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The Riddles of Hillgate (Z & C Mysteries #1)

3.22  ·  Rating Details  ·  393 Ratings  ·  92 Reviews
Zoey is known around her town of Riverside for making bad decisions when it comes to auctions and real estate investments. When her savvy daughter, Claire, learns her most recent purchase is eighty acres on the haunted, desolate side of town, she is simply flabbergasted. This purchase soon reveals some hidden inconveniences, like—murder, skeletons, secrets, and the riddles ...more
Kindle Edition, 138 pages
Published October 14th 2011 by Breezy Reads
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Sep 13, 2013 Paula rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Tweens, Teens, and Adults
Recommended to Paula by: Kathy at I Am A Reader, Not A Writer
Shelves: reviewed
I just finished reading The Riddles of Hillgate and truly enjoyed it. This wonderfully written book had you guessing what was next! Always something unexpected and intriguing happening. I found myself trying to figure out the riddles while cooking dinner or one of the other tasks pulled me away from the book. I like to think that I am a strong woman but Zoey and Claire were much kinder and braver than I would have been under the same circumstances. They are what I strive to be. I can’t wait to r ...more
Oct 18, 2013 Shirley rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Wouldn't
Recommended to Shirley by: Amazon
Awful, truly awful.

The beginning of the read showed some promise, but this quickly evaporated, at least by the second chapter.

I did plod on for several chapters, but ultimately surrendered any hope of getting to the end. Wooden characters, weak storyline and dreadful writing all lead me to abandon this short read soon after starting it.

I could not under any circumstances recommend this book.
I just couldn't suspend disbelief for this one. The story starts out with the members of the Chamber of Commerce taunting one of their own for her unwise purchases. I've belonged to a number of chambers of commerce, and professional people in a business setting would not act like elementary school kids making fun of someone in their midst. Then the whole concept that a mansion would be overgrown and forgotten and the family would disappear with no questions asked for seventy years is just not pl ...more
*Received from the author in exchange for an honest review*

The Hillgate mansion is full of mystery, history and wonder! As you trek across the eight acres of land, you will come across a wonder locked away from prying eyes and hidden under weeds and unwanted parasites, to reveal a lost antique that will change the community forever. I love the cover, how the mother and daughter are silhouetted adds great mystery and the moonlight showing how a lot of the dangers... begin at night!

Zo is known
Jannat Bhat ( Obsessive Compulsive Reader)
Originally posted at :

This was such a fun mystery to read. I couldn't help but feel that Zoey & Claire were the perfect mother daughter duo for this kind of story. The book is about as the title suggests the riddles of Hillgate. When Claire's mother Zoey makes a purchase of 80 acres Claire feels nothing short of shocked and dissapointment. Until they stumble upon a 300 year old but amazing house that is. Clearing up the house they decide to turn it into a
Kathryn Svendsen

This book was a light and zany, quick read. At only 138 pages, this book is short enough to be finished in an evening (I’m a fast reader.) Zoey and Claire Kane (also the names of the authors of the book) are the perfect example of Murphy’s Law. There is always something going wrong, from Claire driving into a ditch, to the skeletons in the mansion and a murder on the opening night of their hotel.

There was a little bit of everything in this novella from romance to murder to ghosts (or were they
Oct 05, 2013 Christy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Riddles of Hillgate is a cute, cozy mystery with all that you'd expect from a cozy. It's got the female protagonists who end up with a mystery to solve on their own.

Poor Zoey has had some bad luck in real estate. So when she buys a huge plot of land, by the dump mind you, sight unseen, the townsfolk are less than kind to her. They make fun of her purchase and look down on her business sense. Fortunately for her, her daughter, Claire, shows up right around the same time, and she takes her to
Sep 30, 2013 Shauna rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a FUN, INTRIGUING book!

A little humor
A little mystery
A little suspense
A little romance
A little treasure-hunting
A wonderful read!

Zoey has made her craziest purchase to date...eighty acres of who knows what.

Claire has just lost her job and her boyfriend and has come home to be with her mom.

Together the two start walking through the eighty acres.

They come across a family cemetery, an old mansion and a lot of weeds.

The mansion is filled with all the heirlooms left behind by the previous family.
Frishawn Quinn
This book is a treasure of cozy proportions!
The antique obsessed, firecracker that is Zoey Kane, and her
equally spirited daughter Claire, are taking sleuthing to hysterical heights
in The Riddles of Hillgate.

The chances are often slim to none that a reader can find likeable, well rounded, and
true to life characters, a thoroughly executed mystery that manages to keep one guessing,
and highbrow hilarity in 138 pages.
That is however, just what this miniature masterpiece of mother/daughter mystery
Ahhh, another fun and quick read! Some may find The Riddles of Hillgate to be cheesy, but I consider it cheesy FUN! I love cheesy fun!

