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High Country Fall

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With friends and family over-reacting to her announcement that she plans to marry Sheriff's Deputy Dwight Bryant, Judge Deborah Knott gratefully seizes the opportunity to put a five-hour drive between herself and Colleton County when the Chief District Court Judge offers her a week on the bench in Cedar Gap. It is early autumn, leaves are turning, and summer residents are With friends and family over-reacting to her announcement that she plans to marry Sheriff's Deputy Dwight Bryant, Judge Deborah Knott gratefully seizes the opportunity to put a five-hour drive between herself and Colleton County when the Chief District Court Judge offers her a week on the bench in Cedar Gap. It is early autumn, leaves are turning, and summer residents are preparing to close up their mountain "cabins" (palatial houses perched atop the most desirable locations) and return to their winter homes in Florida. But Deborah's peaceful break is disrupted when one Floridian is found murdered. He won't be going home, and Deborah won't be either - until she tracks down the killer.


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With friends and family over-reacting to her announcement that she plans to marry Sheriff's Deputy Dwight Bryant, Judge Deborah Knott gratefully seizes the opportunity to put a five-hour drive between herself and Colleton County when the Chief District Court Judge offers her a week on the bench in Cedar Gap. It is early autumn, leaves are turning, and summer residents are With friends and family over-reacting to her announcement that she plans to marry Sheriff's Deputy Dwight Bryant, Judge Deborah Knott gratefully seizes the opportunity to put a five-hour drive between herself and Colleton County when the Chief District Court Judge offers her a week on the bench in Cedar Gap. It is early autumn, leaves are turning, and summer residents are preparing to close up their mountain "cabins" (palatial houses perched atop the most desirable locations) and return to their winter homes in Florida. But Deborah's peaceful break is disrupted when one Floridian is found murdered. He won't be going home, and Deborah won't be either - until she tracks down the killer.

30 review for High Country Fall

  1. 5 out of 5

    Ed

    Margaret Maron is one of those wonderfully talented authors I intended to read more of. This title in her Judge Deborah Knott series is a treat. I don't read many mysteries with a judge as the protagonist. Judge Knott is a sympathetic, tough-minded personality who plays a guitar and has lots of nephews and nieces when she's not on the bench. I like the descriptions of the North Carolina mountains. I hope to return to her series again. Margaret Maron is one of those wonderfully talented authors I intended to read more of. This title in her Judge Deborah Knott series is a treat. I don't read many mysteries with a judge as the protagonist. Judge Knott is a sympathetic, tough-minded personality who plays a guitar and has lots of nephews and nieces when she's not on the bench. I like the descriptions of the North Carolina mountains. I hope to return to her series again.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Laura (Kyahgirl)

    3.5/5 I liked this. The characters were more interesting than the plot, which got a bit tangled up here and there. I do like how the author shows Judge Knott doing her job and using that as a way to delineate her character. C.J. Critt has the perfect narration style for this kind of mystery (not exactly “cozy” but not hardcore either).

  3. 4 out of 5

    Richard Brand

    Well, Maron had to step it up a bit. This novel includes one of those moments when the main character Deborah is almost killed. I do not seem to remember that in other Deborah Knott mysteries that Deborah gets physically threatened or attacked. But since Slow Dollar was in the family farm land, the series alternated and took off for the mountains. We have been to the shore, furniture market, and to the pottery place and other locations so now we are in the mountains. I do like the way Maron fles Well, Maron had to step it up a bit. This novel includes one of those moments when the main character Deborah is almost killed. I do not seem to remember that in other Deborah Knott mysteries that Deborah gets physically threatened or attacked. But since Slow Dollar was in the family farm land, the series alternated and took off for the mountains. We have been to the shore, furniture market, and to the pottery place and other locations so now we are in the mountains. I do like the way Maron fleshes out the conflicts and the challenges of a region. Here the locals, the seasonal invaders and the day tourist all have their points of view expressed, and the locals merchants get to express their frustration with each group of visitors. What about change, how do you maintain tradition when others want to modernize. But the real estate business is big business and lots of money. You know the secret -- follow the money. I am not sure how far back it goes, but in the last couple of stories Deborah has had two murders to solve and most of the time they are related. We have the continued love story of Deborah and Dwight and that goes to a new level as well. And do not despair, there are a host of "family" involved as well. Guess what Twins, now there is a thing that Maron loves to have. I would not be writing about mystery #10 if I did not enjoy the series and so it goes.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Susan

