Bell Elkins

10 books in series
4 out of 5 stars 333 ratings

A Killing in the Hills Publisher's Summary

What’s happening in Acker’s Gap, West Virginia? Three elderly men are gunned down over their coffee at a local diner, and seemingly half the town is there to witness the act. Still, it happened so fast, and no one seems to have gotten a good look at the shooter. Was it random? Was it connected to the spate of drug violence plaguing poor areas of the country just like Acker’s Gap? Or were Dean Streeter, Shorty McClurg, and Lee Rader targeted somehow?

One of the witnesses to the brutal incident was Carla Elkins, teenaged daughter of Bell Elkins, the prosecuting attorney for Raythune County, West Virginia. 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 uniquely placed to help her mother do her job. After all, what better way to repair their fragile, damaged relationship? But could Carla also end up doing more harm than good - in fact, putting her own life in danger?

In this powerful, intricate debut from Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist Julia Keller, a mother and a daughter try to do right by a town and each other before it’s too late.

©2012 Julia Keller (P)2012 Brilliance Audio, Inc.
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  • Book 1

    • A Killing in the Hills

    • By: Julia Keller
    • Narrated by: Shannon McManus
    • Length: 12 hrs and 33 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4 out of 5 stars 133
    • Performance
      4 out of 5 stars 119
    • Story
      4 out of 5 stars 118

    What’s happening in Acker’s Gap, West Virginia? Three elderly men are gunned down over their coffee at a local diner, and seemingly half the town is there to witness the act. Still, it happened so fast, and no one seems to have gotten a good look at the shooter. Was it random? Was it connected to the spate of drug violence plaguing poor areas of the country just like Acker’s Gap? Or were Dean Streeter, Shorty McClurg, and Lee Rader targeted somehow?

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • A wonderful treat!

    • By Joanne on 09-11-12

    Regular price: $29.99

    • A Killing in the Hills

    • A Bell Elkins Novel, Book 1
    • By: Julia Keller
    • Narrated by: Regina Reagan
    • Length: 11 hrs and 57 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      0 out of 5 stars 0
    • Performance
      0 out of 5 stars 0
    • Story
      0 out of 5 stars 0

    Nestled in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains, visitors see only its stunning natural beauty. But for those living there it's a different story. The mountain roads harbour secret places, perfect for making the prescription drugs that tempt its desperately poor. Bell Elkins left as a broken teenager, savaged by a past she couldn't forget. But, as prosecuting attorney for Raythune County, Bell is back and determined to help clean up the only home she has ever known.

    Regular price: $15.48

  • Book 2

    • Bitter River

    • A Bell Elkins Novel, Book 2
    • By: Julia Keller
    • Narrated by: Shannon McManus
    • Length: 11 hrs and 58 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4 out of 5 stars 74
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 65
    • Story
      4 out of 5 stars 66

    Phone calls before dawn are never good news. And when you're the county's prosecuting attorney, calls from the sheriff are rarely good news, either. So when Bell Elkins picks up the phone, she already knows she won't like what she's about to hear, but she's still not prepared for this: sixteen-year-old Lucinda Trimble's body has been found at the bottom of Bitter River. And Lucinda didn't drown - she was dead before her body ever hit the water. With a case like that, Bell knows the coming weeks are going to be tough. But that's not all Bell is coping with these days.

    • 4 out of 5 stars
    • Liked the writing but not the story

    • By Catherine on 04-03-16

    Regular price: $29.99

    • Bitter River

    • By: Julia Keller
    • Narrated by: Regina Reagan
    • Length: 11 hrs and 13 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4 out of 5 stars 1
    • Performance
      4 out of 5 stars 1
    • Story
      4 out of 5 stars 1

    The second in the Bell Elkins crime series from Pulitzer-prize winner Julia Keller. For fans of Linwood Barclay, Dennis Lehane and Henning Mankell. In a small town, everybody is next of kin to everybody else. When a local high-school student - sixteen, promising and pregnant - is found murdered in a car in Bitter River, the hunt is on to find her killer.

