
Black Cat Blues
* First, 2013 Southern Heat (contemp. series)
* Third, 2013 Lone Star contest (Rom-Sus)
* Finaled, 2013 Romancing the Lake