Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Dana Donovan Discusses his novel "Resurrection"

Hi Nancy. Thanks for hosting me. Today I thought I would set aside my focus on the Detective Marcella Witch’s series to talk about a book that will forever remind me of my cat, Luke. You see, a couple of years ago, my beloved friend of eighteen years succumbed to a terminal kidney disease. In the difficult days after his passing, a bizarre idea hit me; what if I could bring him back? Born was the premise for Resurrection.

Witness Alex Payne. Alex would do anything to bring his wife back from the depths of her watery grave. But when a voodoo mambo offers her help, he soon realizes that turning back the tides of life comes not without its repercussions. Somewhere between the living and the dead, there lies a murky middle. Can he walk the tightrope between the two and bring her back, or will he lose everything including his own life trying? In this excerpt, Alex brings a special pakët of his wife’s personal affects to a voodoo mambo to use in her resurrection ceremony. Thus starts the beginning of Alex’s nightmare.


© Dana Donovan 2008, 2010

She didn’t answer, and instead palmed my chest, pushing me to one side. I stepped back and watched her prepare the kwi for the ceremony. Most of the candles she needed were already lit: the red, white and purple ones in particular. She blew out the only three yellow candles and lit the remaining four black ones. Next, she cleared a spot on the kwi to set out the items from Angela’s pakët, arranging the objects from large to small around the strangely adorned chicken bone stick figure, which took center stage. The last thing she did before turning on a music clip of Congo drums and clanging rhythm sticks was set out an earthen bowl about the size of a small kitchen wok, which she filled with shredded coconut husks, dried palm clippings and chips of common cordwood. I smiled at the hokey set up, thinking how clumsy it might appear if duplicated in some silly made for TV movie. But Mambo Ella took it very seriously. I could see it in her eyes as she prepared the kwi that something mysterious was already happening. Even as I looked around, I noticed how smoke from the candles had begun gathering over her head in lazy loops like spider silk. It followed her around the room, spiraling in a halo and collecting like storm clouds. Only then did I feel the chill of doubt blow down my back, raising the hairs on the back of my neck. I pulled my collar up and shuddered, and as I did, Mambo Ella looked over at me and smiled.

Guédé Nibo is here,” she said.

I shook my head. “Who?”

He gives voice to the dead whose spirits have not yet been reclaimed from below the waters. That is a good sign.”

Is it?”

Yes. It means that Papa Guédé has not yet found your Angela.”

That’s great,” I said, though already the seed of apprehension had begun gnawing at my will. I cleared my throat and swallowed, thinking that now might be a good time to call things off. But as I opened my mouth to speak, she flicked a light into the wok, sending the kindling ablaze in rush of air. I fell back from the heat, and by the time my eyes readjusted to the light, I saw that she had already started dropping items from Angela’s pakët to the fire, all the while chanting, dancing in circles and calling out to Guédé Nibo to guide the lost one back to this earth.

Nancy, thanks again for hosting me today, and as a special thanks for everyone who stopped by, here is a promo code for a free download of Resurrection at Smashwords.com (promo code BQ36H) expires 04/13/10

Resurrection, available in paperback at Lulu and in multiple E-formats at Smashwords

Visit DanaDonovan.com for more info on this and other books by the author.


  1. Great excerpt. Good luck with the books.
    Martha Swirzinski

  2. Dana, thanks for visiting me today. The book sounds terrific.

  3. Dana, I love how you took something so person - the death of your cat (my sympathies, btw) - and played the "what if" that led to your novel. Just proves that ideas come from anywhere.

    Thanks for the peek into your book. Best of luck with your projects.

    Great post, Nancy!

  4. What a nice way to memorialize your kitty. I lost mine, too, but she wasn't as old as yours. Best of luck with your book.

  5. Best wishes for your success. I love "What If" scenarios. Its how I wrote my book. Sorry to hear about your cat. Pets can be like family.

    Stephen Tremp

  6. Dana, I'm not even a big genre fiction fan (for reading) but that cover makes me want the whole story. Way to go!

    Carolyn Howard-Johnson
    Blogging at Writer's Digest 101 Best Websites pick www.sharingwithwriters.blogspot.com

  7. I wish you every success with your new book Dana. WAY TO GO!

  8. Great post Nancy!
    I've enjoyed reading your excerpt Dana, thanks for sharing!
    I wish you Good Luck with it!

  9. Thanks to all you folks who stopped by today. Your kind words mean a lot. And a special thanks to you, Nancy, for having me. I am forever grateful.

  10. Thanks everyone for coming. The comments were wonderful. I enjoyed them and I know Dana did.

  11. It's so interesting what motivates writers and how they get ideas. The excerpt is great Dana.

    I wish you much success with your book!

  12. I love when writers ask "What if?" This is great!

  13. The book sounds fascinating. Great lttle excerpt. I was ready to keep reading! LOL Thanks for the download code. Much appreciated.

  14. What a fantastic premise! I loved the excerpt. My sympathies about Luke -- may he rest in peace.



  15. I always like to hear how people's story ideas came to them and this is no exception. Dana, did you have to do a lot of research for your book?


  16. Helena, yes, I did a lot of research on voodoo, its origin and the important figures within the religion. Voodoo is one of a few in the world without a written a text or doctrine to guide its faithful. It is primarily handed down by word of mouth through the generations, which is why it seems so secretive. Thanks for the question.