After a few years as a police officer in Chicago, Michael Keane has no trouble relaxing into the far less stressful job of deputy sheriff in his small hometown. After all, nothing ever happens in Hidden Springs, Kentucky. Nothing, that is, until a dead body is discovered on the courthouse steps. Everyone in town is a little uneasy. Still, no one is terribly worried--after all the man was a stranger--until one of their own is murdered right on Main Street.
As Michael works to solve the case it seems that every nosy resident in town has a theory. When the sheriff insists Michael check out one of these harebrained theories, his surprising discovery sends him on a bewildering search for a mysterious killer that has him questioning everything he has ever believed about life in Hidden Springs.
Bringing with her a knack for creating settings you want to visit and an uncanny ability to bring characters to life, A. H. Gabhart pens a whodunit that will keep readers guessing.
My review: A.H. Gabhart is Ann Gabhart. I have read one book by her which was a Christmas novel about the Shakers. To my knowledge, she has never written suspense, which might be the reason she used her initials for this first time suspense novel.
Her debut suspense/mystery novel is one she can be proud of. The novel is somewhat of a "cozy" mystery, if murders can be cozy..... but at least the setting and people fall into that description. Hidden Springs is a small town where not much exciting ever happens, and life is predictable. It is one of those towns that make you wish you lived there. It is the perfect setting for this series of mysteries, and the author came up with a great cast of characters that fit in the story and town just perfectly.
The main character, a young deputy sheriff Michael Keane is a very likable character, made all the more likable once his back story is given. He is the one who the main responsibility of solving the crimes falls to, and Gabhart does an excellent job of describing his and the other lawmen's detecting and crime solving.
This is a "whodunit" type of book. I had my suspicions partway through the book which turned out to be correct, but I still enjoyed the reading journey until it was revealed for sure and finding the why's.
Although this isn't a fast paced suspense/mystery novel, it is an exciting and interesting read that I didn't put down until I finished it, except for breaks to eat, etc. It came to a great conclusion, and though I hated to see it end, I was left with that feeling of satisfaction one gets upon finishing a great book. I very much recommend this one. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and am looking forward to the next book in the series.
About the author:
A. H. Gabhart is Ann H. Gabhart, bestselling author of many novels, including Angel Sister, Small Town Girl, and Love Comes Home, several popular Shaker novels such as The Outsider, The Believer, and The Innocent, and The Heart of Hollyhill series. Ann grew up in a small rural town in Kentucky much like Hidden Springs, but Ann is happy to report nobody was ever murdered on her hometown's courthouse steps. Ann and her husband still live on a farm near that same little town in Kentucky. Learn more at www.annhgabhart.com.
Murder At the Courthouse is available from Revell, part of the Baker Publishing Group.
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