Death of a Six-Foot Teddy Bearby Sharon Dunn
Ginger and her husband, Earl, are in for a wild ride in Calamity, Nevada, along with the other BHN ladies–college student Kindra, mother-of-four Suzanne, and sassy senior Arleta. They came to town for the Invention Expo and some outlet shopping, but
Another murder mystery for the Bargain Hunters Network–only this time, one of them is a suspect!
Ginger and her husband, Earl, are in for a wild ride in Calamity, Nevada, along with the other BHN ladies–college student Kindra, mother-of-four Suzanne, and sassy senior Arleta. They came to town for the Invention Expo and some outlet shopping, but instead they endure lost luggage, broken air conditioning, and a long line of people angry at hotel owner Dustin Clydell. With the Invention Expo and the Squirrel Lovers’ convention both in town, the Wind-Up Hotel has somehow overbooked.
Before the night is over, a man has been found dead in a teddy bear costume, the Invention Expo has been canceled, Binky the water-skiing squirrel has gone missing…and the authorities want to talk to one of the BHN ladies! What else could possibly go wrong?
Once again, the Bargain Hunters Network swings into sleuth mode to solve the murder–and this time, clear one of their own. Along the way, Ginger discovers something even better than a bargain.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
- Melanie Dobson, author of Together for Good and Going for Broke
“If you enjoy whimsy, humor, and fun characters with your mystery, Death of a Six-Foot Teddy Bear is for you! But beware! Under the laughs are buried strong spiritual truths. A delightful, thoughtful read.”
- Gayle Roper, award-winning author of Fatal Deduction
“The bargain hunter gals are at it again! Dunn’s riotous romp seamlessly tucks in truth and light and leaves us in stitches. A must-read for those who think living by faith is boring.”
- Lois Richer, author of Healing Tides
“Sharon Dunn’s uncanny sense of the hilarious, her gift for creating unusual but deeply human characters, and her ability to get them into (and out of) outrageously believable predicaments make Death of a Six-Foot Teddy Bear a read that’s just plain fun.”
- Kathy Tyers, author of Shivering World and the Firebird trilogy
“Death of a Six Foot Teddy Bear is an exquisite combination of fun characters, laugh-out-loud weirdness, and a trail of skillfully laid clues that amateur sleuths will love following. A top-notch mystery delivered in Sharon Dunn’s delightfully snappy style.”
- Virginia Smith, author of Stuck in the Middle, book one of the Sister-to-Sister Series
“As an ardent garage saler and reader, I love this series and its lovable quirky characters. Fresh, fun, and outrageous humor with a serious side. Sharon Dunn has ‘dunn’ it again!”
- Lyn Cote, author of Blessed Assurance
Read an Excerpt
Other than the fact that her fingers were on a computer keyboard, there was no real evidence that the woman behind the counter would be able to get Ginger and Kindra checked in. Tanned skin contrasted with a sequined zebra-print leotard. Blue feathers sprouted out of the top of her head. Her hair had that recently electrocuted look of a supersized bouffant.
Ginger Salinski strode toward the counter, pulling her rolling suitcase behind her. The suitcase contained twin sets, sandals, and a very crabby cat named Phoebe. Big hair and a skimpy outfit weren’t going to put her off. She was a woman on mission and time was running out.
“I don’t think the AC is working.” Kindra Hall’s face glistened like a solar panel as she turned a half circle in the lobby of the Wind-Up Hotel.
Ginger stopped short and closed her eyes, as if that could shut out yet another piece of bad news. She opened one eye. That would make it only half as bad, right?
People perched on lobby couches, wiping their faces with tissues and sopping wetness from their eyes. Across the expanse of blackand-white checkerboard floor, the bellboy, pushing a luggage rack that was shaped like a Radio Flyer wagon, stopped to unbutton his sweat-stained shirt. The brochure had said that the Wind-Up had a classic toy theme. A stream of moisture trickled down Ginger’s temple. She had been so focused on getting checked in that the tropical temperatures hadn’t affected her until now.
“I’ve seen worse.” Like inside a kiln.
“I’m sure it’s only a temporary thing.” Kindra stood on her toes and bounced.
At least the kid still had some pep and that was a good thing. Of course, the endless stream of lattes Kindra had consumed on the drive from Vegas to Calamity, Nevada, probably had something to do with her exuberance.
“They can’t charge a hundred bucks a night for a room and not have air conditioning.” Perspiration had caused Kindra’s blond hair to lie flat against her head.
