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Kirkus review of The Lacemakers Secret

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The Utne Hotel

  Photo of Utne Hotel sign in Utne Norway taken by bestselling author Kathleen Ernst. "Not many businesses claim a lineage dating back almost 300 years. The Utne Hotel, which can, is known as Norway’s oldest continuously-operating hotel.

In 1722 Peder Larsson Børsem was given a license to run a guesthouse in the village of Utne. The village was home to the district court, which kept travelers coming and going. A post office was established in 1826, and steamship travel in 1861. Explorers were followed by tourists.

Women have provided much of the Utne Hotel’s hospitality over the years. From 1830 until 1900, Torbjørg Johannesdotter Utne was responsible for keeping the inn running. “Mother Utne,” as she was known, became legendary for making..." more>>

Posted March 31, 2020 on the Sites And Stories blog.



180 days in Top 1%

  Partial front cover image of Mining For Justice the 8th Chloe Ellefson mystery by Kathleen Ernst from Midnight Ink Books Trade paperback sales of Chloe Ellefson mystery #8, Mining For Justice, have resulted in it now being ranked in the Top 1% of all US Print Book Sales—out of over 8 million titles tracked—for a running total of one hundred eighty days. (Data source: NPD BookScan.)

Chloe Ellefson is excited to be learning about Wisconsin's early 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 local historical records 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 stay open, Chloe must unearth dark secrets, past and present . . . before a killer comes to bury her.

Mining For Justice is also available for the Kindle and other eBook readers. For details about where this mystery can be purchased online, click HERE.

Posted March 30, 2020.



"Ernst's Best Mystery to Date"

  Review of the Week graphic for Fiddling With Fate by Kathleen Ernst from Midnight Ink Books. This week's favorite reader review of the newest Chloe Ellefson mystery, was posted on Amazon.com by thoughtsfrommillstreet.

"Kathleen Ernst's cozy mystery series featuring historian Chloe Ellefson just gets better with each new book. Story #10 FIDDLING WITH FATE takes the Old World Wisconsin history expert all the way to Norway to try to solve the mystery of her recently deceased mother's long ago adoption. There, in the old country, danger awaits Chloe and her fiance Roelke, but they do not know from whom or why...

Like in her other books, Ernst skillfully brings the two stories, one old and one set in the 1980's together with a perfect amount of suspense...

Last winter I was able to attend one of Ernst's author visits at a local bookstore; this was to promote her 9th mystery [The Lacemaker's Secret] set in Door County, Wisconsin. But at the same time she was working on FIDDLING WITH FATE, and she shared how this book, like the others, led to her actually visiting the settings of the novels. It is clear from FWF that she learned much in Norway and has shared it with readers in a most enjoyable way."

Posted March 29, 2020.



Save The Date!

  The Lacemakers Secret Chloe Ellefson mystery #9 front cover "I’ve been dithering about whether to announce the Chloe tour scheduled for this summer. In the spirit of optimism…here you go.

The 9th Chloe Ellefson Mystery, The Lacemaker’s Secret, takes place in northeast Wisconsin where early Belgian immigrants made their homes. When readers asked for a special book-themed tour of the area, I turned to my friends at the Belgian Heritage Center in Brussels, WI.

We’ve planned a very special excursion for readers on Saturday, July 11, 2020. I hope you’ll join Mr. Ernst and me as we explore featured locations and learn about the inspiring history of one of Wisconsin’s lesser-known ethnic groups. Activities will include..." more>>

Posted March 22, 2020 on the Sites And Stories blog.



National Award Ceremony - Postponed

  Daughters of the American Revolution logo. Earlier this year the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution announced that it was honoring Kathleen for "outstanding achievement in her artistic field" with their American Heritage Women in the Arts Recognition Award for Literature.

The National DAR President was to present the award to Kathleen on April 16, 2020, during the Wisconsin DAR Society's Conference in Green Bay. The conference, and the award ceremony, have now been postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. New arrangments will be announced later.

Posted March 18, 2020.



Special Message from Kathleen

  COVID-19 Pandemic graphic by Deep Vee Productions Mr. Ernst and I are in good health, and we sincerely hope you and yours are too. May we all be so blessed, and remain so.

Like some, we are over age sixty, with underlying health issues that put us in the CDC's "high risk" category for COVID-19. As such, we have been advised to avoid all group gatherings. We had already decided we did not wish to risk the health of any of our dear reader-friends by doing programs that might encourage them to gather in group events.

Out of an abundance of caution, and guided by the latest CDC directives, Mr. Ernst and I have begun withdrawing from our upcoming public and private presentations. We do this with sadness and regret, but with the hope that circumstances will soon allow us to reschedule and resume doing programs. To that end, I am still adding events for later this year.

Posted March 15, 2020.



April Meeting - Cancelled Due to Pandemic

  Logo of the Metropolitan Womens Club of Madison Wisconsin The Metropolitan Woman’s Club of Madison, Wisconsin has cancelled its April 24th luncheon due to the current COVID-19 pandemic.

Kathleen had been invited to speak to their meeting about her experiences researching and writing her now thirty-eight published books, which include works of fiction and non-fiction for adults and young readers.