    Judge Deborah Knott is on temporary assignment in a beautiful but touristy town in the North Carolina mountains. Of course, murder strikes (twice), but the most frightening display of anger is directed against Deborah herself with nail biting consequences. And one more reason to keep turning the pages: Deborah is having second thoughts about her new engagement to a longtime friend.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Cynthia Grove

    Not my favourite of the series but a good story nonetheless.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Carly

    I am not one for low ratings or bad reviews, and I hope this doesn't hurt anyone's feelings, but I just did not like this book. It was a quick read. It's not that the writing is bad, it kept me wondering until the end "who dun it?" That being said, I thought she tried to put wayyy too many names and characters in the book and then didn't give enough character depth to make you get attached to anyone. I want to leave a book feeling like I connected, and I just never could. On another awkward note I am not one for low ratings or bad reviews, and I hope this doesn't hurt anyone's feelings, but I just did not like this book. It was a quick read. It's not that the writing is bad, it kept me wondering until the end "who dun it?" That being said, I thought she tried to put wayyy too many names and characters in the book and then didn't give enough character depth to make you get attached to anyone. I want to leave a book feeling like I connected, and I just never could. On another awkward note, the racistness was too much for me. I've read books about racial era hardships, and I've seen the "n" word in text....But this was something different. This is current day, adults just casually talking disrespectfully about black people at a dinner party. I don't know about you but I've never been to a dinner party like that. It wasn't just her comments throughout about black people, she made a comment about the waitress at the twins restaurant, and multiple other times when introducing yet another character... Her descriptions of the many characters sounded like they were written by a high school student.. You'll see what I mean.. Surface related, or brief weird comments with no follow up. Maybe it set up for a series and she will finish the character connection in the next book, but I'll never find out...

  7. 5 out of 5

    Kilian Metcalf

    By book #10, I'm thinking to myself that Maron can't sustain the standard of quality she has set for herself in this series. I was right, she doesn't match the quality of the previous book. She exceeds it. Adding in the romance to the straight mystery takes it to a even higher level. How does she do it? I haven't a clue. Each book is better than the one before. Well, except Shooting for Loons, maybe, but even that was important because of the addition of a new love interest. *And* there are six By book #10, I'm thinking to myself that Maron can't sustain the standard of quality she has set for herself in this series. I was right, she doesn't match the quality of the previous book. She exceeds it. Adding in the romance to the straight mystery takes it to a even higher level. How does she do it? I haven't a clue. Each book is better than the one before. Well, except Shooting for Loons, maybe, but even that was important because of the addition of a new love interest. *And* there are six more to go! Write on, Margaret Maron! Thank you, Mary Ronan Drew for introducing me to this writer.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Elizabeth

    I hadn't read any Deborah for a long time and I really enjoyed this experience and look forward to getting back to this series. Margaret Maron has always been a great story teller. I hadn't read any Deborah for a long time and I really enjoyed this experience and look forward to getting back to this series. Margaret Maron has always been a great story teller.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Sharon

    Judge Deborah Knott is taking a break from her flat lander existence and her engagement and going into North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains to fill in for a vacationing judge. Since it is leaf season and very crowded she will be staying in a vacation rental owned by family that is currently “out of service” and is being painted by Deborah’s twin nieces who are students at a nearby college. After holding court she is enjoying the scenery and the social life. Then a murder occurs and in her role Judge Deborah Knott is taking a break from her flat lander existence and her engagement and going into North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains to fill in for a vacationing judge. Since it is leaf season and very crowded she will be staying in a vacation rental owned by family that is currently “out of service” and is being painted by Deborah’s twin nieces who are students at a nearby college. After holding court she is enjoying the scenery and the social life. Then a murder occurs and in her role as judge Deborah hears the probable cause case against a young man who has been arrested. The man is a friend of the twins who insist that he is innocent and of course the judge gets involved. While we of observe the investigation of the murder we are also treated to descriptions of scenery, the social life of the town and the lives of the twins. Although the many diversions have the potential to distract the reader from the investigation of the crime, this was not the case for me. I found that they contributed to the my enjoyment of the book provided a great setting for the story.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Wendy

