Monday, October 19, 2015

Mystery, Murder, and Favorites with Ann Gabhart

Ann Gabhart is back! I'm excited to help celebrate her latest release, Murder at the Courthouse. She's offered a copy to one of my followers, so please check out the giveaway details below.

Here's a peek at the back cover:  

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. 

Ann and I thought it would be fun to ask her main character, Michael Keane, about some of his favorite things. This is how he replied:

Favorite food/s – Cindy’s pecan pies at the Hidden Springs Grill are hard to beat. Especially if you tell her to warm it up a little and add a scoop of vanilla ice cream. If I ate that all the time, I’d have to work out twice as much. Then freshly caught fish from Eagle Lake fried in a skillet over an open fire when I’m camping out in rough country near the lake have to be on my favorite list. There’s just something extra good about eating fish you caught yourself while watching the sun sink down on the western horizon of the lake. 

Favorite beverage – I’m a police officer. That means coffee, black and strong, is as necessary as water. 

Favorite sport – I guess I’d have to say fishing. That counts as a sport, doesn’t it? I like getting out on the lake in my motor boat and throwing out a line. But I also have an old rowboat that I like to get in and slide out on the water. Especially early in the morning while the mist is lifting from the lake. The only noise is the dip of the paddles, the birds welcoming the sun, and sometimes a fish jumping up out of the water to try out the morning air and flopping back down with a little slap sound. 

Favorite piece of advice someone's offered over the years – Here’s something Aunt Lindy told me not too long ago after I moved back to Hidden Springs from Columbus, Ohio. “You young people are always in such a hurry you forget to notice what the good Lord is doing in your life. The Lord wants you right here in Hidden Springs.” I don’t know if I could call that my favorite piece of advice, but it is something that I have to consider. I don’t want to be in too big a hurry to notice the blessings of my days. I do feel as if I belong in Hidden Springs. That makes some problems for me since the girl I’ve loved since we were kids thinks a town like Hidden Springs is the last place she wants to be. 

Favorite quote – My Aunt Lindy shared Lamentations 3:22-23 with me years ago. It’s the verse she read over and over while I was in a coma after the terrible accident that killed my parents and almost killed me. She said she read this every morning as she prayed for me. 

It is of the LORD's mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness. 

Hard not to have that be a favorite since I’ve always been sure it was Aunt Lindy’s love and prayers that pulled me out of the black abyss I was in and gave me a second chance at life. 

Favorite hobby – There is that fishing I’ve already mentioned. But I also like to delve into the history of the Civil War. Some of my great, ever so great uncles fought in the war. Not all on the same side. They were brothers divided by the war. Now I read Civil War histories and collect Civil War weapons. I’ve taken part in some of the Civil War re-enactments. The last one I did, I was a Union soldier like my Uncle Pascal. I was one of the soldiers who charged the enemy line and didn’t make it home. So for most of the re-enactment, I was playing dead on the field of battle.

Favorite way to relax – I guess I’d have to say being out in that rowboat with my dog, Jasper. Or sometimes just sitting on the porch of my log house as night falls with the whippoorwills calling and Jasper asleep beside me. Of course, Jasper wakes up when the coyotes start yipping and howling. 

Favorite season – I like all the seasons down on the lake, but Spring and Fall might be my favorites. Winter is good too, but if too much snow falls, it makes responding to emergency calls when I’m off duty difficult. I want to be there ASAP for the citizens of Hidden Springs and Keane County if they have a need for police protection.

Favorite thing about Hidden Springs – I like that people know one another. It’s a good thing to walk down the street and greet friends and neighbors by name. It’s like a big town family. That’s not to say we all love one another in Hidden Springs or even all get along. Many extended families have plenty of disagreements among their members at times. So do we in Hidden Springs, but in times of trouble, folks step up and help one another out.

Thanks for inviting Michael over for an interview, Karen. Now he’s going fishing! 

Thanks for stopping by and allowing Michael to share with us, Ann. :) Wishing you continued success with your books!  

