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About Donna Ball
Donna Ball published her first book in 1982. Since that time she has written over eighty works of commercial fiction under pseudonyms that include Rebecca Flanders, Donna Carlisle, Leigh Bristol, Taylor Brady, and Donna Boyd. She is known for her work in women's fiction and suspense, as well as supernatural fantasy and adventure. Her novels have been translated into well over a dozen languages and have been published in virtually every country in the world. She has appeared on Entertainment Tonight and Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous, and has been featured in such publications as the Detroit Free Press, the Atlanta Journal Constitution, Ladies Home Journal, Good Housekeeping, and even T.V. Guide. She is the holder of the Storytelling World award, 2001, the Georgia Author of the Year Award, 2000, Romantic Times Reviewer's Choice Awards for consecutive years 1991-1996, the Georgia Romance Writer's Maggie Award, and the Lifetime Achievement Award from Romantic Times, among others.
Donna lives in the Northeast Georgia Mountains in a restored Victorian barn which was the inspiration for A YEAR ON LADYBUG FARM and AT HOME ON LADYBUG FARM. She spends her spare time hiking, painting, and enjoying canine sports with her four dogs-- two golden retrievers, a rough collie, and a border collie.
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Titles By Donna Ball
Dogleg Island Police Chief Aggie Malone has spent years searching for the identity of her birth father. Now, thanks to a home DNA test, she has a lead… but it’s taking her in a direction she never could have imagined, and desperately does not want to go. Because the evidence suggests that Aggie could be the daughter of the infamous Angelo, head of the deadly Ghost Syndicate crime empire.
Matters become more complicated when Aggie’s canine partner, Flash, discovers an abandoned child on the beach. The little girl can tell them nothing about how she got there, but she is clutching a Santa Muerte statuette—a symbol of protection in Hispanic culture, but also the notorious insignia for a drug cartel. Aggie’s husband, Deputy Sheriff Ryan Grady, becomes involved when the case intersects with his own investigation into the Ghost Syndicate, leading them all down a dark path fill with treachery and deceit in which no one is above suspicion.
Grady unearths a secret organization with sinister connections to the past that may provide the key to bringing down the Ghost Syndicate. Aggie comes closer to discovering Angelo’s true identity and, perhaps, the truth about her own parentage. But even as the final pieces of the puzzle fall into place, a plan for revenge that has been decades in the making is unfolding around them. Unless Aggie, Grady and Flash can stop it they risk losing everything they love… even Dogleg Island itself.
Don’t miss this shocking conclusion to the “Angel Trilogy”!
It's Christmas time, and for Raine Stockton and her Search and Rescue dog, Cisco, Hansonville, North Carolina is just like a Norman Rockwell painting-- except for the rash of thefts of baby Jesus figurines from nativity scenes, an abandoned box of golden retriever puppies that someone leaves beside her mailbox, and a mysterious gift from one of Cisco's a grateful admirers. Raine already has her hands full with her own misbehaving pooches, unexpected house guests, and a complicated new relationship. But when a newborn is abandoned in the manger of the town's living nativity and Raine walks in on what appears to be the scene of a murder, she has more to worry about than keeping the Christmas spirit alive.
Praise for the Raine Stockton Dog Mysteries
"An exciting, original and suspense-laden whodunit...A simply fabuloups mystery starring a likeable, dedicated heroine..."
--Midwest Book Review
“ An intriguing heroine, a twisty tale, a riveting finale, and a golden retriever to die for. [This book] will delight mystery fans and enchant dog lovers.”
“Has everything--wonderful characters, surprising twists, great dialogue. Donna Ball knows dogs, knows the Smoky Mountains, and knows how to write a page turner. I loved it.”
“Very entertaining… combines a likeable heroine and a fascinating mystery… a story of suspense with humor and tenderness.”
"There can't be too many golden retrievers in mystery fiction for my taste."
"A delightful protagonist....a well-craftered mystery"
The annual Hansonville, North Carolina Founder’s Day Festival always draws plenty of locals and tourists alike who are eager to immerse themselves in the Smoky Mountain culture and show their support for local businesses and civic organizations. For dog trainer and Humane Society volunteer Raine Stockton, it’s a perfect opportunity to raise money for the local animal shelter. But when a stranger wanders into her fund-raising booth with his young daughter and their beautiful black Lab, the peaceful country afternoon is turned into chaos. Within moments the man is arrested for murder, his child is placed in foster care, and Raine finds herself the temporary custodian of what may well be the most valuable dog in the world.