    #10 in the Deborah Knott series. As usual, we get a glimpse into another region of North Carolina. This time we get some insight into a "revitalized" mountain town. We see how the kitsch and personality has been replaced with upscale but non-descript buildings and businesses. We also get the insight to how most residents of tourist town have a love/hate opinion of the actual tourists. The town also has an influx of wealthy seasonal residents who bring another set of issues with them. Enter the c #10 in the Deborah Knott series. As usual, we get a glimpse into another region of North Carolina. This time we get some insight into a "revitalized" mountain town. We see how the kitsch and personality has been replaced with upscale but non-descript buildings and businesses. We also get the insight to how most residents of tourist town have a love/hate opinion of the actual tourists. The town also has an influx of wealthy seasonal residents who bring another set of issues with them. Enter the conflict that surrounds the murder-mystery in this episode. Deborah is involved in a car accident that I felt was a bit unrealistic and the mystery was tied up very quickly but I totally enjoyed everything else in the story. I especially liked the side story of the underestimated twins that found their niche and success. Deborah is a very relatable character and I always look forward to the next adventure.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Emily Higgins

    North Carolina Judge Deborah Knott is in western North Carolina filling in for a judge who is on vacation. During the first day in court Deborah hears a probable cause case involving a young man accused of killing his girlfriends father. Deborah’s young cousins, who are staying in the same condo as Deborah insist the young man could not possibly be guilty. Then, a second man is killed in a similar manner.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Meredith

    One of the things I enjoy about the series is dipping deeply into the various communities of North Carolina. This one was included the push-pull of small towns keeping their nature while appealing to tourists. Enjoyed the process of Deborah figuring out her emotions around Dwight. Also enjoyed the mini mystery of what was up with her nieces, though it did seem to take her an unusually long time to figure it out and odd she didn't really push for her nieces to come clean to their parents. One of the things I enjoy about the series is dipping deeply into the various communities of North Carolina. This one was included the push-pull of small towns keeping their nature while appealing to tourists. Enjoyed the process of Deborah figuring out her emotions around Dwight. Also enjoyed the mini mystery of what was up with her nieces, though it did seem to take her an unusually long time to figure it out and odd she didn't really push for her nieces to come clean to their parents.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Karen

    Deborah goes to the mountains as a fill in judge only to run into the murders of two prominent men. Her nieces do some investigating and cause her to think twice about the facts, motive, means and opportunity. Deborah keeps the secrets the twins share and tempts fate by dating the lucious Lucius despite her engagement to Dwight. Fast read I've missed most of this series but it doesn't really matter. Deborah goes to the mountains as a fill in judge only to run into the murders of two prominent men. Her nieces do some investigating and cause her to think twice about the facts, motive, means and opportunity. Deborah keeps the secrets the twins share and tempts fate by dating the lucious Lucius despite her engagement to Dwight. Fast read I've missed most of this series but it doesn't really matter.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Carolyn

    I was unfamiliar with this author when I plucked the Book from one of those Little Lending Libraries. The story setting was perfect, since I am currently staying near the mountains of western North Carolina. Much of the landscape described is right outside my door, making it easy to create a mental picture of unfolding events. Similar to a beach read, the characters are somewhat two-dimensional. Yet, it's a suspenseful read and I did develop an interest in Judge Deborah Knott. I was unfamiliar with this author when I plucked the Book from one of those Little Lending Libraries. The story setting was perfect, since I am currently staying near the mountains of western North Carolina. Much of the landscape described is right outside my door, making it easy to create a mental picture of unfolding events. Similar to a beach read, the characters are somewhat two-dimensional. Yet, it's a suspenseful read and I did develop an interest in Judge Deborah Knott.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Mary Baker

    Deborah Knott manages to get herself into trouble without a lot of effort, and she quickly becomes involved in a murder case in a town in the Appalachian mountains where she has gone to replace a judge who is on vacation. I enjoyed trying to figure out who the murderer was while becoming involved with Deborah's friends and family. Deborah Knott manages to get herself into trouble without a lot of effort, and she quickly becomes involved in a murder case in a town in the Appalachian mountains where she has gone to replace a judge who is on vacation. I enjoyed trying to figure out who the murderer was while becoming involved with Deborah's friends and family.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Crystal Toller

