Kate Burkholder Books

Description /Buy link takes you to Amazon. As an Amazon Associate I earn money from qualifying purchases.

The name Kate Burkholder refers to a series of crime fiction novels written by Linda Castillo. The books follow the exploits of a law enforcement agent with Amish roots that must solve murders in a community that does not wholly appreciate her presence.

Order of Kate Burkholder Series

1Sworn to Silence2009Description / Buy
2Pray for Silence2010Description / Buy
3Breaking Silence2011Description / Buy
4Gone Missing2011Description / Buy
5Her Last Breath2013Description / Buy
6The Dead Will Tell2014Description / Buy
7After the Storm2015Description / Buy
8Among the Wicked2016Description / Buy
9Down a Dark Road2017Description / Buy
10A Gathering of Secrets2018Description / Buy
11Shamed2019Description / Buy
12Outsider2020Description / Buy
13Fallen2021Description / Buy

Order of Kate Burkholder Short Stories/Novellas

1Long Lost (Short Story)2013Description / Buy
2A Hidden Secret (Short Story)2015Description / Buy
3Seeds of Deception (Short Story)2016Description / Buy
4Only the Lucky (Short Story)2017Description / Buy
5In Dark Company (Short Story)2018Description / Buy
6In Plain Sight (Short Story)2019Description / Buy
7The Pact2020Description / Buy
8Disappeared2021Description / Buy

Order of Kate Burkholder Short Story Collections

1A Simple Murder2021Description / Buy
Print: Print PDF

Kate Burkholder grew up in Painters Mill, a cozy little farming community in Ohio. The town is unique because it is shared equally by the Amish and the English. The Amish live such a restrictive and austere lifestyle and they would rather not mingle with the modern world if they can help it.

As such, Painters Mill as a sleepy rural town should not work. However, the community has known nothing but peace for two centuries, with the Amish and the English living side by side.

Things changed sixteen years ago. A series of brutal murders broke the peace and drew Painters Mill into chaotic waters. Kate Burkholder was a young Amish girl at the time. Through a series of extraordinary circumstances, she survived the machinations of a killer who brutally marked his victims.

But she also realized that she could no longer live the Amish lifestyle. So she left her home and ventured into the English world. When Sworn to Silence, the first of the Kate Burkholder novels, kicks off, Kate has been forced back to Painters Mill.

As the new chief of police, it is her job to not only keep the peace between the English and Amish residents of her town but to also solve any crimes and mysteries that arise. Things take a dangerous turn when a series of murders eerily similar to those Painters Mill experienced 16 years ago manifest.

Everyone is quick to suggest that the Slaughterhouse killer has returned. But Kate knows that the Slaughterhouse Killer is gone. She has a secret, one which assures her that Painters Mill’s current murderer is someone entirely different. But she must prove this to be true and stop the murders before Painters Mill erupts into chaos once again.

The Kate Burkholder series is very dark. Linda Castillo goes to great lengths to describe the brutal murders at the center of each novel, going into such detail as to put a number of readers off. Her heroine has been praised for being smart and intuitive, but also warm and caring.

In fact, more often than not, she struggles and typically fails to keep her emotions out her cases. Kate’s work is always complicated by the fact that the Amish hate her for abandoning their ways.

She keeps working to overcome the bias that meets her every time she ventures into Amish territory. She is joined in her efforts by state agent John Tomasetti with whom she has a volatile relationship.

Kate Burkholder Awards

The Fifth novel in this series was nominated for a Thriller Award in 2014.

Kate Burkholder Books into Movies

The first novel in this series was adapted into a Lifetime Original Film called An Amish Murder. It starred Neve Campbell.

Best Kate Burkholder Books

The Burkholder novels try to walk the line between exploring the ways of the Amish and overwhelming readers with the brutality of their murders, with some of the best books in the series including:

Her Last Breath: An Amish Deacon and two of his children are killed in a tragic accident. His young boy is left fighting for dear life in intensive care. Kate Burkholder isn’t convinced that his best friend’s husband’s death was an accident, though.

She has reason to believe that there is a cold-blooded killer in Painters Mill, one she is determined to hunt down.

A Gathering of Secrets: When Kate Burkholder, the chief of police, is called upon to investigate a historic barn that burned down seemingly by accident, the discovery of a dead 18-year-old raises her suspicions.

The boy was well-liked but everywhere Kate looks, the Amish community stonewalls her. She starts to suspect that the religious community might be harboring a deep secret.

Other Book Series You May Like

The “Renee Ballard” Series by Michael Connolly is another one you might enjoy. Renee Ballard is a young police officer who works the night shift in Hollywood. She has her demons but she works hard to prove herself to her superiors in the LAPD. Every once in a while she will partner with Harry Bosch.

Another great series to check out is the “Detective D.D. Warren” Series by Lisa Gardner. These suspense thrillers chronicle the exploits of D.D. Warren, a police detective who solves crimes and murders in Boston. Though she often takes a back seat to Bobby Dodge, a former sniper turned detective.

What Is The Next Book in The Kate Burkholder Series?

There doesn't seem to be an upcoming book in The Kate Burkholder Series. The newest book is Fallen and was released on July, 6th 2021.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *