Digging Up Secrets Uncovers a Legacy of Peril
Chloe Ellefson is excited to be learning about Wisconsin's Cornish immigrants and mining history while on temporary assignment at Pendarvis, a historic site in charming Mineral Point. But when her boyfriend, police officer Roelke McKenna, discovers long-buried human remains in the root cellar of an old Cornish cottage, Chloe reluctantly agrees to mine the historical record for answers. She soon finds herself in the middle of a heated and deadly controversy that threatens to close Pendarvis. While struggling to help the historic site, Chloe must unearth dark secrets, past and present, before a killer comes to bury her.
"Richly imagined and compelling, Mining for Justice once again highlights Kathleen Ernst's prowess as a storyteller...Ernst is a master of reconstructing the past."—Susanna Calkins, author of the Macavity-winning Lucy Campion Mysteries
Kathleen Ernst is an award-winning and bestselling author, educator, and social historian. She has published over thirty novels and two nonfiction books. Her books for young readers include the Caroline Abbott series for American Girl. Honors for her children's mysteries include Edgar and Agatha Award nominations. Kathleen worked as an Interpreter and Curator of Interpretation and Collections at Old World Wisconsin, and her time at the historic site served as inspiration for the Chloe Ellefson mysteries. The Heirloom Murders won the Anne Powers Fiction Book Award from the Council for Wisconsin Writers, and The Light Keeper's Legacy won the Lovey Award for Best Traditional Mystery from Love Is Murder. Ernst served as project director/scriptwriter for several instructional television series, one of which earned her an Emmy Award. For more information, visit her online at KathleenErnst.com.
But death strikes as the journey begins, and trouble stalks their fellow travelers. Among the "Little House" devotees are academic critics, greedy collectors, and obsessive fans. Kari is distracted by family problems, and unexpected news from Chloe's boyfriend jeopardizes her own future. As the sisters travel deeper into Wilder territory, Chloe races to discover the truth about a precious artifact—and her own heart—before a killer can strike again.
When a grisly murder takes place on the museum grounds, Chloe is further drawn into a mystery involving a rare variety of Swiss cheese, a nearly extinct heirloom flower . . . and plain, old-fashioned murderous greed.
The Heirloom Murders won the 2011 Anne Powers Fiction Prize from the Council for Wisconsin Writers.
"Chloe is an appealing character, and Ernst's depiction of work at a living museum lends authenticity and a sense of place to the involving plot."—St. Paul Pioneer Press
"Greed, passion, skill, and luck all figure in this surprise-filled outing."—Publishers Weekly
"Entertainment and edification."—Mystery Scene"Interesting, well-drawn characters and a complicated plot make this a very satisfying read." —The Mystery Reader
For curator Chloe Ellefson, a family bonding trip to Decorah, Iowa, for rosemaling classes seems like a great idea—until the drive begins. Chloe's cop friend Roelke takes her mother's talk of romantic customs good-naturedly, but it inflates Chloe's emotional distress higher with each passing mile.
After finally reaching Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum, Chloe's resolve to remain positive is squashed when she and Roelke find Petra Lekstrom's body in one of the antique immigrant trunks. Everyone is shaken by the instructor's murder, and when Mom volunteers to take over the beginners' class, Chloe is put in the hot seat of motherly criticism. As she investigates, Chloe uncovers dark family secrets that could be deadly for Mom...and even herself.
Includes photos of featured artifacts from the real Norwegian-American museum!
"Chloe's fourth...provides a little mystery, a little romance and a little more information about Norwegian folk art and tales."—Kirkus Reviews