Charmed Bones (Sarah Booth Delaney Series #18)

Charmed Bones (Sarah Booth Delaney Series #18)

by Carolyn Haines

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Overview

USA Today bestselling author Carolyn Haines will once again delight readers with Charmed Bones, the next sparkling Sarah Booth Delaney mystery.

Zinnia, Mississippi is rife with quirky characters, but the arrival of three sister witches—and their intention to open a Wiccan boarding school—sets the small town on its ear. And bodies begin to accumulate as a result. Faith, Hope, and Charity Harrington are sexy and smart. They’re setting up their boarding school in an old dairy—a piece of property with tremendous development potential. And they’re standing in the way of “progress,” according to some in the town.

When young Corey Fontana goes missing, Delaney Detective Agency is hired to find the youth—who’s well known as a local hooligan. His mother, Kitten Fontana, who is married to the king of land development, believes the witches have abducted her son and makes no bones about it. She’s willing to pay hard cash to find her son, especially if she can implicate the witches in his disappearance.

When Sarah Booth Delaney and her partner, Tinkie Richmond, find Corey, unharmed, it is only the beginning of a series of events that include midnight dances under a full moon, love potions, and murder. Are the sister witches criminals… or victims? Do they truly have magical powers, as they claim? Sarah Booth and Tinkie must find the answer before more people are harmed.

“A sure pleaser in both the mystery and the romance department…A satisfying cozy Southern whodunit.”—RT Book Reviews

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781250298515
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Publication date: 02/26/2019
Series: Sarah Booth Delaney Series , #18
Pages: 384
Sales rank: 57,292
Product dimensions: 4.10(w) x 6.60(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

Carolyn Haines is the USA Today bestselling author of the Sarah Booth Delaney mystery series and a number of other books in mystery and crime, including the Pluto's Snitch paranormal-historical mystery series, and Trouble, the black cat detective romantic suspense books. She is the recipient of the Harper Lee Award for Distinguished Writing and the Richard Wright Award for Literary Excellence. She is a former journalist, bartender, photographer, farmhand, and college professor and lives on a farm where she works with rescue cats, dogs, and horses.

Read an Excerpt

CHAPTER 1

Tucked under an heirloom double wedding ring quilt on my comfy sofa, I listen to the wind howl outside Dahlia House. A winter freeze is pushing across the Mississippi Delta bringing ice, hail, and frigid, blustery winds. It's a night for hot toddies and a fire — both of which I have. I hope to finish my February indulgence before the ice storm brings the power lines down and renders my television useless. I'm watching a movie from 1939. My favorite movie of all time.

The green face of Margaret Hamilton leers on the screen. "I'll get you, my pretty. And your little dog, too." Even though I'm fully grown and have seen this movie at least a thousand times, I cringe. The witch's malevolence is tangible.

The Wicked Witch of the West disappears in a puff of smoke as I snuggle against Sweetie Pie, my remarkable red tick hound. The Wizard of Oz is an annual event at the house that has sheltered more than seven generations of Delaneys. I always watch it as the February winds blow cold over the raw earth of the Mississippi Delta. When I was a child, I'd snuggle between my parents and drink hot chocolate frothy with marshmallows, safe and secure from the witch's evil intentions.

Dorothy and I share more than I'd ever admit to anyone — a desire to go home. In the movie, she accomplishes that goal. In real life, such a journey is never within reach. Time can never be reversed, and the home of my childhood is far in the past.

On the TV screen, the witch shakes her broomstick and whirls about. The Munchkins cower in the face of such green evil, and I am glad for Sweetie Pie's warm body and the purring of Pluto the black cat, who has my back, literally. It's silly that at my age the witch can still frighten me, but she can.

Not five feet in front of me, orange smoke explodes. In the swirl of vapor, I discern the black and green image of the witch — right in my very own den. She leers at me and shakes her broomstick. "Beware, my fine lady. I may not attend you here and now, but you can't escape me."

I push back against the sofa as the hair on Sweetie Pie's back bristles. She barks and growls. Pluto, on the other hand, jumps from the sofa and saunters toward the witch.

"Away with you." The witch waves the broomstick at Pluto, but the cat is not deterred.

I realize then that Jitty, the resident ghost of my family plantation, has come to devil me again. This is no manifestation from Oz, but the spirit of a former slave who survived the Civil War with my ancestor, Alice Delaney. She is both blessing and curse. "I'm trying to watch a movie," I tell her.

"Give me the ruby slippers and I'll let you live."

