Saddened by her mother's untimely death and fully aware of the less-than-close relationship she had with her, Chloe Ellfeson is determined to learn about her mother's adoption and her true heritage. In Fiddling With Fate by Kathleen Ernst Chloe discovers some antique embroidery pieces hidden in her mother's closet.
These lead her to accept a consulting job in Norway that enables her to research her mother's adoption and the priceless heirlooms as well as the music and dances of Norway. She convinces her fiance Roelke Mc Kenna to go along with her and soon they are on their way to the Hardanger area of Norway.
She's thrilled to be learning about the importance of fiddle music and dancing in Norwegian tradition, but folklore says the fiddle is "the devil's instrument."
The historical background in this book is told through two eras: Chloe's timeline, 1984 and the historical period from 1854 on. This technique lets the author reveal historical connections without using the main character.
As Chloe researches, she discovers the embroidered pieces she has were typical of the region and were passed down from generation to generation. Wanting to keep them secure, she asks the innkeeper at the historic Utne Hotel to place them in the hotel's safe. Within a day, they are discovered missing.
Broken hearted, Chloe now sets out in earnest to discover the connection between the embroidery, her mother and her adoption. When someone is murdered, Roelke worries they have placed themselves in an untenable situation.
This is an outstanding series and I love the two eras technique of unfolding the story.
Disclosure: I received this book from the author.