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Mining for Justice (A Chloe Ellefson Mystery)
by Kathleen Ernst
Mining for Justice (A Chloe Ellefson Mystery)
8th in Series
Midnight Ink (October 8, 2017)
Paperback: 384 pages
E-Book ASIN: B01N7UGNZB
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 center 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.
Interview With The Author
What initially got you interested in writing?
I was fortunate to grow up in a house full of books, and have loved to read all my life. When I was about ten I figured out that if reading stories was so much fun, writing them would be even better. I wrote my first novel when I was fifteen. I got my first contract for a novel when I was thirty-five. You can do the math! I wrote primarily as a hobby for years. Once I started connecting with other writers, getting my work critiqued, and learning about the publishing industry, I started getting published.
What genres do you write in?
I write fiction for adults and young readers. I’ve also written two nonfiction books, essays, television scripts, and poetry. The universal element is history. I grew up reading historical fiction, and worked for twelve years as a curator at a large living history museum called Old World Wisconsin. The Chloe Ellefson mysteries feature a historic site curator, and each is set at a traditional or outdoor museum. Many of them feature a plotline set in the past and entwined with the contemporary mystery. I’ve also written historical fiction for kids and teens, including twenty titles for American Girl. Many of those were mysteries.
What drew you to writing these specific genres?
When I was a child my librarian-mom brought home a lot of historical fiction. My family often visited historic sites, and she’d look for books set in a location where we planned to travel, or during the period of a site we’d be touring. By the time we got to Plimoth Plantation or Colonial Williamsburg, that place was already real in my mind because of the books I’d just read. That combination of story and place and history obviously had a big impact on me!
How did you break into the field?
My first several books were novels set during the Civil War, published by a small press. It was a good way to get my foot in the door, and led to other publishing companies. Good writing is only half of the package; a writer needs to understand the publishing industry too. Joining professional organizations, such as Mystery Writers of America, Sisters in Crime, and the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators helped me a lot.
What do you want readers to take away from reading your works?
First, I hope they simply enjoy a good story with complex, believable characters and a strong sense of place. I also hope that they gain a bit of new insight into the lives of people who are long gone, and discover great museums and historic sites.
What do you find most rewarding about writing?
In my own small way, I try to honor long-gone people—especially women—who faced enormous challenges and managed to create a better life for their children. I also am humbled beyond words when I hear from readers who say my books helped them get through chemo or a loss or some other difficult stretch. If I can provide a bit of escape, that’s wonderful.
What do you find most challenging about writing?
I’m a full-time writer, and still struggle to find enough time to actually write. The business side of things take most of my time. Still, I wouldn’t trade careers for anything!
What advice would you give to people wanting to enter the field?
Write what you feel passionate about, and that energy will show on the pages. Take the time to learn your craft. Connect with other writers. Learn about various publishing options. Enjoy the process as much as the product.
What type of books do you enjoy reading?
Mysteries, historical fiction, memoir, history-related nonfiction. I belong to a book group that reads historical fiction, and that’s introduced me to some titles I would never have otherwise found.
Is there anything else besides writing you think people would find interesting about you?
To the extent possible, I’m a hands-on researcher. Many of the Chloe Ellefson mysteries feature particular ethnic groups, and I like to include traditional recipes and folk arts. I have the fun of experimenting in the kitchen, and taking classes in things like Norwegian rosemaling (decorative painting), Danish hedebo (needle lace), and Polish papercutting. My vegetable garden is filled with heirloom varieties. I’m one of those lucky people who gets to work at what they love.
What are the best ways to connect with you, or find out more about your work?
My website, www.kathleenernst.com, is loaded with features: background information about the stories and themes, photographs of key artifacts and buildings in the books, maps for those who want to visit, recipes, discussion questions, and more. I’m also active on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/kathleenernst.author/.
Kathleen Ernst is a social historian, educator, and author. Her Chloe Ellefson mysteries reflect the decade she spent as a curator at a large outdoor museum, and feature historic sites in the Upper Midwest. Library Journal says, “Ernst keeps getting better with each entry in this fascinating series.” Kathleen has also written many mysteries for young readers. Honors for her work include a LOVEY Award and Agatha and Edgar nominations. Kathleen lives and writes in Wisconsin.
Webpage – www.kathleenernst.com
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/kathleenernst.author/
Blog – https://sitesandstories.wordpress.com
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October 5 – Books,Dreams,Life – SPOTLIGHT
October 6 – A Holland Reads – REVIEW*
October 6 – Girl with Book Lungs – CHARACTER INTERVIEW
October 7 – A Blue Million Books – INTERVIEW
October 8 – Bibliophile Reviews – REVIEW
October 9 – The Power of Words – REVIEW
October 10 – View from the Birdhouse – SPOTLIGHT
October 11 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW *
October 11 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – INTERVIEW
October 12 – Island Confidential – CHARACTER INTERVIEW
October 12 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW
October 13 – Brooke Blogs – GUEST POST
October 14 – StoreyBook Reviews – GUEST POST
October 15 – Lori’s Reading Corner – GUEST POST
October 16 – Back Porchervations – REVIEW*
October 16 – Readeropolis – INTERVIEW
October 17 – Cozy Up With Kathy – CHARACTER GUEST POST
October 18 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
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