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Donn's Hill

(The Soul Searchers Mysteries #1)

4.44  ·  Rating details ·  239 ratings  ·  75 reviews
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 t
Kindle Edition, 290 pages
Published April 5th 2019 (first published March 3rd 2017)
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Caryn Definitely! Mac, Striker, and the rest of the Soul Searchers are back in DONN'S SHADOW, which is available now! There will be a 3rd book to round out …moreDefinitely! Mac, Striker, and the rest of the Soul Searchers are back in DONN'S SHADOW, which is available now! There will be a 3rd book to round out the series after that.(less)
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Average rating 4.44  · 
Rating details
 ·  239 ratings  ·  75 reviews

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Apr 09, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: paranormal
“This is home.”

Moving in and getting used to a new town can be difficult for anyone but Mackenzie’s move to Donn’s Hill takes the prize. The story begins with Mackenzie exploring her new town and meeting new people, each and every character had a unique personality and I enjoyed discovering more about them as the story progressed.

It wasn’t long before peculiar things started happening in this book and I was so surprised to see just how many odd things could one little town like Donn’
Errin Krystal
Feb 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

I’ll admit, I’m not generally a big reader of mystery and thrillers, but the synopsis for this book had me interested enough to give it a try. Plus the paranormal element and ghost hunters definitely helped sell it.

I am happy to report, I am glad I took a chance on reading something different. If I had of passed on this book, I really would have been missing out. I ended up thoroughly enjoying Donn’s Hill. I read the whole thin
May 25, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: abc
Mackenzie Clair has had a rough time of it. Her father just passed away and after coming home from the funeral she finds her boyfriend in bed with another woman. She decides its time for a change, and new start. She gets a bit more then she expects. She heads back to Donn's Hill. A place she loved going on vacation as a child. She starts to find out a few things about her mother who passed several years ago. She also is found by a kitten who decides Mackenzie is her person. She also meets a grou ...more
Feb 20, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I received a free copy of Donn’s Hill in exchange for an honest review.

Donn’s Hill was most definitely expertly written, with a good mix of characters. It was an interesting idea to have Mac who could genuinely interact with people who had passed mixing with a ghost hunting show. This gave a good fictional representation of both sides of opinion as to whether ghosts etc are real.

Personally, I felt the plot was a bit slow but the expert writing made up for this.
Feb 26, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mackenzie Clair pares down everything she owns into one backpack. She decides to move after she finds her boyfriend cheating on her upon coming home from her father's funeral. She ends up in Donn's hill the place her mother used to take her as a child. Strange things start happening when she arrives like seeing a man that's not really there. She is welcome by some but not by others in this strange little town. She starts to find there are paranormal forces at work and they are trying to tell her ...more
Julie Baswell
Mar 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Mackenzie Clair’s mother died when she was very young. Now, her father has died also, leaving her with no living relatives. When she finds out that her long-time boyfriend is cheating on her, she kicks him out, finding herself alone for the first time in her life. Deciding to make a fresh start, she moves to Donn’s Hill since she has fond childhood memories of going there with her mother. As soon as she gets there though, a disturbing spirit starts haunting her. That’s when she finds out that Do ...more
Martin McConnell
Loved it!

I received an ARC in exchange for a review on my website, and I can't shut up about the book ever since. Caryn has a way with characters. All of them have their own story, and felt very real.

I can't say what captured my attention. The plot is a little slow, but captivating. I probably got through it faster than most novels I read. It kept me hooked. I think the character and world building were the cause. It also kept me guessing. Just when I thought I had it figured out, the plot would
Carl Hackman
Mar 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This novel was sent to my wife as an ARC for an honest review. I'll write her words here as she does not have an Amazon account.

The main character is brilliant and my wife says if we didn't have a house full of rescue dogs then she'd adopt a cat as she fell in love with striker. If you love the Ghost Hunters and other Paranormal T.V shows then this book is right up your street. It is has ghosts, psychics, seances and a murder mystery. What more could you ask for, apart from the next in the serie
Kristine Hall
AUDIO BOOK REVIEW: DONN'S HILL takes an interesting premise and runs with it. I was intrigued by the idea that grief and stress could trigger a long-time hidden psychic ability. Pairing that concept with a town that has an annual paranormal festival and houses the crew of a televised ghost-hunting show, readers are given a captivating and creepy story to enjoy.

“You have the air of someone who prefers words on a page to the world around her.”

I knew right away that character Mac was my kind of gal
Ghost hunters, a cat familiar, the unruly dead, seances, and the ability to see spirits – Mac surely has her hands full! This was a great listen. I got attached to Mac right away. She’s restarting her life after a failed marriage and the death of her father a year ago. So she ends up going to Donn’s Hill, a small town that she and her mom visited often when she was a kid.