Zoey and Claire are a great mother-daughter team who both hit bottom at the same time. With luck, the stumbled upon the mansion that they dubbed, Hillgate, turned out to be a great experience for them.

This was a fun mystery with comedy to go along with it. Dealing with trying to earn money by turning it into a hotel and having a "ghost" and finding out the secrets
Kathy Mcvey
Jan 14, 2014 Kathy Mcvey rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I found myself laughing because it was so bad. Do the Mother and daughter have any friends? They find an old mansion on their property and sleep in it that night? Why do they share a room and a bed, even after they fix it up? It skips over a lot of things and skips around too much. I'm glad it was free.
Oct 14, 2013 Lillian rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love this book... Too bad it was so short. This book is perfect for those who want something short and easy to read, it even has riddles... How awesome is that? The book although short got straight to the point and it kept me wanting more. I didn't think that this book would be even remotely scary but there were a few times that had me pull up my bed cover to my chin. I love how the author described the mansion (I have a thing for stained glass windows).
Brandi Striegel
Feb 11, 2014 Brandi Striegel rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
One of the worst books I've ever read. The editing was bad, the plot was worse. I knew from the first page I was doomed to suffer through the rest in an effort to offer the book a chance at redemption that never came.
Vanessa Simmons
Apr 05, 2014 Vanessa Simmons rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Author should have done a little research on tax law. When you have twenty bedrooms why are mother and daughter sleeping in the same room let alone the same bed. Finished it only because I finish books.
Sidhaarthan Asaithambi
Very good book for a quick read.. You cant take your eyes from the book unless you finish it.. Nice work Z!!
Dec 31, 2014 Rebecca rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle-free
Ridiculous beyond my ability to suspend disbelief. They're supposed to be the first people to be in the house in 70 years with everything perfectly preserved... so why are there a washer and dryer in the laundry room and walk-in refrigerators in the kitchen?? Who were all those clues supposed to have been left for? And supposedly she bought the property from someone without anyone knowing the house was there?? And it hadn't been sold before in the 70 years for some reason? It's just too ridiculo ...more
Oct 15, 2013 Patti rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Nook book. Cute story
Diane ~Firefly~
I didn't enjoy this. First the characters have the same names as the authors and that is just weird. Then it went so far out of bounds with just about everything that I spend most of the time rolling my eyes at how unbelievable it all was. Seriously, you buy 80 acres unseen and go walk it one day and just happen to find a mansion no one remembered was there (who is the crazy seller and how far back could it be if they found it walking)? A perfectly preserved mansion that you can make into a hote ...more
With an common start with a mother that apparently seems (slightly) strange and that cannot adapt to her age (or make a common sense purchases) and with a daughter put in a position to start it over again on all levels, The Riddles of Hillgate get to be a story with an unexpected ending (somewhat).

The mystery that Zoey and Claire (mother and daughter) have to solve by unraveling of some clues (actually riddles) and the risk of death that will hang over the two of them will create a gothic atmosp
Stephanie  from Books Paradise
Claire: "Maybe that's why The Fillmores abandoned it in such haste. Maybe that's why it was a secret for so long and all these crazy things have happened."
Zoey: "I know. But don't worry, darling, we are safe for tonight at least."
Claire: "Mom, I have never heard you so sure of yourselt."
Zoey: "Well, having a colt .45 under my bed can do wonders."

My thoughts: The Riddles of Hillgate is the first book in the Zoey and Claire Mystery Series. I do not really want to give a summary, because this bo
Feb 16, 2012 Colette rated it liked it
The Riddles of Hillgate was just a fun read. I enjoyed it because it was an over the top, slightly crazy mystery. I loved the mother daughter team of Claire and Zoey. They reminded me so much of my mom and I. Claire kept me laughing by second guessing her mom's decision, and how surprised she was when her mom was right about something.

The mystery surrounding Hillgate was fun, and even if it was a bit unbelievable that they turned the mansion into a running hotel in a short amount of time, I lov
Cat's Review
Nov 16, 2013 Cat's Review rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Middle school children and very young adults

Well, this was just a silly little book, I mean novella.
It ended at 78% on my Kindle and the rest of the percentages were taken up by reviews of the book and a sampling of the next book in the series.

This book was simple enough for a middle school student to read and it seemed that it was more appropriate for a tween or a teenage to read than it was for an adult – simple mysteries, clues were easy discovered and things worked out well for the main characters with very little effort put into it.
Aug 20, 2015 Megs rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this book in the plane and in the airport while I was on holiday and found it was a perfect book for that situation. Something light and fluffy, that was easy to pick up and put down as needed.

That said, this book wasn't memorable or ground-breaking in any way. I wouldn't go out of my way to recommend it or pick up a sequel.

