Waking the Dead follows Let the Dead Sleep. (I guess they’ve slept long enough!) But the book is the second in the Cafferty and Quinn series. The seed for this story came from a fantastic show on one of the educational channels about the “year without a summer.”
To explain that quickly, there was once what they called a “mini” ice age and the show I saw related many historical events to the weather. In fact, we might have the United States of America because of the cold that descended for several hundred years (some say between 1350 and 1850 while others say it didn’t really begin until about 1550!) At any rate, no one expected Washington to cross a river when it was so flipping cold, but he did, and saved his army—and we went on to be the USA!
But, in the midst of all this, there was a massive volcanic eruption at Mount Tambora. The ash covered the globe. And, combined with the cold, created the “year without a summer.”
Lord Byron, Shelley, and Mary Godwin (later Mary Shelley!) were on the continent; Lord Byron was at Villa Diodati with his doctor/writer friend Polidori. They couldn’t engage in the outdoor activities they might have enjoyed because it was always dark and it was so cold that no one wanted to go out.
Thus, a great work was born—Frankenstein; or, the Modern Prometheus.
I absolutely loved the concept that weather could bring about horrible events that also created things that were, in a way, wonders in the world. (The Irish have peopled most of the world because the weather brought about the great potato famine that sent them seeking better lives in 1849.)
Danni Cafferty and Michael Quinn collect objects that create havoc. Can objects actually be evil?
In my story, Mary and her group of friends visit an artist and engage him in their bet regarding creation during the terrible cold summer. But, Hubert is an artist; they will write, and he will paint.
And years and years later, in modern day New Orleans, that painting will make an appearance . . . .
The death toll will mount up, and they’ll have to discover the painting.
I hope you enjoy Waking the Dead!
I remember reading about that summer that never was. How clever of you, Heather Graham, to weave your plot around that event. Sounds like a great read.
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