This is our first review from Amanda Rock . Amanda is a freelance writer and just getting started as a horror blogger on her own site amandareadshorror.blogspot.com . Find her on Twitter as @amanda_reads
Ghosts. Psychics. Murder. Just another day in Donn’s Hill.
Mackenzie Clair needs a fresh start. The death of her father and a broken relationship rendered her old life unlivable. What better place to build a new one than Donn’s Hill, the most haunted town in America and her favorite childhood vacation spot?
But returning to Donn’s Hill awakens more than nostalgia. As memories resurface, so does a lost psychic ability to talk to the dead… a power the poltergeist haunting Mac’s apartment is eager to use.
Aided by her new roommate—a spirited Tortoiseshell cat named Striker—and the ghost-hunting crew of the Soul Searchers, Mac struggles to control her newfound talents. She’d better get a handle on them fast, because someone in town is hiding a deadly secret. If Mac can’t divine the truth, Donn’s Hill will never be the same.
Title: Donn’s Hill (The Soul Searchers Mysteries Book 1)| Author: Caryn Larrinaga | Publisher: Twisted Tree Press | Pub. Date: April 5, 2019 | Pages: 290 | ISBN: 978-0-9990200-3-6 | Genre: Mystery, Thriller, Suspense | Content Warnings: None | Language: English | Source: Received a copy from the author for review consideration | Starred Review
Donn’s Hill Review
If you’re looking for a lighthearted and compelling mystery, you’ll enjoy the time you spend in Donn’s Hill. Mac and her kitty sidekick, Striker, are excellent company.
I gleefully devoured Donn’s Hill in two days. Larrinaga’s friendly, conversational tone made this book a joy to read. Not only did she write funny dialogue, she masterfully crafted frightening and gruesome scenes laden with suspense.
Donn’s Hill sorta reminded me of Hallmark movie. This could be good or bad, depending on the reader. The plot relies on quite a few lucky coincidences. The main character was resilient and perky, but the rest of the characters felt one-dimensional. Some parts of the book were totally unbelievable. I can suspend belief enough to accept Mac regained her psychic abilities when she moved to the most-haunted town in America, but I cannot accept that burning sage will vanquish poltergeists. I’ve seen Poltergeist.
Easily eliminated poltergeists aside, I thoroughly enjoyed reading Donn’s Hill. Striker, Mac’s cat, is a big part of this book’s charm. The cat is adorable, and her dialogue with the cat was really fun to read. Cozied up with a spiked hot chocolate, a purring cat in my lap, and the Yule log roaring on TV, a visit to Donn’s Hill was the kind of escape I’d been craving. I’m looking forward to reading the next book in this series, Donn’s Shadow. I’m anxious to revisit this haunted little town and see what Mac and Striker are up to.
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Lilyn G is the founder of Sci-Fi & Scary, and leader of the Coolthulhu Crew. She does book and film reviews for both genres the site focuses on. Her tastes run towards creature features, hard science fiction, and lots and lots of action. She also has a soft spot for middle-grade fiction that rears its head frequently.
Though no longer involved with Ladies of Horror Fiction due to other responsibilities and a too-full plate, she was one of the original 4 co-founders.
Feel free to chat her up on Twitter as long as you aren’t hitting her up to review your book.