While Raine’s ex-husband, the newly appointed county investigator Buck Lawson, tries to sort out the tangled threads of a murder case that isn’t even his own, Raine discovers that the man they’ve taken into custody is the world-famous research scientist Dr. Jason Broderick and that the Labrador, Bongo, is one of an elite group of dogs Broderick has bred and trained to detect concealed micro-technology. Raine can’t believe that someone she so admires could be guilty of murder, particularly when she learns that one of his associates is her own fiancé, Miles Young. But is her faith in both men misplaced?
It turns out that Bongo has skills that go beyond even those of his fellow scent-detecting canines—skills that are worth billions of dollars to some people, and are worth killing for to others. When the unthinkable happens and an innocent life is placed in jeopardy, Raine is forced to make a terrible choice: one that will shake her to her very core and cause her to question not only herself, but everything she has ever believed.
No one knows the mountains of North Carolina like Raine Stockton and her search and rescue dog, Cisco. When they are called in to search for an elderly man who has wandered away from home it seems like a routine mission, until Raine looks through her binoculars and sees something she wasn’t supposed to see. A dead man is very much alive, a felon is walking around free, and Raine is the only person who can testify to the fact. The problem is that no one takes her claims seriously...except the person who wants her dead.
Unwillingly thrust into the midst of an unpleasant child custody battle and a hotly contested political race, Raine finds herself questioning her own judgment and uncertain who to trust. Is she suffering from PTSD, or has a nightmare from her past materialized to haunt her? The police tell her one thing, her common sense tells her another. But when murder strikes too close to home, the hypothetical question becomes all too real, and no one is above suspicion: not the man Raine loves, not the man she once married, not even Raine herself. And they all must choose how far they’re willing to go to protect the ones they love.
In this thrilling conclusion to the trilogy that includes HOME OF THE BRAVE, DOG DAYS and LAND OF THE FREE, Raine and Cisco face their biggest challenge yet, and when it is over nothing will ever be the same.
Almost two years ago the sleepy little community of Dogleg Island was the scene of one of the most brutal crimes in Florida history. The only eye witnesses were a border collie puppy and a police officer. Since that time Flash has grown from a puppy into a vital part of the Dogleg Island Police Department, and has lived happily with the two people who rescued him on that horrible night: Deputy Sheriff Ryan Grady and Police Chief Aggie Malone.
Now the trial of the century is about to begin. The defendant, accused of slaughtering his parents in their beach home, maintains his innocence. Aggie and Ryan, the top witnesses for the prosecution, are convinced he is lying. But only Flash knows the truth.
And with another murder to solve, a tangle of conflicting evidence to sort out, and a brutal storm on the way, the truth may come too late... for all of them.
"An ample murder mystery with an enthralling
protagonist... thoroughly entertaining..."
"Exceptionally entertaining and deftly crafted..."
--The Midwest Book Review
More praise for the work of Donna Ball:
“A maelstrom of suspense… gripping, intense”
“A major talent of the genre”
Former Hanover County Sheriff Buck Lawson leaves the mountains of North Carolina to take a job as the police chief of the small south Georgia town of Mercy, and soon finds himself in over his head. For one thing, his predecessor has been murdered...
Leaving behind two failed marriages and a job that almost cost him his life, all Buck wants for himself and his new family is a fresh start. But Mercy is a town with a past as dark as the Blood River that runs through it, and the crime that resulted in the death of the beloved former chief of police may have its roots in an evil that goes back generations.
Buck has inherited an unsolved homicide, a house that may well be haunted and a police department that is almost certainly corrupt. It falls to Buck to free an innocent man and bring the former police chief’s killer to justice while wading through the quagmire of incompetence and dishonesty that permeates his office. His efforts are both hampered and assisted by the benevolent despot of a mayor who runs the town like her own fiefdom and has no compunction about bending the law to suit her will. His only true ally, Buck comes to understand, is the dead man himself.
When a young college student goes missing, Buck has reason to suspect foul play that may involve one of his police officers. He must rely on his gut to point him to those he can trust. But as the evidence leads him closer to an unthinkable truth, he realizes he is retracing the footsteps of the former police chief. Will the path lead him, as it did his predecessor, to his grave?
