• Donn's Shadow

  • The Soul Searchers Mysteries, Book 2
  • By: Caryn Larrinaga
  • Narrated by: Jessica McEvoy
  • Length: 9 hrs and 53 mins
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars (35 ratings)

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Donn's Shadow

By: Caryn Larrinaga
Narrated by: Jessica McEvoy
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Publisher's Summary

Return to the most haunted small town in America....

Mackenzie Clair finally has this whole ghost-hunting psychic thing figured out. The Soul Searchers are a hit, she’s got pet-parenting down, and she even has a plan to banish the poltergeist running amok at a lakeside cabin. Best of all, Donn’s Hill feels like home. But not everyone loves the town as much as Mac.

A world-famous paranormal debunker thinks the psychics in Donn’s Hill are lying about their abilities. His determination to destroy the Soul Searchers threatens Mac’s livelihood, and when a killer strikes, the sheriff’s suspicions threaten her freedom.

Mac needs all the help she can get to find the real murderer and clear her name...even if that help comes from beyond the grave.

©2019 Caryn Larrinaga (P)2020 Caryn Larrinaga

What listeners say about Donn's Shadow

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

moving closer to uncovering something more

Returning to Donn's Hill and syncing backup with Mac and Striker was just what the day called for. I loved meeting the challenge of this new mystery. I loved seeing a different yet the same side of Max. Striker was just what you would expect and then more all at the same time. This supernatural mystery lured me in and kept me going all the way through to the end.

I found this to be a cozy mystery with more.

Jessica McEvoy voice that felt like home in the cozy mystery genre.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Better than the first book!

I chose to listen to this book after receiving a free audio copy from Audiobookworm Promotions. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased. I listened to the first book, Donn’s Hill, recently and liked it so I was looking forward to listening to Donn’s Shadow.

Mac finds another body in Donn’s Hill and is briefly a suspect because she’d had an argument with the victim the night before. Fortunately, one of the officers knows that she’s a psychic and believes in her powers and her innocence. Mac is determined to figure out who the murderer is. It’s not as easy as it could be though because every time she tries to contact the murder victim, Horace, another spirit, appears and invades her mind.

The Soul Searchers, a group who help people find closure with ghosts, had hired her a while back but are they going to break up? If they do, Mac will have to find another job. That’s not all that she’s dealing with. Horace will tell her who the murderer is if she brings him a jewelry box. The Soul Searchers help her with the jewelry box, but it’s cursed. How many of the negative changes in her life are because of the box? All of them? None of them?

Mac is fairly likeable but she still has some growing up to do especially when it comes to relationships. The other characters are not as well-developed as Mac, but they add a lot to her story. My favorite character is Mac’s cat, Striker, who is as gifted as Mac in her own way.

Jessica McEvoy does a great job with the different voices in the story. She’s the perfect narrator for Donn’s Shadow. Once again, it is more a performance than a narration, and she brings the story alive.

I’m looking forward to listening the next book in the series!

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Good continuation of series

Note: While this is book 2 in the series it would work pretty well as a stand alone. Of course, book 1 is good, so I encourage people to check it out as well.

Mac has gotten caught up in the center of a drama in Donn’s Hill. A well-known myth buster or paranormal debunker Raziel is coming for a visit and many residents of the spiritual community are not happy. Raziel and his popular show have a reputation of viciously discrediting paranormal incidents and those who claim to have special supernatural gifts.

Right away, I was pulled into the story. I’m a skeptic when it comes to the paranormal (even though I love reading urban fantasy and the like), but I sympathized with Mac and her friends. There’s no need for Raziel to be mean about it, right? And yet I too don’t like seeing people who are in emotional distress bein cheated by frauds. So I was hoping for some kind of happy medium reconciliation between these two groups and I was looking forward to seeing how Mac would help make that happen.

Ha! And this tale had a twist early on meaning I wouldn’t being getting what I expected. Raziel arrives with his show’s productions team and immediately stat hanging out with the locals, making them uncomfortable. Mac’s best friend Kit really dislikes Raziel, but she is interested in Amari (Raziel’s personal assistant). Raziel really wants to tag along to a séance that Mac is leading but he’s turned down. Yet this man is sneaky. Lots of drama follows.

