Dadgummit, by Maggie Toussaint: A Psychic Sleuth Stalks an Energy Vampire

dadgummitThis vamp doesn’t want your blood. It wants to suck the life force out of you.

Dadgummit ($16.95, 248 pages, ISBN: 978-1-60381-593-2), is the latest paranormal cozy mystery by Maggie Toussaint. While on vacation in the Georgia mountains, amateur sleuth and psychic Baxley Powell joins forces with a local Native American detective to stop a voracious supernatural being on a killing spree.

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5 Stars: “The author draws from myth and legend and her boundless imagination to create a wonderful story. Dadgummit keeps the reader engrossed throughout each page with surprising plot twists and the author’s unique take on the paranormal genre. Highly recommended for both fans of paranormal and for those readers who just like a great story!”  Read more….

—Gwenellen Tarbet for InD’Tale Magazine

“Dadgummit is a solid and fascinatingly eerie mystery that tingled my spine and had me sleeping with the lights on. I didn’t want to put it down! While it’s a fantastic follow-up to the author’s outstanding previous releases, the backstory is so expertly woven into this new release that the book stands on its own as an exciting, enticing and thoroughly entertaining read.”  Read more….

—Linda Morelli, My Shelf

5 Stars: “From the very first page, I was drawn in by the powerful prose, the tight sentences, the images, and the way [Toussaint] blends the consciousness of the characters with plot and setting. The characters are unique and original, and their extraordinary gifts make them even more interesting. I loved Baxley and her dreamwalking gift and how this gift plays a central role in her investigation. The plot is tight, well developed, and well paced to keep the reader turning the pages. Dadgummit is a rare story that will have readers completely engrossed in the plot and in the characters.”  Read more….

—Ruffina Oserio for Readers’ Favorite Reviews

Dadgummit is such a wild, exhilarating, and thrilling ride! I was drawn into Baxley’s world from the first chapter, and there I stayed until the very last page. I’m impressed by the complexity of the mystery [….] Dadgummit is un-put-down-able! Not that I’m complaining—I’ve been eager to read it ever since I finished Doggone It. I just love Baxley Powell and the Dreamwalker Mysteries! I can’t wait for Book #5.”  Read more….

—Jane Reads

“Maggie Toussaint has an extraordinary imagination and I can’t help but follow her with mine right into this story [….] The way the author made these other worlds come to life is really unique. The dialogue was so well written. The plot has some surprising twists and very fearful moments. This story is sure to be a hit among paranormal/supernatural fans.” Read more….

—Escape with Dollycas

“Plenty of suspense and a surprise twist.” —RT Reviews

“Boasting a wonderful cast of characters, engaging dialogue and a supernatural atmosphere, this is one of the best books in the terrific series.”

—Dru’s Book Musings

Dadgummit is the fourth book in the Dreamwalker Mystery series, featuring Dreamwalker Baxley Powell and her “gifted” family. The series began with Gone and Done It and continued with Bubba Done It and Doggone It. Critics have raved about the Dreamwalker Mystery series:

Gone and Done It: “Wildly exciting” –RT Reviews

Bubba Done It: “A walk on the paranormal side with a gritty heroine and plenty of Bubbas” —Kirkus Reviews

Bubba Done It: “Toussaint will keep you guessing right up until the end” —RT Reviews

Bubba Done It: “Replete with Southern charm and colorful characters” —Library Journal

Doggone It: “Plenty of hair-raising action as the likable, gutsy lead battles forces of evil.” —Kirkus Reviews

Amateur sleuth Baxley Powell is on vacation at Stony Creek Lake in the north Georgia mountains. Her parents, best friend, and ten-year-old daughter are camping with her. Almost immediately, a young man’s body is found beside the lake. Strangely, there’s no apparent cause of death. The local police have heard about Baxley’s skill at closing unusual cases, and at their urging she agrees to help.