Right away, spooky stuff starts happening. As Mac meets a variety of characters, her newly rediscovered psychic abilities begi
Theresa Braun
Sep 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the perfect summer read, especially if you can’t commit to a book genre. What I mean is that this story has something for all of your cravings: it’s part supernatural/paranormal, part mystery, and part crime, with a touch of horror. This is also a character driven story about self-discovery, friendship, trusting intuition, and much more. What makes Mackenzie’s journey so enjoyable is her voice. There’s a casual, down-to-earth tone to the narrative that kept me flipping the pages. She’s s ...more
Roxie Prince
Sep 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Read this review and more on my blog at [Roxie Writes].

'Donn's Hill' by Caryn Larrinaga (narrated by Jessica McEvoy)
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 5/5
Finished on August 20, 2017
$2.99 on Kindle | $14.99 in Paperback | FREE with Audible Trial

Mackenzie Clair's father died. She found her boyfriend cheating on her. Now, she needs a fresh start. So, she moves to Donn's Hill, a place she used to go with her mother as a little girl, but when she gets there, more is awakened in her than just nostalgia. She
Jun 09, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I listened to the audiobook for this story and enjoyed the production by narrator Jessica McEvoy.

In Donn's Hill, Mackenzie Clair moves back to the town she remembers from childhood to restart her life after a nasty break-up with her cheating boyfriend. The town is haunted, however, with a lot of strange activity, and her road to reinvention and self-discovery leads her into paranormal territory she's never taken seriously before. An old cat named Stryker also adopts her for its new owner after t
Jan 03, 2021 rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Katherine Paschal
**4.5 Stars**
I think this had a very sad vibe to it with Mac having a lot of past baggage that she had not fully come to terms with yet, dealing with the recent loss of her father and betrayal of her boyfriend to the unknown past with her mother and the secrets of her visitors. I usually try to avoid books that are more serious like this but I did not feel overwhelmed by the sadness in the book because I think the author did a good job of putting danger and mystery in to keep the pacing of the p
Oct 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Larrinaga blends high suspense, tense mystery, a poignant account of finding friendships and loyalty, and a touching narrative to craft this hard-to-put-down paranormal mystery series.

In the first book, untimely death of her father and a broken relationship forces Mackenzie Clair to leave her home and city behind to start afresh in her favorite childhood vacation spot, the small town of Donn’s Hill. As her lost psychic ability to talk to the dead returns, Mackenzie joins the team of Soul Search
Apr 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Absolutely terrific - Ghosts Whisperer meets Supernatural

What a fantastic read and am so glad to hear that this is going to be a series. A plot full of murder and greed with a liberal dose of ghosts. The characters embody strength and resistance whilst making the storyline flow. (Although some proofing errors in the time line should have been picked up)
With the death of her father, the betrayal of her longterm boyfriend and a general dissatisfaction with her life have led her to this particular
Oct 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2019
Donn’s Hill is a horror/mystery/thriller that involves the paranormal. As such, I knew I had to give it a shot. I wasn’t disappointed.

Donn’s Hill is Caryn Larrinaga’s debut novel. As such, it does suffer a bit from “first book syndrome” but in all honesty, it doesn’t really detract from the story. This one needs the long set-up to make it as impactful as it is. Not to mention this is the first book in a series, which makes it even more forgivable that the set-up takes as long as it does.

I really
Travis Poole
Oct 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed this and plan on tracking down more books by this author. Lot of fun, lot of humor and a super cool cat named Striker. The author obviously has cats because she describes Striker absolutely perfectly. At one point Striker poses in the shape of a loaf of bread and I never realized I knew exactly what the pose was. The main character, Mac(kenzie) loses her father and decides she wants to start over and move to where she and her mother vacationed as a child. Mac lost her mother as ...more
Reads A-Lot
Oct 29, 2019 rated it liked it
Welcome to Donn’s Hill.

A new life was to being for Mackenzie.

On the first night in a dingy motel, Mac awoke to an intruder. Or, at least, she thought it was an intruder. But there was no one there. Could the Travelers be back? Travelers?

It would seem that the Travelers were her imaginary friends. Or were they…?

The odd thing was that Mac showed up at the peak of the Afterlife Festival. Strange how that cat just kept following her around. Strange things kept happening.