    In this book, Deborah and Dwight are getting married at Christmas and the congratulations are getting on Deborah's nerves. Her sister-in-law, Minnie makes a call and Deborah is sent to Cedar Gap to fill in for a judge on vacation. While there, she becomes involved in a mystery, and has an accident. She also discovers she has fallen in love with Dwight Bryant. A great addition to the series. In this book, Deborah and Dwight are getting married at Christmas and the congratulations are getting on Deborah's nerves. Her sister-in-law, Minnie makes a call and Deborah is sent to Cedar Gap to fill in for a judge on vacation. While there, she becomes involved in a mystery, and has an accident. She also discovers she has fallen in love with Dwight Bryant. A great addition to the series.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Kathy

    Free cassettes from library. Might try another in the series if I ever come across it and can remember the author's name. I might even look for Shooting at Loons which is a terrible thought and name for a book. Free cassettes from library. Might try another in the series if I ever come across it and can remember the author's name. I might even look for Shooting at Loons which is a terrible thought and name for a book.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Michelle

    Deborah heads to the mountains to escape all the wedding well wishers and she's only been engaged for less than 10 days! While there she ends up getting involved in a murder when the defendent is brought before her in court. From there it's just another fun read by Margaret Maron. Deborah heads to the mountains to escape all the wedding well wishers and she's only been engaged for less than 10 days! While there she ends up getting involved in a murder when the defendent is brought before her in court. From there it's just another fun read by Margaret Maron.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Mary

    how I love Margaret Maron and this series. It is so funny how you can get attached to characters in books. I just love spunky, smart and engaging Judge Deborah Knott and all the people in her life. I have already put #11 on hold!

  20. 5 out of 5

    Pat

    Good story line. I did not guess the “bad guy”. Interesting, Deborah Knott goes out to more hilly country and takes on a week of court duties out there. Interesting twists and I did enjoy this book. I enjoy C.J.Critt as the narrator too. I like the cadence of her story telling.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Val

    Each book just gets better! 😊 I am the first to admit that I don't really enjoy the books where Deborah goes out of town but the ending of this one changed my mind 😉. Everything is finally going how I want it to and I truly am happy ☺ I decided to check this series out at my library. Each book just gets better! 😊 I am the first to admit that I don't really enjoy the books where Deborah goes out of town but the ending of this one changed my mind 😉. Everything is finally going how I want it to and I truly am happy ☺ I decided to check this series out at my library.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Anie

    Fits into the cozy mystery genre, with a tad harlequin. And a tad is too much. Won't be reading this author again Fits into the cozy mystery genre, with a tad harlequin. And a tad is too much. Won't be reading this author again

  23. 4 out of 5

    Annabelle

    Two murders - interesting characters and stories.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Cyd

    Well-written brain candy--a mystery set in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Likable heroine, good dialogue, good character variety.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Sheila

    While Deborah is subbing in another jurisdiction she gets involved in a murder investigation.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Mary

    Surprisingly good. Didn't have very high expectations from the blurb on the back of the book, but I'll definitely look for others in this series and/or by this author. Surprisingly good. Didn't have very high expectations from the blurb on the back of the book, but I'll definitely look for others in this series and/or by this author.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Kris

    Having been getting these books from the library and am loving every one of them!!!

  28. 4 out of 5

    Michelle (meshe) Martin

    I'm so glad Deborah finally figured out how she feels. As much as I enjoy the books set in Deborah's home county, it's kinda fun to see what happens when she travels. I'm so glad Deborah finally figured out how she feels. As much as I enjoy the books set in Deborah's home county, it's kinda fun to see what happens when she travels.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Chris

    very good read. most excellent environment.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Camilla Harry

    This author's series keeps getting better as it goes. Love it. Could barely put this book down. A fast finish. Did not have the outcome pegged either! This author's series keeps getting better as it goes. Love it. Could barely put this book down. A fast finish. Did not have the outcome pegged either!

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