Better Off Dead In Deadwood (Deadwood Mystery # 4)
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Better Off Dead In Deadwood (Deadwood Mystery #4)

4.21 of 5 stars 4.21  ·  rating details  ·  1,050 ratings  ·  124 reviews
One dead body. One century-old haunted opera house. One zombie musical. One pissed-off detective.

Will Violet "Spooky" Parker keep her tail out of trouble or will she end up as one of Deadwood's walking dead?
Kindle Edition, 400 pages
Published February 11th 2013 by Corvallis Press
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Douglas Meeks
For anyone that reads my reviews I usually try to give enough info to get you interested but in this case this whole series is an example in how to write paranormal books that appeal to a wide cross section of the reading public. Every book has been 5 Star and this one is no exception BUT the trick here is that she has inserted a bit more paranormal into each book (it is barely paranormal most of book #1) until this book is pretty close to a "normal" level of paranormal. Great writing, great hum...more
I feel the pot stirring...all the ingredients are in motion and I don't know how things are really going to end up. Ann Charles brings back the characters we love. Violet is still plucky and hopeful. Doc is still smoldering. Harvey is still incorrigible. Zoe is still helpful. Natalie is still confused. But we get a little more this time around. Everybody is revealing a little more of their backstory and true character. Everybody is changing from the mayhem and from their contact with each other....more
Dotti Elrick
This is the fourth book in the Deadwood series. It picks up right where book three left us hanging, with the death of Violets boss Jane. What starts off as a typical murder mystery ends up taking a turn into weirdsville. As in book three, once again the "albinos" are involved. We have a haunted opera house, who is hosting a zombie musical. Violet's odd Abe Lincoln look alike client who talks to ghosts.
Her new boss who finally gave in and hired Ray's nephew Ben. Leaving Violet with a whole new ro...more
❂ Jennifer (reviews on BookLikes)
This book is a continuation of an over-arcing plot line throughout the Deadwood Series. It starts out with everyone thinking it's a typical murder mystery, but we quickly get back to the albino's. There's obviously something in Violet's destiny that has her meant for a greater purpose, and it became obvious to me that her Aunt knows about it.

I like the characters in this book quite a bit - I'd like Ray to be a victim soon, and I'd like Cooper to ease back a bit, but mostly these are great charac...more
Wendy Cantu

After reading Nearly Departed In Deadwood, the first book of the Deadwood Mystery series, I was in love (I gave it a five-out-of-five star rating and I rarely do that). When I finished the second book, Optical Delusions In Deadwood, I thought it was great, although not as good as the first book. I drew the same conclusion from the third book, Dead Case In Deadwood.

Now we’re at book number four, Better Off Dead in Deadwood, and I’m sad to say I didn’t really like it. There were parts I definitel...more
One of my favorite series read ever! For the last two years I have been transported to an incredibly believable world full of colorful characters and things that go bump in the night. Well, some of them are not just things, some of them are really bad people.. but some of them? They go more than just bump in the night. And where is Violet in all of this? Somehow right smack dab in the middle of all the mayhem ... again!

She is still needing to sell houses, and though Violet would prefer they not...more
Sweet Mother of Pearl! Who says that being chased by crazy things that go bump in the night can't be fun? Because this book IS TOTALLY FUN! Violet's right in the middle of more shenanigans in the town of Deadwood, Detective Coop has her on his "most likely to get caught breaking into a locked building" list (actually, I just made that up. But if he *did* have a list like that, I'm sure she'd be on it!), and Violet's clients expect her to help out in all manner of supernatural goings on!

Oh, and t...more
Annoyingly Good Paranormal Mystery

Violet Parker is drawn into investigating the death of her boss Jane from Calamity Jane’s Real Estate. But the more she digs, the more dirt she finds. As her suspicions multiply, so do those of Detective Cooper, who finds her digging annoying, dangerous, and counter-productive to his real investigation. Before you know it, Violet has a big old target painted on her back and a fistful of suspects.

