"The Hiding Place" By Paula Munier: Review/Giveaway

Review by Cynthia Chow 

Details at the end of this post on how to enter to win a copy of the book and links to purchase it.

Life for former MP Mercy Carr has not slowed down since she returned from Afghanistan to live back home in the Green Mountains of Northshire, Vermont. Helping her to recover from her PTSD has been Belgian Malinois Elvis, a bomb-sniffing war dog handled by Mercy’s late fiancĂ©. Against her grandmother’s advice, Mercy makes a deathbed visit to her grandfather’s home, Deputy Pitts, who asks her not only to investigate a cold case but to adopt his retriever Sunny. Taking in another dog is easy compared to looking into the disappearance of Beth Kilgore, who along with her abusive husband went missing in 1999.

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It’s an eerie coincidence when Police Captain Thrasher comes with the news that George Rucker, the man who killed Mercy’s grandpa Sheriff Red O’Sullivan, has escaped from prison and could be bent on continuing his mission of revenge. Local gossip had it that Red was having an affair with Rucker’s wife Ruby, a disreputable woman from Vegas who shocked the town with her unabashed flirtations and inappropriately tight clothing. A bomb attempt foiled by Elvis seems to indicate that either Mercy or her grandmother Patience are being targeted for murder, especially when it’s followed by an attempted break-in.

This is the worst time for the arrival of Wesley John Hallett, a military dog handler claiming to be Elvis’s rightful owner. An IED left him wounded and placed Elvis in the hands of Hallett’s partner Sergeant Martinez, the love of Mercy’s life and who would later himself be killed in action. Mercy has no intention of breaking the promise she made to Martinez to take care of Elvis, and giving him up would break her like nothing else. She’s already suffering from the betrayal of trust by game warden Troy Warner, who was nudging his way past her guard, until the estranged wife he neglected to mention existed, crashed their first dance together. Ignoring him will be impossible as not only is he determined to protect Mercy, but his own investigation into the death of a wildlife biologist has Troy’s bosses ordering that he spy on her to prevent her from interfering. 

I’ve loved these characters since they debuted in A Borrowing of Bones, but this third is my absolute favorite. Mercy’s interactions with her independent grandmother and her straight-laced, take-no-prisoners very judgmental mother explain just how Mercy became the woman she is now. The advice she is given on how to move on in her life, and what she should choose to protect, is both heart-breaking and heart-warming. Just as complex is her dilemma over Elvis, and whether holding onto him is in hers or his best interests. While the continual attacks upon them are undoubtedly stressful, Elvis is outstanding at his job at detecting bombs and protecting his handler. 

Balancing these complicated topics are Mercy’s daily conversations with her family, and particularly memorable is one between herself and her grandmother as they prepare a doberge cake together. Librarians will, of course, appreciate the tribute to libraries as sanctuaries and librarians as agitators and protectors of privacy. While this serves as an eminently rewarding and satisfying conclusion to the series, readers can hope that there will be further installments exploring the lives of Mercy and her wonderful Green Mountains family.  

To enter to win a copy of The Hiding Place, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line "hiding,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen April 10, 2021. US residents only and you must be 18 or older to enter. If entering via email please include your mailing address in case you win. BE AWARE THAT DUE TO THE CURRENT CRISIS THERE MAY BE A DELAY IN SHIPPING THE WINNING BOOK. You can read our privacy statement here if you like.

Check out other mystery articles, reviews, book giveaways & mystery short stories in our mystery section in Kings River Life and in our mystery category here on KRL News & Reviews. And join our mystery Facebook group to keep up with everything mystery we post, and have a chance at some extra giveaways. And check out our new mystery podcast which features mystery short stories and first chapters read by local actors! A new episode went up this week.

You can use these links to purchase the book. If you have adblocker on you may not be able to see the Amazon link:

Cynthia Chow is the branch manager of Kaneohe Public Library on the island of Oahu. She balances a librarian lifestyle of cardigans and hair buns with a passion for motorcycle riding and regrettable tattoos (sorry, Mom).
 Disclosure: This post contains links to an affiliate program, for which we receive a few cents if you make purchases. KRL also receives free copies of most of the books that it reviews, that are provided in exchange for an honest review of the book.


  1. Sounds interesting! Count me in!

  2. This sounds very suspenseful, right up my alley. Thanks for the chance to win a copy. crs(at)codedivasites(dot)com

  3. This sounds like a fascinating and engaging book!

  4. Sounds like another good series, count me in! tWarner419(at)aol(dot)com

  5. Sounds like another great book. Thanks for the chance.

  6. Hard to break the bond of a dog and it's handler.
    Sounds intriguing. thanks


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