Dead Is a Killer Tune (Dead Is Series #7)

( 18 )

Overview

High school freshman Jessica Walsh is a Virago—a woman warrior who must protect her hometown from danger. And in Nightshade, California, trouble is always lurking. At the town’s Battle of the Bands, Jess’s boyfriend, Dominic, and his band, Side Effects May Vary, are up against Hamlin, a band so popular, their fans follow them everywhere. Soon, the competing musicians are doing risky, illegal, and even fatal things—and claiming that they heard strange music that compelled them to do ...

See more details below
Paperback
$6.25
BN.com price
(Save 21%)$7.99 List Price

Pick Up In Store

Reserve and pick up in 60 minutes at your local store

Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (47) from $1.99   
  • New (16) from $1.99   
  • Used (31) from $1.99   
Dead Is a Killer Tune (Dead Is Series #7)

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK
  • NOOK HD/HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$6.99
BN.com price
(Save 12%)$7.99 List Price
Note: Visit our Teens Store.

Overview

High school freshman Jessica Walsh is a Virago—a woman warrior who must protect her hometown from danger. And in Nightshade, California, trouble is always lurking. At the town’s Battle of the Bands, Jess’s boyfriend, Dominic, and his band, Side Effects May Vary, are up against Hamlin, a band so popular, their fans follow them everywhere. Soon, the competing musicians are doing risky, illegal, and even fatal things—and claiming that they heard strange music that compelled them to do it. Can Jess and her friends track down the tuneful tyrant before it’s too late?

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Praise for the Dead Is series

"[Perez] delivers a wise-cracking, boy-lusting, determined sleuth of a high school protagonist . . . this quick, lighter-than-air spoof of the undead, cheerleaders and popularity is pure pleasure."—Publishers Weekly

"A fun ride from start to finish. Perez's smart and sassy style soars."—Mary E. Pearson, author of the Jenna Fox Chronicles

"[A] quick, lively romp. . . . Teens looking for a breezy read will find plenty to like here."—Booklist

"This super supernatural murder mystery is sassy, romantic, and spooky-fun!"—Cynthia Leitich Smith, author of Tantalize

"Light romance and a paranormal plot are more tongue-in-cheek than scary, making this series a good introduction to the genre for younger readers."—Booklist