This book has ghosts and zombies. The ghosts are for real, while th...more
This is the fourth in an amusing series about Violet Parker, a never married mother of twins--a girl and a boy--who works in real estate and lives with her aunt, dabbling in murder. Her boss is killed, and the first ex husband takes over the business. He decides to cash in on her blond looks, buying clothes for her to wear in publicity. There is a 'boyfriend' and the aunt has one, too--Harvey--who is sort of a short order cook. Oh, there are also zombies in a zombie musical. Most of the action t...more
Linda Baker
I was delighted to be a beta reader for the 4th book in the Deadwood series and Better Off Dead in Deadwood did not disappoint. Still suffering from nightmares, Violet is stressed out over the rift in her friendship with Natalie and a haunted hotel sale that appears to be falling through. Some new characters are introduced, none of them what they appear to be. The weird supernatural events keep on coming and Cooper is madder than ever. Thank goodness Violet has the support of a lot of people, de...more
Roberta Smith
I love ghost stories. I've been to Deadwood and loved the town. With so many 5 star reviews how could this book miss (with me, anyway)? I think I would have been better off reading book 1 in the series, but now I don't want to. I found the banter of the main character (Violet) witty, but after a while it grew repetitive and, therefore, tiresome. The interaction between Violet and the sheriff was repetitive and mostly not believable. The sex scenes were bountiful and slowed the story. Too many th...more
The Deadwood gang is back and they are plagued by more mystery, mayhem, and murder. Violet (Spooky) Parker has a whole new set of problems to work through.
This is the fourth book in the always amazing Deadwood series.

This book is a page turner from beginning to end. I loved the character development. From sexy “financial advisor” Doc (fans self), to humorous Old Man Harvey and his words to live by and then throw in an Abe Lincoln looking ghost whisperer, and many other infectious characters th...more
5+++ It's hard to express how much I LOVE this series!! This is another top-notch installment.
I'm not going to try to recap the story but just tell you what I liked about it. Everything!

The writing is superb. You feel transported to this town and totally engaged, and connected to these characters. Sometimes I feel I'm watching this play out instead of reading it. The characters are so relatable, even with the paranormal elements that are a part of the story and the town.

The dialogue is perfect;...more
Review 7/3/2014: Ugh!! I so forgot about the huge cliffhanger on this book, I really hope the next book comes out sooner than September!! So much for taking my time re-reading this series! I highly recommend this series!!

Original Review 4/28/13: UGH!!! I hate that I will have to wait till next year to read another Deadwood Mysteries book!!!

This is book four in the series and I am so upset that this is the last one for awhile that I will be able to read. Looks like won't have a new one out till...more

This series is my favorite. No doubt about it. Deadwood is a small town with lots of funny characters. Violet is a character that I'd love to be bbf's with. The gangs all back in this book. More mystery. Which Violet is right in the middle of. To the regrets of Sheriff Cooper and her boyfriend Doc. Harvey who is Cooper's cantankerous old Uncle, but Violets sometimes partner in crime. Doc,Violets very hot boyfriend, is a financial adviser who speaks to ghosts. Violet has moved to Deadwood to sta...more
I keep going between 3/4 stars on this one.

I LOVED that the action increased, the feelings got real, Violet had a lot of personal growth. And Harvey. I love that guy.

I did NOT love the angst parts. Violet was insecure about SOOOOO MUCH. Her career, her relationship, her friendship, her self. I am over her self loathing diatribes.

Other than that, can't wait to dive into the next edition…. please write faster Ann Charles!
Vivi Vocat
The books in this series are decreasing in quality. And this was a very strange book and I wasn't sure whether I liked it or not. My problem was that I can tell something big is coming, but I'm getting tired of little to nothing happening. I kept waiting for something to happen that made sense. Don't get me wrong, the smaller build up plots up to this point were fun, but in this installment story needed to move to the bigger picture and it didn't. Instead the plot unnecessarily got just too fant...more
This series really is getting better with each new instalment! The more I think about it the more I think it has everything to do with character development. This is not one of these series where the characters are always the same, never change no matter what happens or the things they go through. Here the characters come to life as they evolve throughout the books, depending on the people they meet, the situations they face, the choices they make... The plots for the Deadwood series are always...more
How does your boss end up in the bottom of the Open Cut gold mine? How many more suspects can be uncovered in this little town in the hills? How many more times can Violet end up in the wrong place at the wrong time? More Trouble...more laughs...more who done it...more DOC...Better off Dead in Deadwood is the 4th book in Ann Charles's Deadwood series, and it kept me up way to late into the night, and begging for another pot of coffee at work the next morning!! This book is filled with TONS of hi...more
Douglas Cook
Lots of fun, but each book gets weirder and weirder. Who will show up in the next book?

