A Memory of Muskets
By Kathleen Ernst
A Chloe Ellefson Mystery #7
Midnight Ink, 2016
Curator Chloe Ellefson is happily planning to spotlight home-front challenges and German immigrants at Old World Wisconsin’s first Civil War reenactment―but her overbearing boss scorns her ideas and proposes staging a mock battle. And when a reenactor is found dead at one of the historic site’s German farms, Chloe’s boyfriend, cop Roelke McKenna, suspects murder.
The more Roelke learns about reenacting, the more he fears that a killer will join the ranks at Chloe’s special event. Then Chloe discovers a disturbing secret about Roelke’s Civil War-era ancestors. Together they struggle to solve crimes past and present . . . before Chloe loses her job and another reenactor loses his life.
A Memory of Muskets is an engrossing historical mystery that captured my attention from the very beginning and never let go. Although this is #7 in the Chloe Ellefson series, it can stand alone. The writing flows easily, the mystery is well plotted, and the living history museum of Old World Wisconsin becomes a major character. For a murder mystery, it’s very character driven, which greatly contributed to my fascination with the story.
|Old World Wisconsin|
I enjoy historical novels and I’d have to say that A Memory of Muskets is one of the most enjoyable I’ve ever read. While looking at the “why” of reenactment, modern-day Civil War reenactment is sharply contrasted with Wisconsin’s German immigrants in the 1860s as they struggled to make a life for themselves while being confronted with America’s war. Opinions differed, but in the words of one immigrant … “America is a democracy, and the land of the free. America has opened its shores to us. I will fight to defend it.”
A Memory of Muskets is a moving story rich in historical detail, and I’m eager to delve into the whole series. It’s a clean read with no graphic scenes, the only negative being that I hated the use of mild profanity throughout – so unnecessary and detracted from an otherwise excellent mystery.
I received this book free of charge from Great Escapes Tours.
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.
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