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Reining in Murder

(A Carson Stables Mystery #1)

3.87  ·  Rating details ·  235 ratings  ·  66 reviews
When horse trainer Annie Carson rescues a beautiful thoroughbred from a roadside rollover, she knows the horse is lucky to be alive…unlike the driver. After rehabilitating the injured animal at her Carson Stables ranch, Annie delivers the horse to Hilda Colbert--the thoroughbred's neurotic and controlling owner--only to find she's been permanently put out to pasture. Two d ...more
Paperback, 352 pages
Published March 29th 2016 by Kensington
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Average rating 3.87  · 
Rating details
 ·  235 ratings  ·  66 reviews

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Jessica Robbins
Dec 26, 2017 rated it liked it
For complete review check out my blog at https://booksaplentybookreviews.blogs... ...more
Sep 10, 2017 rated it liked it
The first book in the Carson Stables mystery series by Leigh Hearon, Reining In Murder, introduces readers to Annie Carson. She's the owner of a small farm and an assortment of horses and other animals. She's also the area horse rescue leader, so anytime there's a need for someone to help with a horse, she gets a call.

Such a call comes in early one morning. There's a traffic accident involving a thoroughbred in a trailer that overturned on the highway. The driver is dead and when it is determine
I received a copy in exchange for an honest review

I started this book after DNF'ing a sci-fi book that was too gruesome and dark for me, so a nice cozy mystery seemed like it would be the perfect book to read after that. The start of this book was good. Main character Annie cared about animals and the book starts with a mysterious death and she helps rescue the horse that was in the accident. The first chapter was great and I am not exactly sure when I started losing interest, but this book just
Cathy Cole
Reining in Murder raised some decidedly mixed emotions in me as I read. Leigh Hearon has created a good, solid mystery, and all the scenes concerning horses and dogs are excellent. The author also created a very intriguing pairing of characters with the elderly Martha and Annie's irritating sister Lavender. These are all good bits that I really appreciated.

However, I think your enjoyment of the book is going to hinge on your perception of the main character, Annie Carson. Mine certainly did. An
Mar 14, 2016 rated it really liked it
Annie is a horse trainer, and the local horse rescue contact, so when a horse trailer is involved in a fatal accident, she's called to the scene to help, but once she gets the bay thoroughbred home strange things start happening, and before long she's embroiled in a murder investigation (and harboring a material witness).

This isn't your average cozy mystery. Most tend to be on the lighter side, but this definitely has some depth to it, and Annie does not deliberately obstruct or bypass the offic
Susan Ferguson
Apr 30, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cozy-mystery, nook, 2020
Annie is awakened in the middle of the night by a phone call saying there has been a wreck involving a horse trailer. She is part of a rescue that responds to such things as well as rescuing neglected horses. The horse is an expensive thoroughbred on it's way to a neighbor's, not a well-liked neighbor. She ends up walking the horse to her home because he is too traumatized to load in a trailer. The driver of the rig involved in the wreck is dead. When she goes to return the horse to the owner, s ...more
Aug 08, 2016 rated it it was ok
Shelves: cozy, m-z
Book could have used a better editor! It's ridiculous, but one of the things that sticks out the most is a puppy which kept switching gender (example: "Annie scooped him up and hugged her."). Not a bad story, but it wasn't that great either. The villain was pretty one-dimensional. The love-interest subplot was baffling, and not in a good way. I found it jarring how some characters swung back and forth between being chummy with the main character and sniping at her like middle-school girls.