first sentences
Chapter One Deadwood, South Dakota Saturday, September 1st “You need to get your ass back in gear, Violet,” Old Man Harvey told me. “The world’s still spinnin’.” “I just can’t believe Jane’s dead,” I said over the din of conversation surrounding us in Bighorn Billy’s Diner, a local favorite here in Deadwood. I picked at my lunch salad, pushing the lettuce around on my plate, looking for life’s a...more
So, first I really love Ann Charles. Her writing style is just so amazing, and I'm captivated from the first page to the last. Every time Ann needs a beta reader I imagine myself as one of those overly eager smart kids raising their hands before the teacher finishes the question and pleading, " me,me". When I'm suppose to be looking for any errors that can make a slip on even the most brilliant writers, I'm usually to caught up in the story to do any kind of meaningful searching. I'm not gonna g...more
At this point, this series is a little bit like drugs. As frustrating as it can be with all the different story lines that continue from the last three books, the fact that they grow richer and more detailed kept me going.

Between more albinos, a play going wrong in the Opera House in Lead, Prudence using both Mollie and Doc to communicate with Violet, Cooper not giving Violet a single centimeter, more demonic like activity when Violet is around Cornelius, and mishaps in Doc and Violet's relatio...more
Elizabeth Kiley


Great well formed charcters. Love Violets attitude, she struggles but does not give up. Story is not predictable and keeps you on the edge of your seat wanting more.
I really hate starting a great series before the books are all written.... Now I have to wait HOW long for the next installment?!?! Grrrr. I'm not normally a fan of paranormal but this series has sucked me in and now I'm trapped. Can't wait to find out what's going to happen next.

what a fast fun sexy read. Violet has fast become my favorite basket case. between killer albinos and dysfunctional relationships you just never know what kind of trouble she'll get into.
Denise Keef
Once again Ann Charles has done it by writing another hit story in Deadwood with the fun loving Violet. In this the fourth book in the "Deadwood" series, Violet is again brought into a murder investigation and there the mystery begins. This book is filled with laughs...romance(OH yes...Violet and Doc get a little hot and heavy) and of course a killing or two. Definitely a must read for fans of Ann Charles' books which include the Deadwood series and the Jackrabbit Junction series and by all who...more
This book is a wonderful addition to the series. It is my favorite by far. It has lots of great humor that made me smile and laugh out loud many times. What I like best about the humor is that Ann Charles made it seem so effortless and unforced. So obviously she worked very hard to make it appear that way. My favorite line? "....I was allergic to bathing suits - they made me break out in humiliation."
The book also has lots of paranormal shenanigans,ghosts,ghost whisperers,the occasional albinos...more
These books never disappoint! I thoroughly enjoyed Violet's latest adventure and this time I REALLY can't wait for the next book after the way things ended.

*minor spoilers

I was happy to see Vi's relationship with Doc making progress, but its still frustrating seeing her keep him at arms length the way she does at times. Though they are definitely talking things out more and as long as they keep that up I'll be happy.

Also glad to see things with Natalie are back on track. I would love to see Na...more
I love this series. I think the books get better as the series goes along, but maybe I'm just beginning to care more about the characters as I get to know them better. Anyway, I enjoyed this one.
**4.5 Stars**

Protagonist: 9/10
Secondary Characters: 10/10
Mystery: 10/10
Humor: 10/10
Pace: 10/10

This series continues to blow me away! And this book is by far my favorite. My only problem was with Violet (surprise, surprise) and her handling of matters with Cooper. She goes out of her way to be a stubborn bitch with him for no reason. Hopefully, she gets an attitude adjustment in the next book. Other than that, I loved the book and it breaks my heart that I have to knock off points for Violets abi...more
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Is there a Violet/Cooper coupling in the future? 5 28 Jul 01, 2013 07:12AM  
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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...
Nearly Departed in Deadwood (Deadwood Mystery, #1) Optical Delusions in Deadwood (Deadwood Mystery, #2) Dead Case in Deadwood (Deadwood Mystery, #3) Dance of the Winnebagos (A Jackrabbit Junction Mystery #1) Jackrabbit Junction Jitters (A Jackrabbit Junction Mystery #2)

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