Next, murder! Yes! That’s what I’m here for. Some are relieved at the death, some are worried. Mac is concerned too. She had an altercation with the dead and then even stumbled upon the body. So of course the police have to look hard at her. Meanwhile, it feels like things are kind of falling apart. Plenty of people are having emotional outbursts that aren’t like them. There’s problems with the TV show Soul Searchers (run by Uri and Kit with Mac and Mark helping out). Mac even has an argument with Graham. Striker the cat gets a mysterious injury. And most disturbing to Mac, she learns that several of her friends have been faking their paranormal abilities.

I really enjoyed Mac’s exploration of this. People have a variety of reasons for faking their abilities and not everyone is out to make a lot of money. Mac turns to her friends Nick and Daphne and Steven to help make sense this. She feels that she’s been naïve and that some of the fakers have taken advantage of her.

There’s also ghosts and evil entities that cause Mac no end of trouble too. I liked that she reached out to her friend Gabriel (from book 1) even tho things aren’t the best between them right now. The suspense ramps up and then sneakily smacks you in the face with the answer as to who committed to the murder. I totally did not suspect that person at all. Meanwhile, there’s still a bigger mystery to answer dealing with the paranormal. The tale ends on a cliffhanger so luckily I have book 3 queued up! 4/5 stars.

The Narration: Jessica McEvoy was a great fit for Mac. She really had her voice down to a T and I especially liked how she captured Mac’s emotions throughout the story. McEvoy also provided a variety of accents for the cast of characters and I felt her international accents for Steven (rune reader) and Amari were very well done. The guys sound like guys too. The pacing was perfect & there were no tech issues with the recording. 5/5 stars.

I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The tour is being sponsored by Caryn Larrinaga. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

The Ghostly Thrills Continue

It’s been about one year since Mac Clair discovered that she is a psychic. Her job with Soul Searchers is going well and her relationship with Graham is going well. But when famous debunker Raziel sets his eyes on the Soul Searchers things are going to get heated. But Mac discovering another dead body puts her in the person of interest’s category again.

Mac is also up against a powerful ghost that directs her to a dybbuk box. The discovery of this book seems to put a curse on Mac and her friends. As everything seems to be crashing down around her it’s up to Mac to find the truth and learn to ask for help.

I really like this series and I think Jessica McEvoy breathes life to the characters and the story. Things seem to be going so well for the Soul Searchers and Mac. But this is going to change quickly. A séance brings a new and powerful spirit to Mac’s attention, and it seems he likes to follow her around. He also gets her mixed up with a cursed object that seems to be breaking up her life.

I enjoyed how things are going to Mac, but I did get frustrated by her naivety. I understand she wants to think the best of people, but it almost gets her killed. I still say Striker is my favorite character, but I have a soft spot for torties. Thank goodness she is there to guide Mac to what is under her nose.

I’m kind of torn on the ending. I understand how this is going to progress, but I worry about how this is going to work out in the next book. I guess I just need to read it to see.

If you are looking for a good, cozy, paranormal mystery you need to check this series out. Although you could start with this book, I would recommend starting at the Donn’s Hill so you don’t miss anything.

I received a complimentary copy of this book. I voluntarily chose to listen to and post an honest review.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Paranormals and Murder

My two favorite things in one story - a murder mystery and paranormal investigation. When a paranormal investigator tries to contact one spirit, she encounters another, this leading to murder. There are no ghosts jumping out screaming "boo", just actions that appear normal, sort of. Greed coupled with misdirection keep this story moving. I received this audiobook at no cost from Audiobookworm for my honest review.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Donn's Shadow

This is the second book in this series.I loved it as much as the first!A psychic and her familiar,Striker the cat,are swept into another mystical murder.When a pshchic debunker comes to town to debunk the show,Kit starts acting crazy and people end up dead. Jessica McEvoy was te perfect narrator.I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.' 