    About Ann 

A.H. Gabhart is Ann H. Gabhart, bestselling author of many novels, including Love Comes Home, the 2015 Selah Book of Year winner and her popular Shaker novels. She also writes about family life, love and now mystery in small towns like the one in Kentucky where she grew up. She and her husband have three children and nine grandchildren and still enjoy country life on a farm near that small town, but she’s happy to report that nobody was ever murdered on her hometown’s courthouse steps. To find out more about Ann’s books or to read her blog, visit:

Ann's Website
Ann on Facebook
Purchase Murder at the Courthouse 

Giveaway Details

Ann is giving away one paperback copy of Murder at the Courthouse. To enter, please note the following:   

1) Open to U.S. residents only.  
2) Please leave your email address. 
3) You must be a Google Friend Connect Follower of Write Now (on sidebar). 
4) Giveaway ends Friday, October 23 at noon Eastern Daylight Time. Winner will be contacted via email and have 36 hours to respond or another name will be chosen.  

What's your favorite way to spend free time? Have any questions for Ann?

Happy reading and writing,

Karen

54 comments :

  1. Hi Karen and Ann! What a pleasure to meet you today Ann. What an interesting life you have! I can imagine that being a police officer is a very stressful job, you need those evenings on the porch with Jasper. I'm so glad you have a peaceful home to retreat to after a long day at work.

    I'm sure your job informs your writing, and helps you draw very lively characters. And speaking of characters, your Aunt sounds like a very wise and 'with it' lady. Sounds like she's a really great blessing in your life.
    I'd love to win your book! My email is: ceil@ceilryan.com
    Monday blessings,
    Ceil

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    1. Well, Ceil, it wasn't me doing the interview. It was my character, Michael Keane. Maybe we should have made that clearer. I let him do all the talking. He's the one who is a police officer and love to fish and row out on the lake and has that wonderful black lab, Jasper. I do have a black lab, but I hate to fish and I don't think I've ever been out in a rowboat and thank goodness I've not experienced some of the things Michael has. Thanks for dropping by to learn more about my character, Michael.

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  2. That piece of advice is spot-on.
    I'm sure the fish don't think fishing is very sporting.
    Congratulations, Ann!

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    1. You could be right, Alex. But living on a lake the way Michael does make fishing almost necessary.

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  3. Hello, Ann, so nice to see you here on a Monday morning. Murder at the Courthouse sounds just like what I need for a relaxing fall weekend. I cannot wait to read it. I live in a rural community like Hidden Springs. Everyone knows you AND your business. Hahaha. How nice of you to offer the giveaway. *waving amigo* xoxoxo robyn@robyncampbell.com Even if I don't win, I'll have to get the book and pass it to my sister when I've finished. :-)

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    1. Thanks for coming by to read about Michael's favorite things. I do hope you'll enjoy his story if or when you get a chance to read this first Hidden Springs mystery.

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  4. Hi Karen and Ann - it's great to have a favourite sleuth .. and then to be able to read some more about them - brings Michael to life ... a fun post - cheers Hilary

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    1. Glad you enjoyed finding out more about Michael, Hilary. He is going to have some mysteries follow him to Hidden Springs. :)

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  5. thank you for this chance, i love anns' books. im sorry i havent read any of karens' books but i am going to check them out

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    1. Hi, Carol. Thank you so much for reading my books. I'm so glad you've enjoyed some of my stories and I hope you'll enjoy my mystery too. Michael is a great character.

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  6. Thank you for the chance to win one of my favorite authors book. I now have my sister reading her books. She called me yesterday to say I love it. LOL Have a blessed day.

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    1. Aww, Lucy, that's so nice of you. I'm always happy to hear about sisters reading my books since I have two sisters and we like talking books. Then of course, I have those four Merritt sisters in the Rosey Corner books. Those books make great sister reads. Hope you'll enjoy visiting Hidden Springs and reading my mysteries too.