Don’t miss this exciting first installment in the Blood River series!
Hollywood has come to the scenic Smoky Mountain community of Hanover County, and dog trainer Raine Stockton can’t resist the opportunity when her dogs are offered a chance at a role in the film. Naturally, she expects her showy golden retriever, Cisco, to win the part, but Cisco’s impetuous nature does him in, and the role goes to her twin Australian Shepherds, Mischief and Magic. For the first time in his young life, Cisco is left behind.
Film-making turns out not to be as exciting as Raine had expected, and the only upside to the long, mostly boring days is the new friend she makes on the set, a stuntwoman by the name of Dallas McKenzie. But it doesn’t take Raine long to discover that Dallas is a woman of secrets and lies, and trouble seems to follow her wherever she goes. The set is plagued by accidents and vandalism, and Dallas always seems to be at the center of everything that goes wrong. But even Raine can’t imagine how wrong things have yet to go.
Meanwhile, Raine agrees to investigate a case for her lawyer friend Sonny involving a service dog who is accused of biting a child. The case seems open and shut until Cisco, who is beginning to show some talent as a medical alert dog, sniffs out evidence that throws previous theories into disarray—and may shed some light into the mysterious happenings on the movie set. But when Cisco and Raine start to track down answers, they find murder instead.
In a world where nothing is what it seems, it’s up to Raine and Cisco to find the truth… before it’s too late.
Busy with a thriving kennel business, an annoying new neighbor, four dogs, and an estranged husband looking to reunite, Raine hardly has time for the poor dog she’s named Hero. But as she falls for him, questions surface: Why were there no groceries, luggage, or dog food in the cabin? And if Michelle was paralyzed on her right side, why was the gun in her right hand? Only Hero knows…and it’s up to Raine to find out.
"An exciting, original, and suspense-laden whodunit..."
--Midwest Book Review
As a native of the small town of Hansonville, North Carolina,and a wilderness rescue worker, Raine Stockton knows the Smoky Mountains as well as anyone could, but she gave up her Search and Rescue work after a tragic loss. Now she reluctantly returns to active duty to help find a young child who has been kidnapped and taken deep into the forest. But as Raine's young golden retriever, Cisco, picks up the trail, his enthusiasm fails to make up for his lack of experience, and their first foray into the forest results in disaster...and the discover of the kidnapper-- shot dead.
Suspecting there's more to the case than meets the eye, Raine struggles to overcome her personal demons, turns her search in new directions... and learns to trust Cisco to lead the way.
The second book in the riveting new Dogleg Island mystery series from the author of FLASH.
Still recovering from the traumatic events of the past year, newlyweds Aggie Malone, police chief of Dogleg Island, and Deputy Sheriff Ryan Grady are looking forward to a casual day trip to Wild Horse Island, a nearby nature preserve, with their precocious—and uncannily perceptive—border collie, Flash. But when Flash discovers a body in a shallow grave on the island, and Aggie and Ryan learn of an attack on the park ranger, a tangled knot of conspiracy, murder and deception begins to unfold.
Fifteen hundred miles away, an ex-con and a fifteen year old girl embark upon a crime spree that will earn them the nicknames “Bonnie and Clyde”. As they make their way inexorably south, Aggie, Grady and Flash are thrust into the middle of a murder investigation that leads to the arrest of one of their neighbors and the attempted suicide of another. When a search of the dead girl’s belongings reveals a priceless emerald bracelet and two of the island's most popular residents go missing, the puzzle becomes even more complicated. Grady and Aggie struggle to put all the pieces into place while Flash, ever obsessed with understanding the human condition, wrestles with a more painful dilemma: how do you tell the good guys from the bad guys when they are so often the same person?
"A simply fabulous mystery starring a likeable, dedicated heroine..."
--Midwest Book Review
"A delightful protagonist..."
Raine's old boyfriend Andy Fontana is back in town... and at the top of the FBI's Ten Most Wanted List. With a fortune in diamonds hidden somewhere in the wilderness, several recent acts of ecoterrorism and an unsolved murder laid at Andy's door, the feds turn to Raine Stockton, with her unsurpassed knowledge of the mountains and her reputation as a wilderness tracker, to help bring Andy to justice. The only problem is that Raine still believes Andy is innocent...
With the help of Cisco, her golden retriever,Raine must uncover the truth about the man she once loved and uncover a killer in the process.