"Breezy style and comic-book plot. . . . Fun."—Kirkus

From the Publisher
"A solid continuation with an ending that promises further growth in characters and overarching storylines."—Kirkus
Children's Literature - Danielle Williams
In a town where supernatural catastrophes are a monthly occurrence, Jessica and her fellow viragos are tasked with ensuring the safety of Nightshade. When the month long festival of the "Battle of the Bands" begins to heat up, strange things start happening to the leaders of the different bands. Jessica and the other viragos begin a discreet investigation and uncover a plot to promote a lackluster band using magical instruments, including a flute used by the Pied Piper of Hamlin. Revolving around the Battle of the Bands contest, the author weaves an intriguing tale that is reminiscent of the Pied Piper fairy tale with interesting twists and turns adding depth and mystery that will appeal to any teenager with an interest in music and fantasy tales. The second book in the "Dead is..." series, the text can be read alone, but would make more sense if the prequel, Dead is the New Black, is read first. Reviewer: Danielle Williams
VOYA - Lauri J. Vaughan
In the seventh Dead Is title, trouble crops up in the mysterious behavior surrounding the town of Nightshade's Battle of the Bands. This is no normal town, nor battle. Neither is the narrator, Jessica Walsh, a virago charged with protecting her fellow citizens, paranormal and otherwise, from evil that lurks in Nightshade. In this case, Perez borrows from the haunting tale of The Pied Piper of Hamlin to construct her mystery, complete with a missing flute, the musically hypnotized, and strange goings-on. Like the other titles in the series, Dead is a Killer Tune is almost pure dialog. Hence, Killer Tune is a very quick, but not especially deep, reading experience— a combination which makes it perfect brain candy for a heavy-duty reader, solid mystery for the reluctant reader, or a safe choice for the precocious younger reader. Perez puts enough meat on the bones of her tale to lure in all types. Since the series relies on familiar characters and settings, newcomers to the series can pick it up anywhere, rather than read titles in any special order—a nice feature for both reader and reading evangelist trying to hook up a lapsed reader into a light but rewarding experience. Reviewer: Lauri J. Vaughan
Kirkus Reviews
A Battle of the Bands brings a magical music menace to Nightshade, and Jessica and her friends must stop it. Jessica's romance with Dominic hasn't exactly progressed smoothly since Dead Is a Battlefield (2012). Everyone swears he's still head over heels for her, and she definitely is still into him, but Dominic's reserved treatment leaves Jessica baffled and boyfriendless. While Jessica and friends peruse a music collector's estate sale, a mysterious thief absconds with a not-for-sale flute rumored to have belonged to the Pied Piper of Hamelin. The peppy prose pushes on to the main show, Nightshade's first Battle of the Bands. Dominic's band, Side Effects May Vary, finds competition in an out-of-town act followed by a large entourage of obsessed fans--Hamlin, fronted by Brett Piper. When the most competitive bands start losing members to recklessness and bizarre accidents, Jessica must not only get to the bottom of the mystery, but also step into the spotlight as a musician herself. The guest judges act as additional suspects, partially countering predictability in the mystery. With Jessica and Dominic back in a will-they-won't-they holding pattern, female friendships are free to develop. A solid continuation with an ending that promises further growth in characters and overarching storylines. (Paranormal suspense. 10-16)
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780547608341
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Publication date: 9/4/2012
  • Series: Dead Is Series , #7
  • Pages: 204
  • Sales rank: 281,834
  • Age range: 12 - 17 Years
  • Lexile: HL560L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 4.90 (w) x 7.00 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Marlene Perez is the author of eight books in the Dead Is Series, including Dead Is The New Black, an ALA Quick Pick for Reluctant Young Adult Readers. She lives in Orange County, California. Visit her website at www.marleneperez.com .

Read More Show Less

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

The bad thing about being a virago wasn’t the mysterious whirling tattoo, my hard-as-nails trainer Flo, or even that I regularly put my life in danger to keep Nightshade safe.
   All of those things I could handle, but what I couldn’t handle was arguing with my parents for the thousandth time about why I couldn’t watch my little sisters.
   My best friend, Eva, had no sympathy. "Why not tell them the truth?" she asked when I called her to complain about their unreasonable attitudes.
   "You have met my parents, right?" I responded. I couldn’t think of two people less likely to believe that werewolves, vampires, and witches lived in Nightshade, or that it was my sworn duty to protect them. Or fight them. It depended upon the day of the week.
   A few years ago, my big brother Sean went all furry and my parents didn’t even notice.
   My mom didn’t even blink when Sean started shoveling two-pound slabs of rare meat down his gullet for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
   She just mumbled something about growing boys and then asked me to do the laundry.
   Eva had been talking, but I’d missed half of it, probably because I was still thinking about my parents. Or maybe because her pet raven, Poe, was croaking "Nevermore!" in the background.
   "Say that last part again," I said.
   "I knew mentioning Dominic would get your attention," she replied.
   I didn’t even bother to deny it. "What about him?"
   "I asked if you and Dominic wanted to go out with Evan and me this weekend. There’s a VP triple feature."
   VP stood for Vincent Price. Eva was a serious horror movie fan.
   "I’ll ask," I said.
   "Your parents or your boyfriend?"
   "He’s not my boyfriend," I insisted. Dominic Gray was the lead singer of Side Effects May Vary—all six foot three, blond, blue eyes, and high cheekbones of him.
   We’d gone out a few times, but calling him my boyfriend was definitely premature. Especially since I had the distinct impression he’d been avoiding me lately.
   Eva lost interest in the subject of my pathetic love life and hung up a few minutes later.
   I stayed by the phone and brooded. Dominic and I had grown closer since we had saved Eva from becoming a brain-munching zombie, but I still sensed some reserve in him.
   Maybe it was because I was high-risk as a potential girlfriend. As a virago—a woman warrior—I got hit a lot, and sometimes nasty things wanted to eat me. I’d had a run-in with a hungry chupacabra a few months ago, but it had been quiet in Nightshade since then. Almost too quiet.
   When my parents came home and let me off the hook, I headed for the library. I had a new assignment from my guitar teacher. My favorite librarian, Ms. Johns, was working at the reference desk.
   "Jessica, I haven’t seen you around lately," she greeted me. Ms. Johns had a mass of curly brown hair and a smile that practically made you smile back.
   "Hi, Ms. Johns. I was hoping you could help me. Does the library have any sheet music? My guitar teacher wants me to learn a new song and she’s letting me choose it."
   She pointed me in the right direction, and I spent time thumbing through the selections. Nothing seemed right, though. I hated to part with my precious allowance money, but it looked like I might have to.
   Ms. Johns came up as I was leaving. "No luck?" she asked.
   "Not really," I said. "I’m looking for something really different."
   "I know of an estate sale on Saturday," she said. "Mr. Lindquist played several instruments for years, but he’s moving to Florida and is selling almost everything. Maybe you can find something there." She wrote down the address on a piece of paper and handed it to me.
   "Thanks for the tip," I said. "See you later."
   I liked the idea of performing something unusual, maybe even something my teacher, Ms. Minerva, had never heard before.