I'd pr
Feb 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
Stumbled onto this via some detective work (read: nosiness) of my own, but glad I picked it up. Being a fairly new transplant to the Pacific Northwest, I found the details of the Olympic Peninsula setting very interesting and relatable. The horse stuff was really fun, too. Ironically, I grew up in horse country, but never got involved. They are beautiful animals, but I've always been a little intimidated. Reading this book had me kind of regretting not overcoming my fears. The writing flows natu ...more
Deborah Gebhardt
Jun 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jeanie Jackson
Jul 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: xread-2018, suspense
I love Reining in Murder as much as I hoped I would. I have been wanting to read it since I first heard about it. I loved the balance of day to day and mystery and spending time with her friends. I wonder if someone is going to develop a crush on her. The mystery was strong and while not what I would have expected for the resolution, completely reasonable. This is one of the few times in a long time that I missed the same clue everyone else missed. I did not light the fact that she took evidence ...more
Theresa Phillips
Apr 30, 2019 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was a good mystery that should appeal to horse lovers. Good characters, including a couple of quirky ones. Lots of good information about horse keeping and training. Fast-paced mystery. I'm ready for the next one in the series.
May 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I liked this book very much. A mystery with animal rescue. Two of my favorites in one. I'm now reading the second book in the series, Saddle up for Murder.
Jan 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery
It was nice reading a book with a main character who had some common sense.
Carol Lynn
May 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Good adult - NOT x-rated - horses and mystery

#2 downliaded and ready to read ...keep writing, Leigh!

Not feeling wordy much more do I have to write....
Mary Tucker
Jun 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
this is one of the best mysteries i have ever read. i saw ratings from 1-4 stars when the books that this author has written should be 5 stars hands down.
Oct 26, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Horses and a murder mystery

Not about teenage love agnst. HOORAH! Just people, some horse people some not, making up a rural community in Washington state. Light, easy read.
Mary Brown
Sep 26, 2016 rated it really liked it

"Here's a new heroine after my own heart. Plan to stay up all night with this one." -- Fern Michaels, #1 New York Timesbestselling author

When horse trainer Annie Carson rescues a beautiful thoroughbred from a roadside rollover, she knows the horse is lucky to be alive…unlike the driver. After rehabilitating the injured animal at her Carson Stables ranch, Annie delivers the horse to Hilda Colbert--the thoroughbred's neurotic and controlling owner--only to find she's been permanently put
Feb 04, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2016, cozy-mysteries
Reining in Murder by Leigh Hearon is the first book in A Carson Stables Mystery series. Annie Carson is a horse rescuer in Suwana County, Washington. She receives a call during the night from Sheriff Dan Stetson. A man was in an accident and he was hauling a horse. The horse needs to be brought back to Carson Farm. The man who was driving, Wayne Johnston did not survive. The horse was okay and only suffered minor injuries. Unfortunately, the gorgeous horse belongs to Hilda Colbert of Colbert Far ...more
Sep 24, 2016 rated it really liked it
I won this book on Goodreads. Annie Carson is a horse trainer, she is called in the middle of the night to rescue a horse in a trailer rollover. She rehabilitates the horse and tries to return the horse to the neurotic owner. She finds the owner dead and tries to find out who the killer is. Lots of information on training horses. It also has the typical horses in a barn fire scene.
DelAnne Frazee
Apr 05, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reviewed
Title: Reining in Murder - Carson Stables Mystery 1
Author: Leigh Hearon
Published: 3-29-2016
Publisher: Kensington Books
Pages: 352
Genre: Mystery, Thrillers & Suspense
Sub Genre: Cozy Mystery; Amateur Sleuths; Animals; Private Investigators
ISBN: 9781496700339
Reviewer: DelAnne
Reviewed For: NetGalley
My Rating: 4 1/2 Stars

Carson Stables located in Suwana County Washington is run by Annie Carson. As a horse rescuer she receives a late night call from S
Apr 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Anyone who likes horses and are interested in horse rescue will like this book. This is the first one in a new series and Leigh Hearon hasn't written in a lot of detail about horse rescue, but the heroine of this series is involved in rescue and it mentions that she gets horses that other trainers haven't been able to handle as well as working with the Sheriff's dept on calls that need to have horses "picked up" from situations at various times - day or night.

The story starts out with a middle
R J Mckay
Mar 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: top-shelf
I received this book from Goodreads in exchange for a review.

