Linda Thomas-Sundstrom
Linda Thomas-Sundstrom

Single Titles » Barbie and the Beast

Barbie and the Beast Cover Art

"Barbie and the Beast is a wonderfully charming and light-hearted romantic adventure full of two of my favorite things...cookies and furry friends."
—Janet Evanovich, New York Times bestselling author of the Stephanie Plum novels

A Hairy Situation

Barbie Bradley was swept off her feet — literally. One moment the twenty-something was traversing Forest Lawn Cemetery in the dead of night with her best friend, the next she was thrown like a sack of potatoes over a man's shoulder. True, she and Angie had come to this odd locale for a singles party, but this wasn't quite how she'd planned to get picked up.

Hello, Dolly!

Darin Russell found "Ms. Right" at work, which was surprising because girls in the cemetery were usually a tad, in a word, stiff. Not that this one couldn't stand to loosen up. She seemed particularly sensitive about being named after the Mattel toy, and before he popped the question he had to know how she'd react to his furry little secret. You see, though he had a tuxedo and a Porsche, he had more in common with the residents of the Miami Zoo than Ken. And if things went according to plan, Barbie was going to see his animal side.

Kindle Amazon (Paperback)

Free with Kindle Unlimited

Wanna know more about Barbie B—

To what lengths might a twenty-something, single female go when confronted with raging hormones, family pressure, and a desire for a big diamond ring?

For Barbie Bradley, the answer might lie somewhere in the dark, creepy pathways of an old graveyard. Where she can finally rustle up something the airhead "doll" never had . . .

Dear visitors: I've been asked what the inspiration for the book was, and why I chose the very recognizable name of Barbie for my heroine. Easy!

I loved the doll. I still have her. And as time went by, I became saddened by the fact that Barbie never got Ken. Not really. It was always, if you recall, "Dream Wedding Barbie," and "Bridesmaid Barbie," but never "Wife Barbie." After all this time and dating, Ken was pretty boring and non-committal.

So I thought to myself, what if some poor, feisty young gal, not at all like the doll but named after her by a Boomer parent (and used to the jokes such a name would continually provide), was to take this fact to heart and wonder if she'd also be left to meander through time in single status? Bummer, right?

And then, after discussing this idea with a pal, he sent me some statistics on Barbie from a Barbie fanzine site that became an inspiration for my hero's plight, and ended up like this:

Though Barbie, as the doll we have all known and loved, has had in her short time on planet earth twenty-one dogs for pets, as well as three ponies, a horse, six cats, a parrot, a chimp, a panda, a lion cub, a giraffe, and a zebra - Barbie, in whatever incarnations Mattel has made her, has never had a . . . Werewolf.

"Werewolf" interchangeable with . . . "husband"?

Voila! My muse sang out loud and clear. My Barbie needed a real challenge, and this was it. Somebody not in the least boring. Someone with problems all his own, but who rose above them like a champ. Up popped Darin Russell, part-time fur ball.
A beautiful man, flawed, but with real potential . . .
For an adventurous woman, flawed, with real potential . . .

It was a wild romp for me after that, as a writer - following Barbie and her pal Angie toward the singles party that turns out to be in a graveyard locale, where their personalities shine, even if the sun doesn't, and they can safely whine, as only best pals can.

Describing their antics in this very light contemporary paranormal was so much fun that I wanted to work on it every day. And then, when the book was finished, I had withdrawals, and decided to make Barbie and the Beast the first book in a series of light, frivolous paranormal stories where each gal or guy gets their beastie in the end. Beasties ranging from A to Z with alliteration in the titles. I'm already half finished writing the second one, about Veronica, and then want to get to Angie, Barbie's best pal for the third. (Can't wait to tell you what Walter is).