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Optical Delusions in Deadwood (Deadwood Humorous Mystery Book 2) Kindle Edition

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Length: 428 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Editorial Reviews


"... mystery, humor, romance, and fun all wrapped up in a great book." ~BooksRUs Reviews

From the Author

Dear Reader,
I have an itchy case of gold fever. I came down with it decades ago when I first traveled through the Deadwood area. I'm not talking about a hunger for shiny treasures, rather a need to know all about the people and places from which the shiny pieces are unearthed.

When it comes to the Black Hills, one town reaches out to scratch my gold-fever itch--the city of Lead (pronounced Leed). While Deadwood was busy leaving its mark on the history books with tales of Wild Bill Hickok and Seth Bullock, Lead was busy staking its claim on the land. The Open Cut mine in the middle of Lead brings its industrious past front and center.

The Open Cut has always fascinated me. I have studied "before" and "after" pictures, read all about its creation (at the Black Hills Mining Museum), and stared at the geological timeline in its walls through the Homestake Visitor Center's chain-link fence. Why am I so fascinated with a big hole in the ground? Because it reveals a history full of hard work, spent lives, and change. It intrigues me how people adapt to these changes.

Over the years, I've met several Homestake miners. I've listened to their stories of what it was like to work deep inside the Earth. At the butcher in King's Grocery, I stood in line with their wives and kids. These days, Homestake is no longer an operating gold mine; most of the drifts and shafts below the town are filled with water rather than men. But Lead's industrious spirit is still alive, its down-to-earth hardiness still apparent.

I'd always planned to incorporate Lead into the Deadwood Mystery series. The two towns are like sisters, each enchanting with separate but entangled histories. Before I began writing this second book, I cruised the back streets of Lead, along Sunnyhill Road, from East Summit Street to West, and down Gold Street, searching to see how life off the main drag had changed since Homestake stopped digging for gold. I took my kids to the little park on Miners Avenue and the big park next to the Open Cut. I climbed the steep hill on Mill Street, retracing the going-to-work route of many miners. I located the exact piece of land next to the Open Cut where I'd place the house that would play center stage in the story--the Carhart house.

I hope you get a kick out of reading Optical Delusions in Deadwood. While I enjoyed introducing Violet and her friends in the first book of the series, Nearly Departed in Deadwood, this second book allowed me to shed light on the kaleidoscope of colorful characters and historical settings.

Most of you reading this have already dipped a toe into Violet's world. Thank you for returning for more Deadwood fun.

Grab your boots, because the water is getting deeper.
Welcome back to Deadwood ... and Lead.
Ann Charles
Award-winning author of the Deadwood Mystery Series

Product Details

  • File Size: 2517 KB
  • Print Length: 428 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Ann Charles (January 16, 2014)
  • Publication Date: January 16, 2014
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005007HQ0
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #31,024 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Ann Charles is a USA Today Best-Selling author who writes award-winning mysteries that are splashed with humor, romance, and whatever else sounds fun.

Currently, she has several fiction books available: NEARLY DEPARTED IN DEADWOOD (multiple award-winning book for both mystery and romance/mystery), OPTICAL DELUSIONS IN DEADWOOD, DEAD CASE IN DEADWOOD (selected as one of Suspense Magazine's BEST OF 2012 books), BETTER OFF DEAD IN DEADWOOD, AN EX TO GRIND IN DEADWOOD, and MEANWHILE, BACK IN DEADWOOD, which are all part of her ongoing Deadwood Mystery Series.

Also available from Ann are the first three books in her Jackrabbit Junction Mystery Series: DANCE OF THE WINNEBAGOS, JACKRABBIT JUNCTION JITTERS, and THE GREAT JACKALOPE STAMPEDE.

LOOK WHAT THE WIND BLEW IN, the first book in her new Dig Site Mystery series, is now listed on Amazon, too. This book stars Quint Parker, the brother of Violet Parker--the heroine in her Deadwood Mystery series. It's filled with mystery, humor, adventure, and a splash of romance.

She has a couple of short stories as well--DEADWOOD SHORTS: SEEING TROUBLE and BOOT POINTS (short stories from her Deadwood Mystery Series) and THE OLD MAN'S BACK IN TOWN (a short story from her upcoming Goldwash Mystery Series).

Stay tuned for the following new books by Ann coming in 2016:
* THE ROWDY COYOTE RUMBLE (Jackrabbit Junction Mystery Series #4)--early 2016
* TBA--(Deadwood Mystery Series #7)--Summer 2016

A member of Sisters in Crime and Romance Writers of America for many moons, Ann has a B.A. in English with an emphasis on creative writing from the University of Washington. She is currently toiling away on her next book, wishing she was on a Mexican beach with an ice-cold Corona in one hand and her Kindle in the other. When she is not dabbling in fiction, she is arm wrestling with her two kids, attempting to seduce her husband, and arguing with her sassy cat. Most nights, you can find her hanging out over at, on Facebook as Ann Charles, or as AnnWCharles on Twitter.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition
Optical Delusions in Deadwood (Deadwood Mystery Series)