Saturday morning, it was foggy and rainy, which didn’t make Eva happy.
   "Remind me why we had to get up at the crack of dawn?" Eva complained as my mom dropped us off at the estate sale.
   I gestured to the dozens of cars already parked in the street in front of the house. "This is why," I told her. "Mr. Lindquist is a serious collector. Musicians from all over California are coming to this sale."
   As if to prove my point, a pasty-looking guy in leather pants and a vest without a shirt stepped out of a black town car. He groaned and fumbled for his sunglasses.
   I nudged Eva. "He’s clearly not used to getting up this early either."
   The house was a typical-looking tract home on the outside, with a two-car garage, beige paint, and a manicured lawn. Music notes had been painted on the front door and one of the hedges was in the shape of a saxophone.
   A baby grand piano stood in a position of honor in the living room, near a big bay window. Teddie Myles, the owner of the all-ages club the Black Opal, sat at the piano and touched the keys softly. Today, the purple highlights in her hair had been replaced with hot pink and lime green streaks.
   On the opposite wall, above a leather couch, hung three guitars. Three amazing guitars. I went to get a closer look.
   "Dominic would love this!" I exclaimed, pointing to a Rickenbacker guitar.
   "What would I love?" a familiar voice asked.
   I whirled around. "I didn’t know you were coming."
   "Neither did I, until about an hour ago," he replied. "Aunt Katrina wanted to check it out." Dominic and his aunt were both in the band Side Effects May Vary.
   Eva said, "I’m going to look for"—long pause while she figured out what to say—"something over there."
   After she left, Dominic and I pretended to admire the guitars.
   "I called you," I finally said, "about that triple feature tonight."
   "I’ve been meaning to call you back," he said. Another long pause.
   "It’s okay," I said, even though it wasn’t. "I already told Eva no."
   "Jessica, I wanted to talk to you about something."
   "You have a strange way of showing it."
   Harmony and Selena approached before Dominic could tell me whatever it was he wanted to say. Noel and Connor were trailing behind them. The guys were best friends, and I was pretty sure Noel and Harmony were dating. Connor and I had gone out a couple of times, but I broke things off and he’d avoided me ever since.
   That apparently hadn’t changed because he took one look at me and nudged Noel. "Let’s check out the albums in the next room."
   "What are you two talking about so intently?" Selena asked.
   "Nothing," Dominic said.
   "This guitar," I added. I pointed to the purple Fender Stratocaster on the wall.
   "Are you going to buy it, Jessica?" Selena asked. "Because if not, it would go perfectly with this outfit I just bought."
   Selena didn’t even play guitar. She was just being petty. She probably would buy it, just because she knew I wanted it.
   I glanced at the price tag and nearly gasped out loud. "It’s out of my price range," I said, trying to sound cheerful about it. "Excuse me, I think I’ll go look for some sheet music." I told myself it wasn’t practical anyway. I usually played acoustic guitar, although I had played electric guitar a few times. Ms. Minerva expected us to be well-rounded musically.
   I didn’t look back at Dominic. He knew where to find me if he really wanted to talk to me.
   I found Eva in a room lined with bookcases, full of books, magazines, and even old albums. There were three shelves crammed with nothing but sheet music. I pulled out a stack of music to examine.
   A hand-carved flute sat on a stand in the corner.
   "Jessica, isn’t this cool?" she asked. She pointed to the flute.
   "It’s beautiful." I picked it up carefully to look for a price tag, but there wasn’t one.
   "That’s not for sale." A small man stepped out of the shadows, leaning on a cane.
   I put the flute back on the stand slowly. "I’ve never seen anything like it," I replied.
   "It’s made of boxwood with an ivory inlay," he said. "I’m Mr. Lindquist, the owner."
   He picked up the flute and took it over to the only chair in the room. He brought the instrument to his lips and played.
   There was silence when he finished and then Eva and I broke into spontaneous applause.
   "What’s all the noise about?" Selena asked from the doorway.
   Mr. Lindquist put the flute back in its place. "Just a little practice," he said pleasantly. "Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’d better see how the sale is going."
   After he left, I gave Selena a dirty look and then returned to the stack of sheet music. I sat down on the floor to go through it. Harmony took a spot near me and started rummaging through another stack.