I know she is a ghost, not a witch, and can't conjure ruby slippers out of thin air, but I pull up the quilt and check my feet just to be sure. Nope. Plain old gym socks stuck on the ends of my legs so that I look like a sad Raggedy Ann doll.

"Get out of here. You're making me miss the Munchkins. The Lollipop Guild is one of my favorite parts."

"Where's that strong lawman? He should be here, protecting you from the big bad witch. Bringing some strong and upright sperm with him."

"Coleman is working." Jitty is right about one thing. It would have been cozy having Coleman Peters to snuggle up to. An armed robbery at a convenience store has him out working late on a bitter winter night. As sheriff of Sunflower County, Mississippi, he doesn't get to pick and choose his hours. He's a 24/7 kind of lawman.

"You should be out in the patrol car with him, ready to shuck off those ugly sweatpants to help him pass the time while he's doing surveillance. You need a job, Sarah Booth, and that would be a good one."

Jitty's goal in life is to get me pregnant so she'll have a Delaney heir to haunt. "He isn't on surveillance; he's investigating. The last thing he needs is some Lustful Lucy trying to seduce him."

"Sarah Booth Delaney, I know you aren't so unimaginative that you can't figure out a way to be useful to the sheriff and get pregnant. Use that thinking cap, Missy. Then use your money maker!"

"Go away." I pause the movie and get up to make more popcorn. It's a futile effort to escape Jitty. She only follows me to the kitchen, where she continues her harangue.

"You were this close to having Coleman," she says, referring to a recent moment when Coleman and I — buck naked — had been headed upstairs to my bedroom. Tinkie Richmond, my partner in the Delaney Detective Agency, slammed through the front door, catching us red-handed and withering our mutual desire. Since then, we've made several attempts to lock out the rest of the world, but life has a terrible way of intervening. The truth is, I'm almost as impatient as Jitty to close the sexual gratification deal — but I'll never let her know it.

"What I need is a new case, not a sperm donor. Now back off or I'll dump a bucket of water on you."

She whirled around once and disappeared in another poof of orange smoke. She was getting way too good at dramatic entrances and exits. The phone rang and I picked it up as I waited for the butter to heat in the bottom of my skillet.

Tinkie was on the horn. "Whatever you're doing, stop! You have to get over to the Sunflower County Board of Education meeting."

"Why?" I paid my school taxes but I didn't have children so I didn't closely follow the issues of the public schools. In Mississippi, those issues were almost insurmountable as the state legislature cut and cut and cut the school budget. Most of the local school board members were good ol' boys who had about as much business dictating school policy as I had flying jets.

"A trio of witches are in the meeting right now. They're applying for state recognition for their Wiccan boarding school, which they are opening in Sunflower County. Folks are all upset."

"What witches?" Sunflower County had a lot of strange inhabitants, but I'd never come across boarding-school witches, not even in the farthest reaches of the cotton fields and brakes.

"Sexy witches."

Tinkie's response left more questions than answers. "What are you talking about?"

"Get your sassy self down to the school board meeting. You are missing the whole thing, so hurry. I have to get off the phone. I think the school board meeting is about to go postal. Man, I have to film this for Cece." She hung up.

I turned off the stove and raced upstairs for my jeans and a warm sweater. If witches had moved to Sunflower County, I wanted to watch the action unfold. Like all small towns, Zinnia had a few people who'd set themselves up as moral leaders and those who knew best for everyone else. The schools had become the battleground in many instances. Witches! It was going to be interesting.

The wind keened around the eaves of Dahlia House as I opened the front door. Sweetie Pie and Pluto, normally my constant companions, each took one look outside and ran back upstairs. It was for the best. I'd have to leave them in the car and it was a bitter night. I locked the door and drove to town.

The school board meetings were held in an old World War II brick building a block from the courthouse, so I wasn't surprised when I arrived and saw a patrol car parked outside. Things must have gotten rowdy in the meeting, and I knew Coleman Peters well enough to be able to predict his ire if the school board attendees had wasted his time with misconduct.

I slipped into the overcrowded room and took a seat in the back. Tinkie and Cece Dee Falcon, the best reporter in the Southeast, were in the front and therefore had a much better perspective. The room roiled with tension, and the place was so jam-packed I had difficulty finding the source of all the controversy. When at last I saw the witches, I was a bit disappointed. Three very attractive young women sat at the table with the members of the school board. The women were close in age and as Tinkie had noted, oozed sexuality. Blonde, brunette, and redhead — they covered the range of hair colors. Their sense of style was a little risqué, but there wasn't anything sinister about them in the least.