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Love, love, love

It's rare for me to find a sequel that rivals with the original, but this one does it. The only thing wrong with it is that it ends. The pacing is good, the story is intriguing, and the characters are fabulous. Jessica, as always, delivers a fabulous vocal performance - getting into characters with ease. Definitely worth your time!

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Donn's Shadow

Donn's Shadow continues Caryn Larrinaga’s The Soul Searchers Mysteries. I really enjoyed the first book in the series, Donn's Hill, and this one does not disappoint. It was great catching up with Mackenzie and seeing what would be happening next with her. I had the pleasure to listening to the audio version of this book. Once again, Jessica McEvoy, is the narrator and does a fantastic job bringing Mackenzie’s story to life. Great entertainment.

I am giving Donn’s Shadow four and a half stars. I am hoping there will be a third book releasing from The Soul Searchers Mysteries in the future.

I received this book from the publisher. This review is 100% my own honest opinion.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

A Tremendous Follow Up and Flawless Performance

Welcome back to Donn’s Hill, where things go bump in the night (or in the daytime), and the Soul Searchers can’t wait to get their cameras ready. We’re in Book 2, DONN’S SHADOW, by author Caryn Larrinaga, and our intrepid hero Mackenzie Claire is settling in, both as one of the newer residents of Donn’s Hill and in her role as a resident psychic. As the second leg of her journey begins, Mac finds herself plagued by guilt: a recent episode of her show has inadvertently encouraged sojourns into the paranormal by untrained and reckless kids, leading to an incident where one was nearly killed and is still recovering.

Also, there’s Raziel, a magician and self-styled “debunker” of the fraudulent who prey on the grieving—and who comes to town convinced the Soul Searchers are only in it for the money. It’s his mission to take them down, and he’s managed to wheedle his way into their next filming. Things could not possibly get worse.

That’s when the dead body shows up. And Mackenzie is the one who found it. And the cops think she may be responsible.

And—we’re off! To say any more would be a crime. Ms. Larrinaga weaves a tale here not only rich in story, with constant twists and unexpected turns, but also deeply textured in flawed characters the reader will fall for, settings that breathe (and hiss, and scream), side-conflicts that immediately engage… oh, and there’s a cat. Did I mention the cat? Her name’s Striker. Don’t make her mad.

These characters and conflicts are all vividly rendered by the incomparable Jessica McEvoy, who simply breathes life into everything she reads, every performance she conjures. It’s not only the accents and the emotional swings, the genuineness of her own feeling while conjuring the written word to audio. She has that perfect storyteller voice. It guides and invites. She captures and recreates the intended mood of every moment, never overdoing it, hitting every note.

You could listen to this book without going to the first—but I definitely recommend them both. Lean back, brew a little coffee or tea, have the fire going if it’s cold inside, and let both the living and the dead of Donn’s Hill into your head. Spoiler, though—looks nice from the outside, but it can get dark in there.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Spookier than ever

As before, totally absorbing and cunningly mysterious. This time, the author introduced a touch of horror, which made me wary since I'm no horror fan usually. Luckily, this was done in such a way that the story was intriguing enough to keep my attention, and the horror elements didn't overwhelm the mystery rather the tension ratcheted up several notches.

When the team set up ready to film at the lakeside after a spirit had previously harmed an innocent adventurer, they are rudely interrupted by the one man Mac had taken an instant dislike to. Raziel, a famous psychic debunker, arrived in Donn's Hill determined to out those he considered frauds. Such was his determination that he had Mac and the team on his radar too. So, when he was found murdered, Mac's name was quickly added to the suspect list. And, clearing her name proved more difficult than she expected.

The characters were well defined, and Mac's past was developed further with some letters from her mom to Gabriela (a character from book one now awaiting trial for murder / manslaughter). Continuity from book one means reading or listening the first in the series is advised, as this is a series in every sense of the word but especially with character development. As before, Striker outclassed the human contingency, and some new characters cropped up with interesting businesses ...well, Donn's Hill is not the place for your regular entrepreneur ;)

The mystery was very well written, and the ending was another winner. This author knows how to finish a story with a flourish. Another great paranormal mystery, with superb narration. I really hope there'll be another in the series.