Her richly illustrated presentation was to include a special focus on Kathleen's now ten-book Chloe Ellefson Historic Sites mystery series, which had been requested by the club's many fans of the series.

Posted March 13, 2020.



Kroting

  Image of Norwegian Kroting in Tveismestova farmhouse at Hardanger Folk Museum at Utne Norway "For centuries, Norwegian farmhouses had open fireplaces. A raised hearth was built in the center of the floor, with a smoke hole in the roof above. These “smoke houses” with a central hearth and/or corner fireplace were common along the western coast.

Kroting was a simple way of decorating a house with smoke-stained logs and few or no windows. In Fiddling With Fate, the 10th Chloe Ellefson Mystery, Chloe senses why it was important...." more>>

Posted March 12, 2020 on the Sites And Stories blog.



Chloe Ellefson Program - Cancelled Due to Pandemic

  Wisconsin State Rosemaling Association logo. The following is a special message from Kathleen Ernst about the Chloe Ellefson program she was scheduled to present this Sunday, March 15, 2020, for the Wisconsin State Rosemaling Association spring meeting, at the Fire Station in Stoughton, WI.

"Out of an abundance of caution, and guided by the latest CDC directives regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, Mr. Ernst and I have, with great reluctance and regret, decided to cancel this specific program. Scott and I had a grand time when we visited this rosemaling meeting a few years ago, and I love spending time with rosemalers, so this is very disappointing.

Please contact the State Rosemaling Association directly to learn whether there may be any additional changes relating to their spring meeting.

Decisions about Kathleen's other scheduled programs will be made later, in conjunction with event sponsors, based on the then current status of the pandemic and CDC guidance.

Posted March 11, 2020.



Chloe's Coming to Decorah - Advance Notice

  Decorah Iowa Public Library logo. Attention mystery readers in Northeast Iowa and Southeast Minnesota! 

Bestselling author Kathleen Ernst has been invited to present her richly illustrated program about the award-winning Chloe Ellefson Mystery series at the Decorah Public Library—and you are invited.

The program begins at 7:15 PM, Monday, April 27th. Admission is free and open to the public, thanks to the generous support of the Friends of the Decorah Public Library and Dragonfly Books.

Posted March 11, 2020.



"I am in Chloe Droughtsville-land..."

  Review of the Week grahic for Fiddling With Fate by Kathleen Ernst and Midnight Ink. This week's favorite reader review of Fiddling With Fate, the newest Chloe mystery, was posted by Laura Lareson on Kathleen's blog.

"I am in Chloe Droughtsville-land, so waiting for book 11. ...More of my friends have finished the 10th book, with all of us in agreement, it is your best one yet."

Posted March 8, 2020.



Writing Workshop

  Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum logo The Vesterheim Folk Art School in Decorah, Iowa, has once again invited Kathleen to present her popular Exploring Your Heritage—A Writing Sampler Weekend.

Cherished family stories can be preserved in many ways. This workshop will introduce you to several types of writing, including poetry, memoir, fiction, and creative nonfiction. You will enjoy a variety of short writing activities designed to help capture memories or explore what interests you most about your unique family, ethnic group, or community heritage.

Inspired by Vesterheim’s rich collections and whatever personal memories or heirlooms you wish to explore, you will leave with drafts of several poems, character sketches, essays, and short stories.

The weekend's activities begin Friday evening, April 24th, and run through late afternoon Sunday the 26th. Prior registration and payment of a fee is required. The number of people who can participate is strictly limited in order to provide a quality experience for each person. To register and pay, please click HERE.

PLEASE NOTE: Kathleen's workshop has filled up. There is a waiting list. For details contact the Vesterheim Folk School at (563) 382-9681.

Posted March 5, 2020.



"Very Compelling Story"

  Review of the Week graphic for Fiddling With Fate by Kathleen Ernst and Midnight Ink. This week's favorite reader review of Fiddling With Fate, the tenth and newest Chloe Ellefson mystery, was posted on Amazon by R E D.

"My father immigrated from Norway in 1920 so all things Norwegian interest me. When I was in high school we had a pastor who was very against dancing and this story helped explain where he was coming from.

I am in my 80s now and have read all of Ms. Ernst's [Chloe] books. I hope there will be more adventures."

Posted March 1, 2020.



Author Program - Advance Notice

  The Metropolitan Woman’s Club of Madison Wisconsin logo Kathleen will speak to the Metropolitan Woman’s Club of Madison, Wisconsin, during their March 24th luncheon meeting.

Kathleen will share her experiences researching and writing her now thirty-eight published books. These include works of fiction and non-fiction created for adults and young readers. Her richly illustrated presentation will include a special focus on Kathleen's now ten-book Chloe Ellefson Historic Sites mystery series. Afterwards Kathleen will answer audience questions and sign books, copies of which will be available for purchase.

The MWC was formed in 1971 by a group of women who joined together to encourage the social, cultural and intellectual fulfillment of the individual member. The club is dedicated to the acceptance of civic responsibilities as they relate to the needs of the community.

