Thursday 29 June 2023

Murder at the Mine (A Ghost Town Mystery Book # 1) by Jamie L. Adams

From author Jamie L. Adams comes a modern Wild West murder in a cozy California ghost town...

Lily Cranston is eager to return to her hometown and get a do-over on life. She'll be among old friends, with loving family, and as the new manager of the Calico Rock Mine and Ghost Town, she's excited to take on the challenge of turning the old west town back into the premier tourist destination she remembers from her childhood. But Lily's happy homecoming takes an unexpected turn when one of the Calico Rock re-enactors turns up dead—murdered in the ghost town!

Bill Stevens was anything but beloved to the staff and volunteers at the Calico Rock Mine. Womanizer , liar , and cheat are all words Lily finds being used to describe the dead man. But when one of Lily's old friends suddenly emerges as the number one suspect, Lily finds herself digging into the dead man's past...and finding secrets buried deeper than the old mine itself! While her Chief of Police brother-in-law, and the handsome CSI who is a close family friend—and possibly becoming more than just a friend—both warn Lily off the case, she's determined to prove her friend innocent and unmask the real killer. Can she solve the mystery, save her friend, and stay alive? Or will the ghost town claim another victim...

"Complicated characters, a twisty mystery, and a heartfelt romance—what's not to love about this  series?"
~ Gemma Halliday, New York Times bestselling author   (Summary via Goodreads)

Murder at the Mine by Jamie L. Adams was like a walk down memory lane......except for the murders that is.  Murder at the Mine is the first book in her Ghost Town Mystery Book series and the theme and location brought me back to a time in my childhood.

In Murder at the Mine main character Lily Cranston moved back to her hometown of Grady, California after being away for five years.  She was offered the job of manager of the Calico Rock Mine and Ghost Town and wanted to be back home with her two sisters, Pat and Ava.  Unfortunately the Calico Rock Mine and Ghost Town is not making much of a profit and Lily is hired to turn it around.  If she cannot turn it around and begin making a profit, it could end up closing and everyone would lose their jobs.  Sadly to make things worse for Lily, one of the volunteers, William, who ran the Calico Rock Gazette was found murdered with a knife in his back.

Lily's brother-in-law Jack is the town Sheriff and an old friend of the family Cody is the Undersheriff so they have the investigation well underway.  But Lily cannot sit by and watch this little community crumble and everyone possibly lose their jobs so with the help of her sister Ava, they look into William's life and who would have wanted him dead.....unfortunately as they dig, the suspect list becomes long.  Then another volunteer is found murdered with a knife in his back and Lily is getting messages to back off.....

Murder at the Mine was such a treat to read and it brought up some great childhood memories.  Growing up there was an amusement park nearby that we would visit during the summer months and a part of the park has a section just like the Ghost Town in this book.  Throughout the day they put on shows with criminals and sheriff's catching the bad guys.  As a child they would hand out little badges to us so that we were deputized to save the town.  The only big difference is that I do not believe there were any real murders or even real crimes that took place in my childhood Ghost Town.  

The Ghost Town Mystery Book series is going to be a favorite of mine and it will be on my watch list so that I can hop back into a fun childhood time in my life.  There is so much to like in this series and this is only the beginning.....

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