Ginger winced. The last thing she needed was to be reminded of the cost of this hotel. She had never paid that much in her life. She could always find discounts and coupons, but not for the Wind-Up. She reminded herself that the best deal, at the expense of relationships, was not a good deal. They needed to be at the Wind-Up so her husband could network.
Ginger cleared her throat. “Let’s get Earl checked in so he keeps his booth at the Inventors Expo. We’ll go up to our rooms and wait for Suzanne and Arleta. At this point, I could sleep in a sauna.”
The woman with the showgirl look and poufy hair glanced up from her keyboard, batting blue eyelashes. “Yes, can I help you?” Thick stage makeup coupled with the heat gave her features a melting-wax quality.
“Are you…are you the one who checks us into the hotel?” Or maybe I have fallen down a rabbit hole.
The woman slammed a fist on her hip. “For now. I am afraid the regular help has quit. No surprise there.” Her booming voice almost overpowered her loud outfit. She leaned over the counter as though sharing a confidence, but spoke at an even higher volume. “Our illustrious owner, Dustin Clydell, has alienated yet another employee. I told him not to blame her for the AC problem. He didn’t listen to me when we were married; he doesn’t now. I don’t know why I keep hoping.” She pointed at her chest and nodded. “So who gets stuck with the admin duties? You guessed it. Good old, dependable Tiffany.”
“We’re in a little bit of a time crunch.” Kindra’s voice was apologetic, barely above a whisper. “We need to get checked in to reserve her husband’s spot at the Expo.”
Tiffany wiped her temple and a line of dark brown extended from the corner of her eye to her hairline. "Oh, sorry, honey.” She put her hands on the keyboard. “I just needed to vent. This AC mishap is only the tip of the iceberg. This place is going down like the Titanic, baby.” Tiffany stopped typing and turned. She waggled alternating fingers in the air like dueling pistols. “He just better give me the alimony he owes before this ship sinks.”
Ginger clutched her chest. Titanic metaphors were not a good choice at this point. “Please, we just need to get checked in.”
“I’m so sorry. I did it again.” Tiffany tilted her head side to side. “Yak yak yak, that’s all I do. I’m sure you folks have enough to deal with already.”
Understatement of the century.
“You don’t need to listen to me bellyache.” Tiffany placed her fingers back on the keyboard. “See, I’m being good.” She mimed tapping the keyboard with alternating fingers. “Focus, Tiffany, focus. What did you say your name was?”
“I’m Ginger Salinski. My husband, Earl, is registered for booth 29 at the Inventors Expo. Our contract said that we had to be here by three o’clock Thursday or our spot would be given to someone on a waiting list.” She pointed to the clock on the wall behind Tiffany. 2:48. “And we made it.” Took almost an extra day, but we made it.
“You sure did, sweetie.” Tiffany clicked away at the keys. “Let me just get this printed out, so you can sign it.” Ginger leaned back on her heels and stood up a little straighter. With everything that had gone wrong, at least Earl would have a shot at getting attention for his invention. Today was the first full day of the convention, so they hadn’t lost that much time.
Kindra leaned across the counter. “We reserved two rooms. One of them should be under our friend’s name, Suzanne Thomas.”
Tiffany held up a finger. “Just one moment, dear.” She bent closer to the printer, as if listening for sounds of operation. “I can only do one thing at a time. I’m not really a clerk. I just play one on TV.” She laughed at her own joke, causing the feathers on her head to shake. “Let me just get this agreement printed up for you. Dustin has been a real stickler about paperwork for the Expo. He’s got a waiting list a mile long, mostly local people who can be here in ten minutes, but a few people are waiting in other hotels. The success of the Expo is the one thing that has gone right.”
A sudden wind blew past Ginger. A rather large woman dressed entirely in lime green materialized. The woman tapped her white plastic sunglasses on the counter. “I want to report a theft. Someone has taken my diamond tennis bracelets, right out of my room no less.”
“I am sure you are mistaken.” Tiffany’s hands shook like aspen leaves. “You probably just misplaced them. This is a nice hotel–”
Ginger’s hand lurched protectively to her own costume jewelry.
“Nice, ha. My friend Gwen has misplaced”–the woman did an air-quote thing with her fingers–“her ruby ring and antique emerald and sapphire brooch last night. I think you know that.” She leaned closer. Her eyes became slits. “Aren’t you the one who took the theft report?”
