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Nearly Departed in Deadwood (Deadwood #1)

3.96  ·  Rating Details ·  4,997 Ratings  ·  580 Reviews
Little girls are vanishing from Deadwood. Fearing her daughter might be next, single mom, Violet Parker, is desperate to find the monster behind the abductions. Short on time, she refuses to give up her dream of a fresh start. But with a malicious coworker after her job, a creepy secret admirer tailing her, and a sexy stranger hiding truths, will Violet end up one of Deadw ...more
Published January 8th 2011 by Smashwords
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Jody McGrath
Jan 08, 2017 Jody McGrath rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have to start by saying my whole reason for reading this book was because it was set in South Dakota and that is where I live. That being said this book was fantastic. It is about a single mother with 9 year old twins who recently moved to Deadwood for a fresh start. Her kids are hilarious and a handful, her job isn't going anywhere, and she is making some pretty odd friends.

The mystery was very, very easy to solve. Way too easy. I still enjoyed the book though. So much so that I ordered the s
Oct 29, 2012 C. rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I didn't get more than about a third of the way through this novel; the problem is that the plot was so frustratingly mediocre, even poor in many ways, that I could not understand how it gets such positive reviews by so many people.

The book is narrated by the main character, Violet, and it starts out with the, "oh, life is so haaaaaarrrrrd!" refrain and never stops.[1] She has "cutely" disobedient children that know that they can push her around by whining until they get what they want. She has
For Readers

Violet's probation as a realtor is nearly up and she's yet to sell a single house. Increasingly desperate she has managed to snag a few clients. But they're anything but easy. She only has a few short weeks to get a rundown wreck of a house that's rumoured to be haunted into a condition good enough to list, and her buyer is literally turning his nose up at every single house she shows him. Adding to her worries young girls are disappearing and they all look a lot like her daughter.

Jul 04, 2011 Natasha rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The first time I came to Deadwood, I got shot in the ass.--Violet Parker

Best opening line ever. Nearly Departed in Deadwood is the first installment in the Deadwood series by Ann Charles. I knew this would be a fun book, but I didn't realize how intrancing it would be. This novel covers everything you've come to love in mysteries and paranormal romances. From start to finish I was on the edge of my seat. I'd think, "I know who it is!" one mintue and then Mrs Charles would throw in a curve ball a
Mlpmom (Book Reviewer)
This was a lot of fun! Full review to come!
Dec 09, 2011 Katy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of amateur-sleuth female characters
Shelves: ebook
Book Info: Genre: Humorous Mystery (view spoiler)
Reading Level: Adult
Recommended for: Fans of mystery series with “spunky” heroines who have zany adventures
Trigger Warnings: Really big jerk co-worker (sexist, smarmy butthead), missing children, child murder

My Thoughts: I moved this series into my review queue based upon Kriss Morton’s enthusiastic recommendation. I had picked up each of these books as they went on promotion through KDP prior to these recom
I finished the book, but I can't say I'd recommend it to many people I know. The main character was a bit mary-sueish (yes, I realize the heavy accusation that holds) and as I went through the book, I was beginning to wonder if there were any man in Deadwood that didn't want to sleep with her (view spoiler) ...more
Jonah Gibson
This book is first in the series of Deadwood Mysteries by Ann Charles. It generally gets great reviews, and the descriptions and excerpts that I read were interesting so I decided to give it a try. I have to say that it fell flat for me. It is evidently written to a formula, and after a short while that formula began to seem forced and artificial. Ms. Charles tries to be all things to all readers and ends up with a story that has no heart. The main character, Violet, is a down-on-her-luck, wise- ...more
✘✘ Sarah ✘✘ (former Nefarious Breeder of Murderous Crustaceans)
October 2013 update:
I have now read the rest of the series and absolutely love it! I can't get enough of Violet:) I still can't think why I didn't enjoy the first instalment as I did the others so I guess I'll have to give it another try soon!

Original review:
The description for this book made it sound interesting enough so I decided to give it a try. Unfortunately, it didn't live up to my expectations. The plot is very poor and the narration is badly handled by the author. I kept forcing myself
Tanja Berg
Rating 2.4* out of 5. It wasn't all bad. My expectations weren't that high and at no point in this book did I really hate it. The most annyoing aspect was the author's repeated spelling of the word "brooch" as "broach".

Violet Parker is a newly employed, so far unsuccesful, realtor in Deadwood. She is a single mother of two children. A worrying aspect of the town is that several young girls have disappeared without a trace and they look very similar to Violet's girl Addy. Violet tries to find ou
May 27, 2012 Deidre rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebooks
Had a hard time developing any sympathy for Violet. Another reviewer mentioned her irritation with how Vi handles workplace harassment and I must agree. So many times in the book, I just wanted to slap Vi with a calendar and encourage her to get into the 21st Century.