PLEASE NOTE:  Kathleen's talk is open to MWC members only.

Posted February 27, 2020.



"Thank you for many hours of enjoyment."

  Review of the Week grahic for Fiddling With Fate by Kathleen Ernst and Midnight Ink. This week's favorite reader review is about the Chloe Ellefson mystery series. It was sent to Kathleen by Pat P.

"I’ve enjoyed all of your books. Being born and raised in Wisconsin, you are not only sharing things I didn’t know about my state, but are also stoking an interest to learn and explore.

Thank you for many hours of enjoyment."

Posted February 23, 2020.



Please Stand By

  Technical Difficulties graphic.

A software glitch, and the fact that our web technician is away for an extended period, is preventing Mr. Ernst from updating this page.

Updates will resume as soon as possible.

Posted January 30, 2020.



"...your best yet"

  Review of the Week graphic for Fiddling With Fate by Kathleen Ernst and Midnight Ink. This week's favorite reader review of the newest Chloe Ellefson mystery, was sent by postal mail to Kathleen by Roger B. from Decorah, Iowa.

"My wife gave me your latest book (FIDDLING WITH FATE) for Christmas. I just finshed reading it. I didn't know there was so much to learn about Hardanger fiddles and Norwegian folk dancing. You wove a plethora of historical information into the story. The book is your best yet.

Posted January 27, 2020.



Chloe Ellefson Program - Advance Notice

  Wisconsin State Rosemaling Association logo.

The Wisconsin State Rosemaling Association has invited Kathleen to their Spring General Meeting to present her illustrated Chloe Ellefson Mysteries program at 1:15 PM on Sunday, March 15, 2020, at the Fire Station in Stoughton, WI.

Kathleen's presentation is free and open to the public.

Posted January 25, 2020.



Washington Post quotes Kathleen's book

  Too Afraid to Cry - Maryland Civilians in the Antietam Campaign by bestselling author Kathleen Ernst An excerpt from Kathleen's first non-fiction book, Too Afraid to Cry: Maryland Civilians in the Antietam Campaign was quoted in an article entitled Maryland house had part to play in the Civil War published today in the Washington Post Real Estate section.

Posted January 24, 2020.



"Keep writing!!!"

  Review of the Week graphic for Fiddling With Fate by Kathleen Ernst and Midnight Ink. This week's favorite reader review of the Chloe Ellefson mystery series came to Kathleen from Suzanne H.W. of St. Peters, Missouri.

"Love your Chloe E. series.... You write with the right balance of mystery, romance (not too graphic), history, scenic description, and good dialogue. Keep writing!!!"

Posted January 20, 2020.



"You have enriched our lives."

  Sweet Note graphic by Dee Vee Productions. Kathleen recently received these sweet words from reader Maueen C.

"Have long been an admirer of your research, your writing skills and creativity for an audience young and mature. Thank you! You have enriched our lives."

Posted January 11, 2020.




150 days in Top 1%

  Partial front cover of Fiddling With Fate, Chloe Ellefson Mystery #10 As of yesterday, pre- and post-release purchases of Fiddling With Fate trade paperbacks have resulted in it being ranked in the Top 1% of all US Print Book Sales—out of over 8 million titles tracked—for a running total of one hundred fifty days! (NPD BookScan.)

Kindle and other eBook versions of Fiddling are also doing well.

Posted January 6, 2020.



"Not so with Fiddling With Fate."

  Review of the Week graphic for Fiddling With Fate by Kathleen Ernst and Midnight Ink. This week's favorite reader review of the newest Chloe Ellefson mystery, was posted by Melanie on goodreads.com.

"It can be difficult to read the latest book in a series when you have not read any of the others. Not so with Fiddling With Fate.

Ernst divides the narrative into past and present in the Hardanger region, giving the reader glimpses of the struggles that 19th century farmers encountered, and the lack of options for women.

Despite obstacles in both present and past, and despite a murder that seems to be linked to their quest, Chloe and Roelle find their way, helped by Chloe's extraordinary gift for sensing things beyond what can be touched and seen.
"

Posted January 5, 2020.



National Recognition Award

  Daughters of the American Revolution logo. The National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution (NSDAR) has chosen to honor author Kathleen Ernst for "outstanding achievement in her artistic field" with their American Heritage Women in the Arts Recognition Award for Literature.

Kathleen was nominated for this national award by the Wisconsin Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution (WSDAR). State Regent Brenda T. Majewski explained why they proposed her for this recognition.

"Education, historic preservation, and patriotism are the missions of the DAR. Literacy, American history, and classroom participation fall under our service projects. [Kathleen's] books fall easily into these categories, particularly the research that goes into the back stories of the Chloe Ellefson series."

National DAR President General Denise Doring VanBuren will present the award to Kathleen at an afternoon reception in her honor, to be held April 16, 2020, during the WSDAR Conference at the Hyatt Regency in Green Bay, WI.

The DAR was founded in 1890 and has 185,000 members, including 1,500 in Wisconsin. This non-profit, non-political, volunteer women's service organization is dedicated to promoting patriotism, preserving American history, and educating America's children.

Posted January 1, 2020.