The brunette stood. "Our paperwork is in order. Renovations on the old dairy are already underway. We anticipate accepting our first-term students in August. As you can see, our curriculum has been approved by the state board of education."

Nancy Cunningham, one of the town's most uptight citizens, rose. "Our county will not tolerate this Wiccan foolishness. You will not receive state funding, and certainly you will not be allowed to use state education vouchers. I will see to it."

The battle lines were drawn.

"You have no say-so," the brunette said. "The Harrington School of Nature and Wiccan Studies has approval. There's nothing you can do to stop it."

"We'll see about that, Ms. Harrington." Nancy's hand swept the air, encompassing all three young women. "We will not have the dark arts in a Christian county."

The other two young women also stood. "Our meeting here was a courtesy. If you'd like to tour our facility, please stop by. Otherwise, stay out of our way and out of our business. We're going to bring education back to Mississippi. Our students will understand the role of nature in the world today. You can thank us in twenty years when the best and brightest begin to rule this country and save our planet."

As they marched toward the door, Kitten Fontana stormed into the room and barred their way. "Sit back down. You aren't going anywhere." Kitten was Snooki with a drawl. She even had the ball of teased hair at her crown and the huge earrings that might pass for skinny girl hula hoops. She was one generation removed from brawling in back alleys with a girl gang, but she was loaded. Or at least her husband was.

"Kitten, just stay out of this." Bob Fontana was chairman of the school board, and Kitten was his wife. Fontana Construction and Development had lately gotten a number of bids for work on school facilities — a conflict of interest that seemed to upset no one but me and my friends.

Kitten had no intention of listening to her husband. She had the floor and knew how to use it. "Corey, my son, is missing." She pointed to the witches. "And you are to blame. What have you done to my baby boy?" Kitten was also well known for hurling accusations without any facts to support them.

The woman beside me mumbled, "Whoever has him will bring him back. That boy is destined for a life of crime." Indeed, Corey had a reputation for bad behavior.

"We don't know anything about your son," the brunette said.

"You have him. I know you do. If one hair on his head is harmed, I'll see that you burn like your ancestors."

"I wouldn't make idle threats against us," the redhead said. "We don't like that."

"I don't give two hoots what you like or dislike," Kitten said. "I want my son. What have you done with him?"

"Asked and answered," the redhead said. She turned away to retrieve her purse. Kitten ran toward the witches and just as she lifted her hand to slap the blond one, she cried out in pain and crumpled. No one had touched her — but something was causing Kitten pain.

"Stop! Make it stop!" Kitten cried out. Suddenly she slumped over as if a hard grip had released her.

"I'd be careful of that tennis elbow," the blond witch said. "Now get out of our way. We don't have a clue what you're talking about. If you can't control your child, you shouldn't try to blame it on someone else. At Harrington School, our children will be accounted for and under control at all times. From what I've heard around town, that boy of yours is a menace. Keep him off our property — or else."

Kitten's face contorted and her hands formed into claws, the red- painted talons of her fingertips extended in a classic cat-fight pose. Bob leaped up from the table and grabbed his wife around the waist. "Kitten, control yourself."

"They have Corey. He went over to the dairy to play a prank and he hasn't come home." Kitten grunted with exertion as she fought against Bob's hold. I definitely didn't want to be near their home when all of this came to a head later. Kitten Fontana brooked no constraints when she wanted to express herself. She'd made a fool of herself numerous times at various board meetings and gatherings, and no one was going to stop her from doing the same here.

Tinkie edged up beside me. Cece was snapping photos. "Who are these witches?" I asked.

"Hope, Faith, and Charity Harrington. They're sisters. And powerful witches." Tinkie sounded like she was reading a fairy tale.

"Get real." I'd been inoculated from such foolishness by Jitty.

"They're allegedly very powerful. And they cast spells and sell potions."

Three days ago, I'd noticed a little shop that had opened on a country road where Musgrove's Dairy used to sell whole milk and homemade butter and cheeses back in the 1970s. As far as I knew, the dairy had been out of business a long time, and the eccentric owner, Trevor Musgrove, a renowned artist, was a recluse in the old manor house that was part of the dairy. As I thought about it, I realized the dairy and manor were a perfect setup for a boarding school and gift shop. The Harrington sisters might not have witchy powers, but they had something better — brain power.

