Summer Solstice, Witches, Love Charms!

on June 26, 2018 Carolyn

I know for a fact that I’ve been under a spell put on me by some dark enchantress—half a year has escaped me. And what a 6 months it has been. I’ve never been busier or more productive with my career—or more depressed about what is happening in my country. I do wish I knew magic. I would make everything right and a world where animals and children are safe and loved.

Summer hit lower Alabama at the end of May—almost a month early—and we’ve been battling temperatures in the low to mid 90s all month. Luckily we’ve had some rain showers to cool things off, but keep an eye on the Gulf. With these superheated temperatures, I fear the worst for hurricanes. I’m no weather prognosticator, so I sure hope I’m wrong.

I finished the draft of the 2019 Sarah Booth book, GAME OF BONES, and it has gone to the editor so Hannah can work her magic on it. I know she wishes SHE had a magic wand! Ha ha. Many thanks to Dawn Hasiotis, Shelley Timms, Rick Fortenberry, and Rebecca Barrett for reading over the manuscript before I turned it in. I have a terrible flaw as a writer—I’ll be thinking Tinkie and type Cece. I’m not even aware I’ve done it. Or thinking Coleman and type Harold. I know I do this and I try hard to find all the places I’ve done this this crazy thing. The pre-readers helped me out a lot with stuff like that. Thank you. I don’t mind being a goober, but I hate to make this kind of brain-fart mistake.
[photo:winner Jeff Lee]

Jeff Lee has won the first ARC (Advance Reading Copy) of A GIFT OF BONES for his “Take Sarah Booth on Vacation” photos from his cruise through Europe. He had Sarah Booth in some most interesting places! There are still 5 books to give away and lots of great photos have been turned in. Remember, this is about fun and mischief, not truth. Make something up. Dress up. Put your face on Wonder Woman holding my book! Whatever! You can post your photo on the Sarah Booth page and on the Author Carolyn Haines page. We’ll be picking the second winner this week. You can enter as many times as you want to. If you’re not on social media, you can send me your photo at

Speaking of giveaways, we’re giving away a paperback edition of ROCK-A-BYE BONES for the June Contest on my website.


In good news about witches, CHARMED BONES stayed on the Publisher’s Alley bestseller list for five weeks! This list is prepared by booksellers for physical books, and CHARMED BONES was up against some big guns—James Patterson, David Baldacci, Mary Higgins Clark—I’ve very proud of my book and publisher. It’s hard for a cozy mystery to hold ground against the big guns, but we did it—thanks to readers who care about these characters.

I have some great bargains for you in other books, but you need to act fast. Both THE BOOK OF BELOVED and THE HOUSE OF MEMORY are on sale for $1.99 each until June 30.

[Book Bargains]

The sale continues for only a few more days, so let your reader friends and family know to snap them up. I’m about to begin work on the 4th Pluto’s Snitch book, which is tentatively titled A VISITATION OF ANGELS. It’s going to be fun and super creepy, I hope. The very isolated Sand Mountain, Alabama (remember it’s 1920) will be the setting. So grab these first books and I’m sure we’ll have the 3rd book THE SPECTER OF SEDUCTION on sale this fall.

Trouble, the black cat detective, has been to Key West this summer (TROUBLE IN PARADISE—Rebecca Barrett) and a fine adventure he had with a couple of the Hemingway cats. July 9, Susan Y. Tanner’s newest book, TURNING FOR TROUBLE, will be released. This continues her horse theme with a look at barrel racing and the rodeo. Jen Talty, a bestselling author, will release her first Trouble book, TROUBLE’S WEDDING CAPER, in November, so put it on your calendar to look out for it.

[Turning for Trouble]

And just because we love writing these books and want everyone to have a chance to get in on the mystery solving back cat, Trouble, we have bundled the first five books in the series for only $9.99: A BOX FULL OF TROUBLE. Available on all platforms! Get it before it disappears. That’s 5 complete books by 5 different authors for only $9.99.

Grab all 5 books in A BOX FULL OF TROUBLE!

In the world of animals, it’s been touch and go with Squirt, my 13-year-old kitty who has cancer. He is doing better. My veterinarian is trying a prescription cream used for other purposes (ask me and I’ll tell!) to put on his lesions. Keep a good thought that this works. He eats and otherwise feels good except for the horrific sores. I will try everything before I give up.

On June 16, my writer friend Suzann Ledbetter Ellingsworth died in Springfield, MO. I met Suzann when we were both writing for Mira, and our friendship was strengthened by our love of writing and love of politics. She was a “take no prisoners” kind of woman who had a well thought out and researched opinion about what was happening in this country. I really miss her, but I am glad she is no longer suffering. Those of you who read and enjoyed her books will also miss her, I know.

I struggle with the passing of time—and the passing of friends and animals. I remind myself constantly that I have to flex with change. It isn’t easy for me, but you know, there’s not really an alternative. So listen to some good music, drink some good wine, eat some good food, and celebrate each small moment with good friends and family. The road isn’t as long as you think it is.

This is for my friend, Suzann: The Road to ‘The Tree of Forgiveness’. John Prine is a fabulous songwriter who has lived and faced death with great grace.

Until next time—Carolyn and the Critters