   "I’m starting a band," she said importantly. "We’re calling it Magic and Moonlight. I’m going to be the lead singer, of course."
   "That’s nice," I commented mildly. Harmony’s mom was the Nightshade High chorus director, but Harmony couldn’t sing a note.
   I’d almost made my way through the entire stack when I found something intriguing. It was a handwritten song, the paper browned by age and frayed at the edges. Just as I reached for it, Harmony snatched it away.
   "Hey!" I said. "I was looking at that."
   "Finders keepers," Harmony told me. She bounced up and ran over to Selena. "Look," she said. "This will be perfect for our band."
   "Whatever," I muttered, and returned to my stack.
   Eva and I ignored them until they finally left.
   "What’s with Selena lately?" Eva asked.
   I shrugged. "She’s been hanging out with Harmony a lot, ever since she and Dominic broke up."
   "I wouldn’t exactly call it a breakup," Eva replied. "You can’t count it as a relationship if you had to use magic to get the guy to like you in the first place."
   I didn’t want to talk about Dominic anymore. Eva seemed to sense my reluctance and changed the subject. "Let’s find you some sheet music," she said.
   I found a couple of great song possibilities and put them in my to-buy stack.
   "Did you see anything else you like?" Eva asked me. She was being a good sport about following me around. Eva wasn’t a huge music person, like me—she was into horror movies and her boyfriend Evan, in that order, but Evan didn’t seem to mind. He was almost as much of a horror buff as Eva was.
   "That purple guitar," I said. "But it’s completely out of my price range. Selena probably bought it already anyway."
   "My mom says that at estate sales, price is negotiable," Eva said. "Let’s go negotiate."
   I got to my feet. "It’s worth a try."
   But when we went back to look for it, all three of the guitars were gone. "It was too expensive anyway."
   Eva gave me a knowing look. "But you still wanted it."
   I nodded. "More than you know." We spent a few more minutes wandering around, but I didn’t find anything else I wanted and could afford. Maybe babysitting my little sisters wasn’t such a bad idea after all. It definitely paid better than being a virago.
   "Did you find anything?" I asked Eva.
   "Some cool seventies band posters," she said. "I thought I might use them in my horror film." Eva had been talking about filming her own horror movie, and her closet was filled with all sorts of props.
   We were standing in line to pay when Selena and Harmony left with Harmony’s mom. They carried a couple of huge packages. One was shaped like a guitar.
   "They got the sheet music and a guitar," I pointed out to Eva.
   "But not the talent," Eva replied. Her dimples flashed as she giggled.
   We heard gasps behind us and turned around to see Mr. Lindquist staggering, clutching his head. "My priceless flute has been stolen. Don’t let anybody leave!"
   His face was pasty and gray. I grabbed a folding chair and led him to it. "Somebody get him some water."
   He put his face in his hands. "Gone," he moaned. "It’s gone."
   "What happened?" I asked.
   "I heard the most beautiful music," he said dreamily. "A guitar, I think. And then I must have fallen asleep. When I woke up, the flute was gone."
   The police arrived and Chief Wells started barking orders. The chief was new in town. She’d been hired to replace Chief Mendez, even though everyone knew it couldn’t be done. At least not in the way that counted.
   Eva nudged me and whispered, "Didn’t you sense danger? Your swirly tattoo?"
   "It’s a whirlwind," I answered, "not a burglar alarm. It only warns me of serious danger to the city of Nightshade." Every virago had a whirlwind tattoo like mine.
   The police searched the entire house and every single person at the estate sale, but they didn’t find the flute.
   "You’re free to leave," Officer Denton told us. I remembered the sheet music I still had in my hand and went to pay.
   "Poor Mr. Lindquist," I said.
   "Poor? Even without that flute, he’s worth a fortune," the cashier told me. She handed me my change. "It’s a shame about that flute, though. It’s a one of a kind from Germany." She leaned in closer to make sure no one could hear her. "In fact, some people even say that it belonged to the Pied Piper of Hamelin."
   "You mean the creepy guy who lured all those kids away with music? No way. That’s just a myth."
   "I’m serious," she replied.
   "Mr. Lindquist played the flute today," I said. "And not a thing happened to us."
   She shrugged. "I’m only telling you what I heard."
   On the way home, Eva and I talked about the theft and the cashier’s strange comment.
   "I don’t believe it for a minute," I said. "She was just trying to scare us."
   "I don’t know," Eva said. "This is Nightshade."
   She had a point.