"Tomorrow, let's stop by Pandora's Box and buy some spells." Tinkie was as wide-eyed as Dorothy in the Emerald City.

"I wonder if they have Corey Fontana somewhere on the premises. The boy is a juvenile delinquent who's never paid a price for his destructive behavior. Kitten always buys him out of trouble." I'd heard gossip about some of Corey's activities, such as tossing watermelons off the overpass onto cars. He'd nearly caused several wrecks, but the Fontanas' expensive lawyer had managed to keep him clear of punishment.

"One day he'll get into something she can't get him out of." Tinkie had been a child of privilege, but she'd been held accountable for her conduct.

"Let's meet at Millie's Café for breakfast and we can take a jaunt out to the old Musgrove dairy and see what's what." It was time to leave the school board meeting. The fireworks were over and the board would be back to dull issues like school bus routes and leaky roofs.

As we made our exit, we were joined by the Harrington sisters. I took a moment to introduce myself, discovering that Hope was the brunette, Faith the redhead, and Charity the blonde. They had come to Sunflower County via Lafayette, Louisiana, where they'd run a very successful Montessori school, which had whetted their appetites to try something bigger with more potential impact.

"Mississippi gives any school with a religious foundation the right to apply for state vouchers. I don't think they were anticipating a Wiccan school, but we are a recognized religion. No different from the Baptists or Catholics." Charity flipped her silvery blond hair over her shoulder. "I just have to wonder how some of these people get elected."

"The younger generation has no connection to nature," Hope said. "We have to reconnect or the attacks upon the planet will continue and the future of the human race will be in jeopardy. Without clean water and air, we have nothing."

"Wouldn't a science-based boarding school create less ... controversy?" Tinkie was always the peacemaker. "Folks around here get a bit uptight about religion. And witches."

"Contrary to what is currently being taught in public schools, religion, nature, and science aren't in conflict. The Wiccan religion is very loving and based on the science of balance with nature. It's not like we worship the Dark Lord and say the Bible backwards." Charity had a merry laugh that matched her blond curls. I couldn't tell if the vivid array of hair color among the sisters came from bottles, but the shades complimented each woman's complexion. And possibly her personality.

"If you don't worship the Dark Lord, what do you worship?" Tinkie asked.

"So glad you want to know." Faith opened her huge purse and pulled out printed material. "This is the Wiccan Rede. It's the basis of our beliefs and a call for ethical and careful behavior. We believe in protecting Nature and the helpless. We believe in sisterhood, the moon, the power of white magic to heal and help, and the benevolence of the Goddess. We can cast spells, but only those that bring light. We make potions, but only those that bring about love and healing."

"Think Glinda," I said to Tinkie. My viewing of The Wizard of Oz had been interrupted, but now I found myself in a real-life confrontation of a trio of sexy witches.

"Do we look like Glinda?" Hope asked.

"Maybe if you traded in your leather miniskirt for a ruffled pink gown ..." I smiled to let them know I was teasing. These were modern witches, and as Tinkie had described them, sexy. They wore black leggings, skinny jeans, miniskirts, and the latest provocative styles. I could definitely see where they might cast a spell on a man.

(Continues…)


