The Final Reveille
A Living History Museum Mystery, Book #1
By Amanda Flower
Author website: http://www.amandaflower.com/
Brought to you by OBS reviewer Kayt
As the director of Barton Farm, a living history museum in Ohio, Kelsey Cambridge is underpaid and underappreciated, but she loves every minute of it. Determined to keep the struggling farm open, she plans to impress the museum’s wealthy benefactress, Cynthia Cherry, with a Civil War reenactment on the farm’s grounds.
Unfortunately, the first shot in the battle isn’t from a period soldier. It’s from Cynthia’s greedy nephew, Maxwell, who fires a threat at Kelsey to cut the museum’s funding. The next morning, things go from bad to worse when Kelsey discovers Maxwell dead. Now Kelsey is the police’s number one suspect, and she must start her own investigation to save Barton Farm . . . and herself.
I have to start off by saying that I absolutely love all the books/series Amanda Flower/Isabella Alan writes. When I read about this new series. A Living History Museum Mystery, I was thrilled. Having had some firsthand experience with Civil War reenactments, I was intrigued to see how this amazing author would handle the subject. I was not disappointed, far from it in fact. The Final Reveille is a super first in what promises to be a stellar new cozy mystery series. Amanda Flower writes with so much heart that her characters and storylines always radiate that care. They quickly feel like family and make a fabulous story even better.
The main character, Kelsey Cambridge, is the director of living history museum Barton Farm. Along with her young son Hayden, cat Benjamin Franklin and corgi Tippin she lives in the cottage on the farm. Her father also lives with them during the summer. The farm, including period buildings and her cottage are all thanks to the care and money of the farm’s benefactor wealthy Cynthia Cherry. The cast of characters is wonderful, including friend Laura and other workers at the farm. The reenactors are great and from experience I can say Amanda Flower does a fabulous and authentic portrayal of all of them. Right down to the “cider” secretly being enjoyed by a few.
I cannot wait to learn more and more about all the main characters. I was truly impressed by the way the characters were so well written and developed in this first of the series. The Final Reveille felt more like the 2nd, 3rd, or 4th in a series to me. I felt as if I knew the characters from the start and enjoyed them so much. That is one of the many great things about this author’s writing style. It always feels like coming home. The murders were surprising and the methods were definitely not any run of the mill. The twists and turns were intriguing and exciting yet believable. Kelsey is not one to go bumbling around putting herself in danger. Towards the end I had a very good idea who the killer may be, but the reveal and motive were full of suspense and unexpected.
The Final Reveille did not disappoint this diehard Amanda Flower fan. I was pulled in from the very first pages and never let go. This is a book that was almost impossible to put down. Full of great characters, authentic historical references, flowing writing style and a wonderful mystery. The Final Reveille is a true winner. The only bad thing about this book, it ended and now the wait is on for the next in this series. This is a wonderful new cozy series that promises to just keep getting better and better. You can truly never go wrong reading an Amanda Flower book and The Final Reveille is a supreme example of that.