Friday, October 16, 2015

Book Review and Giveaway - Death on the Prairie by Kathleen Ernst

Death on the Prairie
(A Chloe Ellefson Mystery)

6th in Series
Cozy Mystery
Paperback: 360 pages
Publisher: Midnight Ink (October 8, 2015)
ISBN-13: 978-0738744704
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Synopsis:
Chloe Ellefson and her sister, Kari, have long dreamed of visiting each historic site dedicated to Laura Ingalls Wilder. When Chloe takes custody of a quilt once owned by the beloved author, the sisters set out on the trip of a lifetime, hoping to prove that Wilder stitched it herself.
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.

My Review
From the moment I first heard about Death on the Prairie, I was eager to read this book.  I am a lifelong Laura Ingalls Wilder fan - primarily the books, although I did enjoy the tv series as well.  (I know the tv series took liberties, but I still enjoyed it, primarily because of the warm characterization of the Ingalls family.)  I have to admit that I chuckled at the conversation in a book that included the line "Are you a book person, a TV person, or a truther?"  One of my dreams is to visit all the Laura sites, so it was a joy to read a cozy mystery that involved  Laura Ingalls Wilder history and the sites associated with her life. 

I really liked the character of Chloe, with her kind nature and fascination with Laura history.  I also enjoyed her relationship with her sister and  her boyfriend.

The mystery started with a death early in the book and it deepened as the book continued, with mysterious happenings at the various Laura sites.  It was very well written, and moved at a pace that seemed perfect for a cozy with rich historical details.

Of course, all the Laura lore was fascinating!  I loved the details about the historical sites, the quilt, and the Laura Ingalls Wilder quotes that started each chapter.  

I loved the conversation in the book about "WWLD?" ("What would Laura do?")   That has always been something I've thought about in times like ice storms, power outages, etc.   I was tickled to see a reference to others thinking the same way.

This is my first book in the Chloe Ellefson series.  I enjoyed it and picked up with the characters easily.  I did have some confusion about the time setting.  There were a lot of references to pay phones  (and no cell phones in emergencies), so I am assuming the books must be set in an earlier time. 

I have already enthusiastically recommended this book to friends who are interested in Laura Ingalls Wilder, children's literature, and history.  I am personally looking forward to reading the rest of the series as well. 
 

About The Author:
Kathleen Ernst is a former museum curator who remains passionate about history!  In addition to the Chloe Ellefson Historic Sites series, she has written many books for American Girl, including nine about the historical character she created, Caroline Abbott. Over 1.5 million copies of Kathleen’s 33 titles have been sold. The Chloe series has earned a LOVEY Award for Best Traditional Mystery, and several of her mysteries for young readers have been finalists for Edgar or Agatha awards. 

Author Links:
www.kathleenernst.com
www.sitesandstories.wordpress.com
https://www.facebook.com/kathleenernst.author

Giveaway
Win a print edition of this book.  U.S. only.  Ends 10/23 at midnight.
a Rafflecopter giveaway 
I received a copy of this book from Great Escapes Virtual Book Tours and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

39 comments:

Kim Amundsen said...

New author for me but the title alone I would love to read the book.

Sandy Klocinski said...

Against all odds, I have enjoyed all the previous books in this series about Chloe Ellefson, a curator at a Wisconsin museum of the immigrant cultures that settled the area from Northern Europe. From the moment I first heard about Death on the Prairie, I have been wanting to read this book. This sixth book in the Chole Ellefson mystery takes place on a tour following the different sites Laura Ingalls lived.

Deb said...

I've been a fan of Laura Ingalls Wilder since I was old enough to read - long before the TV show. I'm also a little bit of a "truther". I'll have to put this book on my "must read" list.

Noreen said...

Looking forward to reading! Love Laura Ingalls Wilder books, so I'll probably love this book also!

Becky Richardson said...

I would love to read this! Thanks for the chance.

minibea12 said...

Visiting a historic site dedicated to Laura Ingalls Wilder would be great fun.
nikilsend(at)outlook(dot)com

holdenj said...

I read all the Little House books over and over as a kid! And now, I'm a fan of Chloe's and can't wait to go on this adventure with her! Thanks for the chance to win!

Darlene said...

I love mystery books.

Kathleen Ernst said...

Thanks so much for hosting the review and giveaway! And thanks for the comments, everyone. Good luck, and happy reading!

Cheryl Corbitt said...

This is such an interesting series, rich in history as well as mystery. I'd love to add this latest book to the first five.

Karen B said...

This is a terrific series. Always a great story, wonderful characters and locations, and a lovely dose of history!
kpbarnett1941[at]aol.com

Kammie said...

I'll have to check this series out. Is there anything better than a book & a bath?

jnalpath said...

Looking forward to reading this book!

cheryl prince said...

I have read all of the Chloe Books and love them. Can't wait to read this one.

Sue said...

I'm an old Little House fan and I love the Chloe mysteries---so this is a perfect book for me.
suefarrell.farrell@gmail.com

Anonymous said...

This is a new Author for me, I do love Mysteries, I would love a chance to win this, thanks again. Linda May

Connie said...

I haven't had a the pleasure of reading the Chloe mysteries but I love Laura Ingalls Wilder and I am anxious to start! Thanks for this giveaway!
Connie
cps1950 (at)gmail (dot)com

cyn209 said...

a series that's on my Wish List.....
thank you for the giveaway.......

Deborah Wellenstein said...

I am not familiar with these books, but I look forward to reading them!

Barb W. said...

Thanks for the opportunity!

Kristina Anderson said...

I am looking forward to reading Death on the Prairie. It looks like it will be an enjoyable cozy mystery. Thank you for a chance to win! Doodlesink@hotmail.com

Cindy Jameson said...

I haven't been back to the Prairie since the Little House on the Prairie series ended. This will be a very fun read.

Leslie V said...

All the Chloe books have been great. I am looking forward to this one.

Gayle Keresey said...

I would love to read this book. I am a great Laura Ingalls Wilder lover.

Mary Holshouser said...

this would be a new series for me.
Would like to try this one.
thanks for the chance

Verna Gass said...

History and mystery are the best combination ever!
Almost like traveling back in time and being there.
Can't wait to read

colodreamer said...

I love a new series and finding a new author!

Sue said...

I'm anxious to read this book with the Little House tie in.

wen budro said...

This sounds like the perfect read for a long Winter night. I love the Truther reference and the Little House trivia.

Sunnie said...

This looks like a good one! Thanks for the giveaway!
sunniewoodyplus2 atmsn.com

Tracy Shafer said...

This looks like such a great book!!

tavernie said...

I would love to read this book!!! Sounds great!!

Melissa B. said...

My mom used to read the Little House books to me before bed each night. This would be perfect for me.

Shakeia Rieux said...

This sounds like a great book

Nancy said...

This is a unique premise for a mystery series. I'd like to read it!

Nancy
allibrary (at) aol (dot) com

Christy Maurer said...

This sounds so good! I loved all of the Little House on the Prairie books when I was a little...and still love them. I also loved the show :)

Danielle jones said...

Like the author I too love history. I will have to start looking for her books.

Jennifer Clay said...

This sounds like a great book! Would love to win!

Laurie Nykaza said...

I would love to read this book thanks