Excerpted from "Charmed Bones"
by .
Copyright © 2018 Carolyn Haines.
Excerpted by permission of St. Martin's Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Charmed Bones 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 13 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
When Carolyn Haines writes a book she does not disappoint and she has delivered yet again in CHARMED BONES. It’s an entertaining mystery with all the regular fun characters we’ve come to expect and love in the Bones series set in Zinnia, MS, plus a few unpredictable extras. The book is a maze of plot twists and turns that will have you racing along breathlessly, trying to solve numerous puzzles simultaneously to sort out the good, the bad, and the most entertaining. It's clear to the reader that Haines is not only a masterful orchestrator of the mystery, but thoroughly entertained in the writing of them.
Dmaxtownsend More than 1 year ago
Wiccans, witches and murder. Oh, my! A trio of beautiful witches have come to Zinnia, Mississippi to open a charter school. It’s up to Sarah Booth and Tinkie and friends to figure out who is killing off several of the locals. What a wild ride with large splashes of the occult, mysterious tunnels, an old history teacher and a fertility spell tossed in. This latest episode of Sarah Booth and company really knocks it out of the park! The witchy theme is fun. Jitty gets into the act with her spot-on portrayals of witches throughout the centuries. (She could have her own series, I’m thinking!) The allusions and historical bits are spot on. Great research! I just loved the wild, chaotic, inventive satisfying ending. Sarah Booth’s “plan” to unmask the evil doers comes together in a most unexpected way. Don’t want to spoil anything, of course. This is my favorite book of the series! Of course, I say that about all of them, but I really mean it this time! If you’ve never read this series, feel free to start with this one; you will surely want to read the rest.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Rich Plot, characters, fun, mystery, all rolled into a recipe of Southern charm. I look forward to many more of Sarah and Tinkie's adventures, and watching their lives with family & friends continue to unfold. Thank you!!
DanieleK More than 1 year ago
I liked CHARMED BONES, the eighteenth book in the Sarah Booth Delaney series. With the focus on the three witches and the rather gothic Musgrove Manor, this installment leans to the darker end of the cozy mystery spectrum. Haines definitely knows her craft. The characters are well developed, the mystery is intriguing, and there is enough humor to balance the darker elements. Sarah Booth seems a little off her game this time around. Perhaps she is distracted and frustrated with the progression of her relationship with Coleman, or maybe she is tired of Tinky’s obsessive want for a child, but, at times, she is mean, and that is out of character. Confusing reality with a dream like state is also not like her, and this left me scratching my head a little. Jitty, as always, provides great comic relief, but even she seemed different, talking in riddles instead of laying it all out there. Even Tinky is out in left field half of the time. But, don’t get me wrong, I still love all of the recurring characters. The mystery itself is gratifyingly complex, though it gets off to a somewhat clunky start. About midway into the story, things really get going, and the final twist made for a satisfying ending. The story is a tangled web of greed, deceit, magic, and murder. I recommend CHARMED BOMES to fans of Carolyn Haines, paranormal cozies, and readers looking for a nice balance of humor, zaniness, and darkness. I received an ARC of this title from the publisher through NetGalley and voluntarily shared my thoughts here.
bravewarrior More than 1 year ago
Sarah Booth high only to realize I'm done with the book and I miss my friend Sarah Booth. She single and a private investigator and I want to live vicariously through her. When I saw the cover, I thought this was going to be a Halloween story, but it's not. When I read the first couple of chapters, I thought this was going to be a hokey plot about some witch sisters. It is not. I enjoyed the plot immensely. Haines not only has a grasp on how to write a serial character and not make her repetitive, but she makes it so the reader care for a fictional character. I love the setting, in the south, but that is my bias because I live in the south. This is only my third Sarah Booth mystery, but I am going to put the series on my reading short list. I did receive this book from NetGalley in lieu of an honest review. I do wish Sarah Booth would leash her pets.
rgp1950 More than 1 year ago
This is the best Bones yet! Carolyn has managed to incorporate her love for the mystical thriller in a manner that would not upset the cozy reader fan. This book has more twists than a rattler has coils. Being an armchair sleuth I love attempting to figure out who the culprit is in the mysteries I read. I can honestly say I believe the ending to this mystery would take anyone by surprise. Guaranteed to keep you enthralled until the last word. There’s even a touch of romance to sweeten the reading experience.
beckyb0416 More than 1 year ago
Even after seventeen (and a few novellas in between) stories, the Sarah Booth Delaney series continues to provide an entertaining mystery which weaves a wonderful story with the “Who Done It?” a complete surprise. The ending is guaranteed to leave you thinking, "Wow, I didn't see that coming!" In addition to its intricately delivered mystery, the story’s impressively original cast of characters (including Sarah Booth et al.) created another layer to the story which served to keep the me guessing up to the very end...one thing I've learned about this author's stories, they accomplish whetting my Sarah Booth Delaney appetite for more. The next installment cannot come soon enough. Satiated This ARC book was complimentary, provided by the Publisher and NetGalley. I am voluntarily providing my honest review.
beckyb0416 More than 1 year ago