    Regular price: $15.98

  • Book 3

    • Summer of the Dead

    • Bell Elkins, Book 3
    • By: Julia Keller
    • Narrated by: Shannon McManus
    • Length: 10 hrs and 52 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4 out of 5 stars 47
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 39
    • Story
      4 out of 5 stars 39

    High summer in Acker's Gap, West Virginia - but no one's enjoying the rugged natural landscape. Not while a killer stalks the small town and its hard-luck inhabitants. County prosecutor Bell Elkins and Sheriff Nick Fogelsong are stymied by a murderer who seems to come and go like smoke on the mountain. At the same time, Bell must deal with the return from prison of her sister, Shirley - who, like Bell, carries the indelible scars of a savage past.

    • 3 out of 5 stars
    • Unsatisfying conclusion

    • By Catherine on 04-06-16

    Regular price: $29.99

  • Book 3.5

    A Haunting of the Bones audiobook cover art
    Not Available on Audible.com

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    Sometimes a book goes temporarily out of print - and sometimes no audio version has ever been recorded. Audible wants to give you the most complete selection we can and we'll keep adding series and filling in gaps as quickly as possible.

  • Book 4

    • Last Ragged Breath

    • Bell Elkins, Book 4
    • By: Julia Keller
    • Narrated by: Shannon McManus
    • Length: 11 hrs
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4 out of 5 stars 33
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 29
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 29

    Royce Dillard doesn't remember much about the day his parents - and one hundred and twenty-three other souls - died in the 1972 Buffalo Creek disaster. He was only two years old when he was ripped from his mother's arms. But now Dillard, who lives off the grid with only a passel of dogs for company, is fighting for his life one more time: He's on trial for murder. Prosecutor Bell Elkins faces her toughest challenge yet in this haunting story of vengeance, greed, and the fierce struggle for social justice.

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • Author/ series

    • By Lori Giovine on 01-24-18

    Regular price: $29.99

    • Last Ragged Breath

    • Bell Elkins 4
    • By: Julia Keller
    • Narrated by: Laurel Lefkow
    • Length: 10 hrs and 36 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      0 out of 5 stars 0
    • Performance
      0 out of 5 stars 0
    • Story
      0 out of 5 stars 0

    Karin Slaughter has called Julia Keller 'a rare talent', and Dennis Lehane has praised her 'remarkable writing'. Now Bell Elkins returns - a high-profile development has been green-lit in Acker's Gap, but with one resident refusing to sell his land, tensions are running high, and when a body is found it's up to Bell to find out the truth.

    Regular price: $20.65

  • Book 5

    • Sorrow Road

    • Bell Elkins, Book 5
    • By: Julia Keller
    • Narrated by: Shannon McManus
    • Length: 11 hrs and 30 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 23
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 19
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 19

    From the small towns of Appalachia they came, the young men who joined the fight for liberty in World War II. Now they are elderly, and some of them - like Harmon Strayer, father of prosecutor Bell Elkins's former law school classmate - suffer from Alzheimer's. When Harmon dies in an Alzheimer's care facility from what appear to be natural causes, Bell confronts a mystery that brims with questions about memory, grief and the lethal cost of burying the past.

    Regular price: $29.99

  • Book 6

    • Fast Falls the Night

    • Bell Elkins, Book 6
    • By: Julia Keller
    • Narrated by: Shannon McManus
    • Length: 9 hrs and 26 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4 out of 5 stars 22
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 20
    • Story
      4 out of 5 stars 20

    The first drug overdose comes just after midnight, when a young woman dies on the dirty floor of a gas station bathroom. To the people of the small town of Acker's Gap, West Virginia, it is just another tragedy. It is sad - but these days, depressingly familiar. But then there is another overdose. And another. And another. Prosecutor Bell Elkins soon realizes that her Appalachian hometown is facing its starkest challenge yet: a day of constant heroin overdoses from a batch tainted with a lethal tranquilizer.

    Regular price: $20.99