Story had a good concept, b
Colleen Villasenor
Dec 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is a book about grief, self-discovery, and starting over. It is also a book about murder and the paranormal. Mackenzie Clair has just returned from her father's funeral to discover her boyfriend in bed with another woman. She packs the essentials and turns her back on the life she has to return to a place she knows only as a childhood memory shared with her mother. She hopes to reconnect with the feelings she had there before her mother's death when Mac was only 8 years old. Instead, she co ...more
Sep 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I picked this novel up at Boise Book Fest. I was hesitant to dive in as I don't typically read horror, but I found it to be a consistently enjoyable read. There was one thrilling scene at a haunted cabin in the woods but nothing too scary. I'd call Donn's Hill a cozy mystery with a paranormal twist.

The story is well-written with a relatable narrator, perfect pacing, expertly woven-in and relevant backstory, well-developed characters, just the right amount of description, and delightful dashes of
Mar 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Not many towns can boast an annual paranormal festival, but Donn's Hill is a town like no other. Everyone has an aura, a vibe or a fascination with the paranormal. There's even a dedicated team of ghost hunters for a TV show. Not that Mac knew this when she moved there, though she did remember her mom taking her to the festival when she was a child. It's probably her only memory of her mom whose maternal instinct was somewhat lacking. Raised by her father, recently passed, and finding her boyfri ...more
Elizabeth Suggs
Jan 15, 2021 rated it liked it
Donn’s Hill by Caryn Larrinaga is a psychic mystery with great writing and interesting characters.

Larrinaga did well crafting unique characters with their own voice and personality. In fact, I think the interpersonal relationships are the crux of this story and it’s how our main character, Mackenzie Clair, learns to accept and understand herself.

There’s a lot of mystery and intrigue, but the tone throughout the book seemed off and a little too light for how the novel began. While the lightness
Kay Brooks
Mar 08, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Mac’s Life Changed Forever When She Moved To Donn’s Hill

After her father died, Mackenzie decided to leave her boyfriend and go back to the place she remembered from her childhood. It was almost time for the annual Afterlife Festival, a good time to visit and rekindle memories. Her backpack filled with all her worldly possessions, she hitched a ride to a small dingy motel, a place to spend her first night in town. From that first day in Donn’s Hill, strange things began to happen. Then she met St
Tracey Digilormo
I really enjoyed this book. I found it by accident really on my kindle. I had looked up another book and it had this one showing what other people bought when they got the particular book I was looking at. So I thought I would buy buy it and give it a try. I am so glad I did. So with me sharing how I found this book and author i will tell you my thoughts on the book lol.

I normally don't read paranormal books. I was caught up in the synopsis of the book. Mac moving back home after the death of he
Oct 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
She thought she had made a good decision to head back to a place where she had happy memories after all that had happened to her. She just wanted a fresh start. Well she got that in spades. Moving to a small town was supposed to be a sure bet and this was anything but that. Secrets are revealed not only about the town but about her parents. Finding her entire world flipped and all she knew now in question she is trying to find the truth and instead finds new gifts. It's a great suspenseful tale ...more
Daniel Yocom
Aug 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Donn’s Hill was a good read that kept me interested. I quickly went through the 328 pages and was left thinking about what comes next for Mackenzie Clair.

The story is strong and has emphasizes the mystery. The horror element is present in the use of the supernatural and in solving the mystery. Since it is about a murder, there are some details written in.

Characters are alive and personable. They have depth even when they only come to the page a few times.

I look forward to reading more from Caryn
Mar 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Caryn Larrinaga’s first installment to her The Soul Searchers Mysteries series, Donn's Hill, was a fabulous first introduction to her work. I had the pleasure of listening to the audio version with Jessica McEvoy narrating. She did a wonderful job bringing this story to life. I was intrigued with MacKenzie and the mystery she was involved in.
I am giving Donn’s Hill a very well deserved five plus stars. I look forward to reading the next installment from The Soul Searchers Mysteries series, Donn’
Mar 21, 2020 rated it really liked it
Donn's Hill was a pleasant surprise. I ended up really enjoy the book. It involves Mackenzie who moves to Donn's HIll looking for a fresh start after the death of her father. There she finds a strange group of friends, an unusual job and a mystery she needs to solve before ti's too late.

As I said, I really enjoyed listening to this audiobook. I enjoyed all of the characters, especially Mackenzie. She is a character I definitely want to read more about. I also loved the mix of mystery and superna
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Caryn Larrinaga is an award-winning mystery, horror, and urban fantasy writer. Her debut novel, DONN'S HILL, was awarded the League of Utah Writers 2017 Silver Quill in the adult novel category and was a 2017 Dragon Award finalist. 

Watching scary movies through split fingers terrified Caryn as a child, and those nightmares inspire her to write now. Her 90-year-old house has a colorful history, an

Other books in the series

The Soul Searchers Mysteries (2 books)
  • Donn's Shadow (The Soul Searchers Mysteries #2)

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