Tiffany picked up a blank piece of paper and folded it over and over. “I’m…I am helping this woman right now.” Her gaze did a spasm up to the large lime green woman, then back down to her origami project. “Could you come back in just a few minutes?”
The woman exhaled, showing teeth. “I’ll be back. You can count on that.” She waddled away and disappeared into the sweating masses.
Tiffany crumpled the paper in her hand. “I’m sorry you had to hear that.” She tossed the paper toward a garbage can. “We don’t have a theft issue at the Wind-Up.” She blinked rapidly.
Ginger would bet a fistful of two-for-the-price-of-one coupons they had big theft problem.
A cacophony of clinking silverware and idle chatter spilled into the lobby as the doors to the hotel restaurant swung open. The sight of the $3.99 buffet sign cheered Ginger. Such a deal. A tall man with square shoulders sauntered through the door. His clean-shaven face, angular features, and perfectly sculpted hair reminded Ginger of a Ken doll.
A woman barely out of her teens rushed up behind him with a takeout box. She half curtsied as she handed him the leftovers. Ken doll leaned close and whispered something in her ear. The young woman laughed and fanned her neck with her hand, bending toward him flirtatiously.
The man trapped Tiffany in a laser-beam stare and ambled in her direction.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
Meet the Author
Sharon Dunn is the author of Death of a Garage Sale Newbie, book one in the Bargain Hunters Mysteries, and the Ruby Taylor mystery novels including Sassy Cinderella, which was voted Book of the Year by American Christian Fiction Writers. She earned a BA in television production and a master’s in history. Sharon lives with her husband of twenty years, three children, two cats, and lots of dust bunnies.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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Everybody has a dream. For the ladies of BHN it's a bargain at the world's biggest garage sale. For Earl it's getting one of his inventions noticed. For others it's fame, fortune, and a host of other things that can make murder seem almost and sane and reasonable. So when the teddy bear drops dead, there's a dozen reasons why someone would want him dead. Though using the squirrel as a method of homicide is...disturbing...and makes you really wonder just who could be behind this evil deed. Ginger, head of the BHN wonders that too. As she sets out to investigate the other ladies each get caught into their own stories. Has Kindra finally found love...only to lose it? Has Arleta found something even greater than that? The questions keep coming and the pursuit of answers leads the reader breathless through the second book in the Bargain Hunters Mystery series. You don't need to read the first book to know what's going on, but you'll certainly want to pick it up so that you can get to know these lovable, quirky characters better. The author, Sharon Dunn, is amazing and you'll be kept in suspense to the very last page. I highly recommend this book!
If you want to sit back and read a chapter of a book then set the book aside for days, this book is not for you. Sharon Dunn, author Death of a Garage Sale Newbie, wove a most interesting mystery. From her cast of characters to the unfolding mystery she created a sequel to her first book with the same entertainment value as its predecessor. And, even if you haven't read Death of a Garage Sale Newbie, you can jump right in enjoy the lives of the Bargain Hunter's Network(BHN) and the most unusual set of circumstances they find themselves in. Ginger has followed her husband, Earl, to Calamity, Nevada for the Inventor's Convention. In an effort to show her support of his inventions, she and her friends travel on this adventure. Of course, it helps that they will be able to attend the world's largest yard sale while there. No one expected to meet a man in a six-foot teddy bear costume who immediately bonds with Kindra, the youngest member of the BHN. When a man is found murdered at the marina, wearing the bear costume, the Inventor's Expo is canceled. Ginger finds herself tangled in the most intriguing mystery and even ends up one of the murder suspects. And, while their days spent in Calamity appear to define the city's name, they more than define Ginger and her friends. They refine them. Can you lose everything and realize you have it all? With skill and wit Sharon Dunn has created a story that is believable and lovable. You will laugh and cry, sometimes on the same page. You will be sure you have solved the mystery and when you turn the page she surprises you with something else. I highly recommend this book.
Ginger goes on a vacation and her husband is suppose to be at an Inventor's Convention. She cannot get her husband his spot for booth because he is delayed in getting there. They cannot get the rooms the Bargain Hunters group have reserved and all end up in one room. It is one problem after another from the beginning of the book to the end. Air conditioner not working, elevators would go all the way up, water skiing squirrel kidnapped and killed, cat lost, jewels stolen, people kidnapped and murder all in one. Then there is the romance between Kindra and a guy in a teddy bear suit. It is one adventure or event of mystery that just keep you reading. You don't want to stop because something new is always happening. You will be amazed to learn who committed the murder and who is actually murdered. A must read.