Claire is a young woman whose life is falling apart, so she moves in with her mother for a while. Zoey is an unsuccessful real estate agent whose luck is usually terr
Apr 04, 2014 Sherry rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
this is a cute little mystery of a Mom and daughter who end up turning an old mansion into a bed and breakfast. Unfortunately it's haunted. through the course of the book Clare and Zoe have lots of difficulties. 1st the new B&B has problems with a ghost scaring the visitors away, the next night the singer entertaining the guests dies when her equipment short circuits. You'll have to read the ending to find out who is behind all the mischief!
Charming and cute, a very quick read.

That being said, the writing was pretty bad. Cleaned up and edited, this would be even more enjoyable. The plot was interesting, although the last half of the book was way too rushed. The characters were easy to relate to, although more like sisters than mother and daughter (who the hell asks to accompany their daughter on a date? Ugh.) There were a lot of plot holes, dialogue frequently did not make sense and some things were over-explained and some things w
Brooke Berry
Oct 12, 2013 Brooke Berry rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Zoey Kane is known around Riverside for making risky purchases. When her daughter Claire learns a most recent investment is eighty acres on the haunted side of town, she is simply flabbergasted. Amazement takes over the whole community, however, when an old mansion is discovered deep within trees. After the estate is turned into a popular hotel, no one could have expected just how risky this purchase would be.

This mother daughter duo are brave and strong willed. I found myself thinking about the
Feb 25, 2015 Michele rated it it was amazing

Though this book was exciting and well-written, it did leave me wishing there was more to it. I feel as though I were listening to an air-head. I guess I just want more details, more story, without all the jumping over things. Overall it was a good book.
Jun 25, 2014 Betsy rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This was a small book. I almost stopped reading it a couple times. It just wasn't that interesting. And pretty improbable! A woman buys an old property & finds out there's a mansion filled with antiques & beautiful treasures. And there's a ghost who helps her find gold bars. As if...
Feb 11, 2014 Jay rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This had the potential to be a great mystery but at 100 pages there just was not enough fleshing out of the story. The characters were interesting but rather similar, the descriptions less than discriptive and the plot jumped around too much with too many gaps.
Super quick read and a fun story. A nice not-predictable mystery. Makes me wish I could buy an old house and find treasures at every turn. I did find it weird that mother and daughter slept together even after the mystery was solved.
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“sighed. “I can’t say that you weren’t expected.” “I’m just going to be walking around here and taking some measurements. It says here… you own eighty acres? That is one of the most gorgeous mansions I have ever seen,” he rambled on. “It must have cost you millions. I could never afford such a beauty. Well, heck, for that matter I couldn’t afford the millions of dollars in taxes a house like this would assess, let alone such a pricey property. Do you have an accountant?” Zo opened her mouth to respond, but he continued, “For an estate this size, I would definitely have one.” “I do have an accountant,” she cut in, with frustration. “Furthermore, I have invested a lot of money bringing this mansion up to speed. You can see my investment is great.” “Of course, it would be. The fact of the matter is, Mrs. Kane, a lot of people are in over their heads in property. You still have to pay up, or we take the place. Well, I’ll get busy now. Pay no mind to me.” He walked on, taking notes. “Clairrrrre!” Zo called as soon as she entered the house. “Bring your cell phone!” Two worry-filled months went by and many calls were made to lawyers, before Zoey finally picked one that made her feel confident. And then the letter came with the totals and the due date. “There is no way we can pay this, Mom, even if we sold off some of our treasures, because a lot of them are contracted to museums anyway. I am feeling awfully poor all of a sudden, and insecure.” “Yes, and I did some research, thinking I’d be forced to sell. It’s unlikely that anyone else around here can afford this place. It looks like they are going to get it all; they aren’t just charging for this year. What we have here is a value about equal to a little country. And all the new construction sites for housing developments suddenly popping up on this side of the river, does not help. Value is going up.” Zo put her head in her hands. “Ohhh, oh, oh, oh!” “Yeah, bring out the ice-cream and cake. I need comforting,” sighed Claire. The cell phone rang. “Yes, tonight? You guys have become pretty good to us, haven’t you?! You know, Bob, Mom and I thought we were just going to pig out on ice cream and cake. We found out we are losing this estate and are going to be poor again and we are bummed out.” There was a long pause. “No, that’s okay, I understand. Yeah, okay, bye.” “Well?” Zo ask dryly. “He was appropriately sorry, and he got off the phone fast, saying he remembered he had other business to take care of. Do you want to cry? I do…” “I’ll get the cake and dish the ice cream. You make our tea and we’ll cry together.” A pitter patter began to drum on the window. “Rain again. It seems softer though, dear.” “I thought you said this was going to be a softer rain!” It started to pour. “At least this is not a thunder storm… What was that?” “Thunder,” replied Claire, unmoved and resigned. An hour had gone by when there was a rapping at the door. “People rarely use the doorbell, ever notice that?” Zo asked on the way to the door. She opened it to reveal two wet guys holding a pizza, salad, soft drink, and giant chocolate chip cookies in a plastic container. In a plastic” 1 likes
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