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  7. Ceil,
    Happy to introduce you to Ann! I think you might like her books. Thanks so much for coming by! :)

    Alex,
    LOL, this is true for sure! Appreciate you stopping by to check out the post. :)

    Robyn,
    Hey back, amigo! I am looking forward to reading this one too! :) Glad you enjoyed the post!

    Hilary,
    The book sounds like great fun, doesn't it? :) Maybe you will see it across the pond too sometime soon!

    Carol,
    It was nice of Ann to offer the giveaway, wasn't it? So nice to meet you! You are very sweet to mention checking out my books. Thanks so much for that. :)

    Lucy,
    It's nice to see you here! Appreciate you coming by to see Ann and Michael and me. :)

    Happy reading and writing,
    Karen




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  8. Congratulations Ann! Awesome meeting you.

    Hi Karen!

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    1. Thanks for dropping by. Great to meet you too, Kelly.

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  9. My favorite thing to do in my spare time is reading and spending time with my family and friends. I loved this post! Ann, you are one of the few people I have read interviews with that really just connect with us out here in computer-land. You seem very warm and caring and very likeable. Thanks for your books and thanks for giving us a chance to win your new book! If I don't win it, I will definitely buy it!

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    1. Thanks so much, Debbie. But this time you were connected with my character, Michael. He's just an all around great guy even if he doesn't like computers much. LOL. I do enjoy talking with readers and making the blog posts a bit different each time. Nobody wants to read the same thing over and over, do they? Now I don't know whether to wish you luck in the drawing or not since you might buy it. Just kidding. I'm just happy you want to read my story.

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  10. Kelly,
    Hi back! :) So glad you stopped by to check out the post. :)

    Debbie,
    Nice to meet you! :) I'm with you, reading is one of my favorite things too! I agree here too - Ann really does connect with her readers that way. And she is just as nice in person too!

    Happy reading and writing,
    Karen

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    1. Thanks, Karen. You always make my visits here fun.

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  11. Nice to 'see' you again, Ann, and thanks, Karen for hosting this great author again. What a fun approach--interviewing your main character! Certainly makes us want to read Murder at the Courthouse. Interesting revelation about Michael, that he does Civil War reenactments. That caught my attention :-)

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    1. So far I haven't made that a big part of the plot - the Civil War re-enactments, but maybe someday. Then again, the face that Michael is a Civil War history buff and collector does figure in the next Hidden Springs mystery, Murder Comes by Mail, that will be out in July next year. So glad Michael's interview got you interested in his stories, Kenda.

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  12. I'd love to read Ann's book. I love a good mystery and I can't write them for anything. So envious. :-) cleemckenzieATgmailDOTcom

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    1. Lee, right now in the middle of trying to write Hidden Springs mystery 3, I'm beginning to think I can't write them for anything either. :) Hope if you do get a chance to read Murder at the Courthouse, you'll think I did okay with that one anyway.

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  13. Loved the questions and answers. We really get a sense of who the main character is as a person.

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    1. I always enjoy letting my characters take over and do the talking. They are generally more interesting than me. They're out there on the front lines while I'm just back here, my fingers on a keyboard. LOL. Karen came up with a fun way to let Michael tell about himself. Thanks for reading about him, Natalie.

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  14. Kenda,
    Glad you came over! I know you are an "Ann" fan too. As for the Civil War thing, I found that interesting too. Looking forward to reading this one as well. )

    Lee,
    It looks like a winner, doesn't it? I hear you, I have trouble putting the pieces of a mystery together too. :)

    Natalie,
    Glad you liked it! I agree, you gain more insight into the character this way. It's fun! :)

    Happy writing and reading,
    Karen

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  15. Hi karen. Thanks for hosting Ann. she is a special friend of mine. The interview waqs fun. I would love to win Ann's new book. Maxie > mac262(at)me(dot)com <

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    1. Always happy to see you stop by when I go visiting out here on the web, Maxie. Hope you enjoyed Michael's favorite things post.

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  16. Hi Ann! Nice to meet you and Michael. I love the book cover and book blurb too!