As far as the rest of the characters went, I didn't connect with any of them either. Doc is one of the most irritating protagonists ever; I couldn't even decide if he was going to be a major character for over 1/2 the book. Harvey
This was a maybe book for me, saw it on someone's feed, read the premise and it sounded good enough for me to request it from the library. Sadly it couldn't hold my attention. Violet seems to be a hot mess, trying to be a relator when she doesn't know squat, doing whatever including going out to dinner with an old creepy man and bringing her kids along as chaperones and signing a contract for a lost cause house, in hopes of keeping a job where she had a deadline to make some money if she wants t ...more
Jaime Jeffrey
I have 2 things to say about this: the heroine not seeing that somethin was up w/ Wolfgang makes her look stupid. Last thing, she couldn't muster up some tears for the dead lil girls? She was upset by the girls being kidnapped, scared for her daughter & couldn't muster a single outraged feelin' for the dead girls, alright.

Oh, 1 more thing. When she met her secret admirer & confirmed who he was, she sat down & ate dinner w/ him instead of grabbin' the other chair & crackin' it ov
This one was interesting and entertaining. I deducted two stars because the actions of the characters were jarringly unrealistic. There is only so much allowance for dramatic license in a story that is supposed to be taking place in a realistic, normal setting.

The first three-fourths of the book was good and probably rated 4 stars. The one negative was the constant and decidedly lame sexual innuendo that formed a good part of the dialogue. I have no problem with sex in my books (love it, in fac
Kenesha Williams
Feb 19, 2013 Kenesha Williams rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
I was recommended this title on my Kindle because of my recent mystery purchases. Little did I know that this mystery had the twist of the paranormal with a Haunted House thrown in! Violet is a single mother of pre-teen twins (a boy and a girl) and has just moved to Deadwood after getting her Realtor license. She desperately needs to sell a house or have her job be taken from her and given to her spiteful male co-worker Ray's nephew. When a hometown boy comes back to Deadwood to sell his home, s ...more
Apr 21, 2015 Heidi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Four Stars: A fun mystery with a creepy villain, set in Deadwood, South Dakota.

Violet slumps into her office chair, frustrated and disgruntled. Someone took her parking spot again, forcing to her to tromp two blocks in the heat. To make matters worse, Violet only has three weeks to earn her first commission, if not, she will lose her job as a realtor. As a single mother of nine year old twins, Violet needs to keep her job. If that isn't bad enough, Violet must also worry about the alarming numbe
Angela Spencer
Feb 06, 2012 Angela Spencer rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
(Originally written for Rise Reviews.)

In her debut novel, Nearly Departed in Deadwood, Ann Charles weaves a fun romp of humor, romance, mystery and the occult. The pages are brimming with eccentric small town characters that brought the setting to life. Though not quite as paranormal a romance/mystery as I had hoped it would be, I would gladly read more tales in her Deadwood Mystery series.

Violet Parker, the book's protagonist, is a single mother and struggling real estate agent trying to land h
Alisha Robinson
Oct 16, 2011 Alisha Robinson rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm usually pretty good at picking out the "bad guy" this book was no different, but that doesn't mean it took away any of the lure. Finding out I was right just gets me a little more excited.

The only issue I really had with the book was the fact that Violet describes herself as chubby, plain, definitely doesn't seem like the beautiful sexy type. Still, she has every man in Deadwood hanging on her every move. She reminds me a bit of Bella from Twilight, the only difference is where Bella was des
The One Tree
Sep 15, 2012 The One Tree rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Tanya
Shelves: first-reads
No Spoilers...

Ummm, ok WOW! Page turner alert! Woot! Woot!

I started reading this book with little hope of being entertained. Probably because of a recent run whereby I'd select a book to read from my TBR pile (To Be Read pile), only to wonder why I'd purchased it in the first place, and how it had ended up in my TBR pile. It wasn't long before I found myself, quiet happily deeply immersed in the story as it was unfolded before me.

I can state quite unequivocally, that I've found a new author to
Cheryl Landmark
Aug 23, 2013 Cheryl Landmark rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wow! This definitely ranked extremely high on my like meter! It was a very strong, gripping, and entertaining start to this series.

