American Girl Publishing
Audio Version by Recorded Books

Agatha Award Nominee for Best Children’s/Young Adult Mystery
— Malice Domestic

Winner of the Flora MacDonald Award for Outstanding Contribution to Scottish Affairs
— St. Andrews Presbyterian College 

Children’s Literature Award Winner
— Council for Wisconsin Writers



Multiple award-winning Betrayal At Cross Creek is the first of Kathleen's mysteries for Americn Girl, and her eighth published book. It's written for readers age 10 and up who are interested in fiction about the American Revolutionary War—without sex, gore, or explicit violence.

Story Description

It's 1775. Elspeth Monro, newly come from Scotland, is just beginning to feel at home in North Carolina, with a new friend and a weaving apprenticeship she loves. To Elspeth, the brewing Revolution feels very far away, until someone starts to threaten her own family, trying to force them to join the rebels. When her grandfather marches off to fight with the British, Elspeth is left alone to protect her grandmother, and to figure out who is putting her family in danger!

This book includes a richly illustrated "Peak Into The Past" essay, glosseries of Scots-English and Gaelic words, and an author's note. Originally released as a 178-page book in softcover and hardcover, it is currently available as a beautifully spoken 4-hour 13-minute audiobook.

What Others Are Saying

Image of the Kirkus Reviews logo.  Kirkus Reviews
Book Review

"Complex emotions are as balanced as the light and dark threads in the overshot patterns Elspeth loves to weave, and Elspeth, trying desperately to find her own balance, is appealing and brave."
Image of the School Library Journal logo. School Library Journal
Audiobook Review

"Listeners will encounter strong characters, palpable tension, and a surprising twist at the end of the story. Davina Porter...reads with great emotion and earnestness and a lovely Scottish accent."
 Image of the Historical Novel Review logo. The Historical Novel Review
Book Review

"A complex book which does not sugarcoat the trials women and children must face when their homes are engulfed by war. It is well written and the mystery is brought to a convincing, sad conclusion."

About the Author

Bestselling author Kathleen Ernst writes award-winning mysteries and historical fiction for adults and young readers. Her work has earned numerous honors, including multiple Edgar and Agatha mystery award nominations, and an Emmy for children's educational programming.

To date readers have purchased over 1.7M printed, ebook, and audio copies of Kathleen's thirty-five published books. more>>

Related Blog Posts

Enjoy the author's insights about the story, characters, and settings.

The Stories Behind The Story

Photo of interpreter at a Scottish outdoor museum.  When I was a kid, I read lots of novels set during the American Revolution.  Every one I recall portrayed Patriots as “good” and everyone else as “bad.”  As an American, I’m enormously proud of what our foremothers and forefathers did to establish our country... more>>

Missing Home

Photo of a museum exhibit recreating the pine forests of North Carolina circa 1880. Last week I posted about a farewell to Norway found written on a barn beam. The man loved his homeplace, and clearly mourned leaving it. That reminded me of something penned by another immigrant. While researching Scottish... more>>

Fairfield House, Ontario

Link to Fairfield House, Ontario blog post Growing up in Maryland, I never gave much thought to people who were Loyalists during the American Revolution.  When I was in elementary school, I learned that Patriots were good/right, and Loyalists were bad/wrong... more>>

Available From

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You can buy signed, printed copies of this book directly from the author. Request a quote by clicking HERE.

Author's Note

I grew up on the east coast and studied colonial history in college, and always wanted to write a novel set during the American Revolution. I have Scottish roots on my mom's side, and I also wanted to write about immigrants from Scotland. Betrayal at Cross Creek let me do both.

As I learned about the challenges faced by Scottish colonists in North Carolina, I was deeply moved.

This book is one of my favorites. You can download a wonderful audio version of it, which will transport you back in time to the immigrants' smoky cabins and Céilidhs. At this time new copies of the printed version are only available directly from me. 

Book Goodies

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Moore's Creek National Battlefield Park - North Carolina

Audiobook Sample

           Link to Audio Sample of Betrayal at Cross Creek