I've read enough mysteries that sometimes I figure out the villain, before the author exposes him/her. It's a fun challenge for me. But this time I was surprised. The squirrel lovers convention added a nice touch of comic relief. Some call it wit-lit. I recommend the book and will be reading more books by Sharon Dunn.
Question: What do you get when you mix mystery, friendship, romance, giant toys, a wacky hotel, squirrels, the World's Biggest Garage Sale and then shake it up with murder and stolen jewelry? Answer: Sharon Dunn's newest book and the second in her Bargain Hunter Mystery Series! Buckle your seatbelt and strap in for a wild and wacky ride in this fun book that grabbed me from the get-go and didn't let me off 'no matter how dizzy I got!' until the ride was over... and what a ride it was! Join Ginger and her husband Earl as they travel to Calamity, Nevada with the other Bargain Hunter gals as Earl looks for his big break at the Inventor's Expo and the ladies set out to find the best deals possible at the World's Biggest Garage Sale! Wait a second... Earl discovers a dead man in a bear suit with a celebrity squirrel in his mouth - and then it starts to get bizarre!!! This is a fun read that will keep you entertained and make you laugh, but it will also keep you guessing til the end about who did what and why and how - Sharon's writing style makes it all a joy!
Since I had enjoyed the first book in the Bargain Hunters series, I was excited to read the second installment. And with a title like that, who wouldn't be intrigued? Fans will be thrilled with this book. The mystery in this story is awesome. I had no idea who the killer was. There were twists and turns everywhere that kept me guessing. The unique characters in this story are what makes it really interesting. I loved all the little stories and side plots that were happening throughout the book. There's lots of humor that will keep you laughing. I did cringe a bit at the fate of one of the squirrels. I really liked Kindra's relationship with Xabier (very unique name) because they were really cute. Same goes for Earl and Ginger and how they had to learn to trust each other. I hope that in the next book we'll get a story featuring Suzanne as I felt she was sort of a third wheel in this book. I liked Artleta's character especially when she finally decides to become a Christian. Her question about whether something extraordinary was supposed to happen after her conversion rings true, because it always seems to happen in older Christian fiction. I thought it was a pretty funny tongue in cheek statement. There were just two minor quirks I had with this book. One was nothing much was done with the cyber stalker even after their identity was revealed. I felt that it was unsatisfying that the women did not pursue trying to figure out who the person was. They did not even seem mildly concerned when the stalker got threatening and sounding crazy. The other little thing was there wasn't much bargain talk in this story. I would have liked a bit more info about the gals' finds at the garage sale but it's understandable because the murder plot takes more precedence. Other than these two things, I really enjoyed this book. I am so looking forward to the next book in this series. If you enjoy mysteries that'll teach you how to save money, READ this book!
Loveable, quirky, but believable characters manage to get themselves into crazy and dangerous circumstances. What is most fun about this book is the unpredictability. Nothing is as it seems, or should be. The sheer number of principal characters each with a unique eccentricity is sometimes a bit confusing, but keeps the reader on his or her toes for sure. Dunn resists formula mystery in exchange for offbeat mini adventures in which her characters¿ naiveté, lack of communication with each other or just plain poor judgment land them in hilarious trouble. The author¿s wild imagination and extraordinary characters make for a super fun read. Even the expected characters in a mystery, the good cop and bad cop, are distinctively different in Teddy Bear. The fact that they are both female is in itself different, but I won¿t reveal their other idiosyncrasies. (Any dieters out there?) I suggest you read this book in as few sittings as possible so you don¿t forget the thread or lose touch with the characters. Even if you have to spend a few minutes reviewing and catching up, you will laugh, weep and be very glad you were carried away to Calamity, Las Vegas and garage sale oblivion. You may even dream about a squirrel.
I'm probably a little biased since I love a good cozy, (I think a book must include a cat in peril to qualify as a cozy.) I couldn't resist the premise of the Bargain Hunters Series, and I love characters whom I can relate to. Death of a Six-Foot Teddy Bear has it all: murder, humor, red herrings, and surprises at every turn. If you haven't read Death of a Garage Sale Newbie, the first installment in the Bargain Hunters mysteries, you'll have no trouble catching up with the characters. If you are a fan of series mysteries, you must add the Bargain Hunters books to your reading lists. I look forward to plenty more by this author.
