Dead Man’s Hand (Harper Collins)

In an authentic old west ghost town, Nick Caden uncovers the body of Jesse James … and other deadly secrets!

Awards for the Caden Chronicles mystery series:

  • Winner of the Selah award for tween / teen mysteries
  • INSPY Award nominee (runner up)
  • Moonbeam Children’s Book Award nominee (runner up — tagged out at third 🙂

It’s all just for show…right? Nothing more than Hollywood theatrics? “This is an authentic old west ghost town,” the sheriff tells Nick. “Around these parts the dead don’t stay dead.”

But Nick Caden’s vacation becomes a living nightmare when this this “living” ghost town in Deadwood takes a deadly turn toward trouble. Soon Nick finds himself trapped in a livery stable with the infamous outlaw Jesse James. The shooter whirls, aims and… vanishes. Great theatrics, Nick thinks.

Except now he’s alone in the hayloft with the bullet-riddled body of Billy the Kid which (and this is where things really get crazy-scary) DISAPPEARS.

Soon Nick is caught in a deadly chase—from an abandoned gold mine, through forbidden buffalo hunting grounds, and across Rattlesnake Gulch. Around every turn he finds another suspect. Will Nick solve the murder before his family leaves Deadwood? Or will the town’s desperate need for tourist and income bury the haunting truth — that something evil lives in this Old West Ghost Town?In this new middle-grade murder mystery series, award-winning author Eddie Jones takes readers on a Wild, Wild, West ride.

“Samuel was dead and buried. The woman said, ‘I see a ghostly figure coming up out of the earth.’ Then Samuel asked, ‘Why have you disturbed me by bringing me up?'” ~ ghosts in the Bible 

Praise for Dead Man’s Hand

This is teen fiction that’s not just for teens. I for one can’t wait for the next book in the series. For adventure, suspense and just plain laugh-out-loud fun, you can’t do better than Dead Man’s Hand. ~ Ann Tatlock, multiple Christy award winner

Dead Man’s Hand is an exciting ghost-story with lots of surprises. A great read for kids who love a good mystery. I highly recommend it!” Levi Holmes, son of best-selling author and two-time Christy Award nominee, Gina Holmes

Dead Man’s Hand was a perfect mixture of suspenseful and spooky. I loved all the detective stuff. It taught me how to find a murderer! ~ Abby Dellosso, daughter of author Mike Dellosso

With a plot that lassos you in, Dead Man’s Hand is a fantastical read! ~ Laura Tatlock

I am reading this book aloud to my seventh grade english class and they absolutely love it. It is really intriguing and gets the children’s’ attention. (And mine) It is so hard not to read ahead because I am so engrossed in the book too! ~ Goodreads

The author writes for boys because educators have noted that girls consistently outperform boys in reading skills. Research bears this out. Studies reveal that the literacy gap between male and female students is both longstanding and worldwide. Since the author is male and has two sons, he writes for boys.
But girls may also like the Caden Chronicles series.
The Caden Chronicles series contains no; sexual dialogue or situations, violence, or strong language. While this kids murder mystery series discusses things like ghosts, vampires, and zombies, it does so in a factual way. Enjoy the study questions at the end of books 1 and 2.

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