Little did Annie Carson realize when she was called in to provide her services as a horse rescuer, she would soon find herself entrenched in not one, but two, murders in Olympic Peninsula, Washington.

An accident that claimed the life of the transport driver, left a frantic horse in need of Annie’s calming influence. But after several days of working with the horse that Annie had dubbed Trooper, it was time to return him to his new owne
May 01, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I guess the "girls in love with horses" thing is a cliché, but clichés are clichés because they're true. I was obsessed when I was a child, and still suffer from a nostalgic longing to go take riding lessons again. Basically what this means for me now is that when a book comes my way in which horses feature prominently, I'm all over it. If I see it on Netgalley, I'm requesting it – and only afterward will the realization come along that this could be a major mistake. Horses + cozy mystery could ...more
Mar 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I received an e-copy of Reining In Murder from the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.
Within a few sentences, one realizes not only that Leigh Hearon, author of REINING IN MURDER, knows a thing or two about horses, but that the reader is going to learn a lot about the topic, also.
Annie Carson is a horse trainer/sheep rancher on the beautiful Olympic Peninsula of Washington. She is the go-to person for anything dealing with local horse problems, so she’s not sur
When Annie is called out early one morning to help with a horse that was a passenger in a trailer involved in an auto accident, she finds herself stabling and caring for a beautiful thoroughbred that could only belong to one person: Hilda Colbert, known throughout the area as a controlling woman who cares more for prizes and ribbons than for the horses she owns. While attempting to return the horse to its rightful owner, Annie stumbles upon a body and is drawn to helping the local authorities fi ...more
Mar 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Leigh Hearon possesses an amazing empathy for animals. Her experience and understanding shine throughout Reining in Murder. When you add in a thrilling plot involving multiple murders and a missing suspect, you have a winning novel. Even those who aren't into horses will enjoy this well crafted mystery.

Annie Carson is a horse trainer active in the rehabilitation and rescue of horses. When there is an emergency involving horses, the sheriff's department calls on her for assistance. Reining in Mur
Peggy R
This is the debut mystery by Leigh Hearon and the first in the Carson Stables Mystery series. Cozy mysteries involving horses or stables are a new theme for me so I was happy to take a chance on this book. This story is well written with a solid mystery that has plenty of twists, turns and surprises. I enjoy stories where the author keeps me guessing as to the identity of the killer, or those where I have to work to figure out the identity of the culprit. The book has a pretty good pace, with ju ...more
Mar 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
An excellent First in the Carson Stables series, with an appealing, down to earth horse woman, Annie Carson as the amateur sleuth. Besides her own ranch, Annie is a volunteer for the Sewanee County Horse Rescue. She's called into help in the wee hours of a foggy February morning when a truck & horse trailer wrecks. The vivid description of how Annie calms the high-strung, frightened Thoroughbred made me feel like an onlooker.  Annie eventually gets the horse back to her ranch. Unfortunately, she ...more
Susan Johnston
Jun 23, 2016 rated it really liked it
Princess Fuzzypants here:
Annie Carter is a horse trainer extradinaire who helps when horses need rescue. When she ends up with a thoroughbred she tries to unite him with his owner. What she does do is find the body and gets mired in the mystery of who killed the woman and why.
Initially she figures the absent husband is the most likely perp. That is, until she meets him and is swept off her feet.
The local cops do not share her conviction and when he disappears but leaves Annie in charge of the ma
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Leigh Hearon began her own P.I. agency, Leigh Hearon Investigative Services, in 1992. Her cases have appeared on In the Dead of Night, Forensic Files, 48 Hours, Court TV, City Confidential, Unsolved Mysteries, America's Most Wanted, and CBS Evening News with Connie Chung.

Hearon was an avid rider of horses throughout her childhood. She currently has a Saddlebred mare, Jolie Jeune Femme, and enjoys

Other books in the series

A Carson Stables Mystery (4 books)
  • Saddle Up For Murder
  • Unbridled Murder (A Carson Stables Mystery, #3)
  • Runaway Murder (A Carson Stables Mystery #4)

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