The title intrigued me from the get-go. Then I started reading. The second in the BARGAIN HUNTER MYSTERIES, Death of a Six-Foot Teddy Bear is a welcome addition to Sharon Dunn¿s books. Ginger and the other members of the BHN (Bargain Hunter¿s Network) are headed to Calamity, NV for what¿s been dubbed the world¿s largest garage sale. Ginger¿s husband Earl is coming along to participate in an inventor¿s convention to get his dream off the ground. Within minutes of arriving at the hotel, Ginger finds their plans unraveling all around her. The book is filled with quirks from the hotel that has a retro children¿s toys theme to the characters themselves. Ginger and her cohorts are as lively as ever and surrounded by a full cast of characters. While the characters are filled with quirks, they also have a lot of heart and challenges. Ginger doesn¿t want to believe the worst of her husband, but why would he lie to the police? Earl doesn¿t understand why Ginger isn¿t supporting him as he chases his dream. Kindra is surprised to find herself in a possible relationship and wonder if she can cast aside her list of requirements before falling into a relationship. Suzanne missed her children even though she couldn¿t wait to get away from them. And Arleta is trying to live even as she fears she¿s growing too old. I could find something to relate with each of these characters about. I also enjoyed the plot -- even though it moves at the pace of a cozy mystery -- mainly because the characters made me care about what would happen to them. Bottom-line: this is an enjoyable mystery even with it's cozy-mystery pacing.
This isn't chick-lit, but it could be called wit-lit. Sharon Dunn's quirky sense of humor sets this tale on edge and spins it every which way. The reader can identify with the deep, human personalities. No shallowness there. Then the reader is horrified and tickled by the outrageous happenings around these beloved people. Comedy and mystery march hand in hand to give a superb read.
The Bargain Hunters Network is back, and what a fun read! This mystery had me laughing out loud all the way through. The author wove in plenty of red herrings, so the story wasn¿t predictable. And I never saw the plot twist at the end coming. What a surprise! The characters have loveable, believable quirks and insecurities everyone can relate to, yet laugh at. If you¿re looking for a light, enjoyable read without a lot of romance, Death of Six-Foot Teddy Bear should definitely be added to your to-be-read list.
This quirky, hilarious book kept me so completely gripped I had to read it straight through. Just when I thought Dunn couldn't beat her Ruby Taylor Mysteries or book 1 of the Bargain Hunters Mysteries, I found she could and did. Death of a Six-Foot Teddy Bear is a thoughtful and overall delightful book. It's a must read!
Calamity in Calamity...Nevada, that is! As the Bargain Hunters converge on this NV town, so do jewel thieves, and a murder--or is that murderers? Ginger, Kindra, Suzanne, & Arleta get more than they bargain for when their working vacation is sabotaged by a charismatic hotel owner, a cutie puts the moves on Kinda, and Ginger is sent down the river! Rollicking good fun from start to finish. A definite MUST READ!
The Three Horses, Montana Bargain Hunters Network (housewife Ginger Salinski, mother of four Suzanne Thames, elderly Alreta and college student Kindra Hall) are in Calamity, Nevada for the Inventors Expo. Ginger¿s spouse Earl has a booth at the show in which the couple has taken out a second mortgage to fund his entry. However, The Wind-Up Hotel is overbooked and the help has quit while the Squirrel Lover's Convention is also in town. However, someone apparently is stealing jewelry from the guests while the owner Dustin Clydell ignores the complaints especially the thefts and the AC is not working. However, the BHN members become upset when Dustin refuses to proved Earl a booth because Ginger was signing in for him apparently the hotel is overbooked so Dustin demands Earl must sign the registry and he is too late. His wife tries to fix the problem as she thinks her spouse is being unfair and ridiculous. When a six foot man wearing a teddy bear costume is murdered the BHN gang investigates feeling they gained from recent sleuthing experience back home (see DEATH OF A GARAGE SALE NEWBIE). --- This is an amusing amateur sleuth tale starring the delightful BHN ladies. The story line uses hyperbole to purposely add humor and inspiration to the mix leading to the fearsome female foursome landing in fiascos over the top of nearby Boundary Peak. Readers will not care as Ginger wonders if her belief in the Lord was wrong as nothing goes right for her and Earl, but she knows better once especially after the breath of life. --- Harriet Klausner