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Recently I delivered a program about my new nonfiction book, A Settler's Year: Pioneer Life Through the Seasons, at a local senior citizens' center. The highlight for me came afterwards, when attendees shared stories about their ancestors.
Sepia photo of mother and two children.

A few days later "Mr. Ernst" and I were guests at a social club for people with Norwegian heritage. As they sang the Norwegian national anthem, I thought about how much it would mean to their immigrant ancestors to know that descendants meet in their honor.
Many of my own stories are inspired by early immigrants, who faced challenges that we can scarcely imagine. In my own small way, I hope to pay tribute to their experiences.
With that in mind, I'm excited to share the latest news!

  Next Chloe Mystery

The 7th Chloe Ellefson book, A Memory of Muskets, is now in the hands of publisher Midnight Ink, and for the first time I can share with you details of Chloe and Roelke's next adventure!

Front cover of A Memory of Muskets, the 7th Chloe Ellefson Mystery 
Curator Chloe Ellefson is happily planning to spotlight home-front challenges and German immigrants at Old World Wisconsin's first Civil War event--but her overbearing boss scorns her ideas and demands that the staff stage a mock battle.

When a dead Civil War reenactor is discovered at one of the historic site's farms, Chloe's boyfriend, cop Roelke McKenna, suspects murder.

The more he learns, the more he fears a killer will join the ranks at the event. Complications arise when she uncovers a disturbing secret about Roelke's Civil War-era ancestors.

Together they race to solve crimes past and present--before Chloe loses her job, and another reenactor loses his life.

After focusing on Chloe's backstory for six books, it has been great fun to delve into Roelke's heritage. Readers who enjoy historical plot threads will find an intriguing one in this book, focusing on the challenges one of his ancestors faces coming from Germany to Wisconsin just as our Civil War begins.

A Memory of Muskets is now available for pre-order from your favorite bookseller. (Did you know that independent bookstores are happy to take pre-orders?) The book will be released this October as a trade paperback and in multiple eBook formats.

  Laura Ingalls Wilder

Book cover of Death on the Prairie, the sixth Chloe Ellefson Historic Sites mystery by bestselling author Kathleen Ernst, from Midnight Ink.  
I've just finished writing a seven-part blog tour of the Laura Ingalls Wilder homesites featured in the 6th Chloe mystery, Death on the Prairie. This virtual tour offers inspiration for armchair travelers and summer trip planners! Read the Laura Land Tour posts (and more) by clicking HERE.

And on March 9th I'm starting an online book discussion about the Little House series on my Sites and Stories blog. Laura fans are invited to revisit Little House in the Big Woods and join the conversation! 
  Writing Workshops

People often tell me they want to write about their family or community history, but don't know where to start. I'm offering two workshops designed to help solve that problem.
Writing Your Family Stories, Your Way is scheduled for February 29th, from 1 to 4:00 pm, at the Sister Bay-Liberty Grove Public Library in Door County, WI.
is set to take place from March 11th through the 13th at Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum in Decorah, IA.
Details about my other scheduled programs and events can be found on my Calendar. I'd love to see you at any of them!

  Current Projects

Sophie the Super Muse helps bestselling author Kathleen Ernst edit her manuscript.
I'm grateful to everyone who has asked if any books for young readers are on the horizon. Yes! I'm currently hard at work on a new book for American Girl. While it's all super secret, I can tell you it's scheduled for release in early 2017. Stay tuned!

In addition to the American Girl story, I've begun working on what will become Chloe #8 (!) for release in fall of next year.

  Winter Destinations

If you're looking for great places to visit in the Upper Midwest, I recommend you check out these two. The Mill City Museum in Minneapolis, MN is featured in Chloe #5 Tradition of Deceit. And the Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum in charming  Decorah, IA is the setting for Chloe #4, Heritage of Darkness. Both are open year-round and well worth a visit.

Warm regards,

P.S. -- There is a Gratitude Giveaway coming in early March! Details will be posted on my blog and Facebook Author page

Chloe Ellefson          Non-Fiction           Young Readers
KE PR Shot Blue Blouse 2011 150 pixels wide
Bestselling author Kathleen Ernst writes award-winning mysteries, and historical fiction and non-fiction for adults and young readers.
Over the years her work has earned numerous honors, including an Emmy, a LOVEY, and Edgar and Agatha mystery award nominations.

To date, 1.6 million printed, electronic, and audio copies of her 33 published books have been sold. For more about Kathleen, click
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This email Copyright 2016 by Kathleen Ernst, LLC.