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 18 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(14)

4 Star

(4)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing all of 18 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 16, 2013

    Omg

    OMG THESES BOOKS R SOOOOOOO AMAZING! I'm dying to read more!!! I love the plots and characters! There is also sooo much humor! These books r a MUST buy!!!!

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 2, 2013

    Oh My Word

    This series is amazing!! So excited for Daisy and Ryan.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 31, 2012

    Pretty Good

    Good book the plot was awesome

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 4, 2012

    Great

    Good series

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 15, 2013

    Rcrc

    Love it so much

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 1, 2013

    Ashley

    I always loved the dead is series and loved that marlene perez was continuing it even with different characters! But I'm also happy they mention the old characters once in a while! It seems kinda ridicolous but I hope the series never ends!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 25, 2013

    Awesome

    Way better book than the last, getting to know jessica more and cant wait for next book

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 14, 2013

    AMAZING!!!!!!!!!!!

    Love these books! Cant wait for the next!!!!!!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 26, 2013

    Good!!!!

    Love the series, love the author, the setting, etc. I could go on and on. Ahmazing!!! Sad that we are no longer following daisy :( its weird hearing jessica talk about daisy and ryan and her family from her point of view, honestly i dont like it but besides that i looooooove it!!!! Highly recomend the whole series start at #1!!!!!

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 28, 2012

    OMG!!!!

    I want to read this book sooo bad. Also it was published on my birthday<3

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted March 16, 2013

    Amazing

    Amazing

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 30, 2013

    Kk

    Love al lthese books

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 5, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted October 14, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 7, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 9, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted September 18, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted March 10, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 18 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)