It was chock full of quirky characters, fantastic humour, thrilling mystery and suspense, sizzling romance, and tinges of paranormal--although, my least-loved trope, the love triangle, did rear its ugly head and made me grit my teeth a bit. But, the story and the writing was so mesmerizing and entertaining that I didn't let this dreaded element overshadow my enjoymen
Barbara ★
Violet Parker returns to Deadwood, South Dakota in desperation. She has finished her training as a realtor but can't stomach living in her folks' basement with her two kids. Her Aunt lives in a largish house in Deadwood and invites her to stay. Violet gets a job as a realtor with 90 days probation - sell a house or be fired - are the terms of employment. We enter Violet's life during the last three weeks of probation only to find out she hadn't sold a thing yet. Now she has offers out the wazoo ...more
Aug 22, 2011 Abigail rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
One of the most refreshing books I have read in a long time! The one thing that puts this paranormal investigative book at the top of my list is the characters are not only loveable, they are real! They are not perfect in body and form, they have some extra padding, some extra scars, are not always pleasant but loveable because they are real! Violet, the protagonist, has had twins and we she has that baby fat and craves ice cream loves daisy's not red roses. She is not the perfect height, does n ...more
Michaela Grey
I enjoyed this book. Violet was sassy, funny, and relatable - her struggles to keep her job and protect her children rang true. The villain in the workplace was definitely hate-worthy, too, and the murderer was scary as heck. The romantic lead was a hunk, but the sniffing thing was...weird.

It was also a quick and easy read. There were a few snags that bothered me, though. For one thing, the explanation of the person who was stalking Vi was weird and left me hanging. It's THAT GUY? And then he's
Meg Mims
Feb 04, 2011 Meg Mims rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
This new series starts out strong with Nearly Departed in Deadwood, chock full of quirky characters and a great comedic voice. The amateur sleuth, new real estate agent Violet Parker, is in triple trouble – she must sell a house or lose her job, young girls who resemble her daughter have gone missing, and a co-worker is making her life hell. In between showing houses to several clients, Violet has to figure out who’s behind these mysterious disappearances and why. With romance and humor, NDD kep ...more
Susan Bowman
Very slow start...forced myself to keep reading and glad I did. Loved the main character violet- very realistic. While I am very eager to see how things progress b/t her and Doc, I'm not in a hurry to start book two. Enjoyed the laughter and mystery all in one.
Dec 09, 2011 SheLove2Read rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015
Cute storyline with snarky humor and a heroine that the average woman can relate to. A few times it felt like the author was trying too hard to be funny, but overall I did enjoy it.
Nov 04, 2015 Emma rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: paranormal
Perfect light frothy read for a Sunday afternoon requiring almost no brain activity..
Kathy Davie
Sep 03, 2016 Kathy Davie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror, urban-fantasy
First in the Deadwood humorous cozy horror of a mystery series featuring a desperate single mom trying on a new career in Deadwood, South Dakota.

In 2010, Nearly Departed in Deadwood won the Daphne du Maurier Award, and in 2011 it was a RWA Golden Heart Award winner.

My Take
This is too cute. A fun read with cozy characters and quite the unique predicament for Violet! Sure, Violet has all the usual issues of a single mom, primarily the struggle to raise a pair of precocious twins, and Charles liven
Keryl Raist
Mar 28, 2011 Keryl Raist rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Nearly Departed in Deadwood was not what I was expecting. Between the cover, the title, and the paranormal tags, I was expecting zombies and some sort of mad necromancer tied into a mystery with missing kids. And with the early set up of the crusty, old guy who lives way out of town in a farm house with a huge pile of shot guns, hearing odd sounds coming from out behind his barn, I was planning out how the main characters were going to end up holing up there, with the huge arsenal and blasting t ...more
John Podlaski
Oct 19, 2012 John Podlaski rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I downloaded Ann's first book in the Deadwood series during a free promotional period. The book description was intriguing and pulled me in; I had nothing to lose if "Nearly Departed" wasn't my cup of tea. However, it turned out to be a real gem! Having read all the Janet Evanovich books, I could visualize Violet Parker as Stephanie Plum or even the other way around. In Nearly Departed in Deadwood, Ann's characters are believable, witty, secretive and charming; just like any of those folks livin ...more
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Ann Charles—Author
Nearly Departed in Deadwood, the 2010 Daphne du Maurier Award Winner and a 2011 RWA Golden Heart Award Winner.
You'll laugh. You'll cringe. You'll want more.
More about Ann Charles...

Other Books in the Series

Deadwood (9 books)
  • Optical Delusions in Deadwood (Deadwood, #2)
  • Dead Case in Deadwood (Deadwood, #3)
  • Better Off Dead in Deadwood (Deadwood, #4)
  • An Ex to Grind in Deadwood (Deadwood, #5)
  • Meanwhile, Back in Deadwood (Deadwood #6)
  • Cold Flame (Deadwood Shorts, #3)
  • A Wild Fright in Deadwood (Deadwood #7)
  • Tequila & Time (Deadwood Shorts, #4)

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“I had a feeling that Harvey wore his shotgun around the house like a pair of holey underwear.” 2 likes
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