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    1. Nice to meet you too, Southpaw, or is it Holly? That bear holding up his southpaw is a neat thumbprint picture for your comments. Glad you like the cover and blurb. Revell Books does a tremendous job coming up with neat covers.

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  17. Maxie,
    Thanks so much for coming to see us! I can see where Ann would be a special friend. She's always a delightful guest! :)

    Holly,
    Glad you hopped over for the post. I agree, the cover is nice, really draws you in. Looking forward to reading this one. :)

    Happy reading and writing,
    Karen

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  18. Hi Karen,Ann and Michael- Thank you for the wonderful excerpt and the interview with Michael now I am so excited about reading Anns book! I am such a big fan of hers and have yet to read it . The cover is just so nice love it. ptclayton2@aol.com

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    1. Hi, Peggy. Always fun for you to drop by my guest posts. I think you will like Michael. The cover has a cat. That qualifies it for a cozy mystery. :)

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  19. Set in the South, I'm sure there are plenty of opportunities to take part in Civil War reenactments.

    Congrats on the book, Ann.

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    1. I'm sure you're right, L. Diane. We actually have one in our little town every fall. Maybe I could let Hidden Springs have one too. Now, that's an idea with lots of potential.

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  20. Peggy,
    Nice to meet you! Appreciate you stopping by. It is nice to meet other Ann fans! )

    Diane,
    Good point! I am curious to see how it plays into the book. :) Thanks for hopping over to see us.

    Happy reading and writing,
    Karen

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  21. I spend my spare time reading.

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  22. Ann, you sound like you lead a lovely, relaxing life. I'd love to come hang out on a porch like yours or a rowboat on the lake.

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    1. You'll have to go to Hidden Springs and hang out with Michael down on Eagle Lake, Crystal. But I do have a deck and a great farm to take a hike on. I'm always posting things I spot on my walks on my Facebook page. You could come along and help me find some of those iPhone scenic moments. Can't say Kodak moments anymore.

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  23. Sharma,
    It's nice to meet you! Thanks for coming to see us. I too, like to read in my spare time. :)

    Crystal,
    Maybe we should take a field trip and go visit Ann. It would offer a glimpse into her characters' worlds. She lives in a scenic part of KY. Thanks for hopping over to see us!

    Happy Wednesday,
    Karen

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  24. Now that's a deputy sheriff I'd like to meet, along with the lovely author who created him. Sounds like a wonderful read!

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    1. Michael is a great guy, Lisa. I hope if you take a reading trip to Hidden Springs, you'll enjoy getting to know more about him.

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  25. Love the character interview with Michael! He sounds like a wonderful guy from a wonderful book.

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    1. That was a great way to let people get to know my character better, Tyrean. Karen came up with a fun idea.

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  26. Congratulations Ann. It was fun to read about Michael.

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    1. Glad you enjoyed Michael's interview, Olivia.

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  27. What a fun post! I love learning more about important characters. Wishing Ann all the best! Thanks for the chance to win a copy too. :)
    ~Jess

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    1. Thanks for your good wishes, Jess. Glad you enjoyed the post. It was fun.

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  28. Lisa,
    Yes, I'd like to have this deputy sheriff in our hometown. Sounds like someone good to have in your corner. I've had the privilege of meeting Ann in person. She's a gem! :)

    Tyrean,
    I'm glad you liked the post! It's always fun to get to know the lighter side of characters. Thanks for hopping over! :)

    Olivia,
    I am glad you got to meet Ann and Michael. :) Appreciate you coming by!

    Jess,
    Thank you! Glad you liked it. :) It was a fun post. Thanks for stopping to see us!

    Happy weekend,
    Karen

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  29. Rats, I missed this one! It looks like a delightful read. Any book with a cat on the cover has to be splendid!

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  30. Jen,
    So sorry you missed this one! I hope to have Ann back in the spring when the next book comes out. Maybe there will be a cat on that cover too. :)
    Happy weekend,
    Karen

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  31. Wow! Between Internet woes and time management, I missed this post. Congratulations, Ann, on your new release.

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Thanks for stopping by! I appreciate your input. Have a blessed day!