Her psychic sleuthing leads the police to a halfway house. There they encounter eight comatose victims and an odd man named Jonas, who also has supernatural abilities. Baxley senses Jonas cruelly drained their life force energy. Jonas escapes, taking the sheriff as a hostage. Deputy Sam Mayes, a Native American, leads the manhunt, and he keeps Baxley close, knowing she’s the key to capturing this powerful criminal.

Baxley’s paranormal talent of dreamwalking, which she uses to traverse the veil of life, draws the unwanted attention of beings believed to be Cherokee folklore. Jonas stole a treasured artifact from them, and they want it back. They hold Baxley’s best friend and two others because they know Baxley can help them. As the clock ticks, Jonas taunts this crime-fighting duo and proves to be a wily adversary.

With the body count rising, Baxley and Mayes realize they are up against an entity who appears to be invincible. Do they have the power to subdue an energy vampire, turn the tide of evil, and save the day?

Toussaint says some elements from this story are inspired by real life. “I’ve often noticed how I felt drained after spending time with difficult people. When I mentioned this exhaustion to a friend, she said I’d been attacked by an energy vampire. I was intrigued that this was a real thing, and after researching the topic, decided to write about this taken to the extreme.”

Maggie Toussaint has published seventeen books, fourteen as Maggie Toussaint and three as Rigel Carson. She is president of the Southeast Mystery Writers of America and has a seat on the national MWA Board. She is also a member of Sisters In Crime and Low Country Sisters In Crime. Toussaint won the Silver Falchion Award for Best Cozy/Traditional mystery in 2014. Additionally, she won a National Readers Choice Award and an EPIC award for Best Romantic Suspense. She lives in coastal Georgia, where secrets, heritage, and ancient oaks cast long shadows. For more information, click here.

Keep reading for an excerpt:

“I’m Sheriff Twilla Sue Blair. You’re the psychic?” the sheriff asked in a green-apple-tart voice.

“My name’s Baxley Powell. I’m a dreamwalker.”

“You see visions of dead people?”

“Sometimes.” And sometimes I talk with them, but that isn’t the norm.

She nodded curtly. “You’re a psychic. I need your help solving a man’s murder.”

My jaw clenched. If she expected me to perform a public séance, she’d gotten the wrong message from Wayne back home. Maybe if I pointed out her error, she’d let me off the hook.

“With all due respect, I’m not a traveling sideshow, ma’am,” I said. “I’m here on vacation with my family. And for the record, I fail to understand why you couldn’t have just asked politely, instead of dragging me away from my family with no explanation.”

“Sheriff Thompson told me all about you. I understand your reservations, but I need your expertise.” Sheriff Blair’s focus flitted to the tree line behind me before she lanced me with a needle-sharp gaze. “There’s something extra about this case, something that’s in your wheelhouse.”

“I doubt that.”

“Certain elements here appear ritualistic, but there are no footprints, no obvious means of death. My second-in-command is part Cherokee. He keeps muttering about the Little People. Claims the Nunne’hi did this.”

I didn’t want to be interested, but I was. My tattoos heated a bit. An entity from the Other Side named Rose had marked me with two inked images of her namesake flower, one for every favor she’d done for me. My debt to her was an hour of my life for each tattoo, which scared the bejeebers out of me. According to Rose, she was an angel working an undercover assignment in the netherworld. I’d witnessed her black wings and her unusual powers firsthand. Since she’d tagged me as hers, I hoped like anything she was telling the truth. Unfortunately, my lie-detecting ability didn’t work on Rose, so I had no choice but to do her bidding.

I glanced around, hoping this tattooed mentor and sometime nemesis wouldn’t draw me into a dreamwalk right now. Rose had rescued my father and saved my mother’s best friend, and now I owed her two hours of my life—a fact she liked to dangle over my head.

Thinking about Rose was just borrowing trouble; instead, I focused on what the female sheriff had said. “Are the Little People and the Nunne’hi the same thing?”

“According to Deputy Mayes, they are interchangeable in Native American folklore.” Sheriff Blair’s face reddened. “When I heard you were up here, I knew you were exactly what I needed.” She paused again. “I apologize for getting you here first and asking you second. You will do it, won’t you? I’ll pay your standard consulting fee.”

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