An exciting trip back to Deadwood to visit with Violet-real-estate extraordinaire/part-time sleuth. This time with ghostly encounters in the mix. I liked how the story started just a short time after the first book ends. A rollicking romp through the streets of Deadwood sprinkled with sexual innuendo from Harvey,Violet's cantankerous friend to the steamy romance scenes between Doc & Violet. It all mixes together like lemons and sugar to make an inventive lemonade. I absolutely love Violet's eccentric kids. They remind me of some of the shenanigans of my children:)
The sexual tension between Doc & Violet left me with the desire to shake the two of them and say get with it and get together:)
The ghostly twist whet my appetite, wondering what other experiences are waiting in the wings for Violet and will she finally become a believer?
Another fun read that left me smiling. The ending left me anxiously awaiting book 3.
Bravo, Ann Charles for your wit and humor. Your masterful storytelling makes this a gem to read.
I recommend this book to readers who like mysteries, romance, with a dash of paranormal.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Loved the first book and wondered if this second book could be as good. It is!! I'm totally love love this series! Guess there's no question how I feel! Highly recommend for a fast paced mystery with lots of humor and the right amount of romance!! The writing seems effortless it flows so well. Outstanding! I just want to go hang out with Violet, Doc, Harvey and the rest of the crazies in Deadwood. Can't wait to see what happens next in bk3... Hurry please!!
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I met the author at a waterfront book festival a few weeks ago. What attracted me to her books was the book jacket. So many new writers tend to have jackets that look like a toss away from a B movie. Jacket was professional and well done.

The book is and smart. First of all the main character is not a 20 yr old ," I'm so pretty and misunderstood...and so pretty..and angry...and I have POWERS!!!". This chick was 35..single Mom of two intense kids. She is working as a real estate agent with a villian as a co worker..I loved the character because she was able to brush things off , as she wasn't a 20 yr old nymphette..and her insecurities were honest and hyyyysterical!! The Man..was good looking..all the stuff we gals like to read..but he had his own bag of oddness to make him less than perfect. It's refreshing as the babe in these books tend to have it all together while the hero swoops in and saves the heroine in some fancy ensemble (L Hamilton- hear my plea..thigh high boots?? STOPPPPP!!!)

This has something for like mystery, humor and a little gore (serial killers terrify me...give me a monster anytime). The main characters dialogue was hysterical and honest. I downloaded the 2nd book immediately and it was just as great if not better.

I am ready for the 3rd...I was ready for the 3rd after the 2nd but I supposse I will just have to wait. :)
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Format: Paperback
This time - (thank goodness) I wasn't on a plane when I read the next installment of the indomitable Violet via her conduit Ann Charles. I'm not a huge reader of first person, mystery or even humor but this book like the first has me hooked! Ms Charles weaves a great story with unforgettable characters, it has it all including paranormal and romance. I really am enjoying this series and I can't wait for the next book. (to tide me over I've just purchased Dance of the Winnebagos I think that title says it all - LOL)
My only disappointment it wasn't long enough. Can't wait to find out what trouble Violet gets into next and what happens between her and Doc.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
An exciting second in the Deadwood series! I am completely hooked and am on baited breath for the third book. This installment into Violet's life is even better then the first. As a single mom trying to make it in the real estate world, despite the machinations of a misogynistic co-worker, Violet works hard to ilk out a living and still be the best mom she can be. This can prove to be a challenge with a pair of twins who create a whirlwind of interesting adventures on their own. Her ability to attract trouble and ghosts works for and against her leaving me wanting more after each page!

Violet is a believable and real person. She does not have long flowing hair and legs up to her arm pits, she struggles with the baby weight she has had since the twins were born, is short, has unruly, wild hair and real financial issues. Even the most despicable characters in the novel are likeable simply because of the fact they are real, fleshed out individuals, be it her Aunt or the chicken. With each page they embroil themselves into your life, especially Elvis the chicken!!

If you have any doubts, just do a test read, I guarantee you will be hooked and reading them in no time!
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Format: Kindle Edition
This was dreadful...horrible. After reading the first book in the series, I was pretty excited to read this as well. How disappointed I was. Where as some books can be hard to get into because they lack descriptions...this one is partially awful because it has BOTH way too much, yet still not enough; both the writer and the main character will go on and on at lengths over the same times the most unnecessary things...yet glaze over key things.

Violet comes across as an idiot, yet its hard to really blame that all on the character as opposed to her creator. She's paranoid about the things she could easily toss aside, and nonchalant about the things that are supposedly very important to her. She is so consumed with sex with doc that everything else is clouded. Its hard to understand why any character would find her appealing, other than maybe for physical reasons. She's a walking contradiction, and not the good type.

As for the writing style, its so wishy washy and borderlines on immature. I usually do like it when an author takes us deep into a character's head...but Violet really has no depth so there is nowhere to go. The dialogue she has with herself could have been funny at one point, but then gets irritating really fast because its a bunch of nonsense. Based on this (and on her actions) its hard to really see her as taking ANYTHING at all seriously...not her kids, not her job, not the relationship she spends 99.9% of the story obsessed with, not Doc..not anything. The woman finds time to make jokes in her private thoughts, when they should otherwise be focused on saving her life and the stuff that's going on around her...this specifically reminds me of a cartoon.
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