Blood On The Bayou

(A Cafferty & Quinn Novella)

by Heather Graham

From New York Times bestseller Heather Graham…

It’s winter and a chill has settled over the area near New Orleans. Finding a stream of blood, a tourist follows it to a dead man, face down in the bayou.

The man has been done in by a vicious beating, so violent that his skull has been crushed in.

It’s barely a day before a second victim is found . . . once again so badly thrashed that the water runs red. The city becomes riddled with fear.

An old family friend comes to Danni Cafferty, telling her that he’s terrified, he’s certain that he’s received a message from the Blood Bayou killer–It’s your turn to pay, blood on the bayou.

Cafferty and Quinn quickly become involved, and–as they all begin to realize that a gruesome local history is being repeated–they find themselves in a fight to save not just a friend, but, perhaps, their very own lives.

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An Exclusive Interview With Heather Graham:

I loved this latest installment of the Cafferty & Quinn Series. How did this story line come about?

Cafferty and Quinn have been around for a few years—Let the Dead Sleep, Waking the Dead, and Let the Dead Play On. I love New Orleans and can imagine right where their shop, the Cheshire Cat, would really be—down the street from Fifi Mahoney’s, my favorite wig/costume/jewelry shop/salon! A Rodrique studio is also near—Royal Street is just amazing. New Orleans is known for the odd—voodoos, vampires, history, and more. Great ghosts! It seemed the perfect setting for these characters who have discovered that evil can become imbedded in objects—at least, in the mind they become evil and therefore are. I’ve also been on some great swamp tours; the bayous and swamps are a lot like the Everglades, and the nature in them is amazing. But, nature can also truly hide many sins! For Danni and Quinn to become involved with murders in the bayou country seemed a natural!

In this story, you mentioned the old classic movie version of Swamp Thing and it brought back some great memories. What old horror flick would you love to see on the big screen again?

I love all kinds of old horror stories – I’m sure Hammer films had a big effect on my mind when I was child, great old movies with Christopher Lee and Vincent Price and other wonderful actors. The Conqueror Worm—very loosely based on a Poe poem—was a favorite. Sad, a great deal of it true, and the truth of the horror making it all the worse. Also, The Raven, Vincent Price, Peter Lorre, and more. LOL. The Swamp Thing—godawful, really!—was filmed in our swamps, and imaging how the Swamp Thing made it in that costume is really something!

You host some amazing costume parties and I’m dying to know what your favorite costume over the years has been.

I love costumes and costume events. A few of my favorite have been at our theatricals we put on in NOLA and at RT. I’ve done the Queen of Hearts, Maleficent, and a ghost queen, and, perhaps, my favorite was dressing up as Johnny Depp from Pirates of the Caribbean. Have to say, though, part of the fun is going to Fifi’s on Royal Street in the French Quarter to buy wigs.

Hm. Think I may have to dress up Danni and Quinn for an event in the future!

Where do you find inspiration for your book monsters?

Well, I’m the world’s worst coward, so monsters come easy to me. I imagine dolls and wax figures moving and what it would be like to be stuck in a dark building with creatures that came to life.

May have read a few too many Poe and Lovecraft stories as a child—and seen a few too many episodes of The Twilight Zone.

Can you give us a hint as to what you’re currently working on?

Coming this year, a straight suspense at the end of March, Flawless. A lot of fun for me as it’s based on an Irish/American family in New York who own a pub on Broadway. My mom was born in Dublin and I grew up with a lot of characters I used in the new series. Also, summer brings Haunted Destiny, Deadly Fate, and Darkest Journey, all Krewe novels, based on cruise ships—the first, a piano hostess on a Caribbean cruise encounters a serial killer, second, filming a horror movie based on a strange (and true!) situation during the Civil War brings out real victims in the midst of movie magic along a Mississippi river cruise route, and third, a killer escapes from prison and creates murder and mayhem in Alaska with the crew of a reality TV series and an Alaskan cruise entertainment group. Of course, in the last three, ghosts are around to help out!

Ok, so for 2016 I am going to be playing Mad Libs with the 1,001 Dark Nights authors for a bit of fun! Ms. Graham gave me the list of words needed and here is the final product titled “Spooky Stuff”:

American children are fascinated by stealthy stuff – like stories that scare the revenants off them or make their spirits stand on end. Scientists say this is because being frightened causes the daft gland to function and puts coffee into their blood. And everyone knows that makes kids feel green. When they are scared by a movie or a horseman, boys laugh and holler and fly. But girls cover their eyes with their gangsters and keep screaming and running. Most kids get over this by the time they are 7 years old. Then they like movies about cars singing or cops shooting giants, or, if they are girls, they like movies about a boy meeting a wolfhound and falling n love. Of course, that can be scary, too.


heather_newslettter2New York Times and USA Today best-selling author Heather Graham has always been an avid reader, from classics to sci-fi, mystery, horror, thriller, romance, and all kinds of non-fiction. She’s fairly certain that her mom’s deliciously crazy family–arriving in the US a bit before her birth from Ireland–gave her the love of storytelling. She started out in theater and commercials, but once her children began to arrive, she stayed home and gave writing a try. She’s incredibly grateful to be doing what she’s doing for a living. Heather belongs to MWA, RWA, Sisters in Crime, HWA, and ITW, and has the recipient of the RWA Lifetime Achievement Award, a Silver Bullet for charitable works, and this year, she will receive the Thriller Master title from ITW. She has over 200 novels in print, and has been published in 22 languages.

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