Customer Reviews for

A Killing in the Hills (Bell Elkins Series #1)

Average Rating 4
( 34 )
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(14)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

6 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

Bell Elkins grew up in Acker's Gap, West Virginia. After a tragi

Bell Elkins grew up in Acker's Gap, West Virginia. After a tragic
upbringing that includes a fire and the death of her father, she then
goes from foster home to foster home. She goes away to college, gets
married and has a child. She feels drawn to return to Acker's Gap...
Bell Elkins grew up in Acker's Gap, West Virginia. After a tragic
upbringing that includes a fire and the death of her father, she then
goes from foster home to foster home. She goes away to college, gets
married and has a child. She feels drawn to return to Acker's Gap to
make a difference. Her marriage falls apart and she takes her daughter
home to West Virginia. She runs and is elected prosecuting attorney for
Raythune County. The county has a serious drug problem and Bell is
determined to clean up the county. While Bell is working on another
tragic case where a child was killed she learns that 3 elderly men have
been gunned down in a local diner. The same diner where her now 17 year
old daughter Carla was waiting for her Bell to her up. The eatery was
full of witnesses but it happened so fast no one really saw the shooter.
Why were Dean Streeter, Shorty McClurg, and Lee Rader targeted? Was it
random? Drug related? Carla was shocked and horrified by what she saw,
but after a few days, she begins to recover enough to believe that she
might be able to help her mother do her job. Bell vows to find and bring
the killer to justice not knowing her daughter may already know who he
is or that Carla may be putting herself in danger to help her. A Great
Debut to a new series!! Julie Keller has created some wonderfully
flawed characters and set them loose in West Virginia. This first story
has more than one mystery for readers to follow and she has woven them
together seamlessly. We learn about Belfa's (yes, that her real name)
past and her dysfunctional family that made her the woman she is today.
A young boy is killed and Bell has to decide how to move forward
charging a mentally challenged 28 year old. Three elderly residents are
gunned down by an unknown assailant. Add to that Bell's teenage daughter
going through normal growing pains and then she witnesses this terrible
shooting. Bell has a true friend in the sheriff and he is there to walk
with her through the mayhem and he does his best to protect her. I love
the meetings over pieces of pie as they try to sort out the clues. Last
one to arrive buys the pie! Bell has a lot on her plate besides her job
a prosecuting attorney for the county. Her sister has just been paroled
from prison and her daughter would rather be living with her dad. With
this a foundation has been laid for the series moving forward. Bell is a
strong woman with a noble agenda that will probably get her in lot of
trouble. One of my favorite parts of this story was Bell driving in the
mountains to question the mother of the mentally challenged suspect. The
author's description of the winding roads, cliff drop offs, up and down
the mountains, made me feel like I was right in the vehicle holding on
for dear life. Extra tension was added when she was being followed. It
was a white knuckle moment holding on to my kindle as I couldn't read
the pages fast enough. I am looking forward to my return to this
"shabby afterthought of a town". If you are a mystery lover
you too will enjoy this story.

posted by Dollycas on August 27, 2012

Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review

Most Helpful Critical Review

5 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

This would have been a much better read had there not been so mu

This would have been a much better read had there not been so much foul language. I think a good novel can be written without swearing and cursing.

posted by tootsieWV on January 15, 2013

Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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Page 1 of 1
  • Posted August 27, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Bell Elkins grew up in Acker's Gap, West Virginia. After a tragi

    Bell Elkins grew up in Acker's Gap, West Virginia. After a tragic
    upbringing that includes a fire and the death of her father, she then
    goes from foster home to foster home. She goes away to college, gets
    married and has a child. She feels drawn to return to Acker's Gap to
    make a difference. Her marriage falls apart and she takes her daughter
    home to West Virginia. She runs and is elected prosecuting attorney for
    Raythune County. The county has a serious drug problem and Bell is
    determined to clean up the county. While Bell is working on another
    tragic case where a child was killed she learns that 3 elderly men have
    been gunned down in a local diner. The same diner where her now 17 year
    old daughter Carla was waiting for her Bell to her up. The eatery was
    full of witnesses but it happened so fast no one really saw the shooter.
    Why were Dean Streeter, Shorty McClurg, and Lee Rader targeted? Was it
    random? Drug related? Carla was shocked and horrified by what she saw,
    but after a few days, she begins to recover enough to believe that she
    might be able to help her mother do her job. Bell vows to find and bring
    the killer to justice not knowing her daughter may already know who he
    is or that Carla may be putting herself in danger to help her. A Great
    Debut to a new series!! Julie Keller has created some wonderfully
    flawed characters and set them loose in West Virginia. This first story
    has more than one mystery for readers to follow and she has woven them
    together seamlessly. We learn about Belfa's (yes, that her real name)
    past and her dysfunctional family that made her the woman she is today.
    A young boy is killed and Bell has to decide how to move forward
    charging a mentally challenged 28 year old. Three elderly residents are
    gunned down by an unknown assailant. Add to that Bell's teenage daughter
    going through normal growing pains and then she witnesses this terrible
    shooting. Bell has a true friend in the sheriff and he is there to walk
    with her through the mayhem and he does his best to protect her. I love
    the meetings over pieces of pie as they try to sort out the clues. Last
    one to arrive buys the pie! Bell has a lot on her plate besides her job
    a prosecuting attorney for the county. Her sister has just been paroled
    from prison and her daughter would rather be living with her dad. With
    this a foundation has been laid for the series moving forward. Bell is a
    strong woman with a noble agenda that will probably get her in lot of
    trouble. One of my favorite parts of this story was Bell driving in the
    mountains to question the mother of the mentally challenged suspect. The
    author's description of the winding roads, cliff drop offs, up and down
    the mountains, made me feel like I was right in the vehicle holding on
    for dear life. Extra tension was added when she was being followed. It
    was a white knuckle moment holding on to my kindle as I couldn't read
    the pages fast enough. I am looking forward to my return to this
    "shabby afterthought of a town". If you are a mystery lover
    you too will enjoy this story.

    6 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 12, 2013

    Good mystery, lots of plot lines going on, but not so many as to

    Good mystery, lots of plot lines going on, but not so many as to be distracting.  Once I got into it, I couldn't put it down.  Hope to see more of the folks from Ackers Gap!  

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted November 12, 2013

    Keller writes a beautiful novel complete with dimensional charac

    Keller writes a beautiful novel complete with dimensional characters and riveting scenes. I could fell the gentle strength of Belfa and the tenacious hold on Link Fogelsong. Why do people turn to crime is a question with many layers, and Keller addresses several of the reasons in her novel. The people of Acker's Gap are pitiful and wonderful in different degrees. A small community knows all the personal secrets, but individuals lack the gumption for involvement. The only concern rests with the electrician that comes to review his work. I see no relevance in this character other than a love interest in a later novel. I also feel that the emotions between Bell and Carla, and between Bell and her sister are too mellow. Where are the heat and the frustration?

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2013

    Recommend for easy reading

    For readers who enjoy small towns and mountains. It was interesting and I will read more by this author, if her characters continue to grow.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 13, 2013

    A good read

    Really enjoyed this book. A good, easy read.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 6, 2013

    Good book!

    You'll also enjoy A Dog Among Thorns by Joshua R. Fields.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 20, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted April 27, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 26, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted September 28, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

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