Even after seventeen (and a few novellas in between) stories, the Sarah Booth Delaney series continues to provide an entertaining mystery which weaves a wonderful story with the “Who Done It?” a complete surprise. The ending is guaranteed to leave you thinking, "Wow, I didn't see that coming!" In addition to its intricately delivered mystery, the story’s impressively original cast of characters (including Sarah Booth et al.) created another layer to the story which served to keep the me guessing up to the very end...one thing I've learned about this author's stories, they accomplish whetting my Sarah Booth Delaney appetite for more. The next installment cannot come soon enough. Satiated This ARC book was complimentary, provided by the Publisher and NetGalley. I am voluntarily providing my honest review.
Nancy0708 More than 1 year ago
There are 18 books in this series but each time a new one comes out it feels fresh and unique. In this story private eyes Sarah Booth and her BFF Tinkie have been hired to investigate 3 wiccan sisters who have come to town to open a private school. The investigation becomes much more serious when pranks turn into murder. The story started out fun and then became frightening. It was fast paced and had some very surprising twists. If you like scary parts in your mysteries this is a good 5 star read. I received an ARC of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review.
Deb-Krenzer More than 1 year ago
Sarah Booth Delaney is back! This time it's witches and magic that highlight the scene in this the next chapter of Sarah Booth and her best friend and PI partner, Tinkie Richmond. Three sisters, Hope, Faith and Charity Harrington, have come to Zinnia and they are opening up a Wiccan School on the old dairy farm owned by the painter, Trevor (?). Kitten Fontana (what a nutcase!!) is furious about witches moving into her beloved Zinnia and decides they need to go. Her and her husband are fairly wealthy and she drops $10,000.00 checks like pennies falling from heaven. She hires Sarah Booth and Tinkie to do several jobs for her. The major one is investigating these sisters and seeing if their story is heads up. That's when the really quirky characters just start coming up out of the woodwork. I sometimes had trouble keeping up between Malvik and Spurlock. Don't ask me why. During all of this, strange things are happening. People go missing, some turn up dead and some are just lost somewhere on this dairy farm. It sounds like a very creepy place many times in the book. My mind kept going back and forth on these witches - are they good or are they bad? And, I think at times that they have some REALLY rotten luck. The book kept me mesmerized and I sped right through this action packed book. I even had several laughs. Some of these people are so dumb that you just can't help it. And I LOVED the zombie scene. HA! I think this is an excellent series and I just love the covers. Now, I'm back to waiting for Sarah Booth again. Thanks to St. Martin's Press and Net Galley for providing me with a free e-galley in exchange for an honest, unbiased review.
Bobbie Kirkland More than 1 year ago
I received a free copy of Charmed Bones: a Sarah Booth Delaney Mystery by Carolyn Haines in exchange for an honest review. Sarah and her friend Tinkie Richmond are private detectives in the small town of Zinnia, Mississippi. The town is in an uproar because witches have moved in and have announced their intent to open a Wiccan boarding school. The witch hunt begins with accusations of kidnapping and with organized protests. When a local artist, who was the center of a property dispute between the witches and a local real estate developer, is found dead who is responsible? Was it the witches, the developer, a wronged lover, or someone else? I haven’t read any of the other books in the series, but, even at number eighteen, the author did a good job of connecting a series novice to the characters. The characters were likeable and quirky. I enjoyed this mystery #CharmedBones #NetGalley
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The 18th installment of the Sarah Booth Delaney mystery series does not disappoint as readers are treated to another romp through the Mississippi Delta, a locale as steeped with genteel tradition as it is bound by quirky superstitions. Whether you are new to the series or a longtime devotee, you are sure to appreciate Haines’s knack for layered storytelling as plots and subplots gently lead readers deep into a mysterious coven of witches as characters wrestle with bumbled trysts and empty wombs—nothing a little spell can’t fix, right? But it will take more than a little spell to quell the furor over the Wiccan school that the gorgeous witches hope to open in Zinnia, Mississippi. Can private investigator Sarah Booth and her BFF Tinkie keep the witches (and themselves) safe as Zinnia residents threaten to start their own witchhunt? Richly developed characters and highly tuned plot twists ensure that readers will be kept guessing until the end. A dash of romance, a bit of ghostly premonition, just the right amount of humor and Southern charm, and Haines has cast the perfect spell in Charmed Bones.
CozyMysteryLover1 More than 1 year ago
Charmed Bones by Carolyn Haines is a stellar addition to the series. Sarah Booth of the Delaney Detective Agency, along with her partner Tinkie, are hired to locate a missing hooligan. No one is to upset when Corey Fontana goes missing except for his mother. The investigation leads the detectives to an old dairy farm, which is soon becoming a Wiccan Boarding School, owned and operated by 3 sisters, with strong abilities. The small town is against this type of school and soon enough, Sarah Booth and Tinkie find themselves caught up in a rather odd mystery. I was hooked on the book from the beginning and was kept guessing until the end. The story was well written and I enjoyed the plot and the mystery. I am looking forward to what will happen next to the cast of colorful characters in this fun series. I volunteered to read and review a copy of this book provided by the publisher and NetGalley.